Is Your Back Pain An Emergency
Did you wake up today with the worst back pain youve ever felt?
Was it a normal day, and then severe back pain started and you dont know what to do?
In these circumstances you might think the emergency room is the place to go for help.
There are certain pain symptoms that do belong in the emergency department:
Severe back pain is rarely a medical emergency. Back pain, even with tingling or numbness in your leg, pain that makes you limp, and hurts to sit or stand for long doesnt belong in the emergency room.
Ways To Address Leg Pain
There are a few recommendations for leg pain that can ease the pain and discomfort greatly. If your pain is not related a serious cause, doctors suggest the following methods of pain relief
When To Go To The Er With Stomach Pain
- Any sudden or severe pain Injury or trauma like broken bones, swelling and bruising or blistering burns are clear reasons to head to the ER. But severe pain without observable injury can be a sign of internal trauma or illness. ERs have X-ray, CT Scan, Ultrasound and MRI testing equipment to quickly find the cause.
- Uncontrolled bleeding Deep cuts and gashes may need more than stitches. Severe lacerations affecting muscles or tendons may also require emergency surgery and treatment for infection and blood loss. If bleeding is excessive, bypass the urgent care and go straight to the ER!
- Fainting, sudden dizziness, weakness It’s easy to get dehydrated in the Texas summer heat. Severe dehydration can lead to heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Know the signs, what to do, and get help fast!
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When To Go To The Hospital For Leg Pain
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When you are on the go and being pulled in so many different directions, sometimes it is impossibly hard to look after yourself. And by look after yourself, I mean tend to your general healthwhatever that may be. Granted, we must be judicious with what we choose to check out and how much time we spend checking it out, and it can be a bit difficult to discern whether a particular pain is hospital worthy or not. Leg pain can be some of the hardest pain to judge as it pertains to severity and whether or not you should pay a visit to the hospital. Here we intend to inform you on the physical cues to look out for concerning your leg pain and well also show how CBD can be used to thwart some of that unwanted pain.
When Surgery May Help
Most back surgeries are done to treat nerve pain from herniated discs. Surgery might be an option when a disc problem causes pain in your leg that prevents you from doing everyday tasks. You may have pain, numbness, or tingling through your buttock and down the back of your leg or in the front of your thigh.
Other problems that may require surgery include:
- A spinal fracture caused by an injury.
- An infection in your spine.
- A problem that causes your spine to be unstable.
- A tumour in your spine.
- Loss of feeling or weakness in your back or legs that gets worse over time.
- Loss of control of your bowel or bladder.
Having surgery for a herniated disc or another back problem is a big decision. Talk to your doctor about it.
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Common Causes Of Back Pain
Two of the most common reasons for back are muscle strains or ligament sprains. and bad posture can put on your back and make it hurt. and other changes in your spine as you get older can cause back pain. More serious causes of the condition include a ruptured disc or . Possible causes of back pain include:
, when the soft center of spinal disc slips out of place
, a disease that thins and weakens bones including the vertebrae
, a bone infection
, arthritis in the spine
Sacroiliitis, inflammation of the joint between the pelvis and lower spine
When Stomach Pain Is And Is Not An Emergency
Stomach pain can have a variety of causes, some of which you can address by resting, avoiding heavy and spicy foods, taking medication, or using a heating pad. Others, however, may require urgent medical care.
While it can be hard to determine this on your own, at least with total certainty, there are some guidelines you can use to figure out if you should head to the ER, your doctor’s office, or try some at-home solutions. Regardless of how your case matches up if you feel severe, out-of-the-norm pain that you think needs immediate attention, seek it.
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Symptoms Of Back Pain
Symptom-wise, acute pain and chronic pain can be very similar. Back pain symptoms can include:
- Shooting, burning or aching pain that doesnt go away or returns after using home remedies like icing or over-the-counter medications, or massage or physical therapies
- Regular tightness or stiffness, especially after laying, sitting or standing for long periods
- Trouble sleeping
- Lower extremity weakness
So, how do you tell the difference between acute and chronic back pain?
It can be hard to tell the difference between acute back pain and chronic back pain, but timeframe is the biggest indicator.
The most common symptom of acute back pain is a shooting, burning or aching pain that comes on suddenly. With a little time and at-home remedies such as over-the-counter pain relief medications, cold and heat therapy, acute pain can start going away quickly as soon as two weeks.
But with chronic back pain, your symptoms can come on quickly or build over time, but they last for more than six weeks or are recurrent.
Ease Back Into Your Daily Activities
Some people are afraid that doing too much may make their pain worse. In the past, people stayed in bed, thinking this would help their backs. Now experts think that, in most cases, getting back to your normal activities is good for your back, as long as you avoid things that make your pain worse.
- For the first day or two of pain, take it easy. But as soon as possible, get back to your normal daily life and activities.
- Movement helps your muscles stay strong. Lying down for too long can make your problem worse.
- If you are an athlete, return to your activity carefully. Choose a low-impact option until your pain is under control.
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Youve Got Stomach Pain Too
Localized back pain will rarely migrate to the stomach. Stomach pain, however, can often be felt in the back, which means that your back pain could be originating from the abdomen, Dr. Anand says. Stomach pain accompanied by back pain can be caused by many different abdominal issues, including internal bleeding, cancer, or even an abdominal aortic aneurysm, according to the American Academy of Family Physicians. Acute lower back pain that does not follow an obvious trauma or movement associated with the onset of pain, can be a symptom of an enlargement of the aorta in the abdomen, called an abdominal aortic aneurysm. If your pain is severe and continuous, get to the ER, says Dr. Anand.
Pain In The Ed: What To Really Expect
The ED is the place to go when youre having a medical emergency.
Back pain can hurt a lot. So much, that it can be overwhelming and feel like an emergency. But pack pain is almost never an emergency, and should not be considered one unless it is present with the symptoms described above. Moreover, the emergency department cant deliver the kind of help that people with back pain need.
If youre thinking of a trip to the emergency room, youre probably expecting that youll be able to get relief from your pain and have the cause of the pain identified. You expect the doctors there to run certain tests , give you a diagnosis, and then give you a shot or a pill that relieves your pain, at least temporarily.
With all the amazing technology and powerful drugs we have now days, its easy to think that all of this is possible, but its usually not. And so, people often leave the ED disappointed, with their expectations unmet. We have realized that many of these traditional ways of treating back pain simply dont work, and sometimes they can even make your pain worse in the long run.
If you have back pain, the best thing the emergency room will be able to do is make sure you dont have an emergency health condition. Once an emergency is ruled out, some simple education, reassurance, and guidelines for getting moving again are the best help we can give you. Usually, people expect to receive pain relief, and they are often disappointed.
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Back Pain Is More Common Than You Think
Does your back hurt? Youre not alone. Over half of American adults report having back pain every year and its estimated that over 80 percent of people will experience a problem with back pain during their lives, according to the American Chiropractic Association. And were not just talking aches and pains, back issues can be serious. Low back pain is the single leading cause of disability worldwide and is the second most common reason for visits to the doctors office, outnumbered only by upper-respiratory infections, according to the most current Global Burden of Disease report published in The Lancet.
What Doctor Should I See For Back Pain
If your back pain is from a recent strain or mild injury, your primary care doctor can probably help. But if the pain is severe, ongoing, or accompanied by other symptoms such as numbness or tingling in your arms or legs, it may be time to see a back doctor. Start with someone who specializes in nonsurgical treatment for back pain. This can include a physiatrist, chiropractor, physical therapist, or orthopaedic physician assistant. They can evaluate your condition and offer appropriate treatment to help alleviate your pain. Depending on your circumstances, they might also refer you to another type of back specialist — for example, a pain management specialist or spine surgeon.
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Fast Help At Medco Er & Urgent Care
When you experience debilitating back pain, the emergency physicians at Medco ER & Urgent Care are standing by to help. Come right in any time, day or night, and we will show you to a private room where you will see your board-certified, emergency medicine physician in a few moments. Our imaging equipment is in-house and ready to use to aid in your diagnosis, if needed. Our goal is to help you soon feel better while on your way to recovery.
- Plano: 3960 Legacy Drive on the corner of Legacy and Coit Road.
Abdominal Pain With Acute Back Pain
Lets say you have a sudden onset of acute back pain but you havent done anything strenuous lately. If its coupled with abdominal pain as well, you need to go to urgent care for back pain.
The reason these two symptoms together are so alarming is that they could be symptoms of an abdominal aortic aneurysm.
Your aorta is the main artery of the body. It runs from your heart through your abdomen. When it ruptures, youll feel as if you have an intense stomach ache.
A ruptured aorta is life-threatening. Dont waste time asking should I go to urgent care for back pain?, just go to a walk-in clinic.
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Possible Conditions Causing Severe Back Pain
Dr. Drymalski also details several conditions that can cause intense back pain, many of which center on the bones or discs. But you also might be wondering, How do I know if my back pain is kidney-related? Problems with what other organs can cause lower back pain?
He shares a wide-ranging list of potential conditions that can bring about extreme back pain:
Although that list of possible conditions may seem daunting, the important thing to do is to focus on your symptoms and how youre feeling. Also, be sure to consider any symptoms that youre experiencing beyond back pain.
Pay attention to severe back pain and other symptoms that appear with it.
Pay attention to the other symptoms in addition to your back pain, especially your bowel/bladder function and leg function, Dr. Drymalski says.
He adds that if you demonstrate any of the above red flag symptoms, if your pain persists and does not appear to be related to movement, or if you have a history of cancer, recent IV drug use, or a vascular disease, you may be at increased risk for serious back conditions.
Chronic Back Pain: Long
Chronic back pain, on the other hand, can be serious. Chronic pain is serious because the symptoms are strong enough to impact your health, mobility and quality of life for an extended period of time.
While chronic back pain can come on suddenly, it usually builds gradually and lasts more than six weeks. Chronic back pain can also be recurrent, meaning itll go away at times but regularly come back.
What causes chronic back pain? Chronic pain can be triggered by a new injury, but underlying conditions are usually the real cause. Muscle deconditioning is one of the most common contributors.
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When To Call Your Doctor
There’s a bit of a gray area in terms of which stomach pain cases need immediate attention and which would warrant a call or visit to your doctor instead, as there can be symptom overlap. Again, listen to your body and your instincts if you’re not sure.
If you don’t have any of the symptoms listed above and instead have any of the following features of your abdominal pain, it is important that you contact your doctor within a day or two:
- Excessive vaginal bleeding or blood clots
- Vaginal bleeding that lasts for longer than usual
You should also call your doctor if you experience stomach pain while you are being treated for cancer.
When The Pain Shows Symptoms Of An Infection
You have probably heard of arthritisan inflammation of one or more joints. Its known to cause pain, stiffness, and difficulty moving. There are more than 100 types of arthritis, and many of them are chronic, or long-lasting.
Some of the common signs of septic arthritis include:
- Severe joint pain
- Joint swelling or redness
- Being unable to move the limb with the affected joint
The good news is that septic arthritis is often treatable. If the infection is due to bacteria, your physician may prescribe antibiotics or drain fluid from the joint.
Infection caused by a fungus may require antifungal medicine, or possibly surgery to remove the infected tissue. And an infection caused by a virus usually needs no treatment at all it goes away on its own.
The bad news is that if you delay treatment, you risk permanent damage to your joint, leading to joint dysfunction.
If you notice symptoms of septic arthritis, its important to get to the Emergency Department, rather than wait for an appointment with your physician. Thats because joint damage can begin in as little as 48 hours after the infection appears.
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Come To The Emergency Center If You Have Severe Back Pain
There is a tendency for people to tolerate their back pain because they may not understand the potential for real problems that can come from it. While back pain can be temporary and mild, it is always a good idea to pay attention to the signs of something more. Remember, if the pain is unbearable, there is a reason for it, and the best thing to do is make an emergency visit to avoid further complications.
If you have back pain symptoms that appear to be an emergency, do not hesitate to come to The Emergency Center right away. The Emergency Center provides up to 23 hours of Observation and offers 24/7 care with NO WAITING. Visit our freestanding emergency room in San Antonio, to get the care you need, or call us at 210-485-3644 for more information.
How To Relieve Back Pain
The following tips may help reduce your back pain and speed up your recovery:
- stay as active as possible and try to continue your daily activities this is 1 of the most important things you can do, as resting for long periods is likely to make the pain worse
- try exercises and stretches for back pain other activities such as walking, swimming, yoga and pilates may also be helpful
- take anti-inflammatory painkillers, such as ibuprofen remember to check the medicine is safe for you to take and ask a pharmacist if you’re not sure
- use hot or cold compression packs for short-term relief you can buy these from a pharmacy, or a hot water bottle or a bag of frozen vegetables wrapped in a cloth or towel will work just as well
Although it can be difficult, it helps if you stay optimistic and recognise that your pain should get better. People who manage to stay positive despite their pain tend to recover quicker.
Back pain usually gets better on its own within a few weeks or months and you may not need to see a doctor or other healthcare professional.
But it’s a good idea to get help if:
- the pain does not start to improve within a few weeks
- the pain stops you doing your day-to-day activities
- the pain is very severe or gets worse over time
- you’re worried about the pain or struggling to cope
If you see a GP they will ask about your symptoms, examine your back and discuss possible treatments.
They may refer you to a specialist doctor or a physiotherapist for further help.
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