HCA Neighborhood Health Watch – Treating Acute Lower Back Pain

HCA Neighborhood Health Watch – Treating Acute Lower Back Pain


– [Commentator] Neighborhood Health Watch is sponsored by the
doctors of HCA Virginia. – Today in Neighborhood Health Watch acute low back pain, the number two reason people call a doctor. It’s second only to cold and flu and almost everyone
will have some back pain at some point in their life. This pain and discomfort can
occur anywhere in your back but it’s most common in the lower back, and that’s because the lower back supports most of your body weight. Now here with some words of relief today is Dr. Adam Crowl. And Dr. Crowl is with
Herico Doctors’ Hospital, the orthopedic hospital
at the Parham campus. We were hoping to see some pictures of people suffering with
back pain. (laughing) (Dr. Crowl laughing) But that didn’t happen today. But tell us what some of
the common causes are. – Most causes of acute back
pain are generally self limited but usually related to strain injuries of either the disc or the small ligaments or muscle attachments from the bone out to the sides of the spine. Most of the time they’ll resolve in a course of one to two weeks. Usually if people self restrict some of the activity that hurts, utilize a brief period of bed rest, and utilize some over the
counter anti-inflammatories, it’ll start to resolve
for them pretty quickly. – And the brief period of bed rest, that’s important because
contrary to common belief, if you rest too much
it’s counter productive. – Yes Ma’am absolutely, that thinking has changed considerably
over the last few decades. So now we recommend
really only 24 to 36 hours of bed rest before actually
we call it active recovery, getting up and starting to move again. – Is that pain dangerous? – It can be. Most of the time it is not and especially when the pain is limited to either the center of your
back or just off to the side. When pain starts to radiate
way down into the legs, towards your ankle and
starts to make it weak, that can potentially start to
be a more serious condition. – When should a person
have an MRI or surgery? – As far as getting the MRI, in most acute issues of low back pain, usually MRI does not provide
additional helpful information other than your physical exam. However, if people start
having weakness down the leg, numbness and tingling in both legs, then MRI becomes more important to determine whether or not there is significant neurologic compression. – And quickly, the best treatment options, exercise or… – Exercise, prevention is the biggest one. Maintaining good body
mechanics with lifting, bend with your hips and your
knees and not your back. Everybody talks about
their core being strong and that is actually really important, and if we can maintain those, we can actually keep
ourselves out of the hospital. – Alright, Dr. Crowl, thank
you so much for joining us on First at Four
– Absolutely

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