Introduction to Facet Syndrome
For some patients, alternative treatments — remedies that are not a part of mainstream medicine — may prove useful in reducing the symptoms of facet syndrome. There are many reasons why patients choose alternative treatment options, ranging from personal beliefs to feeling like more conventional treatments have been exhausted. Of course, before beginning any treatment plan, you should consult a physician.
Facet syndrome is a term that generally describes the natural deterioration of the joints in the spine, called the facet joints. Like any joint in the body, the protective articular cartilage within these joints wears away over years of movement. This degeneration can progress to the point that bone-on-bone contact occurs once the cartilage has eroded. Inflammation results in causing pain and stimulating the development of bone spurs. Bone spurs can cause further symptoms by narrowing the spinal column and compressing nerves.
These symptoms can be very disruptive to your life, straining your work, relationships, and making the activities you enjoy difficult to participate in. Learning about the full range of treatment options, including alternative treatment options, is a great first step in getting the care you need to return to a healthy, active life.
Alternative Treatment Options for Facet Syndrome
If you decide to pursue alternative treatments after being diagnosed with facet syndrome, it is important to thoroughly research the methods you pursue. Make sure that any practitioner you seek is a licensed, experienced professional with a good reputation. Keeping your physician informed of any treatment you seek is critical. You can also ask if there is a method or practitioner he or she would recommend or refer you to.
These are some alternative treatments for facet syndrome that patients commonly seek out.
- Yoga and Pilates
- Mindfulness meditation
- Herbal remedies
- Chiropractic care
When to Consider Surgery
Patients may consider surgery if alternative treatments and therapies are ineffective at treating pain. Before discussing the idea of surgery with a doctor, patients will typically undergo extensive imaging including X-rays and/or MRIs to determine the cause of their chronic back pain. Depending on the results, you and your doctor can make an informed, collaborative decision about what is best for you.
BEST Health System offers minimally invasive surgical options for spine and orthopaedic needs. Whether you are seeking conservative treatment or minimally invasive surgery for facet syndrome, BEST can help. Contact us today to learn more about our state-of-the-art procedures.