Using Botox for Migraines

Migraine
Woman with migraine

Most people associate removing wrinkles with a Botox treatment, but recently it has been used in cases where individuals have experienced migraines. The question remains as to whether or not there is adequate evidence that would show a Botox treatment would provide any measure of relief for migraine sufferers. In July of 2010, the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency) licensed Botox for treating chronic migraines. The FDA (Federal Drug Administration) approved the use of Botox for treatment of chronic migraine headaches. Continue reading “Using Botox for Migraines”

Exercise Tips for Back Health

Exercise
Exercise ball

Recent research has indicated that inactivity is much harder on the back than participating in a reasonable and active lifestyle. Physical conditioning is one of the essential keys to preventing lower back injuries. Exercises which strengthen the core along with aerobic exercises cane help stabilize and strengthen the spine which can be critical in maintaining good spinal health as well as keeping the back pain free. At the same time, back injuries are some of the most commonly reported types of sports related injuries that athletes suffer from. There are several types of exercises which can help strengthen the back as well as help maintain good spinal health. Remember that it is always advisable to discuss any new exercise regimen with a physician before beginning. Continue reading “Exercise Tips for Back Health”

How to Reduce Back Injury When Playing Sports

Stretching
Pre-exercise Warm-ups

Exercise is a very important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. One of the most common ways to achieve high levels of exercise is to engage in various sports and competitive activities. Always discuss any exercise regimen with a physician before beginning participation, especially before engaging in any sports related activity. It is possible for people who have back pain to participate in some sports as long as they pay attention to their backs and get an okay from their physician. For many individuals sports can offer a way to prevent back injuries. There are ways to reduce the chances that the back will sustain injury while participating in sports. Continue reading “How to Reduce Back Injury When Playing Sports”

Poor Posture and Back Pain

Good and bad posture
Posture

One of the best ways to protect spinal health is to practice good posture. Poor posture is the root cause of many of the most common back problems. One of the easiest ways to make sure the intricate structures of the spine are kept healthy is to practice good posture. For many years people have thought of good posture as a simply cosmetic action, but it is in fact critical in helping reduce back and neck pain. Individuals who have to stand or sit in one position for long periods of time will find good posture and adequate back support to be very beneficial. Posture is a matter of developing a habit and when poor posture is the habit back pain and even spinal damage can occur. Continue reading “Poor Posture and Back Pain”

What is Spinal Stenosis?

Back and Leg Pain
Woman with Lower Back and Leg Pain

When the spaces in the spine start to narrow pressure is applied to the spinal cord and nerves in the spinal canal. This condition is referred to as spinal stenosis. In most instances, the lower back or neck region are the areas affected by the narrowing of the spine. Symptoms can range from very mild to severe complications. Many individuals do not experience any noticeable symptoms but others may have pain, numbness, muscle weakness, or problems with bowel or bladder function problems. Spinal stenosis is commonly attributed to aging or regular wear and tear that occur over time. Continue reading “What is Spinal Stenosis?”

What is a Pinched Nerve?

Working and Bad Posture
Bad Posture

When a nerve receives too much pressure, it is said to be “pinched.” Pain, numbness, tingling or weakness may be experienced when there is a pinched nerve. Many times, too much pressure is applied to a nerve by surrounding tissues, tendons, cartilage, bones or muscles. Pinched nerves most commonly occur in the lower back and are a result of pressure coming from a herniated disc. Individuals generally complain of a very intense pain that radiates out from the back and down the back of the leg. The wrist is also an area where a pinched nerve occurs and this can cause numbers or intense pain in the hand or fingers. A physician can sometimes use some conservative treatment options which will offer a patient some relief in as little as a few days, but for many individuals it takes weeks to find relief. Some individuals may require surgery in order to relieve the pain and pressure that is caused by a pinched nerve. Continue reading “What is a Pinched Nerve?”

What is Sciatica?

 

Sciatica Patient
Examining Sciatica Patient

Sciatica is a term for a symptom rather than a condition. It is basically caused when the sciatic nerve becomes irritated; sciatica is the tingling or pain felt in the legs that is a result of the sciatic nerve being irritated. Most individuals state that the sensation of sciatica is located in the lower back and then radiates down through the back portions of the thigh and continues to run down to just below the knee. This pain or tingling feeling is felt where the sciatic nerve is located. The sciatic nerve is rooted in the lower portion of the back called the lumbar cord; it extends through the buttock so that it can send more nerve endings through the lower limb. Another term frequently used for sciatica is sciatic nerve pain. Continue reading “What is Sciatica?”

What is a Slipped Disc?

Back pain
Weakness and Pain in the Back

The term, “slipped disc” is commonly used for a spinal condition which can also be referred to as a ruptured disc, herniated disc or a prolapsed disc. It does not literally mean the slipping or dislodging of a disc, but instead refers to a spinal condition where a disc is protruding abnormally and made contact with nerve tissue. Usually a slipped or herniated disc is located in the region of the lower back, but any disc along the spinal column could potentially rupture. This also includes the discs that are in the neck region. Continue reading “What is a Slipped Disc?”

What is Facet Arthrosis?

Back X-ray
Spine X-ray

There are many spinal conditions that occur due to aging and facet arthrosis is one of them. Facet arthrosis occurs as the joints located in the spine start to deteriorate and the cartilage in these joints starts to wear away. The cartilage is a very important factor in keeping the back and spine mobile. Cartilage is a type of connective tissue that keeps the bones in a joint from rubbing together; it covers the facet joints and provides protection by intercepting friction or strain. As the body ages the cartilage can wear away and allow the bones in the joint to come into contact with each other. This can lead to pain, stiffness or bone spurs in many individuals.

How does a physician diagnose facet arthrosis?

When a physician or orthopedic doctor suspects facet arthrosis, they will usually order an x-ray of the area. In most cases, this will reveal any abnormal facets. In order to get a more thorough look, the physician may also order a CT scan. This will offer the physician or spine specialist a better look of the spinal structures. In most instances, an MRI will not be required in order to diagnose the spinal condition but when looking for various causes of back pain it may be useful. Continue reading “What is Facet Arthrosis?”

What is Lumbar Laminectomy?

Relived legs
Woman’s legs

A lumbar laminectomy is a surgical procedure that is also known as an open decompression. The procedure is designed to relieve the pressure that is on the spinal nerve or spinal cord by opening or widening the spinal canal. During the procedure, the lamina which is a small section of the bone on the spine is removed so that there is more room for the nerves. An open decompression, or lumbar laminectomy is typically suggested by a physician for those patients who suffer from back pain caused by neural impingement. The surgical procedure relieves the pressure by enlarging the spinal canal. Continue reading “What is Lumbar Laminectomy?”