Common Medical Questions
There are many conditions that cause back pain. Some of these are congenital, such as scoliosis, but often back pain results from an injury or trauma. Common, but not all causes of back pain include muscle strain, bulging or herniated disc, degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis, sciatica or pinched nerve and sacroiliac joint inflammation.
Chronic pain is used to describe any number of illnesses that result in pain felt in the neck, shoulder or back regions of the body. Pain is usually temporary and can flare up at any time without any specific action. It is usually due to an underlying injury to the joints in the neck or back.
Spinal stenosis is the narrowing of the spinal canal. The narrowing puts pressure on the nerves causing leg and lower back pain. The pain can worsen with standing or walking. Sitting, steroid injections, and therapy can provide relief. If pain continues, some of the bone in the spinal canal can be removed for additional relief.
A herniated/bulging disc, sometimes referred to as a slipped disc, occurs when a portion of the intervertebral disc bulges out into the neural canal. This puts pressure on the spinal cord and nerve roots causing pain, numbness, or tingling in the arms or legs.
Inflammation in the sacroiliac (SI) joint can cause pain in the lower back and buttocks. The pain often radiates into the leg. SI joint pain responds well to nonsteroidal medications and physical therapy. Injections into the joint space may be necessary at times to completely alleviate pain and dysfunction.
Degenerative disk disease is a general term applied to back pain that has lasted for more than three months. It is caused by degenerative changes in the intervertebral discs.
What to Expect During Your First Evaluation Visit
The initial appointment generally lasts 30 to 60 minutes. If we need to take x-rays, the total visit time can take longer.
The doctor or physician assistant (PA) will review all of your medical history and if available, any previous medical records. You will be asked a series of questions and will be examined. A care plan will be established between you and the doctor or PA. A follow up appointment will be scheduled at check out. Your care plan will be monitored and adjusted as necessary.
The diseases and injuries treated in our center can be very complex, and most patients have seen a number of doctors related to their back and neck troubles. In order for the doctor or PA to provide you with the best care, they request as complete a history as obtainable from your medical records. The information collected assists the doctor in making your first visit as productive as possible.
All of the forms are available on this website. Please print, complete and bring the following with you to your appointment. If you are unable to print and complete them prior to your appointment, then please arrive 30 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment so you have adequate time to complete all necessary paperwork.