Lower back pain (also known as lumbago) is a fairly common condition, affecting as many as 40 percent of the population at some point, with the onset most commonly occurring between the ages of 20 and 40. It affects the bones and muscles of the lower spine, and can range in duration and severity from:
Acute (fairly sudden onset of pain lasting less than 6 weeks)
Sub-chronic (lasting 6 to 12 weeks)
Chronic (lasting at least 12 weeks or longer)
In addition to duration, cases of lower back discomfort can also be categorized by the source or underlying cause of the pain. If you or a loved one is experiencing lower back pain, get in touch with Dr. Susan Baker in Los Angeles today at (310) 274-7770. By scheduling a consultation with Dr. Baker, you can determine the right options for relief from lumbago.
Lower back pain usually stems from three main sources: mechanical, non-mechanical, and referred pain.
Mechanical low back pain refers to injuries and pain caused by muscle or joint strains, or damage and injury to the intervertebral discs that provide stability and alignment to the spinal column. Other possible sources of mechanical lumbago include :
- Muscle spams
- Herniated disc
- Spinal stenosis
- Compression fractures
However, there are a number of possible underlying conditions that can trigger or exacerbate lumbago, including:
- Obesity and smoking
- Sleep disruptions
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Secondary tumors from bone, lung, breast, or ovarian cancer
Referred pain occurs when the pain is felt at a different location than where the stimulus causing the pain originates.
Read more about common causes at medlineplus.gov.
The intensity and severity of back pain will vary from patient to patient depending on the source of the pain, and the overall health and lifestyle profile of the patient. The onset of pain can result from motions such as lifting, forward bending, or twisting motions, and involve mild, moderate or severe tenderness or diffuse pain.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Because no two cases of lumbago and the underlying conditions that cause it will be exactly alike, it is important for patients suffering from acute or chronic lumbago that does not respond to conservative treatments to seek medical attention from a specialist. Los Angeles rheumatologist Dr. Susan Baker provides detailed screening and diagnostic methods to determine the source of discomfort in order to find an appropriate course of treatment for each patient.
Testing for lumbago typically ranges from a physical exam and detailed medical history, to diagnostic imaging tests, like X-ray and MRI.
Contact a Lower Back Pain Specialist in Los Angeles
Lumbago can interfere with day-to- day activities and disrupt overall quality of life. Contact Dr. Baker in Los Angeles today at (310) 274-7770 to schedule a consultation to discuss your options for relief from low back pain.
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