Low Back Pain Warana

August 15, 2011

Low back pain affects up to 85% of the population at some time in their lives. Most people (90%) will improve over 1-3 months depending on the severity of injury, but a large percentage of sufferers (50%) will have recurrent episodes. For this reason it is important to seek treatment for low back pain so that predisposing factors can be addressed and the chance of recurrence lessened.
Many structures in the low back can cause pain, including discs, facet joints, ligaments, muscles and nerves. Often several of these structures will be involved rather that one in isolation.

Signs and symptoms
Low back pain may present centrally or on either side of the lumbar spine. Other common areas of pain referred from the low back are the buttocks, hip, groin, thigh and, less commonly, even as far down as the knee and ankle (see referred pain blog). In addition to pain, low back problems can irritate nerves as they exit the spine, resulting in pins & needles, weakness or numbness in the legs. If you experience any of these symptoms you should see your physiotherapist immediately.

Treatment options
A variety of treatment options are used by physiotherapists to treat low back pain. Manual therapy can be used to restore normal movement to the lumbar vertebrae. Soft tissue therapy is often used to relax muscles that are in spasm. In addition, exercise therapy is commonly used to improve core strength, which improves the stability of the spine and prevents recurrence.