When people talk about low back pain, they generally mean lumbago, and some people actually call any lower back pain “lumbago”. However, not all low back pain is actually lumbago, and only a medical professional is able to determine what the problem is. In order to do so, there are two factors that can help them in their diagnosis. These are:
• What the type of pain is – is it dull or sharp? Does anything make it better or worse?
• Where the pain is – is it only felt in the lower back, or does it radiate to the legs? And if so, where is the pain the worse?
What Is Lumbago?
There are a few things that must be understood when talking about lumbago. The first is that the amount of pain is no reflection on how much damage is there. A good example is found by the excruciating pain experienced by a simple pulled muscle, a relatively minor injury. A severely herniated disc, on the other hand, can be painless.
It is often very difficult to accurately diagnose lumbago. This is because of the many structures found in this area of our bodies. Some of the problems that physicians can come across include:
• The various parts of soft tissue, such as ligaments, muscles and tendons
• The bones, which is the foundation of the spinal column
• The various joints, particularly the facet joints
• The discs
• The many nerves
Because all of these parts of the body are actually connected together, it is very difficult for our brain to actually distinguish between the various parts. This is why a torn disc can feel like a simple bruised muscle.
It is incredibly important to get a diagnosis right. There are a number of so called “red flags” that will tell a physician lumbago is a possibility. These include weak legs, loss of control of the bladder or bowel, numbness, unexplained weight loss and fevers or chills. If a patient presents without any of these symptoms, an MRI is generally not necessary and more conventional lumbago treatment is appropriate.
Getting backache relief is incredibly difficult, not in the least because it is our back, which has to support our upper body whilst grinding against the bottom of our body. Usually, lumbago treatment will depend on the severity of the case and the general health and fitness of the patient. Before any treatment is offered, however, the physician must look through all the symptoms and causes to determine what is actually wrong.
Lumbago and sciatica is often one and the same thing, which is why treatment for sciatica is generally a first course of action for those with this type of back pain. Some would even say that experiencing lumbago symptoms is a clear sign that sciatica is present. Sciatic generally presents itself with pain radiating down the legs, buttocks and feet. The pain lasts, rather than coming or going and very often the radiating pain is actually worse. Usually, sciatica is only noticed on one side of the body. These symptoms are generally caused by a lumbar herniated disc, whereby the nerve is actually getting compressed, causing the pain.
Lumbago causes are hard to find, although they are generally caused either by injury or simple wear and tear. There are a number of home remedies for back pain that people can try, including hot and cold compresses. However, if the pain remains or if a patient were to notice any of the so called “red flags”, medical assistance must be sought straight away to eliminate the possibility that anything more sinister or serious is happening.