Treat your pain and live a better life…

best-pain-doctor-nycWelcome to my blog about pain. Unfortunately, many people suffer from chronic pain. As a board certified physician in physical medicine and rehabilitation, my specialty is treating these people with both acute and chronic pain.

A majority of my practice is working with patients that are experiencing back and neck pain.

My goal with this blog is to help patients who are experiencing any type of back or neck pain to understand what is causing their pain and discuss options that are available to end their pain. I hope to be able to provide readers with a portal that they can can use to educate themselves and facilitate treatment.

My specialty is my Interventional Spine Skills including cervical and lumbar epidural steroid injections, facet injections, medial branch blocks, Radiofrequency ablation, sympathetic ganglion blocks, spinal cord stimulator trials, sacroiliac joint injection, piriformis muscle block and musculoskeletal joint injection. I also perform many other procedures to alleviate acute and chronic pain.

I hope you enjoy reading my blog as much as I enjoy writing it and observing people from all over the world reading it.

– Matthew Grimm, M.D.

Category Archives: back pain symptoms

Mechanical Causes of Low Back Pain

‘Mechanical low back pain’

 

originates in the vertebrae, soft tissues, cartilage, spinal joints or discs, and supportive structures around the spine. This condition is also known as lumbar syndrome, lumbosacral strain or pain, lumbago, and idiopathic low back pain. Chronic low clip_image001[4]back pain is one of the leading reasons people seek medical help. About four out of five adults will have experienced low back pain during their lifetime. While the most common cause is lumbar strain, symptoms can develop after cumulative repetitive trauma.

Acute and Cumulative Trauma can Cause Chronic Low Back PainLifting back pain

Strains in the muscles, tendons and ligaments around the spine causes 70% of lower back pain incidences. This can arise from a sudden acute injury such as a motor vehicle accident or by ongoing trauma that often occurs in the workplace. Patients may cross a threshold and develop symptoms without significant injury.

There are a number of other conditions that can lead to chronic low back pain. These include sciatica, osteoarthritis, degenerative discs, kyphosis, scoliosis, arthritis, disc herniation, slipped disc, spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis, fractures, trauma, pelvic anteversion, and pelvic retroversion.

Osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease, is a progressive condition caused by excessive stress along the discs and the bony structures of the spine responsible for maintaining posture. The other conditions mentioned also cause functional or anatomical abnormalities of the spine. We will address each of these topics in more detail in future blog posts.

In addition to mechanical factors, there are a number of non-mechanical causes of low back pain. Although non-mechanical causes are far less common, it is important to rule out the possibility of any diseases that may be affecting the body. If symptoms persist, then it is time to make an appointment with a pain doctor such as myself, to find out if there are any underlying issues that you may not be aware of.

Symptoms of Low Back Pain

Back Arthritis Back Pain

Symptoms of low back pain can vary quite a bit. Generally, symptoms involve cramping, stiffness, or muscle spasms. Pain in the back or buttocks can come on suddenly or can extend over long periods of time. When performing weight-bearing movements or other movement that add pressure to your spine, symptoms will increase. Often, symptoms are relieved within two or three days, but can persist for several weeks if left untreated. Avoiding triggering mechanisms is the best way to allow symptoms to dissipate initially.

If you experience an injury that causes nerve-root pressure, you may feel pain in your leg in addition to your lower back and/or buttock. Pain may arise gradually or come on quite suddenly. Nerve-related issues may also cause numbness or tingling in your legs.

If you are experiencing low back pain for greater than one week, seek treatment before the problem worsens and becomes a chronic condition. Often patients wait weeks and suffer needlessly when treatment is available. Great relief can be found with proper treatment administered by a professional. In addition, a doctor who specializes in back pain will be able to rule out any underlying conditions that may be aggravating the problem further.

Do not live with back pain any longer. Call our office today at 646-862-5555 to schedule a consultation and take the first step toward ending your back pain.

Low Back Pain

Causes of Low Back Pain

Low back pain affects 80% of people at some time in their lives. Whether it’s due to muscle strain, overuse, or injury to the ligaments, muscles or spinal discs, it can become very painful over time. Chronic low back pain can lead to a compensation that can result in muscle injuries when a person begins to walk or move differently in order to avoid pain. Fortunately, many people have found relief by learning about the proper way to stretch and move. In many cases people come to see me, a pain specialist, in order to start a person on the path to recovery. Low Back Pain

Non Specific Low Back Pain

Over 99% of low back pain problems arise from benign musculoskeletal issues, also referred to as non specific low back pain. This type of low back pain stems from overuse or injury to the muscles, ligaments, or back joints. It is common for people to strain their muscles or other soft tissues during heavy lifting or any time when there is physical loading of the back.

Chronic low back pain can also be caused when there is pressure on the spinal column nerve roots. Such compression can be caused by different factors including osteoarthritis, a herniated disc, fractures of the vertebrae, and by spinal stenosis.

Postmenopausal women who have osteoporosis, or people who have used corticosteroids for long periods of time are more prone to compression fractures. This type of injury can lead to severe back pain.

While mechanical injury is the most common cause, there are many other less common causes of low back pain. These include inflammatory, neoplastic, metabolic, psychosomatic, Pagets disease, referred pain, and depression. We will address each of these types of low back pain in future blog posts.

Low Back Pain Symptoms

Symptoms of low back pain include cramping, muscle spasms, and pain in the back or buttocks. These low back pain symptoms may last between 48-72 hours, but can be easily aggravated in the days or weeks following by weight-bearing or other movements that add pressure to the injured areas. Often, rest helps but many times these pains fail to go away and medical intervention is necessary. (This is where a pain specialist, such as myself, comes in.)

Sciatica painSymptoms may also include leg pain. Typically, pain begins in the buttocks and then moves down (‘radiates down’) the leg. This condition is known as sciatica and varies from mild to severe pain. It usually only affects one leg and pain can be aggravated by such things as certain motions, coughing or sneezing.

Depending on what type of low back pain you are experiencing, symptoms may improve or worsen in different positions. For instance, if symptoms become more severe when you are in an upright position, you may be able to find relief by sitting down. Bending your knees while you are lying down on your back may also relieve symptoms. If the pain is worse when you bend forward or backwards, try movements that act to straighten your spine such as lying down, standing up straight, or walking.

If low back pain symptoms continue even after sufficient rest, it may be time to visit a pain specialist who can better assess the situation. A pain specialist will be able to offer expert advice and provide necessary treatment to relieve chronic low back pain.

I have extensive experience with low back pain of all different causes. Having back pain is not normal in the aging process and most times there are treatments that can alleviate some or all symptoms.

If you are experiencing back pain (or any other chronic pain) please see our contact page or call our office today!