What are the cervical Zygapophyseal joints?

What are the cervical Zygapophyseal joints?

Also known as the zygapophyseal or apophyseal joint, is a synovial joint between the superior articular process of one vertebra and the inferior articular process of the vertebra directly above it. There are two facet joints in each spinal motion segment.

What is Zygapophyseal joint pain?

Facet joint disease is a condition in which the facet joints (also termed zygapophyseal joints) of the spine become a source of pain. This is a very common disease process (its prevalence increasing with age) and is a common source of disability with significant economic impact.

Do facet joint injuries heal?

How long does it take to heal a facet joint? As with any injuries healing times can change depending on numerous factors, such as age, weight, work and ability to avoid/manage aggravating activities. But typically, an acute sprain can take anywhere from 2-4 weeks if managed and treated correctly.

What is the main function of the facet joints?

Small joints located between and behind adjacent vertebrae. There are two facet joints at each level of the vertebral column, providing stability to the spinal column while allowing movement. They are found at every spinal level, except at the top level of the cervical spine.

What is articular pillar?

Articular Pillar of a Normal Midcervical Anterior to the upper articular process deep notches accommodate the root sleeve, ganglion portion of the root and the postganglionic cervical spinal nerve. This section also displays the vertebral artery (black) in the transverse foramina of the vertebrae.

Can facet joints cause nerve pain?

Facet joint syndrome is an arthritis-like condition of the spine that can be a significant source of back and neck pain. It is caused by degenerative changes to the joints between the spine bones. The cartilage inside the facet joint can break down and become inflamed, triggering pain signals in nearby nerve endings.

What causes cervical nerve irritation?

The most common causes of cervical radiculopathy are when a nerve root becomes inflamed or damaged due to a nearby bone spur or cervical herniated disc, such as from spinal degeneration over time or an injury. Many other less common causes of cervical radiculopathy are possible, such as infection or tumor.

Does facet syndrome show up on MRI?

Facet arthropathy may be diagnosed on x-rays, CT and MRI. CT scan may show thickened irregular facet joints. MRI scan may show joint swelling, thickened ligaments and bones and pinched nerves.

Is facet joint injury permanent?

It usually results from normal wear and tear, but injuries can worsen it. This condition can also affect younger people due to injury or overuse. Once the facet joint is damaged, it can cause long-lasting or permanent disability.

How to diagnose cervical zygapophysial joint pain?

The diagnosis of cervical zygapophysial joint pain ultimately is based on the response to controlled, diagnostic blocks of the medial branches of the cervical dorsal rami that innervate the painful joint or joints [ 1,2,4,6,7 ]. Medial branch blocks should completely relieve the patient’s pain.

What does zygapophyseal joint arthropathy ( pm ) mean?

Definition Cervical and thoracic zygapophyseal joint arthropathy refers to degenerative changes in the facet joints (zygapophyseal joints, z-joints) of the spine which may result in facet-mediated head, neck, and back pain.

How to treat zygapophysial pain in facet joint?

Treatment for Facet Joint or Zygapophysial Joint Pain. For acute stage, adequate rest is needed. Comfortable position is needed while resting to free up the joint. Hot or cold packs. Activity modifications. Anti-inflammatory medications to reduce pain and help with inflammation. After a couple of days of rest, gradual return to activities.

Where are the z joints located in the cervical spine?

In the cervical spine, they are oriented in a coronal oblique plane; in the thoracic spine, they are in a coronal plane. The z-joints function to limit excessive flexion, extension, side-bending, and axial rotation. The C2-3 z-joint is innervated by the third occipital nerve and a separate articular branch of the posterior ramus of C3.