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Facet Pain VS disc pain

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,321
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:25 AM in Lower Back Pain
X( I am so tired of Doctors that won't listen to me. 2001 I had an MRI on my Cervical spine and they found some degeneration's, narrowing but not encroaching etc. etc.Not significant to them, not minding i was totally miserable. Then February of this year I finally found a Doctor who ordered another MRI. Again, it showed narrowing and DDD but he said it shouldn't be hurting me that much. REALLY? Try it on for a day and then get back to me doc. So he reluctantly asked if I wanted surgery...no not really but I hurt so bad I said yes. Six hours in surgery and he came out and told my husband that he had NEVER seen a neck like that and that if I had been in a car accident or fallen I'd probably have snapped my neck and died...nice huh? That just shows you that a MRI doesn't show everything and maybe the doctors should listen to us. It's OUR body and we know when something is terribly wrong. Now again I am fighting a battle with my lumbar sacral area basically the MRI I had last December said I have 2 bulging discs(mild it says) and they added "No clinical significance".Okay...fine..I'm seeing a spine and pain management doctor who on the 23rd of November did a diagnosing medial branch block because he thinks it's facet pain.The block was only to last a couple of hours and it did on the left side. The right side just got worse and now he;s doing it again on Thursday like it's going to be a different outcome. I hope so but I'm not holding my breath. It hurts to stand longer than 30 minutes, I can't sit for very long,my feet are numb but it's just facets..GAWD I'm so frustrated and I'm allergic to narcotics so I suffer 24-7 and no one understands but maybe someone here. Thanks for listening.


  • I had facet joints injected on Saturday. It stopped the creaking in my spine. But that deep pain for the herniated disc is unbearable. The same I can't stand >20 minutes. Did you have epidurals this time too, it sure helps with feet numbness and pain. Take care and hope Thursdays injections help. Heat helps too I find. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Thanks Charry.
    I have not gotten that far I guess. So far they have done and are doing 6 injections of lidocaine to see if it helps...If it does then they will go in and burn the nerves.I'm so afraid to go Thursday because those two spot on my L4 and L5 hurt so bad I nearly came off the table. The others were no big deal. Thanks for answering me back!
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  • Hiya >:D< Welcome To Spine Health :D Firstly i just want to say , you are not alone >:D< , there are so many here with simular stories to yours :? . We are here for you and we do understand your pain, and the day to day frustrations, that we all go through #:S . I do know how you feel when doctors do not understand, and will not listen to what we say ~X( . You also hit another note :? , how do they know how this feels unless they have the pain that we have #:S .Like charry i had the facet joint injections 11 days ago and i have a swelling on my back from surgery in 2003, and since the injections im getting pains , like contractions but in my back , very painful :''( . I hope all goes well for you on thursday, keep us posted :D . If you want to PM me you can anytime even if you just need to vent out a little. >:D<

    Angie :H
  • I'm sorry you're having pain from the injections plus the usual pain. I hope you feel better soon. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • I am here to tell you that my facet joints are causing me way more pain than the disc that I had an annular tare in. The facet joints are responsible for motion of the spine. Not being able to sit, stand or walk can be a sign of trouble with the facets. Does your back ever "lock up" on you? Do you get stuck in a hunched over position? The doc is doing these blocks as diagnostic testing. That is why it only lasts a few hours. It sounds like he is headed in the right direction. Be optimistic because if it is your facet joints there are longer lasting procedures to try. I wish you luck and please keep us posted.
    BTW - I really do understand your reluctance to trust these docs.
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  • I have bulging, protusions & herniations in cervical & thoracic spine. Around T 6-7. Going to have a Medial Branch block...Why? what do the facets have to do with the herniations. My MRI says all the facets are normal. can anyone explain this to me?
    Thank you.
  • I read a couple of articles yesterday that indicated an MRI is of little value in the case of low back pain. Any thoughts on this?

    Do doctors keep ordering them as lawyer repellant, knowing they won't get much info about lumbar damage?
  • Thank you for your reply, it is helpful and I will keep you posted
  • earthwitch8 said:
    Thank you for your reply, it is helpful and I will keep you posted
    Wow you replied to something that I posted 1 year ago. I got an email for your buddy request and accepted it. I have not been here is awhile but will check in again.
  • MRIs are of great value in general, because they provide so much information. They can reveal problems with discs, nerve compression, facet joint problems, spine degeneration, stenosis and many other things. They don't necessarily show what is causing a patient's symptoms, and often other tests are needed to provide a clearer picture of what's going on, but I personally think they are essential for anyone who has serious back issues.
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