What’s in the back?
The back, also known as the dorsal region, is one of the most remarkable regions of the body. It is the area opposite the chest, and is bound by the shoulders and neck down to the buttocks. It contains a complex arrangement of bones, muscles, and nerves that allow humans to stand up straight and move about. The back is primarily defined by the spinal column, a series of vertebrae supporting the skull, enclosing the spinal cord. The back also contains several major muscles that allow a range of motions such as bending, as well as nerves that stem out from the spinal cord to innervate the limbs and the torso.
What is back pain?
Due to the range of motion and function of the back, all the tissues found therein could be irritated, worn down, and injured, thus bringing about back pain. Back pains are persistent discomfort felt by patients in the dorsal area. The back generally covers a large area, thus the pain may manifest only in certain sections such as the lower back or upper back, on specific spots such as somewhere along the spine, but in some cases does so on the entire region. The pain may be sharp or dull, of varying severity, and may be accompanied by tingling and numbness, as well as difficulty in standing straight, or sitting for long periods of time.
What causes back pain?
There are many possible reasons for the occurrence of back pain. It may be an acute discomfort brought about by simple reasons such as incorrect sitting or sleeping positions, but may also be chronic, caused by more serious illnesses. Some of the possible causes are:
- Muscle strain
- Spinal arthritis
- Spinal cord injury
- Disc degeneration
- Spinal abnormalities (e.g. scoliosis)
- Ankylosing Spondylitis
- Back trauma
- Bad posture
- Kidney problem
What is a back specialist?
Pain is often a symptomatic discomfort, indicating an illness or injury, thus patients who experience persistent back pains are advised to see their back specialists. Back specialists are physicians who focus on the diagnosis, evaluation, treatment, and rehabilitation of back problems. Their practice is about helping patients get to the bottom of their back pain and recommend appropriate short and long-term solutions for individual conditions. They may be from different specializations such as chiropractors, neurologists, osteopathic physicians, surgeons, and physical therapists, all of whom have had special training for back pain management.
What can a back specialist do for you?
As common as back pain is, the vastness of the back area and the structures found there makes it difficult for general physicians to deal with the pain and treat its underlying causes in more chronic cases. Back specialists are therefore helpful in cases when diagnosis or treatment of back pain is already beyond general practice. There are also treatment procedures which require extensive experience as well as specialized trainings, and thus can only be done by back specialists. An example of this is would be spinal nerve blocks and decompression therapies. Care for back pain usually begins with diagnosis, where patients’ conditions are comprehensively evaluated, with back specialists employing physical, chemical, and medical imaging tests for an in depth understanding of the underlying causes, for determining the degree of damage. This is then followed by recommending individualized treatments, involving measures for pain relief, and to rehabilitate injured, strained, or inflamed tissue. Treatment may also involve preventive measure to avoid further injury or to retard spinal degeneration. Depending on your back specialists’ training, he or she may be able to provide you the following services:
- Pain medications prescriptions
- Chiropractic care
- Bioelectric therapy
- Nerve blocks
- Spinal stimulation
- Spinal decompression therapy
- Physical therapy
Where do you find a good back specialist?
Are you having difficulty living life because of your back problems? Dr. Kevin Li, MD, a physician specializing in advanced spine care and pain management, may be the back specialist in Los Angeles that you need. Having received excellent training in anesthesiology and spine care, as well as more than a decade of intensive pain management experience, he could give you the best diagnosis, as well as treatment for back pain tailored to your specific needs. Dr. Li believes in non-invasive therapy and holistic treatment approach, so you’ll be sure to get treated as a whole. Why don’t you give his clinic a call today at (626) 538 – 8950 for an appointment? Back pain doesn’t always have to hold you back.