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Getting an accurate back pain diagnosis can greatly improve your lifestyle and help you move on
to treatment of back pain. When your back pain has exceeded three months, it is termed chronic,
and this means that it is not responding to basic treatments such as rest, anti-inflammatory
medications and heat and there must be a problem that needs addressing. The positive message
about the term "chronic" is that it has a possible cure. Conditions such as diabetes, heart disease
and MS are not termed chronic, but can only be managed, but not cured.
See a Physician for Back Pain Diagnosis
A qualified physician can order tests to help in a back pain diagnosis that will show with a visual
such as an x-ray, CT scan or MRI what the problem may be. In addition, he or she will listen to
your symptoms and prescribe treatments, exercises and medications to reduce your pain. Several
organizations will offer homeopathic and holistic relief, yet without the proper diagnosis, the root
cause may not be addressed. A clinical diagnosis looks at the skeletal system and all of the
biological factors involved ruling out any other factors that may be contributing to the pain,
including heart disease, osteoporosis and even an infection. Blood and urine tests may be
ordered if the patient has a fever or other symptoms that indicate something more than skeletal or
muscular. Your range of motion in the back and nerve sensitivity will be tested as well. This
complete physical exam will likely reveal what is causing the pain.
Possible Back Pain Diagnoses
Muscle strain of the back is the most common pain diagnosis, and can be caused by overuse or
sudden twisting brought about in athletic activity or in a fall. And when abdominal muscles are
weak, they do not support the back, and injury is possible. Often, the pain can be related to the
spine itself and the discs between the vertebrae. Several medical terminologies describe a
problem in the back disc - the cushion between the vertebrae of the back. A ruptured disc, slipped
disc, bulging disc, herniated disc, disc tear, collapsed disc, disc protrusion and black disc all
describe basically the same thing - when damage to a disc presses it onto a nerve and therefore
causes pain. Muscle weakness can also cause pain when a nerve is pinched. Disc degeneration,
however, is when the disc itself deteriorates and is the source of pain.
Spinal compression fractures caused by osteoporosis are a common problem found in the elderly.
When bones of an individual over the age of 60 are brittle, a slight miss-step, a fall or even
coughing or sneezing can bring on the fractures. The tiny fractures may eventually accumulate
and cause a vertebra to collapse, eventually causing pain. Other pain diagnoses exist, but the
above are the most common.
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