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shellsk24 (@shellsk24)

Facet Joint Injections - Anyone had success?

Spine Health | Last Active: Aug 21, 2019 | Replies (115)

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@predictable

Hi @sandytoes14, I notice you have had problems in both lumbar and cervical regions of your spine. I have a little information to add to your notes. On the lumbar issue, I had lower back pain for months; physical therapy only made it worse, because it wasn’t a classical spinal problem; it turned out to be inflammation of the sacroiliac joint on one side of my pelvis. The diagnosis depended on a type facet injection into the inflamed joint; by stopping the pain for good, it proved that the inflammation diagnosis was correct. Within six weeks, carefully designed physical therapy treatments brought the pain to an end. It hasn’t returned in four years.

On the cervical issue, a good friend in her early 50s had deteriorating discs in her C 5-6 vertebrae. Injections and blocks by pain specialists helped but not permanently. She decided to replace three damaged discs — not fuse the vertebrae, but restore her previous flexible cervical spine. No such surgical procedure involving two or more discs was approved for performance in the US 7 years ago (it may not be even today). So she went to Germany for two weeks and had the surgeons there insert artificial discs. She met several other Americans who were there for the same operation. I have communicated with one of them over the years since. She and my friend both returned to full physicality without pain of any significance — one back to playing semi-professional hockey, the other running and playing golf regularly. The fantastic thing was that my friend’s surgery involve incisions to approach the spine from the front of her throat. Miraculously, in my view, there was no damage to nerves or blood vessels, which was crucial since she is an accomplished singer who could have lost her voice for good. She didn’t, and she continues as the leader of her church choir and a primary soprano in a regional professional choir.

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Thanks for that info @predictable . I’m going to Ortho Spine at the Naval hospital on Monday to see what his views are for me.

@predictable I saw the ortho surgeon. He is not recommending any surgery at this time. If I had numbness or weakness he would, but the various injections have that issue currently resolved. So it’s back to suffering with 1 Norco a day for relief of pain (9 is my usual without it, 8 with Norco) Doctors in my area are unwilling to prescribe any narcotics.
Thanks again for the info!

how much did tht cost ? We are in BC,Canada and I keep repeating to my husband if we come up on the lottery it wouldn't be holidays,cars,new house for me it would be a spinal specialist in the US.You think German surgeons are better eh ?