What is radiofrequency neurotomy of the z-joint (facet) medial branch nerves?
The Z-joints joints are located in the back of the spine and prevent excessive twisting of the spine. If it has been determined through a medial branch nerve injection (diagnostic) that the pain is emanating from the joint, then radiofrequency neurotomy (therapeutic) of the small nerve going to the joint may be employed for longer acting pain relief from pain due to arthritis or joint damage to the neck or low back. The radiofrequency current causes an interruption in nerve transmission of pain that can last up to18months, but is usually less. After needle placement, you may be asked questions during the procedure about any mild electrical signals you feel or if you experience any other sensation.