Just about everybody experiences lower back pain at one time or another. There are some instances where the pain is severe but goes away after a while, and others where the discomfort is so intense you can’t perform even the simplest everyday tasks. Here is some information regarding when your problem can be treated through conventional means and when you might need spinal surgery.
Talking to Your Doctor
The vast majority of people suffering from back discomfort will not need spinal surgery. They can typically be treated with anti-inflammatories or other medications, or possibly with physical therapy. Talk to your primary care physician first, and he or she will perform a thorough examination.
In most cases, lower back pain will improve to the point to where a person will gradually be able to resume normal activities. Regular stretching, good posture and exercise can not only go a long way toward clearing up most back problems, but they can also help prevent those problems from returning.
What Makes Me a Candidate for Spinal Surgery?
If your back pain becomes so debilitating that it is beginning to affect your quality of life, you may consider having spinal surgery. Your surgeon will have a detailed talk with you and go over all of your options, providing both the pros and cons of the surgery to help you make the best possible decision.
Spinal surgery can help correct anatomical issues that lead to either pinching of nerves in the spine or instability of the spine. The surgeon will perform imaging tests, such as an MRI or a CT scan, and will recommend a course of action depending on the results.
It is very important to note that there are several different types of surgery, with some being much less invasive than others. For example, a microdiscectomy is a minimally invasive procedure that results in a much faster recovery time than a more involved procedure such as spinal fusion surgery.
Talk to Us About Spinal Surgery
The professionals with Regional Orthopedics have a great deal of experience in successfully treating a wide range of back problems. While we will always pursue conservative treatment methods first, we have the skill and knowledge necessary to perform spinal surgery if needed. When you come into our office, we will take the time to provide a thorough examination and then clearly communicate all of your treatment options.
Two of our minimally invasive procedures that do not involve surgery are injections and radiofrequency ablation. An epidural steroid injection can relieve pain caused by spinal nerve inflammation by delivering medicine directly to the spinal nerve. In many instances, pain is reduced or eliminated for years. Radiofrequency ablation, which uses pulses of energy to disrupt the nerves that carry pain signals, requires only a local anesthetic.
If you would like to learn about our approach to spinal surgery or the other treatments we offer for back pain, contact Regional Orthopedics online or give us a call at 718.477.5479.