Low back pain is a common disorder that affects 84% of adults at some point in their lives. The good news about this is that most back pain gets better without needing imaging (Xrays, MRIs). In most cases, imaging is an unnecessary intervention, particularly in the first six weeks, that costs a significant amount of money to patients. One study found no long-term difference between patients who underwent surgery and those who only did conservative management (therapy) for sciatica. Also, it was found that low back fusion surgery was not more effective than conservative management (therapy) when treating chronic low back pain in patients with lumbar spine pathologies and leads to greater long-term complications such as instability above and below the level of fusion.
Winter is coming. With that comes everybody’s least favorite piece of yard work – snow shoveling. It’s the one chore almost nobody loves but must be done. Unfortunately, it is one of the most strenuous chores we must complete and causes roughly 11,500 injuries per year.1 The most common are soft tissue injuries (strains, cramping, pulled muscles) and lower back injuries. Lower back injuries account for almost 35% of total snow shovel-related injuries.1
Low back pain is one of the most common and debilitating diagnoses that physical therapy can help improve. It is estimated that 60-70% of people throughout the world will suffer from low back pain at some point during their life. In the United States, it is estimated that 149 billion work days are lost every year from low back pain, costing workers and companies between $100-200 billion dollars each year. Lower back pain or pain in the lumbar spine can be from occupational postures such as sedentary desk work that may lead to poor posture, heavy labor job demands, and being overweight. Evidence shows that core strengthening through a physical therapy program will help alleviate pain.