Lower back pain affects up to 90 percent of adults at some point in their life. 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. When back pain persists for a long period of time despite all these alternative treatments, then advice is sought from a specialist such as a spine surgeon. This is because there is often a structural problem with the spine which may be giving rise to these symptoms.