Low Back Pain
The most common causes of low back pain are:
- Injury or overuse. This can include Reference sprains Opens New Window or Reference strains Opens New Window of soft tissues such as ligaments and muscles, Reference fractures Opens New Window or Reference compression fractures Opens New Window of bones, or injuries to the small joints between the bones of the spine.
- Pressure on nerve roots from conditions such as a Reference herniated disc Opens New Window or Reference spinal stenosis Opens New Window.
Reference Osteoarthritis Opens New Window, which is
usually caused by getting older.
- When osteoarthritis affects the small joints in the spine, it can lead to back pain by making the joints themselves stiff and sore and also by creating pressure on the nerve roots.
- Osteoarthritis in other joints, such as the hips, can cause you to limp or to change the way you walk. This can also lead to back pain.
Less common spinal conditions that can cause low back pain include:
- Reference Ankylosing spondylitis Opens New Window, which is a form of arthritis that most often affects the spine.
- Reference Bacterial infection in the bone, spinal discs, or spinal cord.
- Reference Spinal tumors Opens New Window, which are growths on the bones and ligaments of the spine, on the spinal cord, or on nerve roots.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference November 19, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Reference Robert B. Keller, MD - Orthopedics
- Topic Overview
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- What Happens
- What Increases Your Risk
- When to Call a Doctor
- Exams and Tests
- Treatment Overview
- Living With Low Back Pain
- Other Treatment
- Coping With Chronic Back Pain
- Other Places To Get Help
- Related Information