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Back Pain, Cause, Diagnosis and Treatment

Back pain is one of the most common reasons why people miss work and seek medical treatment. It some cases, it can be a minor nuisance causing minimum discomfort, while in other cases, it can be debilitating. It can result from some medical condition, activity, and even injury. Back pain can affect people in all age brackets and for different reasons. However, older people are at higher risk of developing lower back pain due to issues such as degenerative disc disease and previous occupation. Pain management specialists, such as Dr Jay Shah in West Orange, help people in diagnosing back pain and treating it.

Causes of Back Pain

The human back is made up of a sophisticated structure of bones, discs, tendons, ligaments, and muscles to work together in supporting the body and enabling it to move. Problems with one or several of these components can lead to back pain. Some common causes of back pain include poor posture, medical condition, and strain. Some activities that can lead to strain include lifting heavy objects improperly and making abrupt or awkward movements. The medical conditions that can lead to back pain include kidney problems, arthritis, bulging discs, and osteoporosis, among others. Back pain can be caused by poor postures and activities such as twisting, overstretching, muscle tension, standing or sitting for extended periods, and pulling, carrying, pushing, or lifting something.

Some common risk factors for developing back pain include:

  • Pregnancy
  • Old age
  • Occupational activities
  • Poor physical fitness
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Strenuous work or activities
  • Genetic factors
  • Sedentary lifestyle

Symptoms

The primary symptom of back pain is pain anywhere in the back. In some cases, it can radiate all the way to the neck, buttocks, and even the legs. In most cases, back pain can go away without treatment unless there is a serious underlying medical cause. You should, however, see a doctor if the back pain is accompanied by:

  • Difficulty urinating
  • Fever
  • Weight loss
  • Swelling or inflammation on the back
  • Numbness around the anus and the buttocks
  • Numbness around the genitals

Diagnosis and Treatment

For effective treatment of back pain, it is imperative to identify the cause. Diagnosis may include X-ray, MRI, Bone Scans, and EMG. Treatment can involve the use of stronger pain-relieving medications, physical therapy, cortisone injections, traction, Botox, and cognitive behavioral therapy.

The Bottom Line

Overall, it is apparent that back pain is one of the major health issues in the United States. It is one of the main reasons why people miss work and seek medical attention. It can result from many causes, but the risk can increase with age, pregnancy, occupation, and kidney issues, among other risk factors. Luckily, this is an issue that can be managed with the assistance of a pain management specialist.