Back Pain

Back pain is commonest symptom for which people go to the orthopaedic clinic. Most of people usually had back pain at least once in life time. It is usually predisposed by lifting weights, working in one posture, travelling, jerks and lifting heavy weights.


  • Pain in back
  • Difficulty in turning in bed
  • Difficulty in getting up, bending forward or walking
  • Radiating pain in legs
  • Tingling and numbness
  • Pain in leg after walking for a while
  • Stiffness in back
  • Weakness of muscles of leg or foot
  • Rarely loss of control of urine or stool


  • Muscle strain
  • Disc prolapse
  • Degeneration of spine
  • Ankylosing spondylitis
  • Scoliosis
  • Osteoporosis

Risk Factors

  • Age – more common in elderly
  • Working with abnormal posture
  • Lack of exercises
  • Obesity
  • Improper lifting of weight


  • X ray – most common investigation to diagnose reason for back pain. It gives information regarding changes in shape, degeneration and trauma.
  • MRI – helps to diagnose disc prolapse, nerve compression, infection
  • Blood tests – may be needed in some cases like infection or ankylosing spondylitis
  • CT scan / bone scan may be needed in some patients


  • Medicines – anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxants take care of pain
  • Physical therapy – heat, ultrasound, interferential therapy can be used
  • Exercises – to strengthen core, back and abdominal muscles
  • Epidural injections, root block can be given
  • Surgical intervention may be needed in some patients depending on cause.


What is most common cause of back pain?

Axial pain is a most common type of back pain. This includes mechanical issues of spine, inter vertebral disc prolapse, compression of nerve roots etc.

How long does back pain last?

Pain lasts from few days to few weeks. In presence of significant pain or persistent pain it is important to seek medical advice so that appropriate diagnosis and treatment can be started

How should I sleep with low back pain?

You can lie down straight on your back. You can take a pillow below your knees. This helps in maintaining spine curve.

Can I bend or lift weight if I am having back pain?

It can aggravate back pain, better to be avoided.

How can I prevent recurrences of back pain?

Proper postural correction and exercises to strengthen back muscles help in minimizing recurrences.

Can I maintain proper posture with Laptop?

While you are using desktop and proper ergonomic desk and chair you can maintain ergonomic posture. However it is difficult to maintain with laptop. You can improvise with the help of separate mouse and keypad.

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