Back Pain Center | Lower Back Pain Relief, Treatments …

Posted: July 19, 2015 at 3:44 am

Back pain is one of the most common reasons people self-treat and seek medical care. It will affect approximately three in four adults during their lifetime. When we speak about back pain we mean pain that originates in the spine anywhere between the upper and lower back.

Besides back pain, other symptoms may present. There are many different types of pain. Acute back pain is defined as severe but lasting a short period of time. Chronic back pain usually occurs every day. It can be severe, but may be characterized as mild, deep, achy, burning, or electric-like. Back pain that travels into another part of the body, such as the leg may be consider radicular pain, particularly when it radiates below the knee. This scenario is commonly called a lumbar radiculopathy. Fortunately, not all occurrences of back pain include leg pain!

It is not unusual for back pain to be accompanied by other symptoms, such as numbness and tingling sensations, stiffness, achiness, and weakness. Certain activities may increase or aggravate back pain. Sitting, walking, standing, bending over, and twisting at the waist are a few of the movements that can make back pain worse. Of course, that is not true for every patient. Rather, it depends on what level of the spine is affected and the diagnosis, or cause.

Back pain Doctor-speak If you see a doctor for back pain, he (or she) may use terms such as thoracic, lumbar, lumbosacral, or sacrum. The point is, back pain is a large topic covering many different regions (or levels) of the spine.

Back pain is a big topic because between the upper back and tailbone, there are 17 vertebral bodies, many joints, the sacrum and tailbone. Plus fibrous and muscular supporting structures, intervertebral discs, spinal cord and nerve roots, and blood vessels. A simple injury, such as a back sprain/strain from lifting and twisting simultaneously, can cause immediate and severe pain that is typically self-limiting.

Of course, not all incidences of back pain are injury or trauma-related. Many back problems are congenital (found at birth), degenerative, age-related, disease-related, and may be linked to poor posture, obesity or an unhealthy lifestyle such as smoking. Sometimes the back pain is worse than the severity of the injury or disorder. That statement raises the question, When should I seek medical attention for back pain?

Many patients with back pain have reported feeling afraid and anxious, which is normal. Most people who experience upper, low or lower back paineven down into one or both legsintuitively know when its time to seek medical care.

What to expect from your doctor Whether you back pain falls into the seek urgent medical care list above, or you are following your gut reaction that says, Go see your doctor, below is what you can expect.

After a thorough review, your doctor probably has come to one or two conclusions as to what is causing your back pain and other symptoms. To obtain more information about your back problem, and to help confirm the diagnosis, the doctor may order an x-ray, CT scan, or MRI. Sometimes lab tests are ordered too. Keep in mind that an accurate diagnosis is essential to a well-developed treatment plan.

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Back Pain Center | Lower Back Pain Relief, Treatments ...

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