More than 80% of people will have an episode of acute low
back pain sometime in their lives. In a majority of cases, the pain will heal
on its own or can be treated with non-surgical options.
If your back pain persists
over time, talk with your primary care physician (PCP) about it. Your PCP can help
you find the healing path that’s right for you, including lowering your risk
factors. If you don’t have a primary
care physician, we can help. Find a primary care physician now.
Our approach to back pain treatment and spine care
At OhioHealth, we understand the complexities of back pain
and the importance to find not just the right treatment for your condition, but
the right solution for your spine wellness.
Our team of experts explores with you the many options
available to address your back pain, providing a thorough assessment and
evaluation, taking into consideration how much the pain is affecting your quality of life and how
intense are your symptoms.
- We work closely with you to see what works for
you, and to help you reach your goal.
- We concentrate on non-surgical back pain treatments and
minimally invasive procedures before we recommend surgery. Should you require surgery, our surgeons are among
the nation’s best.
- We emphasize wellness and education, so you know
how to manage your pain, stay functional and prevent it from either returning
or getting worse.
Non-surgical and surgical treatment options
Many different reasons lie behind the cause of back
pain. That’s why it’s important to focus
uniquely on each case and to explore the options that will most successfully
treat that unique case.
has shown that patients have more positive results by combining a variety of
treatment options to address an ongoing back pain problem, rather than relying
on just one treatment method alone.
We work closely with our patients to focus on that right
combination, starting with non-surgical options. Our non-surgical treatment offerings include:
- Therapeutic exercise, including aerobic and
strength training programs beneficial for spine patients
- Physical and aquatic therapy provided by
specially trained physical and occupational therapists
- Medication review and optimization for back pain
- Complementary treatments, such as acupuncture,
manipulation and massage therapy
- Electrodiagnostic medicine (EMG/NCS)
- Behavioral medicine (back pain can result from
anxiety and depression)
- Minimally invasive spine procedures including:
- Epidural injections
- Lumbar facet injections/medial branch blocks
- Lumbar radiofrequency ablation
- Lumbar discograms
- Sacroiliac joint injections
- Structured weight loss program and nutritional
counseling (excessive weight in the abdomen increases back pain)
- Smoking cessation (smoking cigarettes weakens
If surgery is needed…
Most back pain can be treated without surgery; however, should
your condition not respond to non-surgical treatment during a reasonable period
of time, our spine surgeons will work closely with you to determine the best
Our spine surgeons in both neurosurgery and orthopedics are
experts in minimally invasive techniques that are safe and effective, spare
muscle tissue and require only small incisions. This includes the minimally invasive lateral access spinal
lumbar fusion procedure that can treat conditions such as degenerative disc
disease, recurrent disc herniation, osteomyelitis and discitis.
Surgical options at OhioHealth include but are not limited
- Anterior Cervical Fusion
- Artificial Disc Replacement (ADR)
- Bone Graft Alternatives
- Cervical Disc Replacement
- Cervical Laminoplasty
- Lumbar (Open) Microscopic Discectomy
- Percutaneous Vertebral Augmentation (PVA)
- Posterior Cervical Foraminotomy
- Spinal Fusion
Download this PDF guide for detailed information about pre-
and post-surgery care.
Individualized back pain treatment plans
At OhioHealth, our therapists are specially trained in spine
care. They perform evaluations to determine the extent of your pain and its
source, taking take into consideration the many causes for your pain to isolate
the problem. This can include
- Lifestyle issues that may be contributing to it
or could’ve caused it
- Measures you’ve taken to manage it that have
worked and haven’t worked, including medications
- Length of time you’ve suffered with the pain
- If the pain is localized or spreading out
- Your past medical history and injuries you may
- What makes it better and what makes it worse
- Whether or not you need tests, such as an MRI,
CT scan or X-ray
After a thorough assessment, we develop an individualized
treatment plan that includes teaching you how to manage the pain on your own, so
you’re empowered to prevent it from returning or getting worse.
Talk to your doctor about this option for your back pain.
You need a referral to OhioHealth
Physical and Occupational Therapy.
What you can do to prevent and manage low back pain
Lower back pain affects everything in daily life – from activities with family and friends to working well at the job; from running errands to getting enough sleep. And there’s always the chance it will get worse.
There are ways to help keep lower back pain from occurring or re-occurring, including these three important tips, which also improve overall health.
Maintain a healthy weight. Extra weight puts extra stress on your back, especially if the weight is carried in the mid-section of the body. Monitor your Body Mass Index (BMI) to keep yourself within the healthy zone.
Stay active. Keep some level of physical activity in your life. It needs to be on a fairly consistent basis to maintain back strength and flexibility. The activity should be a mix of walking, biking, swimming or other aerobic exercises, in addition to core strengthening and resistance or weight training. Stretching also should be part of the mix. This will reduce the risk of lower back pain occurring and also improve and/or maintain your overall fitness.
Know the right way to move and hold your body. In other words, Mom’s urging you to sit up straight when you were growing up was good advice – a majority of low back pain is created by poor posture and incorrect positioning. This can include sitting at a desk for 40 hours a week in a chair that’s not ergonomically correct and/or lifting heavy objects with bad form. Over time, these bad habits add up and create back problems.
Read this educational document for additional information about preventing and managing low back pain.