Facet joint injections OUCH!!

Back home after getting 4 facet joint injections under x-ray guidance. I had a sacroiliac injection in past but that was nothing compared to these ! I have a very high pain tolerance but these were tough though doctor did say if he was hitting the right spot i would feel it down my leg . However , it only took 15-20 minutes so i hope its worth a short period of pain . I have to rest for 3-5 days depending on how i feel , no driving for 24 hours, i can potter about basically. I hope that if pain reduces i will be able to exercise and strengthen my back for the future. The pain you have to go through to hopefully reduce pain ........onwards and upwards πŸ˜€πŸ˜€

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  • Let us know if it works πŸ€•

  • I will but it may take 3-4 weeks before the full benefit kicks in πŸ™„

  • Hope and pray your neck shots work (my neck shots showed and proved I need to have neck surgery---they go in through the front----just so unsure about doing it).....

  • Terri that sounds nasty ! I had injections in lumbar spine , i hope to avoid surgery. Wishing you all the best for your treatment 🌸🌸🌸

  • Thanks unsure of neck surgery and hope things get better for you

  • Ask your consultant lots of questions before you make a decision 🌸🌸🌸🌸

  • Well done you for the endurance test - hopefully will pay off in short time and give longer term relief. I did have a lumbar puncture a few years ago and have to say that the degenerative arthritis in my lumbar region made this an extremely stressful experience - had to be flown home in a wheelchair! Most of what she drew was contaminated by bleeding but she got enough to show I had some systemic process occurring - well I could have told them that lol!! X

  • Its like being a pin cushion , between the constant blood tests and injections, though this morning it was like a big knitting needleπŸ˜€

  • Hi weathervan

    I have experienced many steroid injections in and around my back and hips, the first two were hip and spine and pain relief may have lasted a week, if that, but I suffered terribly because they were Cortisone, I had a really bad reaction to it and felt so unwell, I was off work for a fortnight. They did a fasting blood test cos the symptoms were very diabetes like and that came back ok, however when I still didn't feel well, the GP in his office there and then said that fasting blood tests were not the way to go and he did a blood sugar test there and then, it was 2 hours post breakfast and read 13.5 and he announced I definitely had diabetes. I was put on Metformin, however now two years later I am off the Metformin because my average blood sugars are now within a fairly healthy range, its controlled by diet now and I am convinced from looking at another forum that this is fairly common place for steroid shots to bring on diabetic symptoms.

    I then went on to have diagnostic RF facet joint injections and and now awaiting RF denervation of facet joints and spine, however I've been waiting three months. My life now is pretty hard because I have bulging discs, degenerative disc disease, facet joint arthritis, osteoarthritis all in and around the spine, I've had trochanteric bursitis for four years and its all really rotten. I had an emergency (so called, had to wait three weeks as consultant on holiday when I was finally admitted to hospital) I had a severely prolapsed disc causing impingement and I was locked in a fetal position, couldn't move, couldn't get up for a wee anymore and by the time I was admitted (and I had to insist, it had been my second attempt) it was Easter and it appears the one and only consultant was on holiday. When he returned he sat by my bedside having seen the MRI and declared a needed emergency surgery (lol), I could have told them that days ago,the others didn't take me seriously at all, probably because I didn't make enough of a fuss regarding the pain, he duly cancelled the following day's clinic and did my surgery. What a relief that was, however I now know the delay has caused me ongoing problems; I was pretty good for a year, but then awful cramps and spasms set in, in my calf and ankle, each time they would spasm,the next day my leg would be very weak and hard to walk on..... for four years plus I have been battling for them to do something else and they have to be fair, referred to pain management clinic who to be honest have definitely tried to tell me the pain is just all in my head and I can overcome it (I'm a previous breast cancer patient 04, and I think they believe that people like me suffer from chronic pain conditions because of our previous history), but the MRIs don't lie and as the injections helped a little they were diagnostic there was now further bulging of same disc L5 S1 and others now together with facet joint arthritis etc. I hope the denervation works, I cannot wait for it, my day to day life is so affected, though it still doesn't show to people and rheumatology saw me for couple of years, about three visits and after blood tests and no further flares of hair loss, facial rash, two red eyes, being sick for no reason and pain in all my joints and muscles and tender skin, tender lumps under skin they could actually find no RA or lupus or Sjorgrens but I still feel there is something and even expected them to declare fibromyalgia at the very least if I'm honest but no, no diagnosis from rheumatolgy even though they admitted the arthritis, osteoporosis, just recommended gabapentin which doesn't do anything because I can't take three a day and still function at work and in life generally!

    Please tell me about your diagnosis and if you've had an MRI, what changes do you have and have the injections helped? - I hope they have, mine worked for one month approx. I'll let you know how denervation goes if I ever get an appointment.

    Best wishes, K x

  • Hi krawlins , you have had a really horrible time . I have had problems with my back for over 20 years on and off , initially ihad severe muscle spasms , bad enough to dislocate several ribs . In the last 6-7 years i had bursitis and sacroiliac problems and had numerous steroid injections. Two years ago i was diagnosed with primary sjogrens and i have started to improve with rituximab infusions every 6 months. When i went up for last infusion the rheumy said i need MRI SCAN as my back was very painful with pain down into my foot and pins and needles. MRI showed 4 slipped discs so she recommended facet joint injections. Ive never had a bad reaction to steroids, my blood sugar is usually low so appart from the pain , which means they are hitting the spot, i just hope they work . The last injection i had for hip bursitis didn't work so the pain was more from the discs . Best wishes for your treatment, you really do need something to work 🌸🌸🌸🌸🌸🌸🌸

  • Oh poor you weathervane. I'm 56 but knew at a young age (teenage) that my back wasn't quite right but it took a long time for a disc to actually slip. I'd never been able to wear heels since I became old enough to and this was so disappointing as only 5'1". After vacuuming and bending over I then found it painful to straighten up, realised this aged about 15. So have suffered until it came to a head about 35 yrs later! I've been checked I think for most things AI related and there doesn't appear to be a link and I'll have to accept this as just me having a bad back and severe arthritis, however both sons and daughter have also had similar signs already of this bad back we all seem to be pre-disposed to, as do my brother and our late mother. Are your facet joint injections being done diagnostically? It appears mine were. The chiropractor helped me a little bit when I wasn't any better after 6 treatments he advised me to go back to GP. I'm seeing spinal orthopaedics in a fortnight to get their opinion. Please keep us updated on your progress and how the injections are long term. You have suffered an awful lot and for a long time. I'm now really restricted as to what I can do and still have constant chronic pain which frequently becomes acute!

    Best wishes K x

  • Your story sounds very familiar krawlins ! Im a year younger than and im a bit of a crock as well πŸ˜€ The facet joint injections were treatment and im hoping that i will get enough pain relief so that will be able to exercise a bit and strengthen my back - if the sjogrens allows , i have joint and muscle pain , and tiredness as part of my symptoms from that . Good luck with your appointment in two weeks , it was a spinal specialist i saw as well , he came recommended but i found him very hard to talk to , his poor social skills not mine i think LOL , best wishes xx

  • Well very good luck, I hope you will be able to strengthen your back in time. My arm and thigh muscles have developed this year because I use them instead of back muscle, but boy do those muscles hurt now. Let's hope we both get some relief very soon x

  • I hope you get a diagnosis soon as it helps to know what you are working with . Please keep s posted with your results🌸🌸🌸🌸🌸🌸🌸

  • Definitely keep us posted on how effective the injections are. I've got Facet Degeneration and a couple of bulging disk, I'm in agony, I'm considering the injections but I'm scared.

    Glad to hear you got through it ok, take it easy for a week at least!

  • I will clare , it was a bit like child birth , i had 20 minutes of bad pain and now its gone ! I probably wont know for 3-4 how successfully they have been , but i will update then and let you know. I had sacroiliac injections so i sort of new what to expect, it was very successful 🌸🌸🌸🌸

  • I hope dear weathervane that your treatment proves very successful !! I hope the pain is diminished to very manageable & that you have some relief in your spine. Also I hope that you having this done can so help to relieve Claire's worry about her possible future injection treatment! Claire, so many of us have had the injection treatment & have been helped. I have, like Weathervane been treated for breast cancer & currently it looks like I am heading to theatre for spinal surgery for the second time! Like most people I am in continuous pain. ( thinking of you so much Krawlins as well as all of you who have written about horrendous back issues). I have bulging discs plus other issues in neck & was not considered a great candidate for neck surgery, but have had steroid injections three times in neck over a period of time. This & eventually Physio had helped & after having them done first time I was much more confident. Same as back, I had injections for back done 5 times over a few years some time after my initial surgery on the spine for very severe prolapse L5 & complications. Now a few years later I am in much worse trouble, injections OK but with no relief. In April I had 4 facets & nerve root done, 8 weeks later a steroid epidural, still no relief so caudal epidural, that is injection up the tail bone. This was probably most uncomfortable, but bearable if any thought of relief given. 8 weeks later no change so definite second spinal surgery to be done! Does anyone know if Lupus can cause facet / disc inflammation of spine as I have dreadful inflammation of spine ??? Sorry for meandering & going on, but just want to say, 'have your steroid treatments if appropriate & perhaps be lucky enough to raise the quality of your life'. Oh by the way I have also had Jaw arthrocentesis 2 times, done for atrophy of (R). TMJ joint which, was a great help but now I can have no more, now conservative treatment only! I do hope you can make sense out of this all. Please try not to fear too much that which might give hope or relief to the extent that pain is not always consuming the quality of your life.

    Thinking of you all, Weathervane please let us know how things are with you. Claire we are always frightened of what our treatments might be, I am so frightened of next spinal surgery but anything is better than the pain, I live with! Sometimes I just exist!! Krawlins, I do hope that when you see the orthopaedic consultant, that you will have some relief from your exhausting chronic pain & the flares that make it so painfully acute. Thinking of you all. I do hope that your pain will be diminished & that there is improvement of your illness what ever your treatments might be.

    Very, Very, Best Caring Wishes. XX Pixiewixie

  • Thank you Pixiewixie, I had felt so alone with my issues but this makes me (sadly) realise I'm not! What winds me up most was when one pain management specialist tried to say it's all in the mind. They have literally said that because I've had breast cancer this can lead to issues such as chronic pain. I have very real physical issues for the pain and they can't be denied. Although none of us want surgery I was hoping there would be something on offer surgery wise but pain management have told me there isn't and I've a sneaking suspicion spinal surgeons will say the same. I don't know what I'm hoping for really other than an end to this pain. I can't believe in this day and age there isn't a solution to free us all from this pain. Maybe it will be the denervation?? I hope so and I will let you all know by means of this excellent forum, even though I supposedly don't have AI issues I have found it so interesting and it just popped up in google when I typed in just one of my many symptoms.

    My son has told me that you can buy cannabis oil online, in the form of vaping or like jelly tots! I believe it isn't cheap but that it has had the harmful element removed. I would be frightened to try it because if it works I feel you would become addicted, at the same time I am very curious. If I ever pluck up the courage to try it then I'll let you know. I think he is going to try the vaping oil, I'll probably start by having a try of that (ex smoker). I feel it wrong to even consider such a thing but I've just had enough of feeling like this with no relief from gels, pills and injections!

    Best wishes to all fellow sufferers! K x

  • Best wishes pixie , i hope things improve for you soon xxxx

  • Hi weathervane

    I do hope the facet joint injections work and are worth the initial pain. They were for me . I was surprised how painful it was, things we do eh!. Keep us posted and fingers tightly crossed for you. X

  • Thats just what my husband said- the things we have to do !! He really doesn't know how we put up with everything . Its good to hear from someone who has had success πŸ˜€ How long ago did you have the injections and have you had to get them done again ? 🌸🌸🌸

  • Hi weathervane

    Hope your still pain free. I had them a few years ago now from a previous pain clinic consultant!. She left and a new consultant changed them to a nerve block and the Radiofrequency ones. This is to help leg nerve damage which they all have. I think I only had the facet joint ones once!. Some consultants here won't do them because they have limited benefit but I was lucky they worked well. I hope they work well for you. X

  • Thanks misty , i will just have to keep my fingers crossed these have worked. I hope yours continue to work well xxx

  • Thanks weathervane, my last lot of injections gave me 8 weeks pain free, just enough time to heal my broken foot!. In pain again and can't speak to consultant till end Oct!. Fingers crossed you get a nice long time. X

  • Hi misty , i have a question about how you got on after your spinal injections- did you feel very tired for a number of days ? I am still really tired if i do anything , did you find you were more exhausted that normal 4-5 days afterwards . I do know it can take 2-3 to get pain benefit 🌸

  • Hi weathervane, yes I was extra tired afterwards, ,just wanted to sleep and sleep. I put it down to having pain relief and being able to catch up on lost sleep!. It took a few days to wear off!. Hope you still have pain relief. X

  • Thats a relief ! I was trying to google info but there was no mention of tiredness lasting for days . I can actually get out of the chair without pain at the moment which is amazing πŸ˜€

  • Hi weathervane, glad to help. So pleased you've got good relief. It transforms us doesn't it?. Do it lasts a long time. How's your bat?. X

  • Fingers crossed 🀞🏻! There have been no more bat sightings or any evidence, my husband put up a bat box but cant check to see if there is a resident πŸ˜€Did you see the video that went viral of the bat been chased round a kitchen in Kerry? It is worth a watch though my bat was twice that size with vampire teeth πŸ¦‡

  • Hi weathervane, I'll take a look, is it on YouTube?. Having fun at the moment with hedgehogs. Four are coming for food. X

  • I used to have a tiny hedgehog visitor but i think neighbouring cats may have scared it . Its lovely to have wildlife visitors as long as they stay outside πŸ˜€ I think the video should be still on YouTube, if you watch it lookout for the mammy !

  • Hi weathervane, just watched the bat video!. Can be terrifyingcan't it specially if animal concerned is scared too!. Glad your bat didn't do this. It's great you've put a bat box up. At least hedgehogs are quieter, snuffling away. Shame you lost yours as they're good for the garden!. You could put a saucer of water out to see if you have one if you felt brave enough!.😊X

  • Thanks weathervane, what are we like? I hope things keep improving for you also. My young grandson said 'That his granny walked like the old witch from Hansel and Gretel ' & he was so very proud of my amazing ability to do so. Out of the mouth of babes! I hope my next intervention will permit me to walk a little more lady like!!! Take care weathervane, it is so great to be able to communicate with kind people who do understand! X pixiewixie

  • Good luck pixiewixie for your back op. Sorry your having to go thru it and I really hope it's successful!. X

  • πŸ˜€

  • Hello Krawlins, thank you for your kind reply. To give you a little hope, a friend of mine has had denervation done & found it gives great relief. It is a bit of a trial having it done but she says now that she knows what it is about she is much more relaxed. I don't think that the cannabis oil works for everyone. Read an article discussing the dangers of vaping & the chemicals involved. Oh what is it one has to do? Anyway if your doctor had your pain they would very quickly understand!! I know that you would do anything when pain eats & eats into your life!! I haven't a clue what sleep is as I can only sleep sitting on the chair! Then the legs swell even more! They are painted with a shiny red lupus rash at present. I am possibly moaning but I hope not complaining too much! Hope you see a great orthopaedic consultant who can empathise & be aware of your anguish. Please keep us informed regarding your appointment. I also do understand the chronic nerve pain of post breast cancer surgery. I understand how pain is always there & please understand that on this site the kind people are aware that you have such pain. Please try to look after yourself as best as possible.... I know it doesn't always happen. Take care dear krawlins & I hope you make good progress with your consultation... take care & very, very healing & peaceful wishes, Pixiewixie xx.

  • Thank you so much Misty14. I Saw the orthopaedic consultant tonight & he is taking me to surgery ASAP. No option but to go for second spinal surgery, I have stenosis & lots of other things going on including massive inflammation. Is there anyone else that has spinal inflammation because of lupus ? Thank you for any answers, Take care Pixiewixie. XX

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