When You Should Go to the Emergency Room for Back Pain.
low back painmay be related to cancer. In fact, it is one of the first symptoms of prostate cancer when it metastasizes and creates lesions. Almost any cancer can spread to the back and some, such as sarcoma, can originate in the back.
Be careful, especially if you experience symptoms other than low back pain. Talk to your doctor if you have other symptoms or concerns. As a general rule, if low back pain does not go away in 1 to 2 weeks, you should visit your doctor. The pain is most likely not a sign of a medical emergency, but a doctor can provide you with an accurate diagnosis and recommend a treatment plan.
Certain types of back pain can be indicative of more serious underlying conditions and thus are considered dangerous. It is crucial to seek medical attention if back pain is accompanied by symptoms such as numbness or weakness in the legs, severe and sudden pain, pain following a trauma or injury, difficulty controlling bladder or bowel functions, or unexplained weight loss. These symptoms could signal issues like spinal cord compression, fractures, or infections. Moreover, chronic back pain that does not improve with rest or persists for more than a few weeks should also be evaluated by a healthcare professional. Understanding these signs is important not only for individuals but also for those responsible for health and safety in workplaces. For instance, professionals who have undertaken a first aid at work certification course are trained to recognize these symptoms as potential red flags and can advise on the necessity of seeking prompt medical evaluation. Timely and appropriate intervention in such cases can prevent complications and lead to better health outcomes.
A complete medical history and physical exam can usually identify any serious conditions that may be causing the pain. Neurological tests can help determine the cause of pain and appropriate treatment. In most cases, imaging tests are not needed, but they can be ordered to rule out specific causes of pain, such as tumors and spinal stenosis. Occasionally, the cause of chronic low back pain is difficult to determine even after a thorough examination.
The Back Pain Consortium established through HEAL will conduct studies to better understand the mechanisms of common painful conditions, such as chronic low back pain, develop improved diagnostic and treatment tools, and identify, prioritize and test therapies that reduce the need to consume opioids in millions of people from Americans. Back pain is one of the most common pain conditions worldwide and contributes significantly to the prescription and use of opioids in the United States. Whether back pain requires surgery or can be managed with conservative treatment, it's important to see a spinal specialist for diagnosis and care. If back pain symptoms persist after a few weeks, a good first step is to see a doctor to accurately diagnose the cause of back pain.
If you or a loved one could benefit from a consultation about back pain, call 214-645-8300 or request an appointment online. Inflammation and thinning of the cartilage increases friction in the joints, which can cause lower back pain. Check out The Spine Center at UT Southwestern, where the multidisciplinary team of doctors, nurses and providers provide cutting-edge treatment for back pain and spine-related injuries. Some medications or medical conditions put patients at higher risk for low bone density, fractured vertebrae, or back pain.
Rehabilitation Programs Rehabilitation teams use a combination of health professionals from different specialties and disciplines to develop care programs that help people live with chronic pain. Most acute low back pain is mechanical in nature, meaning there is an alteration in the way the components of the back (the spine, muscles, intervertebral discs, and nerves) come together and move. For example, one study is designed to examine the brain properties of the placebo response and critically evaluate the neurobiology of placebo pain relief in people with chronic pain. In the meantime, if your symptoms of chronic back pain do not improve or even worsen with treatment, you can contact your doctor's office and ask about how to adjust the treatment plan.
Kidney and digestive problems, such as pancreatitis and gallstones, can cause lower back discomfort that patients might assume is spinal pain. For example, if you have been diagnosed with chronic low back pain caused by degenerative disc disease, you may be prescribed a muscle relaxant or you may be advised to take an over-the-counter pain reliever. .