Joint injections relieve pain and inflammation caused by injury, degenerative disease, and other conditions that affect the health and mobility of a joint. The injection solution typically contains a numbing agent and a corticosteroid or other substance that inhibits inflammation. The purpose of the injection is to relieve pain and to make rehabilitation easier.
Knees, ankles, elbows, and many other joints causing pain may respond well to a joint injection. Because chiropractors focus on the spine, however, they typically treat the joints in your back and neck, and most often the facet joints.
Facet joints are paired joints in the back and neck. There’s one pair at each vertebral level. These tiny joints help stabilize the motion in your back. They enable you to bend forward and backward and twist to the side but prevent your spine from flopping or rotating too far in one direction or the other.
Symptoms vary among patients as well as the location of the impaired facet joints. For instance, an issue with facet joints in your neck, or cervical spine, may cause pain that radiates into the shoulders or upper back. Problems with a facet joint in the lower back may cause pain in the areas of the joint as well as pain that travels down the leg through the buttocks and into the back of the thigh. Your clinician completes a comprehensive evaluation to determine whether your symptoms are due to joint damage.
Once your First Team Medical Clinics doctor has identified the joint or joints causing your pain, a joint injection is a relatively simple procedure performed in the office without sedation. The site of the injection is cleansed and treated with a numbing agent to prevent discomfort from the needle prick. The doctor typically uses fluoroscopy, a type of X-ray, to ensure they direct a very small needle into the targeted facet joint. They then inject the mixture into the joint and removes the needle.
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