Back Pain

One of the most common reasons for a visit to the doctor today is back pain. It affects people of all ages.

There are many causes of lower or upper back pain, such as poor posture, strenuous exercise schedules, psychological stress, and more serious reasons such as nerve damage, obesity, arthritis, and failed back surgery.

Sometimes, back pain can be treated with physical therapy, home remedies, injections, and over the counter medication. Other times, however, back pain can cascade into a more chronic or acute condition, implying a more serious underlying issue that needs to be addressed.

What causes acute or chronic back pain?

Back pain is one of the most common medical problems today and affects 8 out of every 10 adults.1 In some cases, it can be a dull ache or escalate into an acute or chronic pain. In such cases, simple therapies and treatment, while providing some palliative care, do not help control the condition in the long run.

Some of the most common areas where back pain is experienced includes the large muscles that support the spine, and the facet joints that connect the vertebrae to each other. Back pain could also be experienced in the intervertebral discs that should provide shock absorption for the bones and the spinal nerves that connect to other parts of the body. Conditions affecting the bones, tendons and ligaments can also cause severe back pain.

The most common reasons for severe back pain are due to muscle or ligament tear, sprains, or irritated joints. In severe cases, the back pain, especially a prolonged condition, could be indicative of a far more serious underlying reason like:

What are the symptoms that you may experience?

Those who experience back pain, often complain of a variety of symptoms. These can range from a stiffness along the spine, a sharp or tingling sensation, or a persistent feeling of soreness in the upper, middle, or lower back region.

Based on the region and type of pain that you experience, the pain can be classified as:

Radicular Pain — Experienced as a searing or shock-like pain radiating along the spinal nerve; caused predominantly by conditions such as spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis or sciatica.

Referred Pain — Dull, achy pain that may vary in intensity and the region in which it is experienced; may be caused due to a degenerative disc disease that causes referred pain to hips and thighs.

Axial Pain — Experienced along the spine itself; the most common reason is a muscle strain

Getting the right diagnosis and treatment

Pain in the upper back or the mid back region usually improves with rest and mild medication and, when required, some simple therapies. Prolonged upper back pain should be attended to as it could be indicative of the associated cancer risk.

Depending on the classification of the pain as well as the accompanying symptoms, pain management specialist at Total Pain Care may recommend a simple regime of; medication (anti-inflammatory medicines, muscle relaxants, etc.), lifestyle modifications, diet, exercise, therapy, application of hot/cold packs, and/or a procedure to relive the pain.

In more serious conditions that are diagnosed using X-rays, MRIs, CT scans, electro myelogram, or a nerve conduction study to understand the extent of nerve damage. Treatment options vary from injection therapy such as nerve block injections, precision nerve injections, or epidural injections; to surgery to procedures such as spinal cord stimulation, radiofrequency ablation, and stronger medications.

Total Pain Care

  • Meridian Location - 1001 14th St., Meridian, MS 39301 Phone: 601-482-9224 Fax: 601-482-9224
  • Flowood Location - 120 Stone Creek Blvd., Suite 500, Flowood, MS 39232 Phone: 601-420-2040
  • Satellite Office at Medical Arts Clinic - 1003 Holland Ave., Suite 103, Philadelphia, MS 39350 Phone: 601-482-9224
  • Byram Location - 114 Byram Business Center Dr., Byram, MS 39272 Phone: 601-376-9960
  • Vicksburg Location - 2080 S. Frontage Road, Suite 112, Vicksburg, MS 39180 Phone: 601-883-6304

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