Knowledge Base

Your primary care provider: Center of your treatment

Finding a primary health care provider who is a good match for you is the first and most important step in getting the health care that you need. This is particularly true when you have acute or chronic back pain, as this condition can test any patient’s relationship with a health care provider.  That’s because the treatment of pain can be… Read more »

Why physical therapy?

If you have back pain, you may benefit from physical therapy, a well-established method for treating all types of back conditions.  Using techniques such as therapeutic exercise, functional training, mobilization/manipulation, massage, electrotherapy and ultrasound, physical therapists help restore function, reduce pain and prevent disability. When should you see a physical therapist for back pain? If… Read more »

When nothing else works: Is back surgery right for you?

Surgery for back pain should usually only be considered after all other treatments have been tried and failed to provide relief.  In such situations, surgery may indeed be the only remaining option.  In order to understand the risks and potential benefits of various types of back surgery, it is important to re-visit the anatomy of… Read more »

Chronic back pain treatment: Myths and realities

Whether you state it or not, you probably have some goals for the outcome of the treatment of your chronic back pain.  Perhaps your goal is to get back to activities you enjoyed before.  In many cases, you want to return to work.  Or maybe you simply want the pain to be reduced to a more tolerable level. You… Read more »

Going to the source: How back pain begins

Knowledge is power!  The more you know about back pain, the better you can manage it.  In this article, you will learn: The three major categories of back pain The most common causes of back pain The symptoms used to diagnose the source of your pain. A closer look at the spine Your back extends… Read more »

Breakthrough pain: Finding the right balance

The term “breakthrough pain” was originally coined by anesthesiologists. After surgery, patients are almost always given some type of post-operative pain medication. Sometimes, however, pain “breaks through” the medication’s ability to control pain. In recent years, breakthrough pain has come to mean any pain that occurs despite pain medication. The meaning of the term is… Read more »

Back spasms: What they are, what to do

To understand back muscle spasms, start by reviewing what you know about the different parts of the spine.  You can think of the spine as a framework or scaffolding holding up the body.  The spine is a collection of bony rings, called vertebrae, whose major function is to provide support for the body and protection… Read more »

Back in the game: Sports injuries

When you work hard at playing sports, you can injure your back.  As the body’s center of gravity, the back is particularly prone to injuries.  Pounding the pavement while running places considerable stress on the lower back.  Tennis shots rotate the trunk and twist the spine which can strain back muscles. Up to twenty percent… Read more »