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  • Abbeygirl
    Post count: 40

    Hi Doctor
    I say this every time but thanks again for this great service you provide your answer are realy helpful i just wish doctors would explain things the way you do anyway i hope you can help me here Yesterday i went into hospital yesterday for a day procedure now here my question it was Left side L4/L5 L5/S1 diagnostic facet injection the i ask the doctor a number of times what it was for he said that it is a dye and he will be able to tell what is going on with my joints and nerves and i have to go back in two weeks to get the other side done I do not feel sore from yesterdays procedure but i do not feel any better either so I was wondering if you know anything about what i have had done i did post a message a few weeks a go because the doctor said i was getting a radio frequency done but the doctor said first he was going to do these injections first to see what treatment i need but said i will need one more big operation ????? Thanks again

    Donald Corenman, MD, DC
    Post count: 8465

    The explanation given to you was imprecise. You are the one that has to know what to expect as this test is designed to allow you personally to report the effects of the injection.

    Facet blocks are of two different types (medial branch blocks and intracapsular blocks) but both are designed to yield the same information. The facet is anesthetized during the procedure. If the facet is the cause of pain, you should have significant relief of the original back pain. Since the anesthetic agent should last about three hours (just like a dental block), performing the painful activity in that golden time period should be much less painful.

    If you had no relief, the block was ineffective in proving the facets were the pain generator. The dye placed into the facet only tells the injectionist if his needle is placed correctly and has no bearing on the outcome of the test.

    A radio-frequency ablation is an attempt to kill the small sensory nerves that go into the facet. This is only appropriate if there was relief in the initial three hours after the block.

    Dr. Corenman

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