Even hearing the word “back pain” makes people uncomfortable. Isn’t it one of the most debilitating health conditions that obstruct our daily lives? Well, nearly half the working population of the US suggests that they experience more than one back pain symptom every year.
Overview of Back Pain
You must be aware of the structure of your back, right? Your spine consists of a column (bones that form the vertebrae) that stays in shape/ formation due to the presence of ligaments, muscles, and tendons—moreover, the cushions in your back act as shock-absorbing discs. However, damage to your spine (any part) can lead to back pain.
Back pain can be severe or acute, depending on the underlying cause of it. It has the tendency to deprive a person of the ability to complete simple tasks. Although back pains are recurrent and go away on their own, chronic back pain can potentially lead to the need for surgery and intense treatments.
In fact, it is one of the leading causes of disability and life disturbances in adults, which prevent them from conducting normal working schedules. Do you experience back pain? Then you must realize the need for prompt medical attention and the importance of preventative measures. With thorough interventions, you can limit the severity of back pains.
Causes of Back Pain
Let’s take a look at some of the most common causes that lead to back pain in people of all ages, but mostly adults.
Arthritis is a common reason for back pain, especially in older people. It occurs due to weakened joints. In fact, deterioration of cartilage (joints around the vertebrae) in your back (i.e., lower) can cause back pain. What’s more is that over time, back pain can progress and lead to narrowing of the entire spinal column!
Injury to the discs (shock-absorbing cushions that make up the vertebrae) is a relatively common cause of back pain. Bulging, rupturing, or herniation of the vertebrae disks can compress the spinal nerve roots, leading to severe back pain. The sensations that you might feel in this condition are:
- Excessive pain
Furthermore, structural deformities can pave the way to sciatica, which progresses from the lower back to the legs, causing more pain.
Compression fractures (osteoporosis) occur due to thinning of the bones. In simple words, diminishing bone density can cause minor fractures in the vertebrae. Hence, severe back pains.
Experiencing strain in your back muscles is a prime cause of back pain in the youth and adult population. Soreness and stiffness are common symptoms of muscle strains. Can you think of the reasons that lead to back muscle strains? Well, excessive weight lifting, sudden body movements, over-activity, and sports injuries, are a few of the many.
Extremely Rare Causes for Back Pain
Your pain physician will opt for further diagnostics if he or she is unable to determine the cause for your back pain from the list of the general ones above. The rare conditions, disorders, or accidents that might take you to the road of back pain are as follows:
- Cancer and Tumors in the Back
- Kidney Diseases (stones or infections)
- Fungal infections on your spine
- Tuberculosis, E. coli, etc.
- Spine nerves dysfunction (cauda equina syndrome)
- Vertebral displacement
Symptoms of Back Pain
- Vertebral swelling or inflammation
- Weight loss
- Back pain in every posture
- Urinating trouble
- Traumas (head, neck, or back)
- Leg pain
- Urinary infections or incontinence
- Knee pain
On the other hand, here are some rare symptoms that severe back pain conditions might manifest:
- Bowel movement disruptions/ fecal incontinence
- Numbness and tingling in either the anus, genital, or buttock surrounding areas
Diagnosis and Treatments
Your pain physician/pain medicine specialist will conduct diagnostic in various methods that are inclusive of blood tests, MRI and CT scans, X-rays, and bone examinations (testing density, strength, measurements, etc.) Below are some treatment options, including medications and therapies.
- Narcotics/ Opioids
- Muscle relaxants (in case the OTC medications don’t work)
- Over-The-Counter (OTC) medication under your pain physician’s prescriptions
- Radiofrequency Neurotomy
- Nerve Stimulators
- Cortisone Injections (Interventional Pain Management)
- Surgeries (nerve compression and structural deformities’ treatment)
Strength and flexibility exercise therapy under the supervision of a licensed physiotherapist is a no-medication way to treat back pain and generate long-term relief.
Conclusion: Consult the Top NYC Pain Management Doctor
In order to create the best recovery plans, medication courses and return to the same functional level in daily activities, you should consult a top pain physician. Why? Because only the best professional medical care can enable you to get relief from your back pain once and for all.
Spine New York City
Dr. Matthew Grimm
160 E 56th St 11th Floor
New York, NY 10022
Visit our official website to learn more here.