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Back Injuries

Back injuries can result from strenuous sporting activities, household work, or a sudden jolt such as a car accident. The lower back is most frequently the site of back injuries and severe back pain.

 

Back Strain

Medically known as a musculoligamentous strain, back strain is the most common injury of the back. It is a group term used to refer to all injuries of the lumbar spine's soft tissue, which includes the muscles, nerves, ligaments, tendons and blood vessels which surround the spine.

Back strains are diagnosed by exclusion, once all other possible causes of pain have been ruled out.

These injuries generally do not continue to spread and get worse, and generally heal within a matter of weeks or months, helped with gentle stretching exercises which increase circulation to the muscles and speed healing. Other treatments which can help provide temporary relief include applying cold therapy and heat to the area.

Herniated Disc

The spine is made up of 26 bones called vertebrae which are supported in place by soft discs filled with a jelly-like substance. These discs can slip out of place or rupture and can press on a nerve causing back pain and sciatica.

Herniated discs usually occur in the lower back, as a result of overuse in bending and sports activities.

Herniated discs are usually treated with a mixture of physiotherapy and pain killers.

Spondylolysis

The term Spondylolysis refers to a stress fracture (a crack in the bony ring of the spinal column) in the lower region of the spine, caused by excessive stress on this area. It is the most common overuse injury in sport, and is most likely to occur in cases where there is repeated arching and twisting of the back.

Chronic low back pain, which is aggravated by activity and eases at rest, is the most common symptom. Sometimes no noticeable symptoms are produced.

In most cases treatment consists of rest from sports for about 6 weeks, accompanied by a series of physiotherapy treatments to improve muscle function and stability.

 

 

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