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Low back pain is a symptom almost all of us will suffer at some point in our life. The pain may remain in our lower back or extend into our buttocks and legs. Most of the time, this is simply a muscle strain that improves with rest and painkillers. Sometimes the symptoms are bad enough to warrant treatment by a physiotherapist, chiropractor or osteopath.

Because of the diverse nature of these conditions, we recommend you review our links below for further information.

More Information

Low Back Pain symptoms can include: -

  • Dull pain that develops gradually
  • Sudden, sharp or persistent pain felt below the waist

Because of the diversity of causes, treatment will vary patient to patient. 

Physical Examination
Your GP will begin with a general examination and ask about your health and how the symptoms are affecting you.

Because of the range of causes of this condition, your GP may arrange further tests to aid a diagnosis and treatment path. These may include: -

  • Blood tests
  • X-rays
  • MRI scan

The cause of Low Back Pain and Nerve Compression including disc prolapses and spinal stenosis

Typical causes of lower back pain are heavy physical exertion such as lifting, powerful movement, twisting awkwardly or remaining in a single position for a long time.

Many different conditions such as nerve compression, cause or contribute to low and lower back pain. Types of spinal disorders include age and trauma-related.

  • Herniated or bulging disc - occurs when the soft interior matter escapes through a crack or ruptures through the disc's protective outer layer. Both problems can cause pain, nerve compression and inflammation. 
  • Spinal stenosis - develops when the spinal canal or a nerve passageway narrows abnormally.
  • Spinal arthritis also called spondylosis, or spinal osteoarthritis - common age-related spine problem. It affects the spine's facet joints and may contribute to the development of bone spurs.
  • Spondylolisthesis - occurs when a lumbar (low back) vertebral body slips forward over the vertebra below it.
  • Vertebral fractures (burst or compression types) - often caused by trauma such as a fall.
  • Osteomyelitis - a bacterial infection that can develop in one of the spine's bones.
  • Spinal tumours - abnormal mass of cells and are diagnosed as benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancer).

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