Facet syndrome –

| Advance Pain Management
Facet syndrome –

Facet syndrome, also known as facet joint syndrome is a condition that involves the degeneration, inflammation, or irritation of the facet joints in the spine. These facet joints are located on the posterior aspect of the spine and facilitate movement between adjacent vertebrae.



1.                 Aging:   Wear and tear on the facet joints due to the natural aging process.

2.                 Trauma:  Injuries, accidents, or repetitive stress can damage the facet joints.

3.                 Genetics:  Some individuals may be genetically predisposed to facet joint degeneration.

4.                 Obesity:  Excess weight can contribute to increased stress on the spine.




          1.       Pain: Typically localized to the affected facet joint region.

          2.       Stiffness: Difficulty in moving or bending the spine.

          3.       Radiating Pain: Discomfort may extend to nearby areas.

          4.       Muscle Spasms: In response to joint irritation.

          5.       Reduced Range of Motion:  Difficulty in performing certain movements.




1.                 Physical Examination: Assessment of symptoms, range of motion, and joint tenderness.

2.                 Imaging Studies: X-rays, MRI, or CT scans to visualize facet joint abnormalities.


Physiotherapy management :

The goal of managing facet syndrome is to reduce pain, improve function, and enhance the patient’s quality of life. Treatment plans are often individualized based on the severity of symptoms and the patient’s specific needs.   

1.      Pain Management:

·                    Modalities: Use of heat or cold therapy to reduce inflammation and alleviate pain.

·                    Electrotherapy: Techniques like ultrasound or transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) may be employed.

2.     Therapeutic Exercise:

·        Flexibility Exercises: Gentle stretches targeting the spine to improve range of motion.

·        Strengthening Exercises: Focus on core and back muscles to provide better support to the spine.

·        Postural Correction: Education on maintaining proper posture to minimize stress on facet joints.

3.     Manual Therapy:

          •        Joint Mobilization: Gentle movements to improve joint flexibility.

          •        Soft Tissue Massage: Techniques to relax and release tension in muscles around the affected area.


4.     Activity Modification:

·        Recommending modifications in daily activities to avoid movements or positions that worsen symptoms.

5.     Core Stability Training:

·        Exercises targeting the core muscles to enhance stability and support for the spine.


6.     Home Exercise Program:

·        Providing a tailored set of exercises for the patient to perform at home to maintain progress between physiotherapy sessions.

7.     Joint Protection Techniques:

·        Teaching techniques to minimize stress on the facet joints during activities of daily living.

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