Alternative Names Backache; Low back pain; Lumbar pain; Pain - back; Acute back pain; Back pain - new; Back pain - short-term Treatment To get better quickly, take the right steps when you first get pain. Here are some tips for how to handle pain early on: Stop normal physical activity for the first few days. This helps calm your symptoms and reduce inflammation. Apply heat or ice to the painful area. Try ice for the first 48-72 hours, then use heat. Take over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB) or acetaminophen (Tylenol). While sleeping, try lying in a curled-up, fetal position with a pillow between your legs. If you usually sleep on your back, place a pillow or rolled towel under your knees to relieve pressure. A common misbelief about back pain is that you need to rest and avoid activity for a long time. In fact, bed rest is NOT recommended . You may want to reduce your activity only for the first couple of days. Then, slowly start your usual activities after that....
“Doc, I just want one of those epidurals to get rid of the pain.”
Really, you want a large needle stuck into your spine? Do you know what could happen to you if you have an epidural spinal injection? Usually, nothing bad happens at all. The complication rates are very low . 1 At the most, you might get some flushing , increased pain or persistent numbness. If you are a diabetic, you might experience a spike in your blood sugar levels temporarily . None of those complications are really a big deal; so the epidurals seem worth the risk to most people. But most people don’t know that rare serious and potentially fatal complications from these “safe” procedures have been reported.
A few people have become paralyzed as a result of having an epidural injection. 2, 3 This complication is thought to be caused by a disruption in the blood supply to the spinal cord. A spinal cord injury is a most unfortunate and unforeseen risk from an epidural steroid inj...
Narcotics, or opioids (pronounced OH-pee-oydz), provide the main relief for this level of pain. There are both long-acting and short-acting opioid pain medicines:
Long-acting opioids include:
oxycodone (brand names: Roxicodone, OxyIR, OxyContin)
fentanyl (brand name: Duragesic)
morphine (brand names: MS Contin, Oramorph, Avinza, Kadian, Roxanol)
methadone (brand name: Dolophine)
Short-acting opioids include:
morphine (brand name: MSIR)
oxycodone (brand name: Percocet)
hydrocodone (brand names: Vicodin, Vicoprofen, Lortab, Lorcet, Hycodan, Zydone)
hydromorphone (brand name: Dilaudid)
fentanyl—rapid acting (brand name: Actiq)
meperidine (brand name: Demerol)
Dosage is adjusted to suppress your pain around-the-clock. Long-acting medication helps so that most of your day is pain free, and ideally you won't need to get up in the middle of the night to take another dose. Short-acting drugs are used to treat episodes of breakthrough pain.
There are many different opioids to try f...
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