Back Pain Specialists

Our back pain specialists understand how debilitating back pain can be, and are committed to providing personalized care that is tailored to your unique needs. By utilizing a range of techniques, including injections, medications, and minimally invasive procedures, we address the root causes of back pain, such as herniated discs, spinal stenosis, and degenerative disc disease.

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Treatment overview and more!

Why Choose a Back Pain Specialist?

Individuals experiencing chronic back pain typically require a pain specialist who can manage their care. A back pain specialist is a medical professional with expertise in diagnosing and treating various conditions affecting the upper back, middle back, lower back, and surrounding structures.

At Pain and Spine Specialists, we conduct a comprehensive evaluation that includes a review of your medical history, a physical examination, and requests for advanced imaging if necessary. This approach allows us to create an individualized health plan that can safely and responsibly address your symptoms, helping you regain a fully functional and enjoyable life.

For additional information about our back pain specialists, including details about back pain classifications, diagnosis, and treatments, please explore the resource buttons below. If you're ready to speak with one of our board-certified pain specialists, use our contact form here or give us a call to schedule your new patient consultation.

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Chronic Back Pain Treatment Guide

At Pain and Spine Specialists, our board-certified Back Pain Specialists excel in minimally invasive treatments for back pain and other chronic pain conditions. We are committed to alleviating your pain and restoring your well-being. Don't let chronic pain hold you back.

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Back Pain Specialists

Throughout your life, you may experience back pain that comes and goes for a few days or weeks. However, when this pain persists for longer than six months, it's considered chronic back pain. This type of discomfort can occur as a symptom of an underlying condition or result from a personal injury.

The crucial first step is to accurately determine the cause of your back pain, allowing for the development of an effective treatment plan. A back pain specialist has the expertise needed to pinpoint the cause and create a tailored treatment plan for your needs.

Back pain can significantly impact your quality of life, often affecting your mobility and functionality. Whether you're experiencing lower, middle, or upper back pain, a specialist can precisely identify the location and type of symptoms you're dealing with, and develop a treatment plan to manage your symptoms effectively. At Pain and Spine Specialists, we're here to help you find relief and improve your well-being.

Back Pain Regions

Back pain isn't limited to just one location or spinal region; it can be experienced in three distinct areas: upper, middle, and lower back. Your upper back, also known as the thoracic spine, provides stability for your body and assists the rib cage in protecting your internal organs.

The middle back, part of the lower thoracic spine, also supports your torso and the organs situated below the rib cage. Meanwhile, your lower back, or lumbar spine, supports both the middle and upper back, with a complex network of ligaments and nerves allowing for flexibility in twisting and bending movements. It's important to note that pain symptoms aren't confined to just one region of the spine, which underscores the need for personalized care when addressing your specific back pain concerns.

Understanding Upper Back Pain

Although the upper back is generally resistant to injury, it's not immune to pain. Upper back pain can occur due to poor posture over an extended period or an injury.

The pain symptoms you experience might result from muscular irritation or joint dysfunction. Constant straining, tightened muscles that can't relax, and repetitive motions can lead to painful muscular irritation, while joint dysfunction can stem from natural degeneration (such as age or health conditions) or a sudden injury.

Symptoms of upper back pain include: 
  • Sharp pain 
  • Stiffness 
  • An achy/throbbing discomfort felt in the upper back  
  • Radiating pain

Upper back pain symptoms may start slowly and gradually before worsening. Sometimes pain in the upper back can have a sudden onset or may even be delayed. Each patient is different, and their pain history may determine their pain experience.

Understanding Middle Back Pain

Similar to upper back pain, when the middle back starts experiencing pain symptoms, it can have several causes. Arthritis, muscle strain, or even injury can bring the onset of pain symptoms. Some other common causes of middle back pain are a result of obesity or herniated discs.  

The lower thoracic spine (middle back) does not move as much as the lumbar spine (lower back), thus making middle back pain less common. Pain experienced in this region can also result from pain radiating from another location in the body. 

Symptoms of middle back pain include:

  • Burning sensation 
  • Redness/swelling in the back 
  • Sharp pain 
  • Muscle aches 
  • Muscle stiffness

Understanding Lower Back Pain

The most common location of back pain, the lower back (or lumbar spine) region of your body, is an intricate network of interconnecting bones, ligaments, joints, and nerves. The muscles in the lower back are responsible for rotating hips while walking and supporting the spinal column. 

Lower back pain can result from soft-tissue injury or a mechanical issue with the body. The soft-tissue injury can become very painful if a muscle becomes overstrained or even pulled. Sometimes the discs can start degenerating, or the joints can lose function.  

Lower back pain can develop suddenly and with no underlying condition or mechanical issue with the body. If there is no definitive cause for pain in the lumbar spine, treatment may focus on mitigating the pain symptoms instead of “healing” the cause. 

Symptoms of lower back pain include:

  • Muscle spasms 
  • Difficulty standing straight 
  • Stinging pain 
  • Difficulty walking 
  • Dull aching pain

Beyond the specific region that causes pain, establishing the type of back pain is critical for treatment. Identifying the type of pain experienced, your skilled back pain specialist will establish a back pain treatment plan based on your symptoms. 

Identifying Types of Back Pain

Back pain comes in many forms, and recognizing the different types can help you and your healthcare provider develop the most effective treatment plan tailored to your specific needs. As the duration and cause of back pain can vary, so too can the approach and treatment. In this overview, we'll explore six common types of back pain to better understand your symptoms and guide you towards personalized care:

Based on duration and cause, these types of back pain can vary in approach and treatment.

Acute Pain

Acute Back pain is described as pain that does not last longer than six months and can come on suddenly. Typically this pain is a direct result of an event such as surgery, dental work, or a burn. The pain will subside when the underlying cause is removed, typically with time (such as a few hours/days after dental work).  

Chronic Back Pain

Pain experienced longer than six months can be characterized as chronic back pain. The pain can be experienced even after the injury or illness has healed. The pain is ongoing and consistently felt. The nervous system remains active, sending pain signals to the brain. 

Chronic pain can be linked to arthritis, fibromyalgia, back injuries, and never pain. A difficult ramification of chronic pain is the toll it can take on your emotional and mental health. The negative impact can also increase anxiety and depression, compounding the pain sensations. 

Inflammatory Back Pain

The body’s immune system will react to injury or infection with inflammation. The pain signals encourage the natural healing mechanisms of the body to relieve the symptoms. However, excessive inflammation can be painful in itself. 

The immune system attacks the joints of the spine, which cause the pain symptoms. An effective method to diagnose inflammatory back pain is if you receive relief from NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs). Some common causes of inflammatory conditions that lead to inflammation pain are MS or rheumatoid arthritis. 

Neurogenic Back Pain

Neurogenic back pain occurs when nerves in the spinal column become compressed or irritated. This can lead to discomfort, numbness, or weakness in the lower back or extremities. Unlike other types of back pain, which might be caused by muscle strains or joint inflammation, neurogenic pain is directly related to nerve involvement in the spine.

Extension Dominant Pain 

Extension-dominant pain is a result of prolonged pressure on the spine when it is extended. This pain is primarily felt in the lower back (lumbar spine), with the back feeling stiff the same way each time. You may experience pain after high-impact activities or even leg pain.

Flexion Dominant Pain

More often than not, this type of pain is related to injury to the discs. Pain and symptoms develop in a trackable pattern, such as when sitting, bending, or lifting. This type of spinal pain can also lead to a loss of range of motion.

The Importance of Finding A Back Specialist

Regardless of the type of chronic back pain you are experiencing, skilled back specialists need to examine and diagnose your condition correctly. With an accurate diagnosis, a back pain specialist will be able to establish the type of back pain and its classification.

Back Pain Classifications

Back pain classifications can be identified as axial, referred, and radicular. How you describe your pain and the pain distribution determines back pain classifications.

Axial Pain

This type of pain is confined to a specific region or a particular spot where the pain originates. This type of pain is mechanical and is experienced as sharp, dull, or throbbing.  

Referred Pain

This type of pain is characterized as achy that moves around to other areas. The intensity can vary and can affect other parts of your body. At Pain and Spine Specialists, our referred back pain specialists can help pinpoint the cause of your discomfort, ensuring that you receive personalized care tailored to your specific needs.

Radicular Pain

This type of pain is felt as a searing sensation because the pain follows the path of the spinal nerve sending the pain signal. Typically caused by compression or inflammation on the spinal nerve root, the pain can travel down specific spinal canals.  

If you're experiencing radicular back pain, it's essential to remember that your needs for pain management will be unique. To ensure the best possible care, we recommend finding a skilled back pain management clinic like ours that can accurately diagnose and treat your chronic back pain with personalized attention tailored to your specific situation.

Comprehensive Back Pain Treatments at Pain and Spine Spine Specialists

When your day-to-day life is physically limited due to chronic back pain, you may become frustrated when trying to find relief. Living with chronic back pain can be challenging, but finding the right treatment combination can significantly improve the quality of your life. At Pain and Spine Specialists, we offer various in the back pain treatment that can significantly improve the quality of your life. These treatments include:

  • Medication Management
  • Advanced Interventional Procedures 
  • Injection Therapies
  • Alternative/Holistic Therapy

A skilled pain management specialist will be able to determine which combination of therapy is appropriate for you.

Medication Management Programs

Many patients suffering from chronic back pain may not find relief from over-the-counter medicines and may require a prescription for something different. The types of medications that a physician may prescribe are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), muscle relaxants, and opioids. A skilled back and pain specialist will decide which approach is best if prescription medication is prescribed.  

Intrathecal Pain Pump: 

In some cases, an Intrathecal Pain Pump may be recommended to help improve medication delivery, reduced side-effects, and increase dosage control. It works by delivering pain medication directly to the spinal cord through an implanted device.

Advanced Interventional Procedures

Our back pain doctors use state-of-the-art technology and techniques to address the underlying causes of pain with precision and minimal disruption to surrounding tissues.

These advanced interventional procedures often serve as an alternative to more invasive surgical options, offering quicker recovery times and reduced risk of complications. By focusing on the source of pain and employing innovative approaches to alleviate discomfort, these treatments can significantly improve your quality of life and promote long-term pain management solutions. Here are the procedures we offer:

  • Spinal Cord Stimulation: A minimally invasive procedure that uses electrical impulses to block pain signals from reaching the brain.
  • Intrathecal Pain Pump: A device implanted under the skin that delivers pain medication directly to the spinal cord.
  • The Minuteman: A fusion system designed to stabilize the spine and alleviate lower back pain.
  • Minimally Invasive Lumbar Decompression (MILD): A procedure that removes excess tissue in the spinal canal, reducing pressure on nerves.
  • Aurora Zip Lumbar Fusion: A minimally invasive lumbar fusion technique that stabilizes the spine and reduces pain.
  • Vertiflex: A procedure that inserts a small spacer to relieve pressure on spinal nerves.
  • Sacroiliac Joint Fusion: A surgical procedure that fuses the sacroiliac joint to reduce pain and instability.
  • The Intracept Procedure: A treatment that targets the basivertebral nerve to alleviate chronic low back pain.

  • Targeted Injection Therapies

    As you seek relief from your back pain, consider the benefits of medicated injections tailored to your specific needs. Injection therapy offers an ideal alternative if you prefer not to rely on prescription medications. By targeting the exact location of your pain, these injections deliver medication precisely where it's needed, providing effective and long-lasting relief. With the potential for months or even years of comfort, you can confidently return to enjoying your day-to-day activities without the limitations imposed by back pain.

  • Lysis of Adhesions: A procedure that breaks up scar tissue in the epidural space of the spine.
  • Trigger Point Injections: Injections that target muscle knots and relieve pain.
  • Radiofrequency Ablation: A treatment that uses heat to disrupt nerve function and reduce pain.
  • Epidural Steroid Injection: An injection that delivers anti-inflammatory medication to the epidural space, providing pain relief.
  • Sacroiliac Joint Injections: Injections that relieve pain in the sacroiliac joint by reducing inflammation.
  • Lumbar Sympathetic Block: An injection that blocks pain signals in the lower back, offering relief.

  • Alternative Therapy for Chronic Pain

    Exploring alternative pain management therapies can offer a holistic approach to your well-being, whether used independently or in conjunction with conventional treatments. By incorporating options such as acupuncture, infrared light, and lymphatic enhancement into your treatment plan, you can benefit from diverse methods of relief. These alternative therapies offer a non-opioid and non-pharmacological options to ensure a comprehensive approach to managing your chronic back pain:

    • Acupuncture: A traditional Chinese medicine practice that involves inserting thin needles into specific points on the body to alleviate pain.
    • Infrared Sauna: A therapy that uses infrared light to penetrate the body and promote relaxation, detoxification, and pain relief.
    • Amethyst Biomat: A therapeutic mat that combines far-infrared rays, negative ions, and amethyst crystals to promote relaxation and healing.
    • Lymphatic Enhancement: A gentle treatment that stimulates the lymphatic system to reduce inflammation and promote overall wellness.
    • Photobiomodulation: A low level laser therapy that reduces inflammation and promotes healing.

    Find the Right Treatment for You

    As you seek the most effective relief for your back pain, it's essential to explore the latest and most innovative therapy options. Finding a comprehensive pain management practice with treatments tailored to your needs is crucial in restoring functionality and achieving a higher quality of life.

    To learn more about how our chronic back pain treatments can enhance your quality of life, please call Pain and Spine Specialists. Our dedicated team is here to guide you on your journey toward lasting comfort and well-being.