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Low Back Pain – Diagnosis and Treatment
Low Back Pain - Condition Overview
Low back pain is a very common condition and is the leading cause of disability in the world according to the Global Burden of Disease 2010. This is primarily due to the "wear and tear" on our spines due to daily activities and how we move. We add a lot of stress to our spine through physical activity, posture, falls and accidents, or even just improper lifting. Most low back pain patients we see in our Overland Park and Lenexa chiropractic clinics are due to gradual stress on the joints, muscles, or nerves eventually presenting as a pain response. Pain can start out just occasionally but may increase in severity or duration over time. Chiropractors are low back pain specialists that know how to properly diagnose where the pain is originating from instead of just masking the symptoms with pain medications and opioids. While chiropractic treats much more than just low back pain and spinal conditions, this condition is the bread and butter of the chiropractic profession.
Symptoms and Causes of Low Back Pain
- Sciatica - The sciatic nerve is commonly irritated in the low back or gluteal region producing distal effects down the legs. This can cause difficulty with sitting, standing up, and most leg movements. You can read more in-depth on sciatica here.
- Lumbar Strain - Improper lifting or exerting additional force from pushing, pulling, or even coughing can cause a strain in the low back musculature. Many people think chiropractic is just for joints, but we have many treatment methods to heal the strained muscle and prevent it from occurring again.
- Lumbago - This is a medical term for low back pain. It can occur through the various joints, ligaments, or muscles through the low back.
- Facet Syndrome - This common low back disorder occurs with the movement joints at the back of the spine. This can be a debilitating pain or low level ache that occurs with movement. When you hear of someone "throwing out their back" this joint is commonly the source of pain.
- Disc Problems - Ruptures and cracks through the outside of the disc can allow inner disc material to push through and herniate or bulge a disc. Depending on location of the disc problem, this can produce severe pain, numbness, or even weakness in the muscle.
- Lumbar Radiculopathy - This is the same as cervical radiculopathy except it occurs in the low back near the spine. This can be similar to symptoms of sciatica but is not always the same thing. Our doctors of chiropractic in Overland Park and Lenexa are proficient in differentiating the two during the examination.
Low Back Pain Facts
According to the American Chiropractic Association (ACA):
- Low back pain is the 2nd leading cause for doctor's visits. 1st leading cause for missed work.
- 80% of the entire population will experience low back pain in their lives.
- 50% of the population has experienced low back pain in the last year.
- 50 billion is spent on low back pain each year, and this is a low estimate based on complexity of costs associated with doctor's offices and hospitals.
We encourage all people with low back pain to seek a diagnosis and have proper treatment. Even if you have not experienced low back pain, the statistics show it is beneficial to be proactive and get maintenance care, just like your car. Call our Overland Park, KS or Lenexa, KS chiropractic clinics to schedule today.
What Are Treatment Options?
Our chiropractic clinics provide the most advanced and up to date protocols for relieving your low back pain. Depending on what is found during the comprehensive examination, a variety of different treatment options can be provided. The most important part is finding the true underlying cause of the pain so proper treatment can be applied along with lifestyle and activity modifications with at home exercises to prevent further damage to the specific cause.
Besides chiropractic adjustments, we provide a variety of different ways to recover and have more information on our treatment methods under the treatments tab above.