Facet joint arthropathy

Case contributed by Dr Henry Knipe


Back pain for 5 days, escalating. Tender across lower back.

Patient Data

Age: 50 years
Gender: Female

Right facet joint effusion with an anterior juxtafacet cyst without neural exit foraminal narrowing or nerve root contact. Marrow edema of the right superior S1 articular pillar extending into the right sacral ala and inferior L5 articular pillar extending into the right pedicle.  Right Oppenheimer ossicle.

Case Discussion

A case of acute right L5-S1 facet joint arthropathy. Osteoarthritis is the most common cause with the differential including inflammatory and septic arthritides. 

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