Chronic Back Pain – Orthopedic McKinney

by Administrator 27. June 2017 06:11

The back provides support to the upper part of the body and helps to carry out all the bending and twisting movements. It is made up of several vertebral columns stacked over each other and supported by muscles and ligaments.  Injury to these soft tissues may result in immense pain and discomfort. If the symptoms continue for over three months, the conditions is termed as Chronic Back Pain and may require extensive treatment.

Causes:

  • Muscle strains or sprains
  • Improper lifting of a heavy object
  • A sudden fall that puts pressure on the back
  • Poor posture
  • Sports injuries
  • Awkward gait
  • Bending down for long periods
  • Straining the neck forward, such as when driving or using a computer
  • Long driving sessions without a break

Risk Factors:

  • Stressful job
  • Pregnancy 
  • A sedentary lifestyle
  • Growing age
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Strenuous physical exercise

Symptoms

  • Elevated body temperature
  • Inflammation on the back
  • Persistent back pain
  • Pain down the legs and knees
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Lost control over bowel movements
  • Numbness around the genitals and buttocks

Diagnosis:

After conducting a thorough physical test, the doctor may ask the patient to undergo several other tests such as –

  • X-rays
  • Blood test
  • Urine tests
  • Spinal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
  • Computed tomography (CT) scan
  • Nerve conduction studies and electromyography to determine nerve or muscle injury
  • Bone scan

Treatment

Non-Surgical Treatment

  • Muscle relaxants and painkillers may be recommended
  • Patients may be asked to wear back braces to provide support to the spine
  • The doctor may ask the patient to apply hot and cold packs alternatively after some time period
  • Patients may be advised to avoid activities that aggravate the pain
  • Exercises may also be recommend to regain the muscle strength

Surgical Treatment

If the back pain is due to some other underlying condition a surgery may be recommend

  • Fusion – A bone graft may be used to join two vertebrae together. They may be supported with metal plates or screws.
  • Artificial disk – A metal plate may be inserted between two vertebrae to replace the damaged disk.
  • Discectomy – If portion of a disc presses against the nerve and causes irritation, the surgeon may remove it.

Consult Dr. Burg for complete treatment of Chronic Back Pain. To schedule an appointment with the spine specialist, visit 7300 Eldorado Parkway, Suites 165/165A, McKinney, Texas 75070.

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Tips To Prevent Back Pain: Orthopedic McKinney

by Administrator 21. April 2014 08:29

Back pain is one of the most common reasons why people visit a doctor. About 4 in every 5 people suffer from back problems. Ranging from a dull ache in the lower part to sharp sensations of pain overall, back pain can be a deterrent to daily activities. Though there are many reasons for its occurrence, common reasons for back pain include sprains, fractures, injuries, and hereditary factors. However, few precautions and you can prevent back pain. Most forms of back pain are curable without surgery.

Read on to know some common tips to prevent back pain:

  • Contrary to popular belief, it is not rest but regular exercise that can help alleviate problems of the back. Exercises help in easing out muscle tension and inflammation, thereby providing relief from back pain. Rest can help for a few days but prolonged periods of rest could actually aggravate the problem than heal it.
  • Uncontrolled weight gain can also put undue pressure on the lower back by causing your center of gravity to shift. For this, back pain experts in McKinney recommend that your weight should be within 10 pounds of your ideal weight.
  • Smoking is another major cause of back pain. Smoking results in back pain by inhibiting the flow of blood that contains nutrients to the spinal discs. This can lead to severe back problems. So if you smoke regularly and are vulnerable to back pain and you know what needs to be done.
  • Sleeping position can also be significant with respect to back problems. For example, sleeping on the stomach can aggravate back pain. Some people prefer to sleep sideways with the knees pulled slightly close to the chest. You can consult an orthopedic surgeon to know what position works best for you and assists in reliving back pain.
  • Posture is an equally important criterion when it comes to keeping back pain at bay. Using the right kind of chair for sitting is important. Chairs with a straight back or the ones with low-back support work best. In addition, if your daily routine tasks require you to stand for prolonged periods of time, it is advisable to keep the head up while the stomach should be pulled in. This will help in preventing back pain.
  • If you suffer from back pain you should avoid lifting heavy objects. In case it is something that cannot be avoided, push rather than pull heavy objects. Pushing puts less pressure on the back and results in less problems of back pain.

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Lumbar Spinal Stenosis: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

by Administrator 17. December 2013 13:23

Lumbar spinal stenosis is a condition in which narrowing occurs in either the vertebral foramina, or the spinal canal. While the former is referred to as foraminal stenosis, the latter is described as central stenosis. The most common cause of the condition is degenerative arthritis, and it is associated with pain in the lower back and numbness or weakness in the legs. You might need to see a spine surgeon if you do not experience relief with nonsurgical methods of treatment or experience symptoms like loss of bladder or bowel function. The surgery involves a lumbar decompression with or without a lumbar fusion. Here is an overview of the causes, symptoms, and treatment of this condition:

Causes:

  • Degenerative arthritis
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Infection that leads to decreased space of the spinal canal or vertebral foramen
  • Metabolic disorders like Paget’s disease of the bone
  • Metastatic tumors or tumors of the surrounding local structures

Symptoms:

  • Low back pain
  • Pain in the legs
  • Numbness, weakness, and loss of sensation in the legs
  • The symptoms usually improve upon sitting down or leaning forward, and become worse while standing or bending backward.
  • Painful sensations can be aggravated with physical activity such as walking
  • The symptoms become worse with time
  • If left untreated, the condition can lead to loss of function in the legs, as well as loss of bladder, bowel, and sexual function.

Treatment:

It is important to see an experienced orthopedic surgeon to perform a correct diagnosis of the disease, due to its overlapping symptoms with other diseases such as vascular claudication, peripheral vascular disease, and diabetic neuropathy. The treatment options adopted for lumbar spinal include -

  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Short courses of oral cortisone medication and pain medications
  • Medications such as gabapentin and pregabalin that are directed towards nerve pain
  • Physical therapy
  • Epidural injections containing steroid (cortisone) that are injected in the lumbar spine
  • Surgery may be indicated for patients who do not respond to these conservative treatment options. The surgical procedures available for the treatment of lumbar spinal stenosis range from laminectomy to fusion procedures. 
  • The surgery is referred to as lumbar decompression surgery, and aims at removing the structures that are responsible for causing compression in the nerves of the vertebral foramen or spinal canal.

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