Almost everyone will experience some form of back pain at least once in their life. It’s one of the most common medical problems in the United States. Back pain comes in many forms and can be caused by a wide range of issues. It is important to understand the symptoms of back pain, as it may be caused by a underlying condition. If you are experiencing back pain that at-home treatment hasn’t helped, contact Dr. Gravori at ProMedSPINE today.
Symptoms of Back Pain
There are many varieties of back pain that can be experienced. With a wide array of potential causes and sources of back pain, the type, location, severity, and frequency can all vary. Back pain can have any of the following characteristics:
- Pain can be isolated to a certain area of the back, or transfer into other regions
- The pain can move into the extremities, such as the arms and legs
- Degree of pain can range from a simple ache to a sharp, excruciating pain
- Back pain may either be chronic, or come on suddenly
- Back pain can be constant after onset, or arise intermittently
Symptoms of back pain may include:
- Aching, discomfort, or stiffness anywhere along the spine
- Soreness in the middle or lower back after long periods of sitting or standing
- Stabbing pain localized in an area of the back that follows physical activity or heavy lifting
- Reduced range of motion and flexibility
Back pain may be a sign of an underlying condition of the spine, especially when any of the following symptoms are present:
- Back pain that extends down along the back of the leg
- A tingling sensation, a feeling of numbness, or weakness in the arms or legs
- The degree of pain increases when bending forward or coughing
- The pain follows an injury to the back or an accident
- Nighttime back pain that doesn’t subside and interferes with sleep
Watch Dr. Gravori Discuss Diagnosing Back Pain
Causes of Back Pain
There are many potential sources of back pain. It’s important to note that back pain is not a medical condition on its own. Rather, back pain is usually considered a symptom of a medical problem. Some of these include:
- Mechanical Problems – These relate to spine movement and condition. Mechanical problems are the most common causes of back pain.
- Intervertebral Disc Degeneration – A breakdown and degradation of the discs between the vertebrae that is commonly associated with normal aging. When these breakdown, they can no longer properly function as cushions and support for the bones in the spine.
- Herniated Discs – Discs may rupture and push against a nerve. This pressure put on the nerve can be a source of back pain.
- Muscle and Ligament Strain – Spinal ligaments and back muscles can be strained due to improper or repeated heavy lifting, or twisting of the spine.
- Diseases and Conditions – Certain medical conditions and diseases can cause back pain.
- Arthritis – Various forms of arthritis can affect the back. Arthritis can lead to spinal stenosis, which is a narrowing of the space around the spinal cord that can put pressure on the nerves and spinal cord.
- Osteoporosis – While osteoporosis is not a painful condition on its own, it can cause compression fractures of the bones in the spine. These fractures can be the cause of severe back pain.
- Spine Irregularities – Conditions like scoliosis may lead to back pain. Scoliosis causes the spine to curve to the side and may lead to back pain later in life
- Injuries – Certain spine injuries can be the root cause of back pain
- Sprains – Sprains can occur from awkward moving of the spine and improperly lifting. Sprains involve the tearing of the ligaments that provide support for the spine.
- Fractures – Commonly caused by osteoporosis, fractured vertebrae can be very painful
- Accidents – Back injuries can be sustained from things like car accidents, falls, and substantial hits taken while playing a sport.
Treatment for Back Pain
Back pain can often go away on its own, even if it takes some time. Home treatment and over-the-counter medications may be all that is needed to alleviate the pain. Back pain is always first treated with non-invasive methods like exercise, lifestyle changes, medication, and rest.
When back pain does not improve after 3 days, or is a result of an accident or injury, it’s important to seek medical guidance. Only an expert like Dr. Gravori can come up with the best possible treatment protocol required for your specific condition.
Surgery for back pain is performed only in severe cases when the underlying condition requires it. Surgical options for these underlying conditions include:
- Disc Replacement Surgery
- Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
- Percutaneous Discectomy
- MILD Procedure
- Percutaneous Foraminotomy
- Interspinous Process Fusion
- Interspinous Process Decompression
Back pain can be very problematic and detrimental to your quality of life. There is no reason to have to suffer from any form of back pain. If you are experiencing any type of back pain in Los Angeles, contact Dr. Gravori today. Dr. Gravori always deems surgery a last resort and will work to develop the best possible treatment option for each individual case.
Dr. Gravori is known for his level of experience. He has extensive training with a range of treatment procedures, not just the minimally-invasive types. As a surgeon that has performed so many types of procedures for the back, head, and neck, Dr. Gravori’s immense knowledge of the nervous system makes him the top option for patients seeking treatment for back pain.
Watch a Patient Testimonial for Chronic Back Pain Treatment
Contact a Los Angeles Spine Surgeon
Todd Gravori, MD, Director of ProMedSPINE, is a board-certified neurosurgeon with fellowship training in advanced spine surgery. At ProMedSPINE, we take pride in offering the most sophisticated technology and cutting-edge minimally invasive spine procedures to provide the highest quality of care for our patients. To schedule an initial consultation with Dr. Gravori, please call 888-75-SPINE.