AVOID the following exercises during initial recovery unless your doctor or physical therapist says it is okay:
- Weight lifting
- Leg lifts when lying on your stomach
- Sit-ups with straight legs (rather than bent knees)
Call your health care provider if
Call 911 if you have lost bowel or bladder control. Otherwise, call your doctor if you have:
feverwith back pain.
- Back pain after a severe blow or fall.
- Redness or swelling on the back or spine.
- Pain traveling down your legs below the knee.
- Weakness or numbness in your buttocks, thigh, leg, or pelvis.
- Burning with urination or blood in your urine.
- Worse pain when you lie down or pain that awakens you at night.
- Very sharp pain.
Also call if:
- You have been losing weight unintentionally
- You use steroids or intravenous drugs.
- You have never had or been evaluated for back pain before.
- You have had back pain before but this episode is distinctly different.
- This episode of back pain has lasted longer than four weeks.
If any of these symptoms are present, your doctor will carefully check for any sign of infection (like meningitis, abscess, or urinary tract infection), ruptured disk, spinal stenosis, hernia, cancer, kidney stone, twisted testicle, or other serious problem.
What to expect at your health care provider's office
When you first see your doctor, you will be asked questions about your back pain, including how often it occurs and how severe it is. Your doctor will try to determine the cause of your back pain and whether it is likely to quickly get better with simple measures such as ice, mild painkillers, physical therapy, and proper exercises. Most of the time, back pain will get better using these approaches.
Review Date: 07/07/2005
Reviewed By: Kevin B. Freedman, MD, MSCE, Sports Medicine, Orthopaedic Speclalists, Bryn Mawr, PA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.