Starting a little less than a year ago, I would walk my father’s miniature Schnauzer, Austin, as well as my terrier mix, Noel. Each dog weighed about 20 pounds, walked rapidly while following their nose, and did not have strong obedience training (which means that they pulled while on the leash). While they loved the walks, I ended up paying the ultimate price last spring with lower back pain.
So I was very interested in a Houston Chronicle column by Dr. Michael Roizen and Dr. Mehmet Oz entitled, “Back Hurt? Check Your Attitude.” The good doctors noted that people who are older than 30 years of age tend to have had or will have lower back pain due to improper posture while driving and working on computers. However, they suggest that your attitude can affect the status of your back. “What you think will happen next – healthy recovery or chronic pain – dramatically affects what will happen. The more optimistic and can-do your mind-s...
Medications are the most frequently recommended treatment for l ow back pain . Research has shown that 80% of primary care patients with low back pain were prescribed at least one medication when seen by the primary care provider; more than one third were prescribed two or more medications.
The most commonly prescribed drugs for low back pain are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as Motrin and naproxen, muscle relaxants, and opioid-based pain killers. Other medications regularly prescribed for chronic low back pain include benzodiazepines such as Valium , cortisone-type drugs, anti-depressant medications and anti-seizure medications. Of course, many patients use over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol, aspirin, and NSAIDs such as Advil.
A challenge to many health care providers involves the choosing of the safest and most effective medication for a given patient. A more disturbing thought involves the possibility that many of th...
Spondylolisthesis (spaun-di-lo-lie-thee-sis) is a mouthful and is a common cause of low back pain (although it can exist anywhere in the spine, the lumbar spine is the most common area affected). The spinal column is a series of building blocks called vertebral bodies stacked on top of one another. Sometimes these blocks do not line up perfectly. This slight separation in the spinal column is called a spondylolisthesis .
"Doc says I have a spondy-something-or-other. Don't ask me what it is; all I know is that it hurts". Steve tries to explain his low back condition to his friend. But, he finds that he cannot explain what he does not understand. Steve has had back pain for a number of years. Every year the pain gets worse and has now become constant. His doctor sent him for x-rays recently. The x-rays showed a spondylolisthesis with disc degeneration at L5/S1. Steve could not understand his doctor's explanation of the condition. So, now he has pain and has confusion.
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