Adults suffering from severe or persistent back pain benefit from visiting board-certified physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist George Drakes, MD, and his team at Metro Spine PC. The practice has offices in Clinton and Oxon Hill, Maryland, providing expert care for the full range of spinal problems, including herniated discs, sciatica, and spinal stenosis. Call your nearest Metro Spine PC office today or schedule a consultation online for effective, nonsurgical back pain treatment.
Common causes of back pain include:
With age and wear, the discs between your vertebrae (spinal bones) dry out and flatten.
Herniation, where the soft interior of the disc pushes through its tough outer layer, can be caused by degenerative disc disease. Acute injuries can also cause discs to rupture.
Arthritis affects the facet joints that link your vertebrae. Inflammation develops, bone spurs can grow, and ligaments can thicken. Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are the leading forms of arthritis that affect the spine.
These conditions cause spinal stenosis — narrowing of the spinal canal. Nerves leaving the spinal cord to extend throughout the body come under pressure, causing pain and symptoms like numbness, tingling, and weakness (radiculopathy).
Back pain can also be caused by injuries like muscle damage and sprains, poor posture, and spinal abnormalities. Osteoporosis, where the bones lose density, can cause vertebral compression fractures that distort the spine. Some people suffer from failed back surgery syndrome after spinal surgery.
Metro Spine PC’s experienced pain management specialists diagnose back pain by taking your medical history, discussing your symptoms, and completing a physical exam. They’ll probably ask you to make specific movements during your exam.
These investigations usually suggest a diagnosis. Your doctor confirms this using diagnostic imaging like X-rays or a CT scan. They also assess the extent of any damage to ensure you get the best treatment.
The Metro Spine PC team offers front-line back pain treatments, including physical therapy and medication. Avoiding activities that make your pain worse is also necessary. But complete immobility is inadvisable as it can make things worse.
If these treatments fail to improve your condition, you might require an image-guided procedure like an epidural steroid or facet joint injection. These injections deliver long-acting anti-inflammatory steroids and a local anesthetic to the seat of your pain. Nerve blocks are similar but act on specific nerves, like the medial branch.
Restorative medicine treatments are also available at Metro Spine PC. These include platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections containing natural cells that boost healing and tissue growth.
You might require an advanced procedure if you still have intolerable back pain. Radiofrequency ablation destroys pain nerves in your spine. Spinal cord stimulation uses mild electrical currents to prevent pain messages from reaching your brain.