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Some 80 percent of Americans will experience back pain at some point. Fortunately, in most cases, the pain is resolved through at-home therapies that include rest, hot or cold packs and over-the-counter pain medications such as aspirin, acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

Most of the time, back pain does not require surgery. Back pain can be acute or chronic. Acute back pain--pain that begins quickly and lasts for less than six weeks-- is the most common form of back pain and is often brought on by accidents or injuries. Acute back pain usually gets better without treatment and is not normally treated with surgery. Chronic back pain lasts for more than three months and, depending on the cause, may be treated non-surgically or surgically.

Persons suffering even mild back pain should consult a doctor if they have:

  • Numbness or tingling
  • Severe pain that does not improve with rest
  • Pain after a fall or an injury
  • Pain plus any of these problems: trouble urinating, weakness, numbness in the legs, fever or unexplained weight loss.




All too often we hear from persons who have suffered, sometimes for months or years, with chronic or debilitating back pain. Sometimes their pain is the result of a trauma; other times, the cause is conditions that affect the spine or muscles and joints supporting the spine. Often, people delay seeking medical treatment because they fear surgery.  It is true that some people require surgery to address their pain, in many cases, persons can achieve total or near-total pain relief with new non-surgical treatments.

Whatever your situation, The Spine Center is here to help. We understand that no matter what your level of pain, you want to return to being pain-free with as little medical intervention as possible.  We offer expert diagnostics to determine the exact nature of your condition, and we have specialists to resolve your pain.

It is important to remember that back pain is a symptom, not a diagnosis, of a medical condition and may be caused by problems that include:

  • Mechanical problems with the spine. Conditions include intervertebral disc degeneration, spasms, muscle tension and herniated/ruptured discs.
  • Injuries such as sprains and fractures may be caused by accidents or by twisting or lifting improperly.
  • Diseases such as scoliosis, spondylolisthesis, spinal stenosis and arthritis. In addition, pregnancy, endometriosis, kidney stones and fibromyalgia can cause back pain.
  • Although uncommon, infections, such as osteomyelitis or discitis, and tumors can cause back pain.

A thorough examination combined, as needed, with tests such as x-rays, MRI and CT scans, can help your doctor diagnose the cause of your back pain.



Depending on diagnosis, most back pain is treated initially with non-surgical options. These options range from hot or cold packs, exercise and medications to traction, braces, injections and alternative treatments (such as manipulation, acupuncture and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation). However, if these methods fail, or if you are in constant pain that interferes with your ability to sleep or function normally, you may be a candidate for surgery.

The Spine Center can diagnose your condition and recommend the appropriate treatment options.  Surgical treatment options include:

  • Laminectomy/Discectomy
  • Microdiscectomy
  • Laser Surgery
  • Spinal Fusion
  • Vertebroplasty
  • Kyphoplasty
  • Hardware Revision