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Back Pain - Symptom, Treatment And Causes

What is Back pain?

Back pain or lower back pain can happen for several problems with any part of the interconnected network of spinal nerves, muscles, bones, tendons or discs in the lumber spine.

What are the causes of Back Pain?

Some of the typical causes for back pain are:

  • The small nerves on the lower back may get irritated
  • The large nerve root (sciatica nerve) that go down to the legs may get irritated
  • The large paired erector spinae muscle may get strained
  • The joints, bones or ligaments may get damaged
  • The intervertebral disc may get degenerated

Although it can happen at any age, back pain, especially lower back pain occurs in people who are in their 40s. Back pain is typically characterized by a localized pattern of discomfort in the lower back area that mostly occurs after an event that culminated in stressing the lumber tissues.

The severity of this condition, depends on a number of issues, which comprises of the degree of the strain and also the resulting spasm of the lower back muscles that occurred owing to the trauma.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis of back pain is generally done by the doctors based on the location of the pain and history of the injury. X-ray is usually performed on the patients suffering from this ailment which helps in excluding osteological abnormalities.The most popular treatment for all kinds of back pains or lumber strains consists of resting the back to avoid subsequent injury. Apart from that reconditioning exercises are also prescribed to the patients to strengthen the back muscles along with medications to relieve pain and muscular spasms. Local heat applications are also advised to the back pain patients along with massage which is often done by certified physiotherapists.

What happens when you don't get treated on time :

In rare cases back pain can also be a sign of CES (Cauda Equina Syndrome), which is a condition that requires immediate surgical treatment.

In patients suffering from CES, something compresses their spinal nerve roots, which cause severe pain. As the cauda equine are a bundle of nerve roots which is located in the lumbosacral spine and sends messages to the brain from the feet, legs and pelvic organs, inability to provide a fast treatment, often leads to lasting damage which can lead to incontinency and also permanent paralysis of the legs.

MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) scan is also prescribed at time along with a Myelogram (X-ray of the spinal cord after injecting contrast material into the spine), which aids in pinpointing the pressure point on the spinal nerves or on the spinal cord.

Can't be cured, but treatment helps Require medical diagnosis Lab test sometimes required Short-term: resolves within days to weeks
Symptoms
Leg numbness Pins and needles sensation Sensitivity to pain Muscle spasms

Popular Health Tips

Plantar Fasciitis - Signs, Causes & Triggers Of It!

MS - Orthopaedics, MBBS, Diploma In Orthopaedics
Orthopedist, Navi Mumbai
Plantar Fasciitis - Signs, Causes & Triggers Of It!

Plantar fasciitis is a common condition that gives rise to heel pain. A thick band of tissue runs across the bottom part of the foot and connects the heel bone to the toes. This leads to inflammation. Those who suffer from plantar fasciitis experience stabbing pain especially when you take the first few steps after waking up in the morning.

As you are up and start moving in the morning, you will feel that the pain decreases. However, after long periods of inactivity or standing in one place the pain might return.

This condition is seen to occur more commonly in runners. Additionally, people who wear improper shoes, lacking adequate support and/or are overweight stand at a greater risk of getting plantar fasciitis.

Signs of Plantar Fasciitis-

Few symptoms of plantar fasciitis include-

• Stabbing pain felt at the bottom of the heels
• Pain arising immediately after exercising but not during it

Cause of Plantar Fasciitis-

Normally, the plantar fascia (ligament tissue) can play the role of a shock absorber, mainly a bowstring that supports the arch in the foot. When tension and stress build up on the bowstring, tiny tears can start to crop up within the fascia. Constant tearing and stretching can lead the fascia to become inflamed and irritated. Many times the cause of plantar fasciitis in certain patients is not entirely clear.

What Makes You Susceptible to Plantar Fascia?

Although the condition of Plantar Fascia can arise without any bulletproof reason, there are certain factors that make you more susceptible to it. These include-

• Age - Those who are aged above 40 but below 60 are more prone to getting this condition
Obesity - Those who are overweight will inadvertently put greater pressure on the plantar fascia
Exercises- Certain exercises tend to put more pressure on the heels than others. These exercise types include jumping activities, long-distance running, aerobic dance and ballet dance.
• Foot Type - Those who have an arched foot or are flat-footed, or tend to walk in an abnormal manner are at a greater risk of putting pressure on the plantar fascia
• Your Job Type - Teachers and factory workers who tend to be on their feet a lot or have to walk on hard surfaces may put stress on their plantar fascia

Plantar Fasciitis is a condition that needs immediate attention because when left untreated it could develop into chronic pain and thus become a source of constant pain. In order to prevent it from hampering your daily activities ensure to change the way you walk. This will minimize the hip, knee and back problems in the future.

2475 people found this helpful

Back & Neck Pain - Stop The Little Drop!

MBBS, MS - Orthopaedics, M.Ch - Orthopaedics, MRCS-Ortho
Orthopedist, Delhi
Back & Neck Pain - Stop The Little Drop!

Since the IT boom, we are growing very fast economically and digitally. But somewhere compromising health especially our back and neck, Due to prolonged sitting hour (10-12 hrs) on computer and top of that some of you are travelling to Noida/Gurgaon, again sitting for 2-3  hrs too n fro. This article is all about pains in back, neck, shoulder, forearm and legs with which you may be suffering from, the pain one doesn’t correlate to your work.

“Mr. X doesn’t wear a hard hat to work. He doesn’t lift heavy objects nor does he operate heavy machinery. Actually, Mr. X wears fairly comfortable clothing, and he doesn’t need to exert a lot of physical energy to accomplish his tasks. He sits at his desk from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Friday, and the only machinery he has to operate is a mouse and keyboard. Sitting in his office, Mr. X is generally safe and secure from injury………but still suffers from pain.”

Our bones and muscles make up our musculoskeletal system. As strong as this system might be, overuse of the muscles through repeated movements can put stress on your body, causing a Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI). Other names for RSI include Cumulative Trauma Disorder and Repetitive Motion Injury. Unfortunately, many office jobs require that we perform repetitive motions to fulfil our duties. For this reason, RSIs are the most common type of injury found in the office.

Symptoms of RSIs

The first signs of an RSI may be subtle and mild, and the symptoms may appear long after performing the activity. For these reasons, people often ignore the slight aches and pains, but eventually these slight aches and pains can become serious problems down the road if ignored.

Symptoms may include:

• Dull aching which sometimes severe pain increases as day progresses

• Difficulty in prolonged sitting/standing

• Loss of sensation (numbness), especially at night

• Aches/pains which may be worse at night

Tingling and burning sensations, ‘Pins and needles’ discomfort

Muscle weakness and fatigue, Muscle spasm

• Morning stiffness

Injury to the spine is very common in office environment because constant sitting (desk job) either working on laptop or desktop, spine (lower back) is at risk. Because sitting causes 150%-200% stress on the back while standing just 100%, sitting with laptop is worse than desktop because of poor posture with a laptop. This constant sitting is just like a small drop of water in a big bucket, over a period of time bucket is filled, water splashes out, that is the time when people experience severe pain. Getting treatment just takes out few mugs of water but that little drop (constant sitting) still coming to the bucket. That means pain may reoccur. So what to do…”..Stop The Little Drop

HOW TO SAVE BACK & NECK FROM SITTING JOB STRESS

  • Avoid Prolonged Sitting > 45 MINS - Do not sit more than 45 min at a stretch, get up after 45 mins take 2-5 min walk than sit again

  • Avoid Forward Bending - Ending forward causes double the stress over neck n back, our head wt is around 5 kg which increases to 30 kg if we bend our neck up to 60 degrees. so keep your head in centre of shoulders. If u want to bend n lift something from lower down than bend from knee and hip as well so that stress on spine is less.

  • Avoid Heavy Weight Lifting -  Keep your back as straight as possible while lifting wt or ask for help while lifting heavy wt.

  • Full Chair Sitting - Try to sit in office chair with hips at the back of chair and back fully supported with backrest, by this your back is fully supported n slightly backwards tilted , keeping stress low on spine . do not sit half-chair.

  • Laptop To Desktop - With laptop one has to bend forward and work as in laptop screen and keyboard is so close to each other that you can't work without bending forward. So, dissociate screen from the keyboard by using external keyboard (preferably wireless) and external mouse with laptop stand to keep screen at your eye level.

  • Holding Mobile Away From Body -  So that neck does not bend too much for long, keep neck as straight as possible.

  • Never Work In Bed Of With Bad Posture - As it causes severe stresses on back and neck

  • Daily Exercise - Daily exercise of neck and back strengthens muscles so that they can take stresses of sitting

 The spinal cord is protected by the 33 bones of the spine as it travels from the brain to lower back, with number of  spinal nerve travelling across the spine to reach arms and legs .
To exit from the bony tunnel of the spine itself, the spinal nerves travel through holes in the bones which are separated by discs or shock absorbers. If these nerves are squashed or pinched, this can cause pain, numbness, weakness or loss of function in the limbs ( sciatica).

There are many bones running up and down the spine, each separated by a jelly-like core and tough outer fibrous structure called a disc.

The nerves travel to the left and right of the spine through space called an intervertebral foramen. Either these nerves or the spine itself can be compressed by either further growth of bone, instability of the bone, or bulging or bursting of the disc ( disc prolapse ).

Investigations
After a thorough history and investigation you may be required to have an  XRAY to see bones and spinal alignment , sometimes CT scan or MRI is needed  to look more closely at the bone and soft tissue structures ( disc and nerves ) in the spine.

Treatment

Rest, Medication and Physiotherapy, generally, cure most patients for short term. But most pain can reoccur if your ergonomics (working and sitting posture) is not right. Long-term solution of the problem is Exercise and right posture.

Surgery

Sometimes surgery is required if pain is severe and not responding to conservative therapy.

Certain types of compression require surgery to prevent nerve damage becoming permanent or irreversible. Surgical options include removing excess bone, removing bulging discs, fusion or stiffening of bones to remove instability or replacing dysfunctional discs.

Tips To Manage Back Strain At Home!

MBBS, D.Ortho, FCPS
Orthopedist, Mumbai
Tips To Manage Back Strain At Home!

Pain management begins at home. Of course, your doctor is the expert you need to go to to check the possible causes and treatment methods to alleviate pain. However, sometimes, the pain can be managed well as home as well. For example, it is possible to manage back strain at home with the help of simple remedies. Some of these remedies include the following:

  1. Ice is the best way: Back pain that is associated with inflammation or an injury can be treated with ice. You can also try using ice and heat alternatively. Use an ice pack for 20 minutes, followed by heat therapy for 20 minutes. This helps in regaining movement.
  2. Lying down is not the right thing: Lying on the bed is often thought to alleviate back pain due to strain. However, several studies indicate that people who are active and suffer from mild to moderate back pain levels actually end up experiencing less pain, compared with those who resort to bed rest. Unless your doctor advises you to stay in the bed for rest, it should not be practiced for more than three days.
  3. Exercises ease the pain: Staying active is the best way to keep any pain at bay. This is especially true if your job is sedentary and you need to workout at least three days a week. If you think that you are not made for the gym, do not fret. Simple exercises can do wonders beyond imagination. You can try simple cardio exercises or even a brisk walk, to begin with. Swimming is another excellent way to exercise that keeps off back pain, helps you lose weight, and keep you stress-free.
  4. Posture means a lot: While other remedies definitely soothe the pain, it is important to tackle the root cause of pain in the right way. A bad posture is one of the leading cause of pain due to back strain. Avoid straining the back unnecessarily by maintaining a correct posture. From leaning at a wrong angle over the sink to leaning over the desk at your work can cause back strain and pain. Keep off from the incorrect posture to ease the pressure off the back and neck.
  5. Become more flexible: Tensioned muscles cause tightness and eventually, back pain. To tackle this and improve flexibility, try this simple technique. Sit on the edge of the bed and ensure that the body is equally spread over the edge. You need to keep one of the legs on the floor, and the other extended. Stretch and lean forward. Your back has to be in a neutral position. Back pain can be at the peak when you wake up. Try this exercises to ease the movement through improved flexibility.
  6. Heels don’t let your pain heal: Heels can be a nice show-off but they are not recommended when you suffer from back pain. They can be a reason for back pain or they can also be the reason to increase or worsen the pain triggered due to various reasons. Shoes with heels of less than one inch are a nice choice. If heels are must for any reason, remove them as often as possible. For instance, remove your shoes and keep them under the desk when you are sitting.
  7. Stay off from smoking: Smoking is associated with several health issues. It also increases the risk of osteoporosis. People who smoke are at a higher risk of developing back pain, as compared to people who do not smoke.
  8. Use the weighing scale: Being overweight or obese puts a lot of strain and pressure on the back, thus causing pain. Keep a tab on your weight. The ways to put off back pain are simple and if you are determined, you can see improvement faster.
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Micro Lumbar Disectomy - Signs You Need It!

DNB - Orthopedics, D ( ORTHO), MBBS
Orthopedist, Trivandrum
Micro Lumbar Disectomy - Signs You Need It!

A microdiscectomy is performed on the herniated disc of an individual to relieve the pressure from the spinal nerve root by eliminating the material which is causing the pain. Being minimally evasive in nature, this technique of disectomy is carried out to provide much-needed relief from the pain caused due to a lumbar herniated disc.

The procedure of the micro lumbar discectomy is not very complicated. During the procedure, a small part of the bone which is present over the nerve root or the disc material is taken out for relief. A microdiscectomy is also known as microdecompression which is more effective in leg pain.

Indications For Micro Lumbar Disectomy

It is very much important to understand that micro lumbar discectomy can be very important if the patient is suffering from serious pain and problems. Here are some indications which show that an individual needs such a disectomy:

● Excruciating pain in the affected areas which does not allow the person to work or carry out normal activities that he or she does.

● Inflammation or redness around the area which is caused due to the constant pain.

● When the leg pain is the major thing affecting a person rather than a back pain as well.

● A kind of leg pain which exceeds more than 6 weeks and keeps affecting.

Advantages And Disadvantages

No surgery comes without both sets of advantages and disadvantages. So, micro lumbar discectomy also has both the sides of advantages and disadvantages which you should be knowing about.

Advantages - Micro Lumbar Discectomy is minimally evasive which makes it possible for the patients to undergo much less pain and trauma. In most of the cases, the doctor separates the muscles instead of cutting it. This helps to minimize the trauma and helps to heal in a better manner. The removal of the muscle is therefore done more precisely giving the patients a quicker way to recover and carry on with their normal activities.

Disadvantages - Even though the risk and complications are reduced because of the minimally evasive nature, there are certain risks associated to it. Postoperative infections can be a real risk when a person goes through a micro lumbar discectomy. A dural tear can occur when incisions are made around the area which is affected. Although it is very rare, but nerve damages can also be a risk in the case of a lumbar discectomy.

So as you can see that the micro lumbar discectomy is a brilliant way to help an individual who is suffering from herniated disc and immense leg pain rather than back pain. You must always visit a reputed and recognized surgeon to make sure that you undergo a safe and sound treatment for the problem you are facing. Any kind of wrong treatment can cause a serious damage to your lifestyle.

Spleen Removal - Why Is It Performed In Kids?

M.Ch - Paediatric Surgery, MBBS, MS - General Surgery
Pediatric Surgeon, Hyderabad
Spleen Removal - Why Is It Performed In Kids?

Splenectomy is an operation conducted to remove the spleen. The spleen plays a vital role in building immunity against bacterial infections, located in the uppermost area of the left hand side of the abdomen, just below the diaphragm. There are some specific requirements with regard to the immunizations as well as blood work that might need to be completed before this surgery takes place.

Why is Splenectomy need to be performed?
There are a number of chronic illnesses like Hereditary Spherocytosis or Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura, which make it a necessity to get a child’s spleen removed. Though it is a rare case but still any kind of trauma to the spleen along with uncontrolled bleeding can create a very serious situation, wherein an emergency might arise to get the spleen removed immediately.

Immunization of child before the operation
Before the surgery of Splenectomy is conducted, immunizations are given to children as a preventive against some specific kinds of infections that are most common for patients to arise after having undergone the surgery of Splenectomy.

How is the surgery performed?
The paediatric surgeon, who performs the surgery, need not require making a large incision for going about the process of operation. In most of the instances, a splenectomy is performed in the following manner, which includes:

  • A laparoscopic way through which a Paediatric Surgeon makes use of a small telescope along with some instruments of miniaturized nature, while placing them through small band-aid sized cuts on the abdomen.
  • The operation gets completed within three hours
  • At the time of hospitalization, a child would receive intravenous fluids, antibiotics as well medicines to get relieve from any kind of pain.
  • As and when the child feels as if he or she is fit enough, he or she would be allowed to eat, drink and also take medicines by mouth.

Essentials after the Surgery
After the surgery has taken place and the child returns home after a couple of days, there are certain essentials that require to be kept in mind:

  • Pain Management: Management of pain is the very first thing which should be kept in mind. The medicines prescribed by doctor for dealing with pain are not required after getting discharged from the hospital.
  • Most of the children would only need Acetaminophen or Ibuprophen once they get back home.
  • Care for Dressings: One may remove the gauze and clear plastic, which are placed over the small cuts, a couple of days after the surgery. The skin that surrounds the incision might have a reddish tinge and look bruised, which can last for few weeks.
  • Restrictions related to Activities: There are no real restrictions with regard to the resumption o regular activities. A child can go back to school as and when he or she feels totally comfortable.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

1766 people found this helpful

Popular Questions & Answers

I'm 19 years old Female, having issues with my neck back pain since 1 years no one is able to find out the real reason behind it. When I hold 2 kg I feel pressure at my back middle of neck, I can't sit for long & work in front of laptop or study. I often have bones crackles and muscle spasm in neck specially. Please help me out what is happening with me sir?

MBBS, DNB, National Board Of Examination
Orthopedist, Faridabad
Avoid sitting in one posture for long periods. Keep neck straight. Do Neck strengthening exercises. Avoid using big pillows. U can use cervical pillow. Get your serum calcium, phosphorus, alkaline phosphatase and serum vit D3 level, serum B12 levels checked. Lots of fruits and green leafy vegetables.

I often suffers from vit. D deficiency due to which I have severe pain at my lower back which is treatable by taking vit. D capsule, calcium supplement and muscle relaxant medicine. However, after 2-3 months the problem come up again. Is there any permanent solution or I have to take medicine every time.

MBBS, DNB, National Board Of Examination
Orthopedist, Faridabad
Avoid forward bending, avoid lifting of heavy weights. Don't sleep on soft mattresses. Don't sit in one posture for long periods. Do backstrentheing exercises with help of some good physiotherapist. Plenty of fruits and green leafy vegetables. If still no improvement get your self examined to get proper diagnosis.

I am 45 now and have shoulder and back pain problem from last 5 years. I took some medicine from medical practitioner but nothing works. Its just gave temporary relief. If you can help me out of my pain I am thankful to you.

MBBS, DNB, National Board Of Examination
Orthopedist, Faridabad
Avoid forward bending and heavy weight lifting. Physiotherapy for back strengthening exercises. Don't sit in one posture for long periods of time. Get your self examined by some orthopaedician.
1 person found this helpful

My age is 36. I have been diagnosed with cervical spondylosis and going for physiotherapy. She is doing neck traction, then I've asked an advice from my physiotherapist regarding my back pain then she started back traction too for 2 days only. The back pain worsened. What should I do to correct it. Is it the right way of treatment?

MBBS, DNB, National Board Of Examination
Orthopedist, Faridabad
Do back and neck strengthening exercises. Sit in proper posture. No forward bending allowed. Don't work in one posture for long periods. Get your serum CAL, PHOSPH, VITAMIN B12 AND VITAMIN D3 LEVELS CHECKED.

Table of Content

What is Back pain?

What are the causes of Back Pain?

Diagnosis and Treatment

What happens when you don't get treated on time :

Play video
Lower Back Pain
Back pain is a common source of pain and can be acute, sub-acute or chronic in nature. Back pain is classified along the segments of the spine and can be divided into neck pain, middle back pain, lower back pain and coccydynia or tailbone pain. Back pain can be quite troublesome as it disables a person to move about freely due to a constant ache.
Play video
Lower Back Pain
Back pain is a common source of pain, which can be acute, subacute or chronic in nature. Back pain is classified along the segments of the spine and can be divided into neck pain, middle back pain, lower back pain or tailbone pain.
Play video
Lower Back & Neck Pain
Neck pain is a common medical condition, which can be easily treated if proper care and medications are taken. It usually occurs due to strained neck muscles, often caused bad posture, though there might be other causes as well. Rarely, neck pain can be a symptom of a more serious problem as the condition is relatively mild in nature.
Play video
Back Pain & Knee Pain
Few very common causes of back pain and knee pain include Vitamin D deficiency and lack of exercises. Exposure to sun is very important. Few preventive measures include forward bending and sitting on ground.
Play video
Body Pain Related To Posture
hello,

We are working on postural association of lifestyle disease, postural association of pain and postural association of most of the evolving muscular-skeletal issue. If we notice what has changed during the last few years, there has been masive change in our lifestyle, our living standards, our surroundings that ultimately we are going towards modernization. By modernisation we are changing our surroundings. Previously we used to walk on soft floor. Now we are walking on much harder floor. Our running surface has been changed, our sitting posture, our living standard, our lifestyle all the things are changing. At Rehab For You, we are advising you how to live with your surroundings, how do you change your surrounding so that you live comfortably, how we can rectify your posture on how we can rectify your defective areas, how we can give you rapid cure from pain. Also at Rehab For You we are working on rapid cure from pain.

Pain is a biggest enemy of human body. Simply if you have pain you ask for a painkiller but how is it helping you? It is infact killing you. You are subsiding your pain by suppressing your pain center. After some time there is a again recurrence of pain, you are again taking painkiller. This cycle has been repeated so many times but here at our centre we are working on target organs. We are working on how to give rapid cure. Like in osteoarthritis people use to take painkiller for decades also but what happened? They are ultimately damaging their sensitive areas. They are taking painkiller, they are putting more pressure on their damaged areas and by doing so they are fully damaging their joints.

At Rehab For You, we are mostly working on injection therapy like, injection Botox, PRP, steroid injection. How much and how rapid can they give you relief from pain. Third area of our concern is Cerebral Palsy. In India 95% of cerebral palsy are not getting proper treatment because most of the parents are not knowledgeable enough. Most of the time they are engaged in therapies and sessions for so many years. Ultimately the golden phase in which you can expect maximum recovery is lost. Fourth, we are working on handicap rehabilitation. By handicap few people are having muscular-skeletal issue, few people are having amputation. By providing them appropriate advice and splint support and prosthetics. We are helping them in rapid ambulation. As soon as the patient will ambulate, they will get more confidence and more active lifestyle. Fifth, we are not working much on medication, we are working more on how to change lifestyle, how to correct posture, how to correct pain. That is our ultimate moto.

Thank you!
Having issues? Consult a doctor for medical advice