Conditions & Services
The majority of conditions treated by Dr. Lipton are for cervical (neck region) and lumbar (lower back) issues because those are the most common, but he also performs thoracic procedures when the problem originates in the mid-spine.
Facet Joint Injection
A facet injection is a minimally invasive treatment option for pain caused by inflamed facet joints. Facet joint pain is often related to spinal stenosis, sciatica or arthritis and is characterized by neck, arm, low back or leg pain. Each vertebra has four facet joints that connect it to the vertebra above and below. The injection may also be used as a diagnostic test to determine if facet joint inflammation is the source of a patient’s pain.
A facet injection is a combination of a long-lasting steroid and a local anesthetic that are injected either into the joint capsule or its surrounding tissue. The steroid reduces inflammation and can relieve pain for a few days to a few years. This procedure can be repeated up to three times a year for those who experienced successful but short-term pain relief.
Interlaminar Epidural Steroid Injection
Epidural steroid injections, or ESIs, are a minimally invasive treatment that has been used for decades to temporarily relieve low back and leg pain (sciatica). They have been shown to be effective for pain in the neck (cervical) and mid-spine (thoracic) as well. While they do not treat serious underlying spinal conditions, ESIs are often effective in relieving the chronic pain these conditions often cause.
Comprised of cortisone and a local anesthetic or saline solution, ESIs work by reducing inflammation and flushing out particles that cause swelling and pain. Medication is delivered directly to the source of the pain rather than dispersing it throughout the body, as oral painkillers and steroids do. They are injected into the epidural space, the area between the dura (a membrane covering the brain and spinal cord) and the actual cord itself. Intralaminar ESIs require inserting the needle between the lamina, a small section of bone that covers the spinal cord, of two vertebrae. The medication enters the epidural space in the midline and from there is able to reach the nerve roots on either side of the spine.
Medial Branch Blocks
A medial branch block is a minimally-invasive procedure to diagnose and treat neck or back pain. This procedure can determine whether a facet joint—which connects the bones of your spine, providing support as you move—is the source of your pain. Next to the facet joints are the medial branch nerves, which transmit pain signals from these joints to your brain.
Before undergoing a medial branch block, you will be given intravenous medication to help you relax. With the assistance of imaging technologies, a small needle will be inserted near your medial branch nerve. Once it is situated properly, an anesthetic will be injected through it.
The effectiveness of a medial branch block varies depending on your individual condition. Patients whose pain returns after a short period of time may require a different form of treatment if it is confirmed that the facet joint is not the source of the pain.
The mild procedure is a new, minimally invasive technique for treating lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS). By attending to the causes of LSS symptoms, mild can provide pain relief as well as improve mobility in patients. This treatment has been FDA-cleared for decompression of the lumbar spine.
The mild procedure offers several benefits over traditional surgical approaches, including:
- Only a tiny incision needs to be made, so no stitches are required
- It’s an outpatient procedure, typically performed in one hour using only local anesthetic and light sedation
- Complications are rare
- No implants are used
- Recovery time is minimal, with patients generally returning to work and light activity just a few days later
The mild procedure is ideal for patients whose LSS is the result of excess ligament. Using imaging technology to guide the procedure, your doctor will insert specialized instruments through the small incision to remove the ligament and bone putting pressure on your spinal canal. It has been proven effective in clinical studies for 79 percent of patients who have undergone this treatment.
Schedule an appointment with our office to find out whether you are a good candidate for the mild procedure.
Conditions & Services
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