Chronic Back Pain Essay

1151 words - 5 pages

Definition of the condition:
Chronic Pain is described as a long lasting pain that people experience beyond a normal healing time (Hasenbring, Rusu & Turk, 2012). This time is usually up to three or six months prior to an incident (Hasenbring, Rusu & Turk, 2012). Chronic back pain can include common diagnosis of muscle spasms, back strain, or myofasical syndrome (Weiner & Nordin, 2010). There are three different types of chronic back pain; simple musculoskeletal back pain, spinal nerve root pain and serious spinal pathology (Jackson & Simpson, 2006). (Hasenbring, 2012)
Causes/ aetiology:
There is suggested evidence that a number of anatomical structures such as, bones, intervertebral discs, muscles, ligaments, joints and neural structures cause back pain (Hoy, Brooks, Blyth & Buchbinder, 2010). Degenerative Disc Disease (DDD) is a condition that is believed to cause chronic back pain (Weiner & Nordin, 2010). It occurs when there is an extrusion of disc material into the surrounding tissue (Weiner & Nordin, 2010). It is also suggested that abnormal stress of the ligaments, muscles and mechanoreceptors contribute to back pain (Weiner & Nordin, 2010). The main cause of chronic back pain has not been identified, but there are many suggested issues that are believed to contribute to chronic back pain.
Simple musculoskeletal back pain has symptoms of pain in the lumbrasacral area of the back (Jackson & Simpson, 2006). The upper thighs and knees are also known to be affected (Jackson & Simpson, 2006). This pain is usually described as a dull pain (Jackson & Simpson, 2006). Spinal nerve root pain is localised down the leg, and usually continues below the knee and into the feet (Jackson & Simpson, 2006). It has been described as a sharp, electric shock through the leg (Jackson & Simpson, 2006).
Medical investigations for diagnosis and injury progression:
To prevent chronic back pain, medical investigations and clinical evaluation is necessary to provide the best treatment (Weiner & Nordin, 2010). To investigate the signs of nerve root damage, the femoral stretch test and straight leg raise test is used to diagnose spinal nerve root back pain (Jackson & Simpson, 2006). These neurological tests help to reveal whether there are sensory, motor or reflex abnormalities in the body (Jackson & Simpson, 2006). If there is a suspicion of serious spinal pathology, investigations need to be assigned to eliminate the possibilities of infection, inflammation or tumours (Jackson & Simpson, 2006).
Medical and other treatments:
The main goal for treating chronic back pain is to get rid of the pain (Weiner & Nordin, 2010) and increase physical and social functions of the body (Jackson & Simpson, 2006). There are different ways of treating chronic back pain, which includes medication, physical therapies, interventional treatment, spinal cord stimulation, acupuncture or surgery, depending on the severity of pain that is experienced (Jackson &...

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