Important notice on our opioid policy

Pain Management Expertise

Medial Branch Block

A medial branch block is a treatment for pain that has developed due to a damaged or inflamed facet joint in the spine. A facet joint is a bony structure that connects spinal vertebrae together. Facet joints help control the movement of the spine and provide extra support and stability for the vertebrae. Clinical research has shown that facet joint pain is the cause of approximately 45% of all neck and back pain that is reported by patients.

Although facet joint problems are often the cause of neck and back pain, chronic pain may also be the result of trauma or an injury. Arthritis is another common condition that may affect the facet joints. It develops when cartilage that protects the joints begins to deteriorate or the synovial fluid that cushions them begins to decrease. Arthritis often occurs with age, but may also develop due to an autoimmune disease. Facet joint arthritis, in particular, may be a source of spinal irritation and back pain. Scoliosis, which is the abnormal curvature of the spine, and poor posture may also cause chronic back pain.

Medial Branch Block

Steroid injections are a form of pain management treatment that is typically performed before a medical branch block is recommended. The injections involve the administration of an anesthetic (e.g., mepivacaine, bupivacaine, or lidocaine) as well as steroids (e.g., dexamethasome) directly into the region where the targeted facet joints are located. The injections usually provide patients with long-lasting pain relief. However, they are also used as a diagnostic tool to determine if a medial branch block will be effective. If two steroid injections produce dramatic pain relief, a physician will usually recommend the block procedure next.

A medial branch block is an effective form of pain management that reduces pain by disrupting damaged nerves in facet joints from transmitting signals to the brain. The block involves the injection of an anesthetic, steroids, and a substance that destroys nerve tissue. This combination of medication numbs the affected region, reduces inflammation, and hinders pain signal transmission.

Patients who undergo medial branch block procedures generally experience dramatic pain relief that may last for up to two years. The block procedure is also used as a diagnostic tool to confirm the location of affected facet joints.

Need to schedule an appointment? Go to Patient Resources

Direct Billing

We offer direct billing so you pay less. If you've got a benefit plan, your insurance provider will cover most of your expenses wherever applicable.

Make an Appointment