Because many different conditions may cause back pain, a thorough medical history will be performed as part of the examination. Some of the questions you are asked may not seem pertinent to you but are very important to your doctor in determining the source of your pain.
The medication typically recommended first are NSAIDs (though not aspirin) or skeletal muscle relaxants and these are enough for most people. Benefits with NSAIDs; however, is often small. High-quality reviews have found acetaminophen (paracetamol) to be no more effective than placebo at improving pain, quality of life, or function. NSAIDs are more effective for acute episodes than acetaminophen; however, they carry a greater risk of side effects including: kidney failure, stomach ulcers and possibly heart problems. Thus, NSAIDs are a second choice to acetaminophen, recommended only when the pain is not handled by the latter. NSAIDs are available in several different classes; there is no evidence to support the use of COX-2 inhibitors over any other class of NSAIDs with respect to benefits. With respect to safety naproxen may be best. Muscle relaxants may be beneficial.
Myofascial pain is characterized by pain and tenderness over localized areas (trigger points), loss of range of motion in the involved muscle groups, and pain radiating in a characteristic distribution but restricted to a peripheral nerve. Relief of pain is often reported when the involved muscle group is stretched.
The lumbar support pillows on our list all include memory foam, which allows the pillow to conform to the natural curvature of your back and continue to provide the support you need. You’ll find a range of lumbar support pillows to make the time spent in your office chair much more comfortable.
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Antidepressants may be effective for treating chronic pain associated with symptoms of depression, but they have a risk of side effects. Although the antiseizure drugs gabapentin and carbamazepine are sometimes used for chronic low back pain and may relieve sciatic pain, there is insufficient evidence to support their use. Systemic oral steroids have not been shown to be useful in low back pain. Facet joint injections and steroid injections into the discs have not been found to be effective in those with persistent, non-radiating pain; however, they may be considered for those with persistent sciatic pain. Epidural corticosteroid injections provide a slight and questionable short-term improvement in those with sciatica but are of no long term benefit. There are also concerns of potential side effects.
The complaint of back pain is among the most common medical conditions. To begin on the positive side, patients must understand that most episodes of back pain resolve, and usually within a few weeks. Unfortunately, back pain can be among the most difficult and frustrating problems for patients and their doctors.
^ a b c d e f g h i j Hoy D, Bain C, Williams G, et al. (June 2012). A systematic review of the global prevalence of low back Arthritis Rheum. 64 (6): 2028–37. doi:10.1002/art.34347. PMID 22231424.
Exercise – regular exercise helps build strength as well as keeping your body weight down. Experts say that low-impact aerobic activities are best; activities that do not strain or jerk the back. Before starting any exercise program, talk to a health care professional.
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Common causes of low back pain (lumbar backache) include lumbar strain, nerve irritation, lumbar radiculopathy, bony encroachment, and conditions of the bone and joints. Each of these is reviewed below.
Surgery is seldom considered for acute back pain unless sciatica or the cauda equina syndrome is present. Surgery is considered useful for people with certain progressive nerve problems caused by herniated discs.
The roll shape gives the cushion much smaller dimensions than the large, flat cushions we have seen thus far meaning it is far easier to carry around. The single strap works sufficiently well given the small dimensions and allows you to even fasten it around your waist. This means you can wear it and remove the hassle attaching and detaching it from chairs if you need to move around.
The lumbar support pillow is comfortable while being supportive. It forms to the curve in your back and is made of ergonomic memory foam. Use it in your office chair, dining chair, recliner, or vehicle. It is lightweight and portable to take with you on the uncomfortable airplane seat, bus or train seats. In a recliner, the elastic and adjustable snap on strap cannot be positioned to the bulk of the chair, but can be used in other chairs and car seats whether they are bucket seats or bench seats. There are no chemical odors with this foam pillow. It is good looking and wears well.
Long periods of inactivity in bed are no longer recommended, as this treatment may actually slow recovery. Spinal manipulation for periods of up to one month has been found to be helpful in some patients who do not have signs of nerve irritation. Future injury is avoided by using back-protection techniques during activities and support devices as needed at home or work.
Analgesic medications are those specifically designed to relieve pain. They include OTC acetaminophen and aspirin, as well as prescription opioids such as codeine, oxycodone, hydrocodone, and morphine. Opioids should be used only for a short period of time and under a physician’s supervision. People can develop a tolerance to opioids and require increasingly higher dosages to achieve the same effect. Opioids can also be addictive. Their side effects can include drowsiness, constipation, decreased reaction time, and impaired judgment. Some specialists are concerned that chronic use of opioids is detrimental to people with back pain because they can aggravate depression, leading to a worsening of the pain.
Anyone who wants to do Foundation Training must learn “The Founder,” the key basic exercise. The Founder disperses your weight through the posterior chains, helping to reinforce proper movement while strengthening the entire back of your body. This excellent exercise can help reverse the effects of frequent and prolonged sitting that may lead to back pain. To learn how to do the Founder, watch this video:
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