A facet joint block injection or infiltration is a minimally invasive spinal treatment done for long-term pain relief and management of inflammation. Facet joints are located in pairs on either side of the vertebrae, providing support and stabilisation for the spine. Inflammation can build around these joints due to injury or conditions such as arthritis, causing pain and stiffness of the joint.

Facet joint pain-blocking injections are commonly done as treatment for pain and inflammation, but may also be done as a diagnostic tool to find the cause for back or neck pain.

Joint block infiltrations can be used for pain management of the following conditions:

  • Spinal stenosis

  • Severe muscles spasm

  • Radiculopathy (Sciatica)


Joint block infiltrations are commonly done on an outpatient basis with sedation, but may also be done under general anaesthetic. You will be asked to lie face down on the examining table for the duration of the procedure. Dr. Kolloori will use a fluoroscopy or CT imaging to guide the placement of the needle. Once in position, the needle is inserted into the facet joint.

A contrasting dye is then injected into the joint to allow real-time x-ray or CT images. This is done to ensure the injection's placement is accurate to relieve pain in that area. Finally, anaesthetic and anti-inflammatory medications such as steroids or cortisone are injected directly into the facet joint to provide pain relief. By administering these medications straight into the joint, the medications are able to be more effective.

You may notice instant pain relief after the injection. This may be due to the anaesthetic; however, the full effects of the injection should begin within a day or two of the procedure. The effects of facet joint block injections as a pain management treatment may vary, and it isn't certain how long the pain may be relieved for. Patients are advised to keep track of their pain and note when the effects wear off..