Facet joints are the joints between each portion of the backbone (vertebrae), which are present on both sides of the spine.
When back pain or neck pain is caused by a pathology or problem in the facet joint, it is termed, facet joint syndrome.
Activities that cause pressure on the facet joints will make the neck or back pain worse. These activities include leaning backwards and "extending" the neck or lower back as well as twisting at the waist.
Pain arising from the facet joints is usually at the level of the affected facet joint. Occasionally the pain may radiate to other areas. If the lower back facets are diseased, pain may radiate to buttocks or thighs. If the neck facets are involved pain may radiate to head, upper back and shoulders.
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