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Did you know that approximately one-fourth of adults in the United States experience back pain at least once during a three-month time period. Unfortunately, I am now officially one of them and have several other friends who are members of this group.
So what does back pain have to do with diet and exercise? A lot, as it turns out. The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) has identified both as risk factors for back pain. For instance, people who don’t exercise regularly often have weak core muscles that don’t do a good job of supporting the spine. Additionally, people who adopt a “weekend warrior” approach (exercise a lot on the weekends while being inactive the rest of the week) are actually more likely to have painful backs. And obesity puts additional stress on the back. NIAMS also identified other risk factors for back pain, which include:
Age. The first lower back pain commonly occurs between the ages ...
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
Are you 55 years old or older and still pain free? Chances are you have osteoarthritis and don't know it. X-rays show arthritic changes in eight out of every 10 adults age 55 and older. Knees, hips, and spines are affected most, in that order. Older adults with leg pain may have arthritic changes in both the hip and spine. They sometimes have a total hip replacement (THR) only to develop groin and buttock pain next. Or suddenly they have muscle weakness that isn't related to the THR. In these cases, lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) may be the problem. LSS occurs when age-related changes narrow the canal where the spinal cord and nerves travel. Bone spurs, thickened ligaments, and worn-down joints are just some of the changes leading to LSS. These doctors from Baylor College of Medicine offer other orthopedic surgeons some guidance. They say that when a patient with a recent THR has severe pain after the operation, look for infection, an unstable implant, or LSS. Location of the pain is a key...
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