lower back pain

Considering Injectable Corticosteroids?

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Corticosteroids are powerful drugs used to decrease inflammation in the body’s tissues.  Corticosteroid injections can treat a range of muscular, skeletal, and spinal conditions.  This article from KRAMES staywell http://ssov3.staywellsolutionsonline.com/Conditions/Orthopedics/Tests/134,92l shows us the most common uses of corticosteroid injections:

  • Lower back pain – Lower back pain from strains, spinal stenosis, ruptured disks, and other common conditions may be treated with injectable corticosteroids to provide some reprieve from pain.  Lumbar radiculopathy is a pain in the buttocks, hips, or legs that stems from a pinched nerve in the lower back.  This kind of pain can usually be treated with corticosteroid injections near the pinched nerve.  If a patient is having excruciating pain, the injection may target the spinal cord area through a catheter.  Sometimes other drugs such as local anesthetics or narcotics are given in conjunction with the corticosteroid.
  • Osteoarthritis – Osteoarthritis sufferers often develop inflammation and pain in their joints.  An injection of corticosteroids into the affected joint can provide temporary pain relief for several weeks or even months.  After the treatment, you will need to rest the joint for at least 24 hours for the best results.
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome – Carpal tunnel syndrome will occur when a nerve in the wrist becomes compressed or pinched, causing pain and weakness in the hand.  Injecting a corticosteroid in the wrist can provide immediate relief.
  • Cervical radiculopathy – This is neck pain that radiates to the shoulder and arm.  It occurs when the vertebrae in the spine moves closer together, pinching a nerve in the neck.  Injecting corticosteroids near the pinched nerve may reduce pain and swelling allowing for time to heal.
  • Bursitis and tendonitis – Bursitis is a common condition that occurs when the fluid sac that normally cushions your joint spaces becomes painful and inflamed.  Tendonitis is a condition in which the tendons around bones and muscles become inflamed.   The most bothersome areas usually are the knee, elbow, shoulder writs and hip.  The injected corticosteroids can help to reduce inflammation.

At Blue Ridge Orthopedic and Spine Center our physicians are fellowship – trained and board certified by the American Board of Medical Specialties. In pain medicine, we have the most advanced training and certifications available for pain management.  Please contact us today at 540.347.9220 (Warrenton location) or 703.743.2814 (Gainesville location) for more information and don’t forget to visit us @ www.broava.com for more information on the comprehensive services offered by Blue Ridge Orthopaedic & Spine Center.

Lower Back Pain and Surgery

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Surgery to treat low back pain can be extensive. Usually, patients are given six to 12 months of more conservative treatment, such as physical therapy, before surgery is recommended for lower back pain.

Recovery is also extensive, taking anywhere from three to 12 months to return to routine daily activity. As with any surgery, success rates vary—in the case of lower back pain, a success rate of between 70 percent and 90 percent is expected, with the main variable being the specific condition being treated.

Osteoarthritis and more

Lower back pain is caused by several factors. In patients 55 and older, it is often caused by degenerative arthritis (osteoarthritis) that might result in a narrowing of the canal (spinal stenosis) and/or instability of one vertebral segment, as this Spine-Health article explains. The article continues:

Generally, the low back pain and/or leg pain created by these back conditions will get worse with walking and will improve with sitting. Often, the symptoms will have been present for years, and may get worse at a very slow rate. Once a patient gets to the point that he or she can no longer adequately function because of the low back pain, lumbar decompression with or without spine fusion may be recommended to help increase the individual’s activity tolerance and quality of life.

Spine surgery is usually elective and follows many months of alternative treatment. However there are two scenarios that may require emergency back surgery. As Spine-Health explains:

  • Sudden bowel and/or bladder incontinence (either the inability to retain or hold waste) or progressive weakness in the legs. Either of these symptoms could indicate nerve damage or cauda equina syndrome.
  • Severe, continuous abdominal and back pain, which could indicate an abdominal aortic aneurysm.

Our Spine Center experts handle all types of back pain, and provide a range of appropriate treatments, from physical therapy through surgery. If you’re suffering from back pain that is getting worse or won’t go away, contact us @ 540.347.9220 and let’s talk.  Visit www.broava.com to learn more about the comprehensive services offered at Blue Ridge Orthopaedic and Spine Center.

Injectable Corticosteroids

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Corticosteroids are powerful drugs used to decrease inflammation in the body’s tissues.  Corticosteroid injections can treat a range of muscular, skeletal, and spinal conditions.  This article from KRAMES staywell http://ssov3.staywellsolutionsonline.com/Conditions/Orthopedics/Tests/134,92 shows us the most common uses of corticosteroid injections:

  • Lower back pain – Lower back pain from strains, spinal stenosis, ruptured disks, and other common conditions may be treated with injectable corticosteroids to provide some reprieve from pain.  Lumbar radiculopathy is a pain in the buttocks, hips, or legs that stems from a pinched nerve in the lower back.  This kind of pain can usually be treated with corticosteroid injections near the pinched nerve.  If a patient is having excruciating pain, the injection may target the spinal cord area through a catheter.  Sometimes other drugs such as local anesthetics or narcotics are given in conjunction with the corticosteroid.
  • Osteoarthritis – Osteoarthritis sufferers often develop inflammation and pain in their joints.  An injection of corticosteroids into the affected joint can provide temporary pain relief for several weeks or even months.  After the treatment, you will need to rest the joint for at least 24 hours for the best results.
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome – Carpal tunnel syndrome will occur when a nerve in the wrist becomes compressed or pinched, causing pain and weakness in the hand.  Injecting a corticosteroid in the wrist can provide immediate relief.
  • Cervical radiculopathy – This is neck pain that radiates to the shoulder and arm.  It occurs when the vertebrae in the spine moves closer together, pinching a nerve in the neck.  Injecting corticosteroids near the pinched nerve may reduce pain and swelling allowing for time to heal.
  • Bursitis and tendonitis – Bursitis is a common condition that occurs when the fluid sac that normally cushions your joint spaces becomes painful and inflamed.  Tendonitis is a condition in which the tendons around bones and muscles become inflamed.   The most bothersome areas usually are the knee, elbow, shoulder writs and hip.  The injected corticosteroids can help to reduce inflammation.

At Blue Ridge Orthopedic and Spine Center our physicians are fellowship – trained and board certified by the American Board of Medical Specialties. In pain medicine, we have the most advanced training and certifications available for pain management.  Please contact us today at 540.347.9220 for more information or visit us @ www.broava.com

What is Pain Management?

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Pain management is a branch of medicine that applies the latest in treatment methods to reduce or control pain.  Our fellowship trained, board certified pain specialist’s specialize in a variety of solutions including pharmacological, interventional and alternatives to reduce or control pain.

At Blue Ridge Orthopaedic and Spine Center, our pain management group offers a variety of options tailored to address all of our patients’ pain management needs.

Comprehensive Pain Management Services for all Pain Conditions

  • Complex pain and spine disorders
  • Acute and chronic pain management
  • Diagnostic and therapeutic interventional procedures
  • Electrodiagnostic testing
  • Neuromodulation for chronic pain management

Blue Ridge Orthopaedic and Spine Center offers inpatient, outpatient, surgical and non surgical services, as well as cutting-edge, minimally invasive pain management treatment for patients with acute or chronic pain.  For more information, please contact one of our pain specialists @ 540.347.9220 or visit www.BroAva.com.

Prevent Back Pain at Work

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It’s hard to face the fact that most of us will have some type of spinal degeneration, a drying out of the discs and arthritic changes in the spine due to age.  If you have a job that requires hours of standing, you are more at risk, although those with desk jobs are certainly not immune to back pain.

Follow these strategies from Krames  Staywell to reduce your risk!

(http://ssov3.staywellsolutionsonline.com/Search/1,S,4024

Shape Up

Overweight and out of shape are a risky combination because of the stress and pressure they place on the spine.  Aerobic conditioning on a treadmill, stair machine, or elliptical trainer will accomplish two things:  Strengthen the trunk muscles so they can support the spine and burns calories, which in turn causes weight loss.

Lift Properly

Office workers on occasion may have to lift boxes of files or a heavy stack of mail at some point during the day.  Here is what you should do:

  • Stand close to the object
  • Place your feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Bend at the knees and tighten your stomach muscles.
  • Lift with your leg muscles as you stand up.
  • Don’t twist your spine; pivot your feet to change directions.

Follow these same steps in reverse as you put the object down.

Adjust your Workstation

Start by adjusting your chair to support your back.  Adjust so the lumbar support fits into your lower back inward curve.  Then adjust the chair so your feet are resting flat on the floor.  For the most benefit, place your monitor and keyboard directly in front of you.

Keep Moving During the Day

Our backs require movement and lots of it!  Do your best to take a walk to the coffee or water machine.   Walking will keep your muscles strong and lubricate the spine.

The Spine Center at Blue Ridge Orthopaedic and Spine Center resolves everday aches and pain.   Poor posture, trauma, lifting, and aging are all factors that can injure your spine and cause pain.  Whether caused by an injury or the normal wear and tear of time, spine-related ailments require the best care available.  Call us today @ 540-347-9220 to schedule an appointment or visit https://www.broava.com/  to learn more about our services.