If you’ve ever missed work because of lower back pain, you’re not alone. About 50% of working Americans also report having back pain within the last 12 months. The leading cause of disability worldwide, the pain and mobility restrictions of a sore back can bring your day to a halt. Dr. Ashley M. Classen and the team at Trinity Pain Medicine Associates in Fort Worth, Texas and Dallas, Texas can diagnose and treat your back pain, so that you can return to a pain-free life. Call or click to request an appointment today.
There are many causes that can bring about low back pain. From trauma to the every-day process of aging, each of these processes being about different changes to your low back. Back muscles and spinal ligaments suffer strains from heavy lifting and awkward movements. If you’re not used to physical activity, muscles can spasm when suddenly asked to carry excessive loads. The disks between the vertebrae of your spine can bulge and rupture. If this causes nerve compression, you may experience many sensations, from tingling to sharp pain that can run along the path of the affected nerves. Osteoarthritis can also cause nerve irritation when it affects the spaces in your vertebrae where nerves pass through. Osteoporosis may cause the bones of the spine to collapse, compromising muscle and ligament tissue in the surrounding area, as well as leading to nerve compression and irritation. Abnormalities of the spine, such as side-to-side curving, called scoliosis, may also contribute to muscle and nerve pain.
Lower back pain can be treated in multiple ways. The physicians at Trinity Pain Medicine will assess you and comprise a treatment plan that is tailor-made for your specific issue. This might be a course of epidural steroid injections which are to target the inflammatory process in your nerves themselves. Another possibility might be to block the nerves that go to the small joints, called facet joints, in your back to alleviate the pain caused by osteoarthritis. Frequently you might suffer from no pain at rest or while sitting or leaning forward. However you find that with walking you experience increasing lower back pain or leg pain and/or weakness. With sitting or leaning forward the pain resolves in a short period of time. You find that when you go to the grocery store that you can walk further with less pain if you lean against a cart while you are shopping. This symptom is called neurogenic claudication. This can be caused from either a buckling of the ligament in the back of the spine or a narrowing in the spinal canal itself. These symptoms can be relieved a great deal from either reducing the amount of the ligament in the space itself or by placing a small implant between the spinous processes in your back to hold them open to alleviate that narrow area that is compromising your nerves. Both of these procedures can alleviate a great deal of your discomfort and increase your function. Both methods of correction are minimally invasive and done on an outpatient basis. We also now have minimally invasive procedures that can restabilize a potentially unstable spine without undergoing a large fusion surgery. A compression fracture caused by osteoporosis might be amenable to a kyphoplasty. Pain that remains despite more conservative efforts might make you a candidate for an intrathecal drug delivery system or a spinal cord stimulator. Please see our other pages for further information on these procedures.