04 Jul Back Pain Specialist San Antonio
What is Back Pain?
Back pain is a common illness affecting most people. It is one of the common reasons people go to the doctor at pain management clinics to see the best pain specialist San Antonio offers or they miss work. Back pain can range from dull, constant ache to sudden, sharp pain that makes it hard for movement. The pain may be sudden if you fall or lift something too heavy.
Anyone can get back pain, but the things that can increase your risk are;
- Getting older: As you age, you become more vulnerable to back pain.
- Being overweight: A lot of weight can stress the back and cause severe pain.
- Poor physical fitness.
- Heredity: Some causes may be heredity such as an ankylosing spondylitis a form of arthritis that affects the spine.
- Nature of your job: If your work entails lifting, pushing or pulling heavy weights, you may get back pain.
- Smoking: Smokers are slow to heal, so back pain may last longer.
What are the Symptoms of Back Pain?
The major symptoms of back pain include:
- Shooting or stabbing pain
- Muscle ache
- Sharp pain that spreads down to the legs
- Limited flexibility
- Inability to stand straight
What are the Causes of Back Pain?
There are several potential causes of back pain. Mechanical problems with the back can cause pain. Examples include;
- Disk breakdown
- Ruptured disks
- Tense muscles
Also, injuries from fractures, sprains, accidents and falls can also result to back pain. Back pain can further occur with some conditions and diseases such as:
- Spinal stenosis
- Kidney stones
Other possible causes of back pain include spinal disc herniation, degenerative disc disease, trauma, cancer, osteoarthritis, fractures, infection and inflammatory disease.
Diagnosis of Back Pain
When diagnosing back pain, your pain doctors trusts at Pain Management San Antonio will first take your medical history then perform a physical examination. The doctor may order other tests such as;
- Computed tomography (CT) scan
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Blood tests
In case the back pain has a persistent cause, such as a particular disease or spinal abnormality, then it is important for the physician to differentiate the main source of the pain and advice on the possible courses of treatment.
Treatment Options for Back Pain
Treatment of back pain depends on the nature of pain you are experiencing. The major goal when treating back pain is to achieve maximal reduction in pain intensity as quickly as possible to restore the person’s ability to carry out daily activities. For instance, acute back pain gets better without any treatment method, however you can opt to use pain relievers such as aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen to help ease the pain.
The major treatment methods used to treat chronic back pain include;
- Heat therapy is used for back spasms. It has been found to reduce symptoms of acute and sub-acute low-back pain.
- Medications: Use of medications such as muscle relaxants, Opioids, Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can be used to relieve back pain.
- Exercises: Proper exercises can help ease back pain but should be done under close supervision of a licensed health provider. Normally, some form of stretching and exercise is believed to be an important component in most of the back pain treatment programs.
Massage may also help for individuals who have prolonged the low back pain. Acupressure may also be more beneficial in relieving back pain.
Education and attitude adjustment have been used to focus on psychological or emotional causes with the help of cognitive therapy to reduce back pain.
Surgery: Surgery is usually the last option in the treatment of back pain. Most people suffering from back pain do not need surgery. However, you may need surgery if you have spondylolisthesis, herniated disc, spinal stenosis, degenerative disc disease or vertebral fractures.