Facet Pain

The facet joints are the joints connecting each of the bones (vertebrae) in the spine. There is one on each side at every level of the spine. These joints allow our spine to bend and twist and they help support us when standing and walking. Facet pain is often caused by wear and tear of the cartilage inside the joint similar to changes that occur in other joints like our knees and hips. Restricted motion of the joints can occur due to tight muscles, improper lifting, or poor posture and lead to facet pain. Trauma can also injure the facet joints.


  • Pain is usually localized to the spine
  • May radiate to the head or shoulders from the neck or to the buttocks or thighs from the lower back
  • Stiffness and restricted motion
  • Pain with movement
  • Muscle spasms


  • Avoid activities that increase pain
  • Ice for the first 2-3 days then alternate with heat
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Stretching to increase range of motion
  • Physical therapy
  • Osteopathic manipulation
  • Acupuncture
  • Laser therapy
  • Steroid injections into the joint(s)
  • Medial branch blocks and radiofrequency ablation (rhizotomy)

Appointment Request

Committed to Your Well-being