ften times, patients experience back pain for a number of reasons. When we say “diagnosing back pain”, we are referring to revealing the underlying cause of the pain, numbness, or weakness you are feeling in your back, not the pain itself. The different symptoms could be caused by a multiple of conditions, and immediately going to the doctor to get diagnosed and treated is recommended. The process of diagnosis can depend on how severe the pain or numbness is, the frequency of the symptoms, and a simple process of elimination method.
he first thing that is going to happen when you see your physician for back pain is a Q&A discussion, which is the beginning of a physical examination. The questions being asked are important because you will cover everything from what allergies you have to the precise point of the affected area in your back. The nurses and doctor need to know this information in order to be able to properly treat whatever condition they ultimately diagnose. Also, as a part of the physical exam, the doctor will most likely apply pressure with his hands, similar to a massage, to the injured area or the area you are feeling pain. If the pain persists or increases due to applied pressure, it could narrow down the possible conditions. If your physician cannot eliminate enough possible issues, then he might issue some diagnostic imaging procedures like an MRI or X-rays.
MRI and X-rays
iagnostic imaging is the process of using different wave lengths to literally take pictures of the inside of your body. An MRI is going to be recommended if the doctor believes there is some type of soft tissue damage. For example, if the physical exams results in the doctor believing you have torn a tendon or ligament, then they will recommend an MRI to confirm this and make sure that you don’t have anything else, such as a tumor, inside the affected area. MRIs work best to view muscles, ligaments, tendons, and any other soft tissue injuries that may be causing pain. Conversely, if the physical exam leads your physician to believe you have a broken or fractured bone, such as a vertebra, then they will recommend an X-ray, which will take pictures of the bones in the area that you are experiencing pain. With X-rays, the doctor will be able to tell if there is any abnormality in the harder parts of the body, such as the bone.
MRIs and X-rays are not always needed, but, when used, can better help diagnose the underlying cause of your back pain. If the physician can correctly diagnose and treat the issue without MRIs or X-rays, then you might save some time and money. Regardless, Laser Spine Surgery can help guide you in the right direction to begin a physical examination, which will ultimately lead to a diagnosis and treatment of your back pain. Call Laser Spine Surgery today so we can help you recover from any pain hindering you from performing daily activities and living life to the fullest.