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When To See A Dr About Back Pain

Things You Should Know

When to See a Doctor for Back Pain

Ideas about back pain have changed a lot over recent years. It is a good idea to read more about back pain as you may be surprised to discover that some of the things you thought were bad for the back are actually not a problem . Examples include:

  • sitting is not bad for the back
  • poor posture cannot injure the back
  • the back is designed to bend, twist and lift
  • moving and using the back makes it more healthy.

Read more at 10-facts-about-back-pain or 15 things you didnt know about back pain.

You’ve Been In Pain For Over A Week

Most back pain will subside after a few days, but if you’ve been experiencing pain for over a week, then it’s time to call a doctor. Your doctor will perform any examinations or tests required to help get to the bottom of your pain before it could become a bigger problem. As is the case with many health conditions, prevention and addressing problems early is key.

Musculoskeletal Problems That Cause Back Pain

The most common cause of back pain is musculoskeletal problems. Muscle strain or spasm, popularly gripes known as myofascial trigger points back, scapula , one common cause of neck pain. Sitting for a long time, heavy activities such as snow shoveling, intense exercise than usual, psychological stress can cause muscle pain. In muscle pain, applying pressure to that muscle causes pain and sensitivity. Pain may increase with neck, shoulder and back movements.

Compression of nerve roots due to neck hernia or spinal calcification is another problem that can cause back pain. In this case, the pain usually spreads from the neck to the back and arm, and a sharp, electric shock-like feeling may occur.

Scoliosis does not usually cause back pain, however, it may give symptoms such as a hunched or flattening on the back, and a low one shoulder. If calcification is added in advanced scoliosis, pain may occur.

Back pain can also occur as a result of trauma. Due to falling on the back, soft tissues may be crushed or fractures of the back vertebrae may occur. Although there is no trauma in people with osteoporosis, a compression fracture may occur in the back vertebrae.

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Where To Start With Back Pain

Low back pain is one of the most common complaints on the planet.

And when someone starts experiencing back pain it can be so frightening that we immediately want an expert that will somehow magically get rid of it.

Unfortunately, there’s just no unicorns and rainbows when it comes to solving back pain.

Realize that most back pain will resolve on its own. What I’m saying here is that your major ache or tweaked out back doesn’t require a specialist in most cases.

Some of the most common causes of acute or sudden back pain include an injury:

  • to a muscle or tendon
  • to a back ligament
  • to a bulging disc .

And the reality is, many of these issues will eventually resolve on their own.

In my personal opinion, the first time someone starts to experience back pain, they should immediately start doing back extension exercises.

I would continue to do back extensions every 3-4 hours throughout the day for at least 3 days.

And if you notice that you’re feeling better, continue for another 1-2 weeks.

But if your low back pain doesn’t improve, then maybe there is something more serious happening.

More serious causes of back pain include:

  • a narrowing of the spinal canal
  • disc tears or herniations
  • severe degenerative disc disease
  • spinal infections

So if your back pain doesn’t improve with back extensions and modified activities, then you’d want to consider someone who is qualified to properly assess the situation.

Back Pain: When To See A Doctor

Back Pain: When to See a Doctor

Generally speaking, if you have severe back pain that doesnt improve with rest or which doesnt subside within a week of home treatment, you should be checked out by a healthcare professional. If your back pain is due to a fall, an accident or a blow to the back, you should see a doctor immediately.

Also, if you have a medical condition that puts you at high risk for a spinal fracture, such as osteoporosis, you need to see a doctor immediately if you experience back pain. Your doctor will make sure that theres no structural damage or conditions that require immediate treatment.

Sometimes back pain can point to a serious medical problem.

Red flags for back pain

If you have back pain and experience any of the red flags below, you should see a doctor as soon as possible:

  • Bladder or bowel control problems
  • Numbness in the groin or in the vicinity of the anal region
  • Weakness, numbness or pins and needles in the legs
  • Fever
  • Pain running down one or both legs
  • Feeling unsteady on your feet
  • Increased pain when lying down
  • Pain that wakes you up at night
  • Pain thats unrelated to movement
  • Pain thats localised in the upper back
  • A history of prolonged corticosteroid use
  • A history of intravenous drug use
  • A history of urinary tract infections
  • In a child: any severe back pain that persists for more than three days

Questions to ask your doctor

The following questions will help you to make the most of your doctors visit:

Yellow flags for back pain

Chronic back pain, depression and suicide

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Incontinence Or Leg Weakness

If controlling your bladder or bowel has rapidly become a challenge, and/or your legs have been growing progressively weaker, you should seek immediate medical care.

Bowel and bladder incontinence, progressive weakness, and loss of sensation in the seat area are symptoms of cauda equina syndrome, which is a very serious condition. Cauda equina syndrome generally requires emergency back surgery.

Who Should Treat Your Back Pain

Many types of medical professionals treat back pain, and each has different training, skills, and specialties. So how do you know which specialist is best for helping to alleviate your back pain? Heres an overview of different back pain specialists and which type or team may be right for you.

See:Specialists Who Treat Back Pain

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Find Relief From Back Pain At The International Spine Institute

At the International Spine Institute, Dr. Marco A. Rodriguez, MD, provides the least invasive treatment approach for patients with back pain. Hes a leader in Endoscopic Spine Surgery and Least Invasive Spine Surgery.

At the International Spine Institute, we realize patients are looking for compassionate and convenient care that provides them with symptom relief and enhanced life. If youre not sure when to see a doctor for back pain, call us with any questions or schedule an appointment with Dr. Rodriguez for a consultation.

When To See A Doctor About Back Pain

When to See a Doctor for Back Pain

Its made up of 24 bones that are connected to ligaments and muscles and hold you up straight. It gives your body its form and ability to function. The spine is a fascinating piece of architecture. It holds and protects the spinal cord, a bunch of nerves that tell the rest of your body about whats going on. Over 19 million people go to a doctor every year for back pain. Aches and pains can vary for people, but when is time to see a doctor?

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You Have Unexplained Weight Loss

If you experience sudden weight loss that can’t be explained by diet and lifestyle changes, then you should always pay attention to what your body is telling you. This is especially true when the unexplained weight loss is accompanied by back pain. See your doctor to rule out the possibility of a more severe condition, such as an infection or tumor.

Ready To Address Your Back Pain

The University of Maryland Spine Network can help you put your pain behind you. With convenient locations throughout the state, the UM Spine Network is home to the region’s leading spine surgeons and specialists that can help you identify the source of your pain and put an end to it for good.

Put an end to your back pain. Find a spine specialist near you.

In This Section:

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Weakness Numbness Or Tingling In Your Limbs

If you have the feeling of weakness or your arm or leg goes numb this could be a bigger issue that may require medical attention.

Muscle Activation San Jose is not a replacement for all back injuries or issues though we attempt to evaluate all problems the clients have in order to help. In many cases, MAT will provide a solution to your back pain. Try our Free Back Pain Evaluation to see if Muscle Activation Technique can help.

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Common Treatments For Low Back Pain

When Should You See a Doctor for Back Pain?

Combining information from the patients medical history, physical exam, and possible diagnostic tests, the healthcare provider will recommend a course of back care that fits the patients needs.

Non-surgical treatments for low back pain will be recommended first. Common non-surgical treatments include:

  • Physical therapy, which typically works to strengthen muscles and mobilize joints in order to better support the spine and minimize painful movements.

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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.

When Should I See A Specialist

If you aren’t satisfied with your initial diagnosis, or if your back pain doesn’t go away after a few weeks of self-help, then ask your primary care doctor to refer you to a specialist.

  • Many different types of doctors specialize in treating back pain, so remember to request the names of specialists who may be a good fit for you.
  • The type of doctor you see, as well as the type of treatment you ultimately receive, could depend on the underlying cause of your back pain.

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Which Department To Go To For Back Pain

In case of muscle pain, a physical therapy and rehabilitation specialist can be examined. Orthopedics and traumatology department is examined for back pain that starts after traumatic events such as falling. In severe traumas, emergency service should be applied without delay. If the sudden onset of back pain is accompanied by symptoms such as shortness of breath and chest pain, there may be a risk of heart attack. If a heart attack is suspected, the emergency room should be contacted immediately. An internist can be consulted for long-standing, worsening, non-movement related back pain that wakes you up at night and is accompanied by weight loss.

Relieve Back Pain At The Dr Reuter Clinic

Chronic back pain: when to see a doctor

the back is a complex network of muscles, ligaments, bones, and tendons. it runs from the top of our buttocks to the base of our neck. the back is responsible for keeping our body upright and balanced.

however, back pain is a common issue many of us experience at least once during our lives.

if you happen to be suffering from chronic or acute back pain, please book an appointment at the dr. reuter clinic with orthopedic specialist dr. helge schmitz.

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If You Have These Symptoms You May Require Emergency Care

Lower back pain, which can occur anywhere from your rib cage to your buttocks, is often the result of lifting, reaching, twisting and stretching. Upper and middle back pain, in most cases, does get better with time and rest. If your back pain is unrelenting and not relieved by rest, you should immediately visit the closest emergency department. If the pain is accompanied by any of the following symptoms, you should also seek emergency care:

How Do I Know My Back Pain Is Serious

Whether your back pain is intermittent, piercing or achy and constant, youre probably wondering if it should be a cause for concern. However, the severity of your symptoms isnt the only indicator of whether your back pain is serious.

For instance, you can experience intense pain from a pulled back muscle but this will usually go away after several days of treating it at home. But, with something like lumbar degenerative disc disease, you can experience a dull, moderate ache in your back, which wont necessarily be intense but could become worse over time if left untreated. In this case, youd want to see a doctor to discuss a long-term treatment plan.

If youre experiencing back pain, you should consider seeing a doctor if you have recently or are currently experiencing:

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Common Causes Of Back Pain

Two of the most common reasons for back pain 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

Er Average Wait Times

When Should You See a Doctor for Back Pain?

ER wait times are approximate and provided for informational purposes only. If you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1.

The ER wait time represents the time it takes to see a qualified medical professional, defined as a Doctor of Medicine , Doctor of Osteopathy , Physician Assistant or Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner .

ER wait times represent a four-hour rolling average updated every 30 minutes, and is defined as the time of patient arrival until the time the patient is greeted by a qualified medical professional. Patients are triaged at arrival and are then seen by a qualified medical professional in priority order based on their presenting complaint and reason for visit.

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When Should I See My Doctor

If you have back pain and have lost feeling or movement in your limbs or are having problems controlling your bowels or bladder, call triple 000 immediately and ask for an ambulance.

You should see your doctor or other health care professional for further advice if:

You should see your doctor as soon as possible, if you have a history of cancer, are prone to infection, or use intravenous drugs.

For most people, back pain will resolve in a few weeks with appropriate self-care. After 2 months, 9 out of 10 people will recover from back pain.

Learn About The Different Back Pain Specialists

When a back problem occurs, it’s typically a good idea to first consult with a primary care physician. This doctor will conduct an initial exam and, depending on the findings, he or she may refer you to a spine specialist.

If you are referred to a specialist for chronic back pain, it will likely be to one of the following:

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Shooting Pain Down Your Arms Or Legs

Back pain will usually go away with rest. If you have inflammation, over the counter IBUProfen will help. But if you have pain that lasts for more than two weeks then it might be time to consult a doctor. Pain that keeps you from performing daily tasks or if you have shooting pain down your arms or legs, its time to see your doctor for further evaluation.

When To See A Doctor For Back Pain: Additional Signs

Understanding back pain and when to see a doctor

In addition to the types of back pain described above, there are other symptoms that signal more serious conditions these should be addressed without delay. If you experience back pain along with any of the following symptoms, seek immediate medical attention:

  • Sudden loss of bowel or bladder control. This may signal cauda equina syndrome. This rare but serious condition is a medical emergency caused by severe compression of the nerves in the lower spine. Without immediate treatment, this syndrome can cause permanent paralysis and impaired bladder or bowel control.
  • Color changes in your legs or feet. Back pain accompanied by color changes in legs or feet could indicate serious conditions, including spinal stenosis, peripheral artery disease, or cancer. The symptoms should be promptly evaluated.
  • Severe, continuous abdominal pain. If your back pain is accompanied by sharp, severe, and ongoing abdominal pain, it could be an indication of an enlarged artery in the abdomen, called an abdominal aortic aneurysm. If the vessel ruptures, it can cause a serious medical emergency.
  • Persistent fever. Fever can be an indication of an infection in the spine, which may arise slowly in a compromised immune system, and can also occur following surgery. Although rare, spinal infections can cause an epidural abscess and damage gross motor function.

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