Back pain is discomfort or pain felt in the lower, upper or middle part of the back. It can be acute (short term) or chronic (long-lasting) and can have many different causes.
There are several types of back pain, including:
- Mechanical back pain: caused by muscle strain, sprain, or injury
- Radicular back pain: caused by a compressed nerve in the spinal cord
- Inflammatory back pain: caused by an underlying inflammatory condition such as ankylosing spondylitis or inflammatory bowel disease
- Degenerative back pain: caused by the deterioration of the discs and bones in the spine
- Referred back pain: pain felt in the back as a result of a problem in another part of the body, such as a kidney infection.
Causes of back pain can include:
- Strained or pulled muscles
- Herniated disc
- Poor posture
- Stress and tension
Symptoms of back pain can include:
- A dull or sharp pain
- Muscle spasms
- Numbness or tingling in the legs
Diagnosis of back pain is usually made by a physical examination, an evaluation of medical history and may include imaging tests such as X-ray, CT scan, or MRI.
Treatment for back pain will depend on the underlying cause. Some common treatments include:
- Over-the-counter pain relievers
- Physical therapy or exercise to improve flexibility and strength
- Chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation
- Massage therapy
- Epidural injections for radicular pain
- Surgery for certain conditions such as herniated disc or spinal stenosis
It is important to note that back pain can be caused by many different factors, and it’s crucial to determine the underlying cause in order to provide effective treatment.
You can book an appointment with our specialists to discuss diagnosis and treatment.
To learn more about the back pain, please click on https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/back-pain/
Dr Ibrahim Yahli MD MRCPsych