Back pain affects 80% of Americans at some time in their lives.
There are many conditions that can cause back pain. Some of these are congenital, such as scoliosis. Most causes of back pain, however, result from injury or trauma. Common causes of back pain include:
Ruptured, Bulging or Herniated Disc
Degenerative Disc Disease
Spinal Stenosis (narrowing of the spinal canal)
Sciatica or Pinched Nerve
Sacroiliac Joint Inflammation
Small fractures to the spine from osteoporosis
Muscle spasm (very tense muscles that remain contracted)
Poor alignment of the vertebrae
Strain or tears to the muscles or ligaments supporting the back
Spine curvatures (like scoliosis or kyphosis)
Other medical conditions like fibromyalgia
You are at particular risk for low back pain if you:
Work in construction or another job requiring heavy lifting, bending and twisting
Work in a job with whole body vibration (like truck driving or using a sandblaster)
Have bad posture
Are over age 30
Smoke, don't exercise, or are overweight
Have arthritis or osteoporosis
Have a low pain threshold
Feel stressed or depressed
myelogram (an x-ray or CT scan of the spine after dye has been injected)
CT of the lower spine
MRI of the lower spine.
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