Your lower back is a complex system involving numerous bones, nerves, ligaments, joints, and muscles. The sheer complexity of the structure creates multiple opportunities for injury and associated pain. At Atlantic Coast Spine & Pain Center in Conway, South Carolina, Dr. R. Blake Kline offers comprehensive care for lower back pain. When you're ready to move beyond daily pain and discomfort, schedule a consultation online or over the phone to learn more about your treatment options.
Your lower back supports the full weight of your upper body, and also enables mobility that allows you to bend, twist, and walk. The system of nerves and muscles in the lower back allow you to move through the course of an average day, and to transmit sensory data from your lower extremities to your brain.
A great deal of acute lower back pain stems from inflammation that results from an injury. Chronic lower back pain can arise from the degenerative disc disease or other conditions that worsen over time.
Lower back pain can be difficult to diagnose because the structures of your lower back are interconnected. Pain in one area may be caused by an injury or issue in another portion of your lower back.
To implement successful treatment for lower back pain, Dr. Kline must first accurately diagnose the source of your pain. Medial branch blocks and facet joint injections are tools that can pinpoint the specific nerves responsible for lower back pain.
Medial branch blocks work by delivering an anesthetic such as lidocaine to your medial branch nerves. If the injection provides immediate pain relief, Dr. Kline determines that those nerves are transmitting pain signals to your brain.
Facet joint injections work in much the same way. An anesthetic and steroid solution is injected directly into targeted facet joints. If pain relief follows, then those joints are the source of pain.
While both of these injections provide immediate pain relief, they are most commonly used in diagnostic applications or for short-term pain relief while you pursue other treatment options, such as radiofrequency ablation.