Contact us 0345 602 8179
phone

The local anaesthetics numb the nerves to the facet joint to give pain relief. The steroids reduce inflammation and may make the pain relief last longer.

What is a facet joint?

Your spine is made up of a column of bones called vertebrae. The vertebrae are joined together by small facet joints and spongy discs that sit between your vertebrae. Facet joints help to stabilise your spine.

As you get older wear and tear (osteoarthritis) in your facet joints can cause pain. Often the pain is in another area of your body such as your thigh, buttocks or neck. A facet joint injection is a diagnostic tool to help your consultant confirm that your pain is caused by your wear and tear of your facet joints.

What happens during an x-ray guided facet joint injection?

A facet joint injection usually takes less than 30 minutes and is performed using local anaestheticA small drip (called a cannula) may be inserted in the back of your hand so that we can give you drugs immediately should you feel unwell. The needle is very fine so you may not feel a thing when it is inserted. A little opening on the cannula allows fluids to be administered from an IV bag.

We will help you get into position for the injection. An antiseptic will be used to clean the area and a local anaesthetic will be injected. Once we confirm the area is numb, your consultant will carefully insert the needle for your injection. They may inject a dye (colourless contrast fluid) and take an x-ray to confirm the needle is in the right position. Sometimes an ultrasound scanner is used to help guide the needle. Please let us know if you feel any discomfort during the procedure. You may feel some pressure in the injection area or along a nerve. This is usually temporary. We will monitor you carefully during the injection.

Going home after x-ray guided facet joint injection

You should be able to go home shortly after your injection. You will not be able to drive so please arrange for someone to take you home. You should rest if you feel tired. Do not walk long distances, drive, operate machinery (including cooking) until you have fully recovered feeling, movement and coordination.

You should be able to return to normal daily activities the day after your injection.

Keep a record of your pain levels so that your consultant can plan your pain management programme or follow-up treatment.

Most people make a good recovery from facet joint injections. As with any medical procedure there could be complications including:

  • Failure of the injection to relieve your pain
  • Worsening pain
  • Backache or feeling bruised
  • Allergic reaction to local anaesthetic

Rare complications could include:


Find your nearest hospital that provides this treatment

67 Lansdowne Road
Bournemouth
BH1 1RW

01202 291866

Shenfield Road
Brentwood
CM15 8EH

01277 695695

Warren Road
Brighton
BN2 6DX

01273 624488

3 Clifton Hill
Clifton
Bristol
BS8 1BN

0117 906 4870

4 Trumpington Road
Cambridge
CB2 8AF

01223 303336

Wrexham Road
Chester
CH4 7QP

01244 680 444

78 Broyle Road
Chichester
PO19 6WB

01243 530600

Rykneld Road
Derby
DE23 4SN

01332 540100

Wonford Road
Exeter
EX2 4UG

01392 262110

25 Beaconsfield Road
Glasgow
G12 0PJ

01413349441

Stirling Road
Guildford
GU2 7RF

01483 555805

Burrell Road
Haywards Heath
RH16 1UD

01444 456999

Venns Lane
Hereford
HR1 1DF

01432 355 131

2 Leighton Street
Leeds
LS1 3EB

01133 882 067

Scraptoft Lane
Leicester
LE5 1HY

0116 2769 401

Clayton Road
Newcastle-upon-Tyne
NE2 1JP

0191 281 6131

Clayton Road
Newcastle-under-Lyme
ST5 4DB

01782 625431

Beech Road
Headington
Oxford
OX3 7RP

01865 307777

Derriford Road
Plymouth
PL6 8BG

01752 775861

Staplegrove Elm
Taunton
TA2 6AN

01823 286991

Junction Road
Norton
Stockton on Tees
TS20 1PX

01642 367439

Kingswood Road
Tunbridge Wells
TN2 4UL

01892 531111

The Chase
Old Milverton Lane
Leamington Spa
CV32 6RW

01926 436351

Winchester Road
Chandlers Ford
Eastleigh
SO53 2DW

02380 266 377

Shores Road
Woking
GU21 4BY

01483 227800

Wood Road
Tettenhall
Wolverhampton
WV6 8LE

01902 754 177

Haxby Road
York
YO31 8TA

01904 715000

Get in touch

Fill in an enquiry form below or call us

Thank you

A member of the team will respond to you soon.

The commuters' guide to back care

Simon Cabot, Nuffield Health physiotherapist provides some tips for keeping your back healthy when you're on the go.

Read full article