Pain after facet joints denervation.

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    Hi, I have just joined this group and have never been part of a forum before so I don’t really know what I am doing! or if I am doing it properly!
    I had facet joint denervation at two llevels L3/4 and SI ( ? ) nearly 3 weeks ago ( I have 4 titanium screws from previous back surgery at level 4/5 so this level could not be done )and the pain is still much worse than it was before I had the procedure done. Has anyone else experienced this and if so how long did it take to settle for them? Everything I read online talks about ‘ up to two weeks ‘ for possible increased pain levels before they settle . I am feeling very depressed about it all and starting to wish I had never had it done. I had the same procedure 10 years ago and it worked like a dream, no increased pain after 24 hours and then no real problems again until a couple of months ago when it all started up again. I hoped someone might have some positive news as I am feeling so low. Thank you anyway.

    Jan Sadler

    Hi Keri,

    Welcome to our Forum, and don’t worry, you are doing everything exactly right!

    Sorry to hear about your situation and I hope you get some relief very soon. Try to stay calm, it’s still early days. Relaxation techniques can help with the pain and with keeping calm. There are plenty of relaxation tracks available on the internet for free or from my Shop on this site.

    I haven’t had this operation myself and so I hope someone else comes along soon who can give you more information.

    Meanwhile, you could explore the Pain Relief section on this site, you find it in the main menu.

    Take care, keep in touch.

    Jan at PainSupport


    Hi Keri, welcome to the forum, I had fusion from L4-5 to SI(sacroiliac joint) which is basically the triangle bit of spine just above the tail which your pelvis attaches to.
    I have had denervation and ablations ,sadly non of which were very short lived or didnt work, but some it works well and can last for a year or more, it does increase your pain for a little while then settles down to give less pain /no pain. can take a couple of weeks or more in some people, but if it doesn’t settle after 4-6 weeks then you need to go back and see them. as it might have not worked for you. and as Jan says try some relaxation methods to stop yourself going into a panic about it all, as this this can make you worse. Hope this helps you in some way and that it does settle down for you soon if not give the surgeons secretary a ring. Take care and best wishes, Lee


    Thank you both for your support. I had a very good day yesterday but today am back to far worse pain than I had before the facet joint denervation. I suppose good days and bad days are ‘normal ‘as part of getting better but as I have only ever experienced steady and continual progress towards getting better when my back has been painful in the past , this is something I am finding very depressing. I am trying to be positive though and doing relaxation techniques and things to keep my mind on anything other than the pain! Talking to others who have similar experiences is very helpful too so thank you both again.


    Hi Keri , if your struggling mentally what has helped me is CBT and Mindfulness taught within a small group. long term pain does take it’s toll on you mentally and makes you depressed. I have been living in constant pain now for about 23 years so have been round the system a number of times. but it is good to have distraction methods as your already doing, most on here like myself do art/crafts ect. and when in a bad flare up i do my family tree as its free on wikitree. also good to have this forum as you can talk to people who really know what your going through and experiencing, with empathy and understanding. take care for now and best wishes, Lee

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