Back pain - nonspecific
The majority of nonspecific back pain is probably caused by muscle strain. This usually responds to 2-5 days of rest and
Physical therapy is often prescribed to instruct the patient on proper body mechanics (such as good posture and lifting correctly) and to improve strength and flexibility in the spine, abdomen, and legs.
Surgery is not useful for the treatment of nonspecific back pain.
Most cases of nonspecific back pain resolve on their own or respond to treatment. It is helpful to sleep on a firm mattress, with a board under the mattress, or even on the floor. Heat or ice applied to the affected area may provide some relief.
Calling your health care provider
Call for an appointment with your health care provider if there is significant pain that persists beyond a week.
Call your health care provider if you have been diagnosed with nonspecific back pain and the pain changes in intensity or quality. This is particularly important if the pain travels down the legs below the knee (suggesting pressure on the nerves as they leave the spinal cord), or if there is
If you develop progressive weakness,
Review Date: 09/26/2006
Reviewed By: Andrew L. Chen, M.D., M.S., Orthopedist, The Alpine Clinic, Littleton, NH. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.