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Lumbar Facet Impingement Syndrome

Lumbar Facet Impingement Syndrome is a condition that Chiropractors encounter almost every day. Also known as facet syndrome, facet joint sprain and spinal dysfunction, it is a condition where the joints in the lower back lock up and pinch the small cartilage between the two joint surfaces. Lumbar facet joint issues account for 15 – 45% of reported lower back pain.

Common Causes of Lumbar Facet Impingement Syndrome

Lumbar Facet Impingement Syndrome is commonly caused by degenerative changes that result from excessive rotation, extension and flexion of the spine. Facet joint degenerative osteoarthritis is the most frequent form of facet joint pain. 

Over time, the structures that support the spine – such as the intervertebral discs and facet joints – can wear down. Intervertebral discs are primarily composed of water. Age related degenerative changes affect disc hydration, resulting in a loss of disc height, affecting the normal alignment of facet joints. This leads to low back pain. Although less common, Facet Syndrome can also be caused by trauma (car accident, sports injury, etc.)

Symptoms of Lumbar Facet Impingement Syndrome

Symptoms of Lumbar Facet Impingement Syndrome will vary depending on the area affected, the severity of the issue and if nerves are affected. Symptoms may include: 

  • Dull ache in the lower back 
  • Dull ache or discomfort referred to the buttocks, hips, thighs or knees. 
  • Radiating, sharp, shooting pain from an irritated or compressed spinal nerve may be felt in the buttock, thigh, leg and/or foot (sciatica)
  • Pain that becomes more pronounced when the affected area is pressed 
  • Pain that becomes more pronounced after long periods of inactivity, heavy exercise or bending the spine backward

How can Chiropractic care help with Lumbar Facet Impingement Syndrome?

Many treatment modalities can be used to manage this condition, with people seeking Chiropractic care to help improve pain and movement. Corrective Chiropractic care or manual treatment may help restore movement and flexibility while providing pain relief, similarly to other treatment methods like soft tissue therapies, acupuncture and exercises.


Cartilages, when pinched, causes pain due to nerve supply. Chiropractors may be able to diagnose and treat lumbar facet syndrome. Our Chiropractors use the top Chiropractic methods for best patient outcomes.

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