Back Pain Doctor Near Me
- 0.1 What does a neurologist do for back pain?
- 0.2 Can chiropractors help lower back pain?
- 0.3 How long is too long for back pain?
- 1 How do I know if my back pain is neurological?
- 2 Is walking good for lower back pain?
- 3 How should you sleep with lower back pain?
- 4 How many chiropractic sessions do I need for lower back pain?
- 5 Why can’t doctors diagnose my back pain?
- 6 Why do I feel off after an MRI?
What kind of doctor should I see for back pain?
What Doctor Should I See for Back Pain? – Content If your back pain is from a recent strain or mild injury, your primary care doctor can probably help. But if the pain is severe, ongoing, or accompanied by other symptoms such as numbness or tingling in your arms or legs, it may be time to see a back doctor.
What does a neurologist do for back pain?
Why you should see a neurologist – The cause of back pain can be different for each patient and even more challenging to determine. Some patients need only the intervention of a general practitioner. Together, the doctor and patient can work on non-surgical treatment to stop the pain.
- If the source of pain is too complicated, a neurologist needs to get involved.
- A neurologist specializes in treating nerves in the brain and spine.
- This doctor also has the tools available to assess back pain like an x-Ray and MRI.
- However, neurologists can go a step further.
- Using tools like an EMG, the neurologist can check nerve health and muscle weakness with fantastic detail.
Detailed feedback makes a neurologist the highest resource to test, diagnose, and treat back issues.
Can chiropractors help lower back pain?
Should You See a Chiropractor for Back Pain? Nearly everyone suffers from at some point. One treatment option is chiropractic care, which often includes spinal manipulation (also called manual manipulation), exercise advice, and self-care recommendations. Research shows that spinal manipulation can help relieve pain and improve function in people with acute low-back pain, one of the most common types of back pain.
Offers chiropractic care and other conservative treatments for back pain as part of its whole-person approach to helping you feel better faster. Here, Duke chiropractor, answers questions about how chiropractic care could help you feel better. I mainly see spine-related conditions. This includes pain in the low back (called the lumbar spine), the upper back (called the thoracic spine), and the (cervical spine).
Some of my patients have had a recent injury while others have had pain for many years. Common causes of spine pain include and muscle spasms. Many patients have leg or arm pain or headaches in addition to back and neck pain. Chiropractors often work with injuries in other parts of the body, too -,, things like that – but my main focus is on the spine.
- People often want to try the kind of conservative approaches that chiropractors provide first.
- In fact, this is what many clinical care guidelines recommend.
- So before trying treatments like or for back pain, they may want to consider chiropractic care,, or,
- Much of the time, back pain resolves with this kind of treatment.
I primarily use manual manipulation. That means I use my hands to try to improve movement in your spine. If I can improve joint mobility in a certain area – the spine, neck, middle back, lower back, pelvis – it may reduce muscle tightness. It can also help with irritation of nerves that travel down the arm or leg, causing numbness or tingling, pain, or even changes in strength.
I sometimes use other therapies as well, such as giving people exercise instructions or self-care recommendations. I spend about 20 to 25% of my time talking with and listening to my patients. We talk about flexibility; we talk about strength-building; we talk about balance. I look at your ergonomics: What do you do for work? How do you bend, turn, lift? Do you ride in a car all day? Do you sit in front of a computer? I try to understand what may be contributing to the pain or other symptoms you may be experiencing.
Often, I’m trying to help patients by encouraging them: “Yes, you can do this,” or “When something like this happens, try to do this instead of that.” That way, they’re not anticipating pain and causing more pain and more muscle spasms. Pain scientists have found that anticipation of pain can lead to more episodes, more muscle spasms, more headaches, and so forth.
- So, teaching patients how to think about pain is important.
- Our goals focus largely on returning people to the activities that are important in their lives, whether those are job-related, family or socially oriented, or recreational in nature.
- Active people are healthier and happier.
- It won’t be a lot different from what you’re used to with other medical providers.
I first gather a lot of information about you by asking questions: how your pain began, what is the effect on your pain when you do this or that, what your level of pain is, and any other symptoms you may have. If your information is in, I’m going to read it beforehand.
This includes if you have images -, – or blood work. Then I’m going to perform an exam that assesses both the medical and mechanical aspects of your pain. For example, I’ll look at alignment, muscle tone, nerve function, how your body is moving, how well you can bend, turn, twist, and what kind of movements reproduce the symptoms you’re having.
If you haven’t had X-rays or other imaging and we need to order it, we can do that. However, most patients do not need imaging at their first visit. After the exam, we have a discussion: “This is what I think is happening with your spine, these are the treatments I would recommend, and this is how I think it will help you.” Since I’m part of a team, if I think a patient will get additional benefit or more benefit from seeing a physical therapist,, spine surgeon, or other provider, I will also suggest that referral.
- I offer video appointments for virtual exams, diagnoses, and patient education.
- I might recommend self-care that you can do at home like heat therapy or stretching, or you may need to make an in-person appointment for hands-on treatments or additional evaluation.
- Your muscles may be a little sore afterward and some patients feel a little tired.
However, most of these symptoms are gone in less than 24 hours. Fortunately, complex side effects associated with manual manipulation are rare. At first, I might see a patient once or twice a week. If the condition is acute, I might see the patient every day to begin.
- As they improve, I recommend fewer visits and start giving the patient more things to do on their own at home.
- I want my patients to be as independent as possible.
- There are patients who have chronic problems and need to come back and see me occasionally.
- But the great majority of patients have issues that are resolvable, and I may never need to see them again after their condition has improved.
: Should You See a Chiropractor for Back Pain?
What if MRI shows nothing but still in pain?
What happens when your pain doesn’t show on x-ray or MRI? Here is one of the top three reasons people wind up in my clinic: “I’m hurt and I’ve been to the doctor and nothing shows up on an x-ray or MRI but I can’t do what I want to. No one can find anything wrong with me.” Having a diagnosis or an injury that does not show up on x-ray or MRI is more common in my office than having a diagnosis that does show up on a scan.
- While people heavily rely on x-rays, MRIs or CT Scans, the truth is that most everyday aches and pains do not show up on any imaging devices or anything at all.
- Why is this? Most problems that cause every day aches and pains are muscle related.
- And while muscle does show up on some scans, it will only show a problem if there is a tear or A LOT of inflammation.
For most people that have pain, it is caused by muscle imbalances, not anything that can be surgically repaired or can be seen on imaging. Another popular phrase I hear: “But my scans showed arthritis so that must be the cause of the pain and there is nothing that can be done about it.” Outside of replacing your joint, there is nothing that can be done to ‘cure’ arthritis.
- But what always perplexes is me is that one joint always seems to have worse arthritis or more pain than the other one.
- To me that is a big red flag.
- Take your knees for example, how does one knee get arthritis faster or more severe than the other.
- Is the one leg walking less than the other leg? Does the one leg do more standing than the other leg? No, for the most part your legs do the same amount of activity.
So why do you have breakdown and pain and arthritis in one leg and not the other? Imbalances, most often in the muscle,are the cause. Let’s continue with the knee example. Say there is pain in the knee. You have been to the doctor and had the tests and the scans and it has come back as arthritis or nothing showed up.
- But your knee gets worse when you go up and down the stairs or stand for long periods of time but then if you lay down the pain goes away.
- So is your arthritis only there part of the time? Why does pain only happen at certain times and not others when doing the same activity? Again, muscle imbalances.
So what is a muscle imbalance? A muscle imbalance could be a number of things, it could be a weak muscle that is giving in and letting the stronger muscles work overtime for it. It could be a muscle that has a lot of knots, and therefore, is not able to relax and stretch out as much as needed in order to function correctly.
- Imagine a piece of string from your hip to your knee.
- Take that string and tie a bunch of knots in it.
- Watch it get shorter.
- Now if that string was connected to something on the other side, it would start to pull on that side.
- This is how knots in the muscle work.
- Those in one muscle can affect all the rest of the muscles and begin to cause pain.
The bottom line is that not all pain is able to be detected on an x-ray or MRI. That does not mean that there is nothing there that needs to be treated or diagnosed. In fact, it means that it is possibly a precursor to something going really wrong and then eventually needing surgery because it eventually winds up torn.
How long is too long for back pain?
What is back pain? – Back pain is one of most common reasons people see a doctor or miss days at work. Back pain can range in intensity from a dull, constant ache to a sudden, sharp or shooting pain. There are two types of back pain:
Acute (short-term) back pain lasts a few days to a few weeks. It usually resolves on its own within a few days with self-care and there is no long-term loss of function. Chronic back pain is pain that continues for 12 weeks or longer, even after an initial injury or underlying cause of back pain has been treated.
Risk factors for low back pain
Age: The first attack of low back pain typically occurs between the ages of 30 and 50 and may become more common as you age. Fitness level: Back pain is more common among people who are not physically fit, as their muscles may not properly support the spine. Weight gain: Being overweight, obese, or quickly gaining significant amounts of weight can put stress on your back and cause pain. Genetics: Some causes of back pain, such as ankylosing spondylitis (a form of arthritis that affects the spine), have a genetic component. Job-related factors: Job that requires heavy lifting, pushing or pulling, or twisting or vibrating the spine can injure your back, as can sitting at a desk all day, especially if you have poor posture or sit in a chair with not enough back support. Mental health: Anxiety, mood, and depression can influence how you perceive your back pain and stress can cause muscle tension. Smoking: This can restrict blood flow and oxygen to your discs, causing them to degenerate faster. Backpack overload in children: A backpack overloaded with schoolbooks and supplies can strain the back and cause muscle fatigue.
Recommendations for keeping your back healthy
Avoid movements that jolt or strain your back. Exercise regularly to keep your muscles strong and flexible. Consult a physician for a list of low-impact, age-appropriate exercises that are specifically targeted to strengthening lower back and abdominal muscles. Maintain a healthy weight and eat a nutritious diet that promotes new bone growth. Use ergonomically designed furniture and equipment at home and at work. Switch sitting positions often and periodically walk around the office or gently stretch your muscles to relieve tension. Put your feet on a low stool or a stack of books when sitting for a long time. Wear comfortable, low-heeled shoes. Sleeping on your side with your knees drawn up in a fetal position can help open up the joints in the spine and relieve pressure by reducing the curvature of the spine. Always sleep on a firm surface. Don’t try to lift objects that are too heavy. Lift from the knees, keep a straight back, and objects close to the body. Quit smoking. Smoking reduces blood flow to the lower spine, which can contribute to spinal disc degeneration. Smoking also increases the risk of osteoporosis and impedes healing. Coughing due to heavy smoking also may cause back pain.
Learn About Clinical Trials Clinical trials are studies that allow us to learn more about disorders and improve care. They can help connect patients with new and upcoming treatment options.
How do you know if back pain is muscular or spinal?
3. Radiating pain – Strained muscles cause localized pain (at the site of the injury), but the pain can sometimes radiate to your buttocks. However, if you find that your pain runs from your buttocks and down through your leg, you might be dealing with sciatica or even a in your lumbar spine.
How do I know if my back pain is neurological?
How Can You Make a Difference in the Future of Spine Care – For more than 30 years, the NREF has funded research and training to improve treatments and care for conditions like low back pain. Your contribution can make a difference. Learn more about the NREF and make a donation today. donate now Although low back pain is a common occurrence, some features warrant evaluation from a medical professional, such as persistent or worsening back pain; neurologic symptoms, including numbness, weakness, or tingling; or changes in bowel or bladder function.
Computed Tomography Scan (CT or CAT scan) Discography Electromyography (EMG) Nerve Conduction Studies (NCS) Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Myelogram Selective Nerve Root Block X-rays
Treatment options include physical therapy, back exercises, weight reduction, steroid injections (epidural steroids), nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, acupuncture, rehabilitation and limited activity. All of these treatment options are aimed at relieving inflammation in the back and irritation of nerve roots.
- Physicians usually recommend four to six weeks of conservative therapy before considering surgery.
- If low back pain occurs after a recent injury — such as a car accident, a fall or sports injury — call your primary care physician immediately.
- If you have any neurologic symptoms (numbness, weakness, tingling or bowel and bladder dysfunction), seek medical care immediately.
If no neurologic problems are present, the patient may benefit by beginning conservative treatment at home for two to three weeks. The physician may recommend anti-inflammatory medications, such as aspirin or ibuprofen, and restrict strenuous activities for a few days.
- If low back pain worsens or does not improve after two to three weeks of home treatment, contact the primary care physician.
- The physician can evaluate and perform an in-office neurologic exam to determine which nerve root is being irritated and to rule out other serious medical conditions.
- If the physician notes clear signs that the nerve root is being compressed, he/she can prescribe medications to relieve the pain, swelling and irritation.
In addition, the doctor may recommend that limiting activities, provide a referral to a pain management specialist or both. If these treatment options do not provide relief within a few weeks, it may be time to consider other diagnostic studies and possibly surgical evaluation.
Reasonably good health Back and leg pain limits normal activity or impairs quality of life Progressive neurologic deficits develop, such as leg weakness, numbness or both Loss of normal bowel and bladder functions Difficulty standing or walking Medication and physical therapy are ineffective
If surgery is recommended, neurosurgeons have a variety of options available to help relieve pressure on the nerve roots. If several nerve roots and discs are causing the pain or if degeneration and instability exist in the spinal column, the neurosurgeon may choose: (1) a minimally invasive approach; (2) a more open decompression; or (3) fusing the vertebrae together with bone grafts and stabilizing them with instrumentation, including metal plates, screws, rods and cages, depending on the extent of disease.
After such surgery, patients may gain restored mobility in the back, including the ability to bend over. In addition, patients may require postoperative physical therapy. The benefits of surgery should always be weighed carefully against the risks. Although a large percentage of patients with low back pain report significant pain relief after surgery, it is not guaranteed that surgery will help.
If back pain resolves with non-surgical, conservative treatment, follow-up will likely be on an as-needed basis or if symptoms return. If a patient undergoes surgery, follow-up is different for each type of procedure. Omar Zalatimo, MD, MPH, MHA, FAANS Director, Functional Neurosurgery LifeBridge Health Baltimore The AANS does not endorse any treatments, procedures, products or physicians referenced in these patient fact sheets.
Can nerve damage cause back pain?
Nerve root pain symptoms may include: Pain in the back, neck, and limbs.
Can lower back pain be neurological?
Neurological Causes of Chronic Back Pain – Since the spinal column and lower back are connected to highly sensitive nerves, neurological conditions can easily arise in the lower back. These conditions, such as pinched nerves, slipped discs, and spinal stenosis can all be caused by injury or excessive pressure being put on the nerves over time.
Is it better to sit or lay down with lower back pain?
How to relieve the pain – If you’re experiencing back pain when sitting, your impulse may be to lie down and then try to slowly progress back to sitting, says Dr. Atlas. But this is the wrong approach. You should lie down to relieve the pain, but the goal should be not to return to sitting, but rather to regain your ability to stand and move.
Is walking good for lower back pain?
Low back pain: Why movement is so important for back pain Created: February 9, 2012 ; Last Update: February 14, 2019 ; Next update: 2022. One of the most important things that people with low back pain can do is to stay as physically active as possible in daily life and exercise regularly.
- Things that have been proven to help include exercises to strengthen the core muscles, as well as certain exercises used in pilates, tai chi and yoga.
- Not moving enough can weaken your core muscles, make the pain worse over the long term, and also lead to other health problems.
- Because of this, people who have back pain are often advised to get “more exercise” and “stay active.” There are good reasons for this advice: For a start, regular physical exercise has been shown to reduce pain.
What’s more, it’s a good idea to go about your daily life as normally as possible, and not to let the pain limit your activities too much. Isolating yourself or no longer doing things you enjoy will make it even harder to cope with back pain. More than 100 studies have looked into various types of exercise.
So this is by far one of the best studied treatment approaches. Exercise and sports are also among the few treatments that have been proven to relieve back pain. This is the reason why most medical societies around the world recommend regular exercise for people with back pain. Although exercise programs don’t always make back pain go away completely, they often relieve the pain and improve your overall fitness and mobility.
Research has also found that doing regular exercise can reduce the frequency of recurring back pain attacks by almost half. It is often hard to stay active if you are in pain. Some people are even scared of moving too much. They might be worried that the pain is a sign of a back injury.
But that isn’t the case when it comes to non-specific back pain, which is usually caused by many different factors. These include weak or tense core muscles, inappropriate physical strain, a problem with the processing of pain in the brain, as well as stress and other types of emotional strain. It’s important to remember that if the doctor has ruled out (rare) serious causes of the symptoms, there is no need to be afraid of movement.
Types of exercise that have proven effective include the following:
Special programs consisting of exercises to strengthen and stabilize the deep abdominal (tummy), back and pelvic muscles, as well as endurance training and exercises to stretch the muscles in the calves, hips and thighs. Pilates : A total body workout in which strengthening the deep core muscles is key. Tai chi : Originally an Asian martial art, tai chi is now practiced with slow, flowing movements. It can improve your balance and coordination skills, strengthen your muscles, and is said to help you relax your body and mind. Yoga : An ancient Indian practice that aims to improve your body awareness and health. Yoga typically involves getting into various positions or carrying out certain sequences of movements that aim to promote strength and flexibility, body awareness and a good posture. Going on walks : Initial research suggests that going on a walk or brisk walking (Nordic walking) can help relieve back pain if done regularly – for instance, every two days for 30 to 60 minutes.
A doctor or physiotherapist can help you to find a suitable type of exercise that is tailored to your situation and that you enjoy. People who have medical problems often find it helpful to have a course instructor or trainer with the appropriate experience.
You may need patience to start off with: It can take several weeks for the exercise to have an effect. Your body also needs to get used to the extra movement. That can be tiring and lead to harmless muscle ache, and it sometimes makes the pain worse for a while. In order for it to help in the long run too, you have to stick to your exercise program.
This requires a lot of motivation, and many people find it tough after a while – particularly if they have a very busy job or home life. It is then important to find a way to fit the exercise into your daily routine. Many people find it easier to exercise regularly if they sign up for a class or exercise together with friends.
Some make sure they pack their sports bag before going to work, or increase their motivation by rewarding themselves with a treat afterwards. It is also a good idea to have check-ups with a physiotherapist or doctor to adjust the exercise program if necessary. If you spend a lot of time sitting in an office, you can be kind to your back by taking regular breaks and moving your body – for instance, by getting up out of your chair, stretching, doing short exercises and going on a walk in your lunch break.
Some people find it helpful to wear a fitness tracker watch, or to set reminders on their mobile phone or computer. Other ways to get more exercise into your daily routine include the following:
Not using escalators or elevators (lifts), and always taking the stairs instead. Regularly getting off one stop before your actual bus or tram stop, and walking the rest of the way. Trying to walk or cycle as much as possible. Getting up and walking around while you’re talking on your mobile or cordless phone.
Patient education classes provide you with facts and techniques to help prevent or relieve back pain. There is usually both a theoretical and practical part. The classes typically include modules on the anatomy of the spine and the back, advice on postures and movements that don’t put harmful strain on the back, and back-strengthening exercises.
These courses are often offered at gyms and physiotherapy practices. Patient education classes haven’t yet been scientifically proven to help people with chronic low back pain. Some studies found that they helped a bit, while others did not. There are a lot of different patient education classes, sometimes differing greatly in terms of what they cover and the approaches they use.
This might explain why the results of the studies varied so much.
How should you sleep with lower back pain?
How to Sleep with Lower Back Pain |Sleep Foundation The lower back features an interwoven series of structures National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) NINDS aims to seek fundamental knowledge about the brain and nervous system and to use that knowledge to reduce the burden of neurological disease.
- It includes the five vertebrae of the lumbar spine, each of which is bolstered by shock-absorbing discs and held in place by ligaments.
- Surrounding muscles offer support and are connected to the spine by tendons.
- Nerves run through the spinal column to deliver signals throughout the body.
- The lower back supports most of the body’s weight Medline Plus MedlinePlus is an online health information resource for patients and their families and friends.
and is integral to all kinds of movements. Whether standing, sitting, walking, or lying down, the lower back plays a role in mobility and comfort. Given the complexity of the lower back and how much we depend on it, it comes as no surprise that it is a leading hotspot for pain.
Eight out of 10 people Medline Plus MedlinePlus is an online health information resource for patients and their families and friends. have back pain at some point during their life, and lower back pain is one of the top reasons why people see a doctor. Back pain can range from mild to severe, and it may be short-lived or long-lasting.
When serious, it can be debilitating and interfere with nearly all aspects of daily life, including sleep. Pain and sleep have a complex relationship. Pain can disrupt sleep, and poor sleep can make it more likely that a person will experience pain. In addition, a sleeping position or mattress that doesn’t support the lumbar spine can induce or exacerbate,
- Acute lower back pain is short-term, lasting for just a few days up to a few weeks. It is often connected to an identifiable event or injury. When acute back pain fades, there is no ongoing effect on mobility.
- Chronic lower back pain Medline Plus MedlinePlus is an online health information resource for patients and their families and friends. goes on for three months or longer. In many cases, it occurs without a clear link to an initial injury.
Lower back pain that starts as acute may become chronic. It is estimated that around 20% of cases of acute low back pain persist and become chronic. Researchers have long seen an association between lower back pain and sleeping problems, and growing evidence points a two-way relationship National Library of Medicine, Biotech Information The National Center for Biotechnology Information advances science and health by providing access to biomedical and genomic information.
- In which they can be mutually reinforcing.
- Discomfort from pain can be a major barrier to sleep.
- Lower back pain makes it hard to get comfortable enough to fall asleep or may provoke nighttime awakenings when pain surges.
- At the same time, people with sleep problems are more likely to start having pain or to have pain get worse National Library of Medicine, Biotech Information The National Center for Biotechnology Information advances science and health by providing access to biomedical and genomic information.
Experts aren’t certain why this happens, but there are several potential explanations. Sleep deprivation may impair healing, affect mood in a way that heightens pain sensitivity, or disrupt chemicals in the brain that are involved in how we experience pain. Another link between sleep and lower back pain is tied to how sleeping position affects spinal alignment. Although posture is typically associated with sitting and standing, it’s also critical when lying down. A sleeping position that involves twisting, contorting, or otherwise putting pressure on the lumbar spine can cause pain and stiffness.
This pain is often worse in the morning but may persist throughout the day. The best sleeping position for lower back pain is on your side with a partial bend in the knees FamilyDoctor.org Familydoctor.org is the public-oriented website created by the American Association of Family Physicians (AAFP) that features physician-reviewed patient education materials.
Keeping the knees bent helps balance the body and reduces pressure on the lumbar spine. Many people find it helpful to put a small pillow between their knees to make this position more comfortable. Unfortunately, many back and stomach sleepers have a hard time changing their sleeping position.
- Back sleepers can put a pillow under their knees, legs, and/or lower back to support the natural curve of the spine and minimize lumbar pressure.
- Stomach sleepers should opt for only a thin pillow under their head and place a more supportive pillow under their hips and abdomen. This works to prevent the lower back from sinking into a U-shape that pulls the spine out of alignment.
Some people with back pain use an adjustable bed that makes it easy to raise the upper or lower part of the mattress in a way that decreases tension in the lower back. Because it is a principal means of supporting the body during sleep, can play an important role in preventing or reducing lower back pain.
Proper spinal alignment demands a mattress that is in good condition and doesn’t sag excessively. Research supports using a medium-firm mattress National Library of Medicine, Biotech Information The National Center for Biotechnology Information advances science and health by providing access to biomedical and genomic information.
to combat lower back pain National Library of Medicine, Biotech Information The National Center for Biotechnology Information advances science and health by providing access to biomedical and genomic information., although the most appropriate firmness can vary based on a person’s weight, body shape, sleeping position, and individual comfort preferences. Getting quality sleep is an important part of recovering from lower back pain, but sleeping well may seem like a tall task when your back hurts. While there’s no guaranteed way to get better sleep, certain practical tips can help:
- Find a supportive sleeping position. Ideally, you can, but regardless of the position, make sure your spine is well-aligned. If needed, use extra pillows for body support.
- Be careful with alcohol and caffeine. Though alcohol may help you doze off, it can throw off the quality of your sleep. As a stimulant, caffeine can make it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.
- Try relaxation methods. Finding techniques to wind down can put you in the right state of mind for sleep with less focus on pain.
- Reduce potential sleep disruptions. If you inadvertently wake up at night, pain may make it harder to get back to sleep. For that reason, try to eliminate excess noise and light from your bedroom or block them out with a sleep mask or earplugs. Set your bedroom to a temperature that will be comfortable throughout the night.
Focusing on can improve your sleep habits so that you can sleep better both during and after episodes of lower back pain. Back pain is common and often recedes quickly, but it’s important to talk with a doctor if:
- The pain began with a specific injury
- Pain continues or worsens for more than a few days
- Pain is debilitating
- Pain radiates to the legs or other parts of the body
- You experience weakness or numbness in your lower body
- There are signs of infection like redness, warmth, swelling, or fever
- You have a personal history of cancer
- You have other unexplained health changes like weight loss or urinary problems
A doctor can review your symptoms and determine the appropriate next steps for testing, diagnosis, and treatment.
- National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. (2020, April 27). Low back pain fact sheet. NINDS., Retrieved September 20, 2020, from
- A.D.A.M. Medical Encyclopedia. (2018, March 20). Low back pain – acute.
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- Finan, P.H., Goodin, B.R., & Smith, M.T. (2013). The association of sleep and pain: an update and a path forward. The journal of pain : official journal of the American Pain Society, 14(12), 1539–1552.
- American Academy of Family Physicians. (2020, January 17). Low Back Pain.
- Jacobson, B.H., Boolani, A., Dunklee, G., Shepardson, A., & Acharya, H. (2010). Effect of prescribed sleep surfaces on back pain and sleep quality in patients diagnosed with low back and shoulder pain. Applied Ergonomics, 42(1), 91–97.
- Ancuelle, V., Zamudio, R., Mendiola, A., Guillen, D., Ortiz, P.J., Tello, T., & Vizcarra, D. (2015). Effects of an adapted mattress in musculoskeletal pain and sleep quality in institutionalized elders. Sleep science (Sao Paulo, Brazil), 8(3), 115–120.
: How to Sleep with Lower Back Pain |Sleep Foundation
Can acupuncture help lower back pain?
Back Pain: Acupuncture Treatment and Points Medically Reviewed by on September 07, 2022 Nearly 8 out of every 10 people will have low back pain at some point in life. is one of the top reasons people seek medical treatment. It is also the No.1 reported reason for seeking,
- The good news is chronic low back pain is one of the conditions that research suggests may be an effective tool for treating.
- One recent review of 22 acupuncture studies showed that it provided short-term relief from chronic back pain.
- It also showed there was greater improvement in pain for people who got acupuncture compared to those who received a “sham” treatment.
Other studies have found, though, that sham acupuncture can be as effective as actual acupuncture. Those studies also found that, compared to standard treatment, both actual acupuncture and sham acupuncture are more effective. Guidelines from the American Pain Society and American College of Physicians say doctors should consider acupuncture as an alternative therapy for patients with chronic low-back pain that’s not helped by conventional treatment.
Acupuncture began in China more than 2,500 years ago. It involves inserting thin needles at certain points on the body. According to traditional Chinese medicine, the body has more than 2,000 of these points. They are connected by pathways or meridians, which create a flow of energy called Qi (pronounced “chee”).
Stimulating these points is said to correct the imbalance of qi and improve the flow of energy. Practitioners believe that this helps relieve pain and improve health. It’s thought the effects come from stimulating the central nervous system. This may trigger the release of chemicals into the muscles, spinal cord, and,
Speeding the relay of electromagnetic signals. This may begin the flow of pain-killing chemicals such as endorphins. Or it may release immune system cells in the body.Triggering the release of natural, These are chemicals in the that may lessen pain or promote sleep.Changing chemistry by altering the release of neurotransmitters and neurohormones. Neurotransmitters either stimulate or dampen nerve impulses. Neurohormones can affect the function or activity of an organ in the body.
When done by an experienced, trained acupuncturist, the procedure is generally safe. Serious side effects, such as infections or punctured organs, are rare. Also, acupuncture has fewer adverse side effects than many of the standard, If other treatments have failed and you are considering acupuncture, discuss it with your doctor.
Be sure to let your doctor know any other you are taking. Also tell your doctor if you are pregnant, wear a, or have any type of implant. Your doctor may be able to refer you to a licensed acupuncturist. You may also contact the American Academy of Medical Acupuncture for the name of a doctor who does acupuncture.
Before starting acupuncture, find out if your health insurance will pay for it. Also ask how many treatments you should expect and how much they will cost. © 2022 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved. : Back Pain: Acupuncture Treatment and Points
How long does it take for a chiropractor to fix back pain?
How Long Should a Chiropractic Adjustment Last? – While there is no simple answer as to how long your chiropractic adjustment should last. Each person responds differently to chiropractic treatment and the chiropractic plan and time frame are driven mostly by the patient’s age, fitness level, duration of pain, type of injury, and level of discomfort.
For chiropractic care to be effective, care typically takes 2 to 4 weeks with visits of 3 times a week. Once improvement is experienced, a chiropractor can begin to recommend home-based care that you can do yourself with the help of ergonomic tools like elastic bands, foam rollers, and dietary support.
In total, the average person requires anywhere between 18-24 adjustments over approximately 9-14 weeks to complete all three phases of chiropractic care (pain relief, stabilization, rehabilitation). Depending on the extent of the spinal injury, patients typically feel a reduction in pain of 40-80% following their first visit.
How many chiropractic sessions do I need for lower back pain?
For acute low back pain, six to 12 sessions of chiropractic treatment over the course of two to four weeks is standard. These initial treatments emphasize the ‘passive’ (non-exercise) approaches of manual therapy to relieve pain and improve function.
Why can’t doctors diagnose my back pain?
Do you suffer from chronic back pain? You’re not alone. Back pain is one of the most common reasons for visiting the doctor. However, chronic back pain can be difficult to diagnosis. Let’s look at the reasons behind this problem. #1 Our Spines are Complex Structures First of all, our spines are very complex and made up of many different components.
- Our spine is made up of bones, ligaments, discs, and nerves.
- Due to all these parts, pinpointing the exact reason and source of pain can be challenging.
- 2 Pain Can Occur Away from Source Where you feel your back pain may not actually be the location of the pain’s source.
- In fact, the pain you feel in one location may actually be caused by a problem in a different location of your body.
#3 Lack of Patient Information When you visit a back pain doctor, he or she will ask you many questions about your pain. These questions will help the doctor get a better understanding of your pain levels, location of the pain, pain duration, and what makes it worse.
Your doctor will also ask about headaches and any tingling or numbness you feel in your arms or legs. If you are unable to recall the answers to these questions, the doctor may lack the right information to make a proper diagnosis. #4 Back Pain is Subjective Like all types of pain, back pain is highly subjective.
Each person experiences pain differently. For example, two people may have the same back problem and source of pain, but one person may report mild pain while the other reports severe pain. #5 Diagnostic Tests May Be Inconclusive Imaging tests such as MRIs, CT scans, and X-rays can provide a lot of useful information about the inside of your body.
When should I get an MRI for back pain?
Your doctor might recommend an MRI if he or she suspects that your low back pain is caused by something more serious than muscle strain. This may be the case if: Your history and physical examination show signs of a serious problem, such as a fracture, tumours, infection, or nerve damage.
Why do I feel off after an MRI?
There aren’t any side-effects from the MRI scan itself. However, if you’ve had an injection of contrast medium (dye) as part of the investigation, you may have some side-effects which might include a skin rash, dizziness, a headache, and nausea. Your radiographer will discuss these with you will and answer any questions you may have before the procedure.
Should I see a doctor or physiotherapist for back pain?
There are often times in life when we get pain and just don’t know whether to see a doctor or go directly to the physiotherapist. Here in New Zealand physiotherapists can lodge ACC claims directly without you having to see a doctor first. But how do you know? Here we have prepared a simple list of questions to help you decide who should be your first phone call, Back In Action Physiotherapy or a doctor.
Are you suddenly bleeding profusely, have 10/10 pain that is un-relenting, or your limb is distorted? Go to a Dr immediately, in-fact go straight to the hospital or a 24 hours medical centre. Do you have pain that is 9 or 10/10 and there is no position or movement that can ease it slightly (even to a 7/10)? You will need to see a doctor for pain relief.
They may refer you to a physiotherapist for treatment once your pain is under better control. Do you have night pain that can not be relieved by rolling over, moving to a different position, or taking over-the-counter pain medication? Once again, you will need to see a doctor to get your pain and inflammation under control before seeing a physiotherapist.
- Have you done this injury before and it feels similar and the doctor just referred you straight to a physiotherapist? Call your physiotherapist and during your initial session, they can help you fill out the appropriate forms.
- Start your rehab immediately.
- Have you had a niggling injury that just isn’t going away? Does it come and go throughout the day but you can sleep through the night fairly easily? Is it stopping you perform your best at home or in your chosen sport? Call your physiotherapist and they can help you figure out the cause of the discomfort.
They will help you return to full daily living without pain again. They can also give you some home exercises and stretches so you can help yourself if the pains return. Does your child get pain whenever they exercise or by the end of a school day? This pain is usually in the knees or ankles and may be related to a sudden increase in height.
- Call your physiotherapist and they can assess your child’s biomechanics (the way they move).
- We also look at training load to see if there is a physical cause for your child’s pain.
- Physiotherapists can give you advice on home exercises, stretches and treatment techniques so you can help them as well.
It is important for your child to be seen by a physiotherapist so they do not end up with long term pain or compensatory injuries. They can often continue with a level of activity that is appropriate for them specifically. If you see your doctor and they diagnose growing pains we recommend you also see a physiotherapist.
- The therapist will help prevent further damage or compensatory postures and return to sport better, faster.
- Have you hurt yourself but your pain or swelling has come on a day or more later? Call a physiotherapist and book an appointment.
- We see this commonly in our clinic where patients are able to continue playing their sport or going about their normal daily business but do not realise they have injured themselves until a bit later on.
If you are in discomfort we can help you so give us a call. Have you had an injury for years but now you just live with it thinking nobody can help? Give us a call at Back In Action Physiotherapy. We are highly skilled therapists who look at your whole body to determine the cause of discomforts and injuries so we can often help you get better.
- So if you have made it to the bottom and you landed on ‘Call your physiotherapist’ then give us at Back In Action Physio a call.
- We are on 021 438825, or text, or email to or message us on Facebook.
- We will get you booked in and on the mend as soon as possible.
- Are you still unsure? Give us a call and we can give you some free advice over the phone.
If for some reason you have come to see us but you should go and see your doctor as well, then we can refer you. We can easily refer you back to your GP, directly to a Sports Doctor, surgeon, podiatrist, and even directly for an ultrasound or x-ray. We look forward to meeting you and helping you get better, faster!
What does an osteopath do for back pain?
About osteopathy Your practitioner will use skilled hand movements to manipulate and move your joints and soft tissues to get your body back to a state of balance. Osteopaths use a wide variety of hands-on techniques to try to reduce your pain and prevent it from coming back.
When should I see a rheumatologist for back pain?
Summary – Severe or persistent back pain is often treated by a rheumatologist or an orthopedic surgeon. A rheumatologist is an expert in autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis, whereas orthopedists treat joint and muscle injuries and osteoarthritis.
- You should see a rheumatologist if you have back pain that’s not from an injury and doesn’t go away in a few days, pain that comes back after treatment, or symptoms that suggest a rheumatic condition.
- You may need to first see your primary care provider for a referral.
- Common autoimmune diseases that impact the spin include RA, AS, axial spondylitis, PsA, and other forms of inflammatory or autoimmune arthritis.
By Anne Asher, CPT Anne Asher, ACE-certified personal trainer, health coach, and orthopedic exercise specialist, is a back and neck pain expert. Thanks for your feedback!