Ultrasound-Guided Cervical Facet Nerve Blocks (Medial Branch and Third Occipital Nerve)


The facet joints of the cervical spine are well-documented sources of chronic neck pain, with a prevalence among patients with chronic neck pain of around 40–50 % [1, 2]. To date, blocking the nerves of the facet joints with local anesthetic is the only validated method to diagnose facet joint pain [3]. In patients diagnosed with cervical facet joint-mediated pain, radiofrequency neurotomy is an effective therapy. It is supported by one high-quality randomized controlled trial [4] and several prospective observational studies [5–9]. In these trials, treatment has provided complete pain relief in 70–80 % of the selected patients for an average time of around 1 year.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Anesthesiology and Pain TherapyUniversity of Bern, InselspitalBernSwitzerland

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