Back Pain Management

The Back Pain Management Unit at the BLK Super Speciality Hospital is a dedicated unit which serves patients suffering from acute to long-term (chronic) back pain. The unit focuses on providing a comprehensive diagnosis and treatment care for disorders arising from a wide range of medical conditions and resulting in chronic pain. 

We have highly experienced professionals who dedicatedly perform a spectrum of surgical & non-surgical interventions tailored to each person’s individual needs. We aim to provide compassionate care to each patient by controlling pain, restoring function and shifting their focus to other enjoyable aspects life has to offer, thereby, improving the quality of your life.
 

What Is Back Pain?

Back pain is a pain that occurs in the lower back, middle back, upper back or low back and develops due to an injury, activity and some medical conditions. It can come and go, but it is chronic if it lasts three months or longer.

Pain Management:  Also called pain medicine, this is a discipline in science that deals with the systematic study of painful disorders and gain expert know-how about their prevention, evaluation, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation processes.

What Are The Causes Of Back Pain?

The pain in the back often develops due to various reasons. The doctor can identify the cause with a test or an imaging study.

Conditions that cause back pain are:

Strain

One of the major causes of back pain is strain which develops due to

  • Injuries
  • Fractures or falls
  • Damaged discs
  • Muscle tension
  • A muscle spasm
  • Strained muscles or ligaments
  • Activities that can lead to strains include:
  • Lifting something improperly
  • Lifting something that is too heavy
  • Making an abrupt or an awkward movement

Structural problems

Other reasons that can cause chronic back pain include structural problems, such as:

  • Ruptured discs
  • Bulging discs
  • Sciatica
  • Arthritis
  • Abnormal curvature of the spine
  • Osteoporosis
  • Kidney problems (such as kidney stones or kidney infection) 

Movement and posture

Back pain can also develop due to some everyday activities or poor posture. For Example: Sitting in a hunched position when using computers can result in increased back and shoulder problems. Other conditions include:

  • Twisting
  • Muscle tension
  • Over-stretching
  • Coughing or sneezing with high intensity
  • Bending awkwardly often for long periods
  • Standing or sitting in inappropriate condition for long periods
  • Straining the neck forward (while driving or using a computer)
  • Pushing, pulling, lifting, or carrying something
  • Long driving sessions (without a break)
  • Sleeping on a mattress that is uncomfortable and cause pain

Medical conditions 

Some medical conditions can also lead to back pain such as

  • Cauda equina syndrome (dull pain in the lower back and upper buttocks with numbness in the buttocks, genitalia, and thighs) 
  • Cancer of the spine
  • Infection of the spine
  • Other infections such as:
    • Pelvic inflammatory disease
    • Bladder infections
    • Kidney infections
    • Shingles (infection affecting nerves)
  • Sleep disorders

What Is The Role Of Back Pain Management Unit?

In case of the spine and musculo-skeletal pain, the pain management unit at BLK Hospital serves a variety of purposes. It usually differs from surgical treatment.

The pain management strategies and techniques available at the unit help:

  • Help in identifying
    • The source of a patient's back pain
    • The areas to approach surgically
    • Whether the patient can get conservative (nonsurgical) care 
  • It helps the patient with after surgery programs, such as:
    • Rehabilitation 
    • Help cope with residual or recalcitrant pain

Are You A Candidate For Back Pain Management?

In some cases, back pain can lead to serious medical problems. You may need to contact a doctor if you experience:

  • Severe back pain that doesn't improves with rest
  • Pain spreading into one or both legs (especially when it extends below the knee)
  • Pain that causes weakness, numbness or tingling in one or both legs
  • Pain that is accompanied by unexplained weight loss
  • Back pain for the first time 
    • After age 50
    • With a history of cancer, steroid use, osteoporosis, or excessive drug or alcohol use.
  • Seek immediate medical help if your back pain:
  • Causes new bowel or bladder problems
  • Is accompanied by fever
  • Follows a fall or other injury

What Are The Various Procedure Required For The Diagnosis Of Back Pain?

Some of the diagnostic tests that your doctor might ask you to take for evaluation of your current medical conditions, which involve:

  • X-ray
  • MRI
  • CT
  • Blood Tests
  • Bone Scans
  • Electromyelogram (EMG)
  • Nerve Conduction Studies (NCS)

What Are The Procedures Used For Back Pain Management?

The pain management techniques used at Back Pain Management unit include: 

Non-invasive, non-drug pain management

  • Exercise: Physical Exercise with the aim of increasing strength, flexibility, and restoring normal motion. The doctor designs the patient-centric exercise programs according to the individual’s medical needs.
  • Manual techniques: Such as applying force to the joints, muscles, and ligaments.
  • Behavioural modification: These methods are to optimise patient’s response towards back pain and painful stimuli. The techniques used are:
    • Relaxation techniques
    • Coping techniques 
    • For symptomatic improvement, learning to control
      • Muscle tension
      • Blood pressure
      • Heart rate
  • Superficial heating or cooling of skin: This method includes the use of cold packs and hot packs to help relieve lower back pain. 
  • Electrotherapy: the most commonly used electrotherapy is Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS). This therapy aims to reduce back pain by using a low-voltage electric stimulation that interacts with the sensory nervous system. The efficacy of TENS as a treatment yielded either positive or neutral results for back pain management. It is not for someone who is:
    • Pregnant
    • Has a history of epilepsy or heart disease
    • Using a pacemaker

Non-invasive pharmacologic pain management

If the non-drug pain management does not provide any relief than the doctor may advise the following medication to the patient, along with physical therapy:

  • Over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers: Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or Naproxen sodium (Aleve), 
  • Muscle relaxants
  • Topical pain relievers in the form of creams, salves or ointments 
  • Narcotics: such as oxycodone or hydrocodone (Drugs containing opioids) 
  • Antidepressants: Tricyclic antidepressants, such as amitriptyline 
  • Injections: when other medicines don’t relieve your pain, your doctor may inject cortisone — an anti-inflammatory medication. This helps in decreasing inflammation and pain

Invasive pain management

The surgery is a last resort of treatment when all the other treatments for back pain have failed. However, if you have unrelenting pain that is associated with radiating leg pain or progressive muscle weakness caused due to nerve compression,then your doctor might recommend you to undergo surgery. The common surgeries for back pain management include:

  • Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
  • Neuro-endoscopy Surgery
  • Functional Neurosurgery
  • Microscopic /Endoscopic Disc Surgeries
  • Spine Fusion Surgery

What Are The Precautions One Must Take After The Treatment Of Back Pain?

The important precautionary measures one must consider after the treatment are: 

  • Do not lift anything heavier or drive vehicle for around 3 weeks after the surgery
  • Avoid bending, lifting, or twisting your back 
  • No strenuous activity such as yard work or housework
  • Do not indulge in sexual activities
  • Do not drink alcohol or smoke
  • Eat a healthy diet.
  • Take all your medicines on time
  • Visit your doctor often for check-ups

Are There Any Complications Involved?

Some of the risk factors associated with various back pain management treatment include:

Complications associated with Medication 

  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Blurred vision
  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Increased appetite 
  • Fatigue 
  • Insomnia

Complications associated with surgery:

  • Infection at the site of the incision
  • Nerve damage
  • Blood clots
  • Excess bleeding
  • Complications from anaesthesia

These risk factors are very mild and usually reversible with the help of some medication. However, if the patient experiences these symptoms for a longer duration then he must see a doctor immediately.

Find Complete Relief from BLK Experts

If you think you are facing similar conditions, or have suffered from them in the past, please contact the BLK Hospital team to schedule an appointment at : +91-11-30403040

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