FROM OUR EXPERTS
Traveling can really be a pain in the back. Besides the bad hotel beds or uncomfortable car rides, lugging all that stuff from one destination to the next can really be the straw that breaks the back. When it comes to lugging stuff, one really has to think about the best choices in luggage for the spine. A trip to the airport baggage claim tells a lot about the good, bad and ugly choices. Some try to overcome poor choices by using the curbside service or luggage carts. In reality, the baggage has to be handled at some point and it is at that point when spine pain can really ruin a trip. Three key aspects of luggage should be considered before the trip of a lifetime: weight, mobility, and features. By getting the best of all three components, baggage does not have to be a drag.
A sore spine is very sensitive to load. Carrying too much weight can stress the ligaments, the discs, and the spine joints . Some have heard that backpacks should not weigh more than 10% of the body weight...
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.
Symptoms of thoracic outlet syndrome may include:
Pain, numbness, and tingling in the pinky and ring fingers, and the inner forearm
Pain and tingling in the neck and shoulders (carrying something heavy may make the pain worse)
Signs of poor circulation in the hand or forearm (a bluish color, cold hands, or a swollen arm)
Weakness of the muscles in the hand
Signs and tests
When you lift something, the arm may look pale due to pressure on the blood vessels.
The diagnosis is typically made after the doctor takes a careful history and performs a physical examination. Sometimes the following tests are done to confirm the diagnosis:
Nerve conduction velocity
Tests are also done to make sure that there are no other problems, such as carpal tunnel syndrome or a damaged nerve due to problems in the cervical (neck) spi...
You should know
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