There are many causes of and reasons for low back pain – it can be a very complex condition to manage. Sometimes low back pain is caused by an irritation of the small facet joints in the spine – a condition known as facet joint syndrome, facet joint disease or facet joint arthropathy. Although patients with this condition are often advised facet joint injections, shockwave therapy is an effective and less invasive option.
Facet joint arthropathy causes long-term low back pain and manifests as a low-grade ache across the low back – generally felt more on one side than the other.
It can be aggravated by long periods of standing, walking or being stuck in one position and movements such as bending sideways or backwards can also cause pain. Less commonly, pain may also radiate into the buttock(s) and down one or both legs.
Facet joint arthropathy is a degenerative condition affecting the small joints within the spine. It is more common in the older population although symptoms often start around middle age.
Prior injury to the spine, a degeneration of a spinal disc or a history of heavy manual work before the age of 20 are potential causative factors. Obesity and a history (or family history) of osteoarthritis are also risk factors.
Most cases of short-to-medium-term facet joint arthropathy can be effectively managed with a short course of manual therapy coupled with exercise advice. However for longer-term problems, or where manual therapy and exercise has proved ineffective, a different approach is generally advised.
Traditionally, people with this condition have embarked upon a ‘journey’ of ever more invasive interventions: starting with steroid injections, progressing on to nerve radiofrequency ablation and ending up with spinal surgery.
An effective and minimally invasive alternative to this journey however is Shockwave therapy, which can provide patients with relief from their pain without the need for further and more invasive intervention.
Our clinic provides osteopathy and shockwave therapy for areas including March, Ely, Wisbech, Huntingdon, St. Ives and Whittlesey.
Contact us now to book a free 15-minute chat with an Osteopath to see if shockwave could help with your low back pain.
Need help? Call us on 01354 694050 or book online here