Low back pain is one of the most common orthopedic happening in everyone’s life. Studies have revealed that 85% of global population has suffered or will suffer low back pain once in their lifetime. So if current Indian population is considered nearly to 130 crores then there could be nearly 110 crore people suffering from low back pain. This figure really increases the worry & need to see an eligible clinician to get rid of this pain.
Low back pain that stays for more than 2 weeks time, starts having its impact on the activities of the daily life of an individual. This eventually leads to absence of the individual from their work which ultimately leads to develop lack of work efficiency & later on it might have economic repercussion as well.
Now every time whenever we get a consultation done for the back pain, we are usually advised to get an MRI done alongwith various other investigations which eventually makes its very costly. And almost all MRI reveals nearly similar results that the reports of MRI say, that is “Slip Disc” or to be more precise the clinically correlated diagnosis becomes “Prolapsed Intervertebral Disc (PIVD)“. And the treatment starts for PIVD. Medications, Physiotherapy, Do’s & Dont’s; but anybody hardly bothers to carry out a comprehensive Physical Examination.
Now to cut the things short you can remember few things & perform certain self-test to atleast know how serious the situation is & how fatal it could be. And eventually whether your situation is a “Slip Disc” or not.
- Always note if the pain is local in the back region, or it is coming to your buttocks, thighs or legs.
- Always remember one basic thumb rule, “All the pains that comes to your lower limb are not Radiating Pains or they might or might not be related to compression of nerves”.
- Does the pain in your back alleviates or spreads whenever you cough, sneeze or laugh?? If yes, then a MRI finding in relation to the displacement of disc could be relevant. If such pains arise in the morning times, then it is unlikely that you have a disc pain because intervertebral discs are enriched with water in the whole night when you sleep so they hardly compress other structures in the morning to cause pain.
- Try to perform movements like rotation on either side or bending on either side & evaluate the motion with most pain. It could be a valuable information in examination for your clinician.
- Do not try to bend forward or backward again & again to check or to re-evaluate the extent of pain.
- If the pain is of neural origin then, the sensation you feel in the lower limb must be of either tingling, pricking, pins & needles like or numbness. You can often feel a stretch like sensation on the back of your thigh which could be called as “Nerve Radiation”. But in such cases it is unlikely to have a nerve impingement or entrapment. Rather it could be a regular muscle stiffness.
- If you feel pain in the lower back which goes to your calves on standing & walking and relieves when you sit down. Such claudication symptoms could be spinal canal stenosis & you must not wait for them to get relieved by itself. And you must immediately consult your doctor.
- Usually a regular back pain can itself get relieved by 2 weeks. But if it does not happens then you must talk to your doctor soon.
- You must perform regular exercises & postural control maneuvers so as to prevent re-occurrence of such a situation.
- Lingering & avoiding low back pain could have delirious effects on general health as well.
So, don’t be afraid & fight your back pain well..
Keep healthy & spread health awareness not fear..