Back Pain: Effective Treatment Starts With Proper Diagnosis

By: Dr. Ellen Edgar  -  no responses  -  Neurological Blog, Treatments


Man suffering back pain in New York

The vast majority of adults will experience back pain at some point in their lifetime. The National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Strokes estimates that 80% of all adults will experience pain at least once during their lives. The fact that most people will encounter it doesn’t make it any less painful or important to treat. In some cases, that incident will lead to lifelong chronic pain. If you are in pain, leaving the resolution to chance can be dangerous. It is important to treat pain when it occurs.

What Causes Back Pain?

Back pain is a symptom of a range of issues, which is why proper diagnosis is important. The most common back injuries involve damage to the muscles and structures of the spine through action. Physical activity, such as lifting and carrying can cause the muscles in the back to stretch, strain, or tear.

Trauma of the back can extend to the spinal column and the nerves surrounding it. The spine is made up of bones called vertebra that cover the spinal cord and various nerves as well as tissue called intervertebral discs. Intervertebral discs can degenerate over time, which leads to bulging (herniated) or ruptured discs. Damage to the discs can cause serious pain whether it is from natural degeneration or physical trauma.

Conditions affecting the nerves that travel the spine also list back pain as a symptom. There are quite a few nerve conditions that can occur. Injuries to the discs or vertebra can lead to spinal compression that can pinch nerves causing pain. Pinching of, or damage to, the spinal root is called Radiculopathy. Another nerve called the Sciatic nerve can become pinched. It extends from the spine to the buttocks and the foot. Nerves leaving the spine can be pinched by a damaged vertebra, which is called Spondylolisthesis.

The above maladies are the most common issues, but there are rare conditions that can also manifest in back pain. Kidney stones can radiate pain as the stone passes. Very infrequently, back pain can be the result of an infection. In the rarest cases, it can be the result of a growing tumor.

How To Tell What’s Wrong

Doctors use a serious of imaging devices, such as X-rays, CT scans, MRI scans, and ultrasounds. Blood tests and electrodiagnostics can be ordered if additional testing is required.

The doctors at Complete Neurological Care are there to help you diagnose the source of your pain. The doctors at Complete Neurological Care have a broad range of experience in neurology. In addition to their medical training, the doctors have committed to learning the nuances of their chosen field in the form of fellowships in Electrophysiology, Sports Medicine, Interventional Spine, and Epilepsy. They are committed to applying their thorough understanding of neurology to help you.

Back pain can interfere, sometimes drastically, with how you live. If untreated, it can develop into something much more severe. Early diagnosis and treatment are crucial to avoiding long-term chronic pain. No one should live with back pain as a regular part of life.

Please contact us to make an appointment, or use our online scheduling assistant, as soon as you are ready to treat the pain interfering with your life.

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