6 doctors weighed in:

What's the next step after a lumbar facet injection if it doesn't work?

6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Qamar Khan
Pain Management
2 doctors agree

In brief: Hard to say

Depends on your pain issue.
Facet injections are helpful and can be long-lasting, however if your get short lived relief you may need to get evaluated for a radiofrequency ablation for longer lasting relief (greater than 1 year of relief is typical).

In brief: Hard to say

Depends on your pain issue.
Facet injections are helpful and can be long-lasting, however if your get short lived relief you may need to get evaluated for a radiofrequency ablation for longer lasting relief (greater than 1 year of relief is typical).
Dr. Qamar Khan
Dr. Qamar Khan
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Dr. Peter Zimmerman
Pain Management
2 doctors agree

In brief: Be careful

When you say it didn't work.
If you got short-term pain relief, it did work. In that case, confirmatory facet blocks and/or medial branch blocks would be the next appropriate step.

In brief: Be careful

When you say it didn't work.
If you got short-term pain relief, it did work. In that case, confirmatory facet blocks and/or medial branch blocks would be the next appropriate step.
Dr. Peter Zimmerman
Dr. Peter Zimmerman
Thank
Dr. Thomas Dowling
Orthopedic Surgery - Spine

In brief: Look for another

Look for another reason for the back pain as it is not uncommon to see facet changes on imaging studies as we age.
Just because there are these changes does not necessarily mean they are problematic.

In brief: Look for another

Look for another reason for the back pain as it is not uncommon to see facet changes on imaging studies as we age.
Just because there are these changes does not necessarily mean they are problematic.
Dr. Thomas Dowling
Dr. Thomas Dowling
Thank
1 comment
Dr. Peter Zimmerman
If they are relieved by facet blocks, and subsequently by medial branch confirmatory blocks, the appropriate next step is radiofrequency neurotomy. When worked up apporpriately, RF is effective in 85% of cases (Spine. 2000 May 15;25(10):1270-7.)
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