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Low Back Pain Causes and Prevention

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 0 0

Low back pain is a term used to describe the appearance of pain in the lumbar spine (lower back), constituting a very common symptom.

Causes

The causes that are the source of low back pain are varied:

  • Excess weight / obesity;
  • Adopt awkward postures when sitting or standing for long periods of time;
  • Lifting excessive weight and / or a prolonged period of time, particularly if done in an inappropriate manner;
  • Viral / flu-like syndromes;
  • Menstruation and premenstrual syndrome;
  • Herniated discs in the lumbar region;
  • Degenerative joint disease and / or inflammatory diseases of various kinds;
  • Trauma to the lumbar region, with or without fracture;
  • Fracture of the bones of the lumbar spine diseases that weaken the bones (e.g., osteoporosis);
  • Renal colic;
  • Pyelonephritis (kidney infection);
  • Some diseases (benign or malignant) affecting the uterus and ovary.

Sometimes, you can not determine the cause of low back pain.

Symptoms

Low back pain is a symptom in itself. It consists of a localized pain in the lumbar region of the spine. This pain has many causes. If the cause is excess body weight, the pain may persist as long as this excess persists.

If the cause is bad posture, exercise weight lifting or excessive or inappropriate for an extended period of time, the pain may occur immediately or after a few hours.

Depending on the anatomical structures injured (bones, muscles, joints or nerves), pain may radiate to the buttocks and / or thighs. The LBP can be more intense in the first two or three days, decreasing the intensity following days or weeks, or may remain with the same intensity for a long period of time.

How it diagnosed

Just what is referred to the existence of low back pain to be able to say that there is a back pain. This symptom requires the doctor to investigate the cause, which requires the completion of a medical history (that evaluate the characteristics of the existence of pain and other associated symptoms) and a complete physical examination (including lumbar). In some situations it is necessary to perform an X-ray, a CT scan or an MRI of the lumbar region to evaluate the bone structure, muscle, cartilage and nerve. The myelography and electromyography can be performed to better assess the presence or absence of nerve injury.

How it unfolds

The spine is divided into four anatomical regions: cervical, dorsal, lumbar and sacral. Plays very important roles support the entire body weight and any overload imposed by our daily activities.

Often the causes of low back pain give rise to a muscle spasm, which leads to the onset of pain, which in turn produces more muscle spasm. It then becomes necessary to interrupt this vicious cycle with some therapeutic interventions.

Methods of treatment

In most cases of lumbago, treatment is relatively simple and can be done at home. In the first 24 to 48 hours after the onset of pain, the patient should remain at rest. For pain relief, your doctor may prescribe pain medications (eg, aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen) and muscle relaxants medications that eliminate the pain but do not accelerate the cure the cause. It may be useful recourse to physiotherapy.

The application of cold and / or heat, massage and performing some exercise programs - aimed at strengthening the muscles of the lower back, increased flexibility and improved posture - make a useful therapy in certain cases of low back pain. A transcutaneous electrical stimulation (which consists in applying some electrodes on the skin, through which pass electrical stimulus) may have beneficial effects.

Some people, mostly with chronic low back pain, get some symptomatic improvement with the completion of several sessions of acupuncture.

It is sometimes required hospitalization and surgery to treat some causes of back pain. During the recovery period, should not be carried out activities which may delay the healing process and make the problem reappears.

Methods of prevention

There are several ways to prevent the onset of low back pain:

  • avoid excess body weight;
  • maintaining a correct upright posture (head and torso rights, chest out, moving in a way that allows the distribution of body weight by both legs);
  • maintain a sitting posture (support well back in the chair, have their feet firmly on the floor with knees bent at right angles. Maintaining a good posture while sitting also depends on the existence of furniture ergonomically adapted to the body;
  • maintain a good posture lying asleep on a firm mattress, a mattress or hard water;
  • maintain a good posture when lifting a weight (hold it close to your body, just bend your knees, let your legs lift him making the move to raise or lower the body always right)
  • physical exercise regularly in a moderate and adapted to the physical possibilities of the patient, with the aim of improving fitness (strength, flexibility and aerobic capacity). The best arrangements are walking, cycling and swimming. They prefer to aerobic activities and avoid arrangements that impose a major burden to the lumbar region.


Common diseases like differentiate

There are several diseases that can be the cause of a low back pain, so it is important to know the characteristics of the pain and associated symptoms, as well as do a complete physical examination. It also can perform several tests in order to better assess all anatomical structures of the lower back.

When you must consult your medical specialist

In case of low back pain should consult a physician assistant, who may direct to specialist orthopedic / physical medicine and rehabilitation / neurosurgery, if:

  • is a consequence of trauma or accident at work;
  • intensive persists for more than a week;
  • lumbar red or swollen (inflamed);
  • associated fever;
  • associated with weakness, tingling or numbness of the lower limbs;
  • the pain radiates to the back of thighs;
  • pain interferes with sleep;
  • inability to control sphincters;
  • marked weight loss in recent times;
  • prior history of cancer.

People more prone

The people most predisposed to low back pain are those that:

  • have a job or leisure activities that involve carrying out large or requiring physical effort to maintain the same posture for long periods of time;
  • do not engage in aerobic exercise regularly and adapted to their physical capabilities;
  • have joint problems;
  • have osteoporosis;
  • have herniated discs.

Other Aspects

The people most predisposed to low back pain are those that:

  • have a job or leisure activities that involve carrying out large or requiring physical effort to maintain the same posture for long periods of time;
  • do not engage in aerobic exercise regularly and adapted to their physical capabilities;
  • have joint problems;
  • have osteoporosis;
  • have herniated discs.
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