Diagnosing Acute Low Back Pain


Acute low back pain is a universal ailment and affects millions of people worldwide each year. As common as it is, the condition could signal the presence of another more severe disease within the body and the only way to know for sure is to get a prompt diagnosis of the same. Here's more on some of the most common diagnostic procedures for low back pain.

Low back pain usually affects the muscles or the bones of your body and is generally triggered by ligament sprain, muscle strain or nerve impingement. A physician uses relevant data such as the duration as well as the severity of pain to distinguish between low back pain triggers and prescribe treatment accordingly.

Obtaining a medical history of the patient is a significant part of diagnosing low back pain. An initial evaluation of the sufferer will help the doctor make a more accurate diagnosis of the condition. Knowing how and when the pain started is also an important part of identifying the causes of the problem. Exacerbations and alleviation of accompanying signs and symptoms must be monitored carefully as well. The data collected, will then be used by the doctor to ascertain the nature of the pain and the best methods to treat it. Patients are also required to provide their physician with information about past or existing conditions that could trigger symptoms such as lower back pain.

A thorough physical examination is also required to diagnose acute low back pain. Patients usually respond in a subjective manner and rely more on their feelings rather than facts while providing details of their condition. In such cases, a physical examination would help the doctor obtain a clearer picture of the ailment. Tell-tale signs such as inflammation, tenderness or swelling must all be noted to make an accurate diagnosis of the problem.

A doctor may also conduct a neurologic test to check for nerve impingement. The nerves transfer motor impulses and sensory stimuli from the body to the brain and vice versa. Once a nerve is impinged, the patient may suffer debilitating pain or even paralysis - depending on the severity. Acute low back pain is a common symptom of this ailment.

Certain blood tests may also be conducted to rule out the presence of serious ailments. At times, acute low back pain may be a symptom of serious health issues such as cancer, infections or even systemic conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis. While the tests results may not provide a doctor with wholly conclusive results, they will certainly guide him/her in the right direction.

The above diagnostic procedures will help your medical practitioner understand your condition better. Based on the diagnosis of your low back pain, you will be given treatment that is most appropriate for your health problem.