Though, Statistics shows 65% of the patients visiting Orthopedic
OPDs (Out Patient Departments) complain of Backache.
So, what is Backache or Low Back Pain?
Low Back Pain or Lumbago is mild to severe pain or discomfort in the area of
lower back. It is a common Musculo-skeletal disorder affecting 40% of the
world’s population. Pain can be acute (sudden or severe) or chronic (if it has
lasted for more than 3 months). Often occurs in younger people whose work
involves physical effort and is not uncommon in people of retirement age group.
Lower Back consists of the Vertebrae, Spine Muscles and the ligaments. The
spine contains intervertebral discs, a kind of cushion made of cartilage that
fits between the two vertebrae. Injury or disease of the muscles, ligaments or
discs of the lower back can cause back pain.
Risk Factors for Low Back Pain:
1) Sedentary life style
3) Poor posture while sitting & standing
4) Weak back & abdominal muscles
Causes of Low Back Pain:
Back Pain is a symptom. Most back pain is Musculo-skeletal in origin. Pain
arising from other organs may also be felt in the back. This pain is called
Referred Pain. Common causes of Low Back Pain include:
a) Lumbar Strain
b) Nerve Irritation
c) Disc Prolapse
d) Vitamin D deficiency
e) Vertebral fractures caused by osteoporosis
f) Spinal stenosis
h) Other conditions such as Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis
Many Intra-abdominal disorders such as – Appendicitis, Aneurysms, Kidney
diseases, Bladder infections, Pelvic infections & ovarian disorders can
cause pain referred to the back.
Low Back Pain may present after exercise or activities involving Lifting,
Twisting or Forward bending movements. Description of symptom may range from
localised to diffuse pain & may or may not worsen with particular movements
such as sitting, standing or raising a leg. Pain may radiate down to the legs
Five Danger Signs which require Immediate
1) Unable to control your bowel or bladder movements
2) Area of the lower back or legs suddenly turns numb or weak
3) Any accident with forces that may have been sufficient to
fracture your spine
4) Low Back pain that is bothering you for more than 6 weeks
5) Low Back Pain which is severe & not improving or actually
All Patients with Low Back Pain are not the same. Each one should be
properly examined and evaluated before the commencement of treatment.
Approximately 90% of cases can be tackled by taking appropriate preventive
Ways to Prevent Low Back Pain:
1) Do regular back strengthening exercises
2) Practice Good posture while sitting & standing
3) Quit Smoking
4) Obese people- Try to shed some pounds!!!
5) Maintain healthy diet
6) Lift with your knees, Keep the object close to your body
& do not twist while lifting