Facet Arthropathy: A Common Source of Back Pain

by Feb 6, 2023Arthritis Care0 comments

Back pain is a common problem that affects millions of people each year. While there are many causes of back pain, one of the most common is facet arthropathy. In this blog, we will discuss what facet arthropathy is, its symptoms, causes, and treatments.

What is Facet Arthropathy?

Facet arthropathy is a condition that affects the joints in the spinal column. These joints, called facets, are located in pairs on either side of the vertebral bodies and allow for movement and stability of the spine. When these joints become damaged or arthritic, it can lead to a condition known as facet arthropathy.

Symptoms of Facet Arthropathy

The symptoms of facet arthropathy can vary depending on the severity of the condition. Some common symptoms include:

  • Low back pain that may spread to the hips, legs, or buttocks
  • Stiffness and limited mobility in the back
  • Muscle spasms
  • Tenderness in the back or neck

Causes of Facet Arthropathy

There are several factors that can contribute to the development of facet arthropathy. Some of the most common causes include:

  • Age-related wear and tear
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Injuries to the back or neck

Treatments for Facet Arthropathy

The treatment for facet arthropathy will depend on the severity of the condition. In many cases, conservative treatments such as physical therapy, pain medication, and hot or cold therapy can be effective in managing symptoms. In more severe cases, radiofrequency ablation can be performed alleviate pain from the affected joints. On average, patients can experience 2-5 years of relief from their back pain after receiving radiofrequency ablation of the facet joint.

In conclusion, facet arthropathy is a common cause of back pain that affects the joints in the spinal column. If you are experiencing symptoms of facet arthropathy, it is important to see a healthcare provider for an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment plan. With the right care, most people with facet arthropathy are able to manage their symptoms and maintain a high quality of life.

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