Many people suffer from back pain (low, mid, or upper back pain) at some stage of their life. It can be a mild aching or a strong and severe pain. In some individuals, it can be chronic and persistent. Back pain is caused by damage or injury to bones, ligaments, tendons, connective tissues, and muscles.
Types of back pain doctors:
An Orthopedic physician is an expert who diagnoses and treats back pain. There are a variety of health practitioners who are responsible for diagnosing and treating people suffering from back pain. These are broadly divided into three groups; primary care providers, spine specialists, and therapists. Each performs a different role and has different expertise and training.
- Primary care providers:
These are the first to consult when you suffer from back pain. Primary care providers provide non-surgical treatment and recommend medicines to help reduce pain. These include chiropractors, practitioners of osteopathic medicines, and primary care physicians.
- Spine specialists:
These have specific expertise in diagnosing and treating spinal conditions and back pain. Spine specialists are the health practitioners who perform spine surgeries. This group consists of neurologists, surgeons, rheumatologists, anesthesiologists, physiatrists.
These are health practitioners who obtain an advanced degree in physical therapy. Physical or occupational therapy for back pain, as well as psychological support for chronic pain, are areas of expertise for therapists. Physical therapists, clinical psychologists, and occupational therapists are generally included in this category.
When to visit a back pain doctor:
If you experience any of the following symptoms then you should visit your back pain doctor:
- Aching back with fever.
- Sore muscles.
- Joint pain
- Back pain caused because of trauma
- Pack pain accompanied with weight loss
Diagnosis and treatments by a back pain doctor:
A physical examination is the first step that a back pain doctor performs to diagnose back pain. During the physical examination, your doctor performs five important assessments:
- Standing and walking abilities
- The range of the motion of the spines
- Leg strength
- Ability to notice responsiveness in your legs
After the physical examination, if your back pain doctor notices any serious condition he may perform other important tests like blood and urine test to explore the causes of back pain. Then he will also perform x-rays ( detect cracks and the arrangement of bones), CT scan and MRI scan (check out nerves, muscles, blood vessels, discs, and filaments), Bone scan (identify anomalies in the bones tissues), and electromyography (examine nerve signals).
A back pain doctor/ Orthopedic physician performs treatments of back pain by any of the following techniques and procedures depending upon the symptoms, nature, and causes of the pain.
- Physical therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Special exercises
- Weight loss