We’ve all experienced back pain at some point in our lives, and the experience is unpleasant to say the least. Treatment of acute pain is relatively easy because the course of treatment is short and the cause is known. After some stretching, rest, and pain medication, in most cases, the pain will subside and you’ll be fine. Sometimes people who experience back pain find themselves thinking, “I don’t even remember why the pain started.” Pain that lasts for more than 3 months or beyond the expected healing period is called chronic back pain. Chronic pain is more complex, involving psychosocial aspects as well as underlying causes, making it difficult to treat. Overall, chronic pain is a disease in itself and requires specialized care.
When to see a chiropractor for chronic back pain?
Having chronic back pain can seriously affect your quality of life. This ongoing pain may also portend bigger problems. Don’t ignore severe back pain, especially if the pain is persistent, severe, or gets worse while you’re resting or at night. Don’t let back pain become so debilitating that it prevents you from enjoying your favorite activities.
Traditionally, over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers such as acetaminophen and prescription-based opioids have been the most common treatments for moderate to severe chronic pain. Other techniques or alternative treatments, such as acupuncture, relaxation, massage therapy, exercise therapy, physical therapy, chiropractic, and herbal medicine, can be used to reduce chronic pain and improve quality of life.
There are some modern treatments, such as spinal cord stimulation, that can help relieve pain. Spinal cord stimulation can be used to treat patients with severe chronic pain from a variety of conditions, including failed back surgery, neuropathic pain, degenerative disc disease, and complex regional pain syndromes.
According to Dr. Sachin Kandhari, Sr. Consultant Neurosurgeon, Institute of Brain and Spine (IBS) Hospital, Delhi “Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) is one of the most effective techniques, unlike other interventional pain treatments Patients with neuropathic pain have experienced long-term results.1,.2 A spinal cord stimulator is an implanted device that sends low-level electrical current directly to the spinal cord to relieve pain. Spinal cord stimulation disrupts pain signals transmitted between the spinal cord and the brain , which is designed to give you pain relief. The stimulation is delivered by a neurostimulator, a device implanted under the skin that sends mild electrical impulses to the area near the spine.”
How does spinal cord stimulation work?
The main benefit of spinal cord stimulation is the reduction of chronic pain, which can improve your mobility, function, and quality of life. Spinal cord stimulation is a proven long-term treatment for chronic pain. People experienced several benefits, including improved ability to participate in daily activities, more function, and the ability to manage their own pain treatment by adjusting stimulation within a preset range.
What if spinal cord stimulation doesn’t work for me?
One of the main benefits of spinal cord stimulation is that you can “test drive” the therapy first to help you and your doctor determine if it’s right for you. Temporary lead placement procedures are performed in clinics, day surgery centers, or hospitals. These temporary wires are placed in the area near the spine. The leads are connected to an external neurostimulator, which is fixed to your back during the trial. The trial period lasts 3-10 days. After the trial, you and your doctor will decide whether spinal cord stimulation can help you manage chronic pain and whether you should continue with permanent device implantation.
“On the occasion of Pain Awareness Month, more patients should learn about effective ways to manage chronic back pain. Many people experience much less pain after SCS surgery than before, allowing them to enjoy a higher quality of life and more Some patients undergoing spinal cord stimulation may be able to reduce or eliminate their pain medication after consulting their doctor. All patients should follow the advice of a pain specialist about medications, exercise, and other treatments that may further reduce pain.” Sa Chin Kanhari
Tips for Managing Back Pain Through Lifestyle Management
• A healthy eating pattern plays a crucial role not only in reducing low back pain, but also in reducing excess weight, which is one of the risk factors for back pain.
• Sleep with a pillow under your knees
• Regular exercise including cardio, strength, flexibility and balance training can help reduce the risk of back-related injuries such as strains and muscle spasms.
• Mind-body or multi-sport may be another form of exercise or physical activity. This type of exercise combines specialized movement, breath control, and mental focus to improve overall health, balance, flexibility, and strength.
• Quit smoking and limit alcohol consumption
• Get as much stress out of the day as possible by getting up, walking around, and doing some simple stretches.
Disclaimer: “Any and all information provided in this article is the independent opinion of Dr. Sachin Kandhari, Sr. Consultant Neurosurgeon, Institute of Brain and Spine (IBS) Hospital, Delhi, for general overview and educational purposes only. This article is for general overview and educational purposes only. It should not be considered medical advice. You will need to consult your registered physician for any instructions regarding this article”
1. Kumar K, Taylor RS, Jacques L, et al. The effect of spinal cord stimulation on neuropathic pain is persistent: 24-month follow-up of a prospective randomized controlled multicenter trial on the effectiveness of spinal cord stimulation. neurosurgery. 2008;63(4):762-770. Discussion: 770.
2. Kemler MA, de Vet HC, Barendse GA, van den Wildenberg FA, van Kleef M. Effects of spinal cord stimulation on type 1 chronic complex regional pain syndrome: five-year final follow-up of patients in a randomized controlled trial. Journal of Neurosurgery. 2008;108(2):292-298.