Lower back pain is one of the most common pains experienced by individuals all over the world. You can't work, drive, play, and sleep etc. due to that nagging back pain, which just refuses to go. At first, many people try home remedies such as icing or applying heat. Some take pain killers, which may temporarily alleviate the pain. However, if the pain persists, then it means there is some other underlying serious cause which needs medical attention. Some of the conditions which can cause lower back pain are: Lumbar epidural abscess, herniated disc, lumbar radiculopathy, spinal stenosis, Baastrup syndrome, pregnancy etc. There are various causes for lower back pain. We have given a brief overview on some diseases and conditions which can cause lower back pain, along with their causes, symptoms and treatment options for lower back pain. Please refer to the left side menu under our LOWER BACK PAIN INFORMATION CENTER for a detailed read.
This is a common condition of the vertebral column in which the spinous processes of two adjacent vertebrae touch each other and these results in severe back pain. This contact may cause formation of a new joint. The exact cause of Baastrup Syndrome is not clear. Experts believe loss of disc space leading to degeneration may result in contact of the spinous processes. Possible causes include: Scoliosis, spondylolisthesis, bad posture, spinal injury and obesity. Symptoms include spinous process pain, pain in the low back, increasing pain upon lumbar extension, rotation and lateral flexion of the spine. Treatment comprises of medications (NSAIDs or opioids), physical therapy, corticosteroid injections and surgery (excision of spine, spinal fusion, implant position between the spine).
Our spinal discs act as a shock absorber during physical activities. One of the most common causes of low back pain is disc bulge. Small disc bulge may not cause any symptoms. Large disc bulge causes spinal stenosis, insomnia, weight loss, numbness, tingling, muscle spasm, muscle weakness and muscle atrophy. Causes include severe trauma, improper weight lifting techniques, work place accidents, playing contact sports. Diseases which cause lumbar disc bulge include disc degeneration. Family history and chronic smoking also plays a role in developing this condition. Investigations for diagnosis include: MRI, blood tests, x-ray, CT scan, myelogram, electromyography, bone scan and bone densitometry. Treatment comprises of medications (NSAIDs, analgesics, opioids, muscle relaxants, anti-anxiety medications etc.), epidural corticosteroid injection, caudal corticosteroid injection, trans-foraminal epidural injection, manual therapy, massage therapy, physical therapy, electrical therapy, magnet therapy and surgery.
To read in detail, please refer to the left side menu under our LOWER BACK PAIN INFORMATION CENTER.
Low back pain during pregnancy is quite common. Almost all the expecting mothers experience mild to severe low back pain at some point in their pregnancy. The causes for lower backache during pregnancy are: Hormonal changes, osteoporosis, weight gain, postural changes and separation of rectus abdominal muscle. Symptoms comprise of acute pain over the pelvic girdle or pain may be localized over the lower back. Pain may worsen upon activities and may be alleviated with rest. Treatment comprises of conservative measures, such as sleeping on the side, using back braces, ice/ heat application, improving your posture, wearing low heels and comfortable shoes. Mild exercises can be done for pain relief. Massage therapy, chiropractic treatment, physical therapy, acupuncture and painkillers can also be tried; however, all this should be done after seeking consult from your obstetrician.
Please refer our left side menu and read under our LOWER BACK PAIN INFORMATION CENTER where we have covered lots of information on lower back pain during pregnancy along with symptoms, causes, treatment options, precautionary measures etc.
Formation of abscess within the epidural space and between the first lumbar and the first sacral vertebrae is known as lumbar epidural abscess. Causes include injuries, bacterial and fungal infections. Risk factors comprise of diabetes, back injury, contaminated reuse of needles, chronic renal failure, alcoholics, chemotherapy and cachexia. The main symptoms of lumbar epidural abscess are: Back pain, radicular pain, tingling, numbness, weakness in the lower extremities and bowel and bladder incontinence. Treatment comprises of mainly antibiotics. Surgery is done in severe cases.
Nerve irritation due to damage to the vertebral discs is known as lumbar radiculopathy or sciatica. Causes of this condition are: Damage to the disc due to degeneration, wear and tear, traumatic injury etc. Risk factors include: Ageing, stress, jogging etc. Symptoms comprise of numbness, tingling and leg weakness. Sciatica is the most common symptom of lumbar radiculopathy. A typical sciatica pain radiates from the back to the buttocks and may also continue down to the feet. Treatment comprises of medications, epidural injections, physical therapy (heat, ultrasound, massage, and electrical stimulation), rest and surgery if required.
As we have mentioned before, many of us have suffered and continue to suffer from lower back pain in our daily lives. In our "Low Back Pain Relief Guide" section, we give you pointers on how to go about your daily life and the proper techniques or measures to follow in order to avoid and to alleviate lower back pain. We have provided:
- Tips To Cope With Low Back Pain While Sitting
- Tips To Cope With Low Back Pain While Lifting
- Tips To Cope With Low Back Pain While Sleeping
- Tips To Cope With Low Back Pain While Bending Forward
- Tips To Cope With Low Back Pain While Coughing and Sneezing
- Tips To Cope With Low Back Pain While Driving A Car
To know more about the precautionary measures to be taken and the right methods for doing certain activities of daily living, please refer to the left side menu and read in detail in our "Low Back Pain Relief Guide" under our LOWER BACK PAIN INFORMATION CENTER.
We have many question and answers regarding lower back pain its causes, symptoms and treatment. Please click on the left side menu to get your questions answered and increase your knowledge.
Spondylolisthesis is a condition where the lower spinal vertebra gets displaced and moves onto the vertebra below it. Causes include: Congenital defect of the spine, severe injury/ trauma, degenerative disease like arthritis (commonest cause), bone diseases, stress fractures, participating in rigorous sports activities. Symptoms comprise of low back pain, which may worsen upon activities, muscle spasm, a dip can be felt at the affected site, weakness and numbness in the legs. Treatment compromises of: Rest, anti-inflammatories, gentle stretching, back brace/ support, strengthening exercises and physiotherapy. Surgery is done if conservative treatment fails.
Lower Back Pain is also known as Lumbago. In today's world, almost everyone suffers from it and lumbago has become a common disease affecting individuals of all ages. In this section you will learn about the anatomy of our lower back along with common causes and treatment for lumbago. Lower Back Pain comprises of Sciatica Pain, Radicular Pain and Radiculopathy.
The Anatomical Structures Present In the Lower Back Are:
- Vertebral Column
- Paravertebral Muscles
- Paravertebral Tendons
- Latissimus Dorsi Muscle
- Erector Spinae Muscle
- Serratus Posterior Inferior Muscle
- Thoracolumbar Fascia
- Quadratus Lumborum Muscle
- External Obliques and Internal Oblique Muscles
Lower Back Has The Following Ligaments:
- Anterior Longitudinal Ligament
- Posterior Longitudinal Ligament
- Interspinous ligament
- Ligamentun flavum
The Common Causes Of Low Back Pain Or Lumbago Include:
- Muscle Abnormalities (muscle spasm/ tear/ sprain).
- Tendon Abnormalities (tendinitis, tendon tear, tendon dislocation).
- Ligamental Abnormalities (ligamental inflammation, sprain, tear, hypertrophy of ligament).
- Abnormalities of Vertebral Column (scoliosis, kyphosis, lordosis).
- Diseases causing Low Back Pain or Lumbago (spinal stenosis, lumbar disk bulge, lumbar herniated disk etc.).
Different Types Of Lumbago Are:
- Lumbago (Lower Back Pain)
- Sciatica or Radicular Pain
- Mixed (Lumbago and Sciatica) Lower Back Pain
Common Investigations done to Diagnose Low Back Pain or Lumbago are:
- CT scan
- Ultrasound Study
- Bone Density
- Blood Examination
Treatment For Low Back Pain or Lumbago Comprises Of:
- Conservative Treatment (heat/cold therapy, weight loss etc.).
- Medications (OTC pain killers/NSAIDs, muscle relaxants, antidepressants).
- Physical Therapy.
- Interventional Therapy (Corticosteroid Epidural Injection, Facet nerve ablation etc.).
- Surgery (percutaneous discectomy, open discectomy, partial laminectomy, spinal fusion etc.).
To know more about these in detail, please refer to the left side menu under our LOWER BACK PAIN INFORMATION CENTER.
Narrowing of the spinal canal is known as spinal stenosis. Causes for spinal stenosis are:
- Lumbar Disc Bulge
- Lumbar Disc Herniation
- Lumbar Spondylolisthesis or Subluxation
- Primary and Metastatic Cancer of Vertebrae
- Lumbar Vertebral Body Fracture
- Hypertrophy of Lumbar Ligamentum Flavum
- Lumbar Facet Joint Disease
- Bony Spurs of Vertebrae
- Lumbar Epidural Abscess
Symptoms comprise of pain in the back, radicular pain, radiculopathy, intermittent claudication, weakness in the buttocks and legs, numbness and paresthesias, bladder and bowel incontinence, equina syndrome, fever, gait disturbance, postural deformity, weight loss, muscle atrophy, diminished reflexes. Investigations for spinal stenosis are: MRI examination, CT scan, blood tests, x-ray, myelogram, electromyography, bone scan, bone densitometry, bladder retention study and cystoscopy. Treatment is done by medications (NSAIDs, opioids, muscle relaxants, anti-neuropathic analgesics etc.), physical therapy (passive and active). Surgical procedures done for spinal stenosis include: Explorative discectomy, laminectomy and spinal fusion surgery.
For more information, please refer to the left side menu under our LOWER BACK PAIN INFORMATION CENTER where we have covered everything about spinal stenosis in extreme detail.
Other Low Back Pain Topics Which are Covered in this Section:
- Lower Back Discogenic Pain or Lumbar Discogenic Pain
- Lumbar Disc Herniation
- Q and A on Disabling Low Back Pain Due To Muscle Spasm or Tense Back Muscles or Facet Joint Pain
- Q and A on 65 Year Old Advanced Age Adult Complaining Why My Lower Back Hurts
- Q and A on 40 Year Old Young Adult Complaining Why My Lower Back Hurts
- Q and A on Lower Back Pain in Adolescent
- Lumbar Neuritis
- Lumbosacral Neuritis
- Flank Pain
- Lower Back Strain
- Failed Back Syndrome
- Lower Back Muscle Spasms
- Lower Back Strain or Lumbar Strain