Back Pain


  • Backache
  • Back Strain
  • Lower Back Pain

Principal Proposed Natural Treatments

Other Proposed Natural Treatments

Low back pain is one of the most common health conditions today. According to some estimates, each year nearly 15% to 20% of the United States population experiences low back problems, and as many as 80% of all adults experience significant low back pain at some point during their lives. 1,2 Back pain is the second most common reason adults under age 45 miss days from work (after the common cold). The total cost of back pain has been estimated to reach $25 billion per year in the US. 3When back pain occurs suddenly (after lifting a heavy object, for example), it is called acute back pain or sprain. In most cases, acute back pain eventually improves by itself, but there may be weeks of discomfort, time lost from work, and impaired function at home. When back pain persists over months or years, it is called chronic back pain. In the majority of cases, the cause of chronic back pain is unknown. Identifiable causes include osteoarthritis , fracture, or injury to the discs between the vertebrae. Conventional treatment of acute back pain involves anti-inflammatory drugs , muscle relaxants, and the passage of time. Chronic back pain requires a medical workup to make sure there are no serious underlying causes, although evidence suggests that, in most cases, x-rays are not necessary. 4 Treatment may also include physical therapy and a graded exercise program. However, there is little reliable evidence that these treatments actually provide much benefit. 64,65 Surgery may be recommended in certain cases, such as when there are severe disc problems, but most forms of back surgery also lack reliable supporting evidence.

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