FROM OUR EXPERTS
One of the most common problems seen in a primary care medical practice is low back pain. It accounts for more discomfort, lost work and productivity, and frustration for many patients than any other malady. Some think it is the price we, as humans, pay for walking upright. The lower back is a complex structure made of bone, muscles, connective tissue and nerves that, along with our legs, hold us erect, allow us to bend, run, twist, catch a football, or just lay down and rest. However, once a problem arises, the complexity of its structure makes pain in the lower back difficult to diagnose and treat. The lower back consists of a spinal column from the lumbar region of the mid-back down to the tail bone or coccyx. The spinal column consists of 5 lumbar vertebrae which are cylindrical bony structures with a ring like component behind the cylinder also made of bone. In between the vertebrae are disc shaped cushions filled with a gelatinous central core known as the nucleus pulposis
Alternative Names Backache; Low back pain; Lumbar pain; Pain - back; Acute back pain; Back pain - new; Back pain - short-term Prevention See: Taking care of your back at home References US Preventative Services Task Force. Primary Care Interventions to Prevent Low Back Pain: Brief Evidence Update . Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; February 2004. Anema JR, Steenstra IA, Bongers PM, de Vet HC, Knol DL, Loisel P, van Mechelen W. Multidisciplinary rehabilitation for subacute low back pain: graded activity or workplace intervention or both? A randomized controlled trial. Spine . 2007;32:291-298. Chou R, Qaseem A, Snow V, Casey D, Cross JT Jr, Shekelle P, et al. Diagnosis and treatment of low back pain: a joint clinical practice guideline from the American College of Physicians and the American Pain Society. Ann Intern Med . 2007;147:478-491. Chou R, Fu R, Carrino JA, Deyo RA. Imaging strategies for low-back pain: systematic review and meta-analysis. Lancet . 2009;373:463-472.
More and more older adults are seeking help for their chronic low back pain outside of traditional medical practices. Complementary and alternative approaches to medicine (CAM) are a source of hope to many. These mind-body techniques include Reiki therapy, acupuncture, BodyTalk, Shiatsu massage, meditation therapy, and many others. In this study, one of the methods called mindfulness meditation is used with a group of older adults (65 years old and older). All subjects had moderately intense low back pain every day or nearly every day for the last three months or more. Everyone was in a weekly mindfulness meditation group for 90 minutes. The session was led by trained health professionals. A daily home program of guided meditation was also prescribed and followed. Three specific meditation practices were taught including a body scan , sitting practice , and walking meditation . Each of these techniques was described in this article. A second group was used as the comparison (control) group...
You should know
Answers to your question are meant to provide general health information but should not replace medical advice you receive from a doctor. No answers should be viewed as a diagnosis or recommended treatment for a condition. Content posted by community members does not necessarily reflect the views of Remedy Health Media, which also reserves the right to remove material deemed inappropriate.