Disc Related Lower Back Pain
Between each vertbrea of the spine, contains a structure called an intervertebral disc. Injury to this region can be a very common source of back pain. Discogenic low back pain can occur when discs degenerate or sustain loads that may cause damage, leading to inflammation and irritation to nearby nerves. Often this condition is related to degenerative changes, spinal injuries and poor posture, often resulting in compensating and incorrect movement patterns.
Having injury or age related changes to the discs in your spine however do not necessarily mean you will have back pain, nor does the severity of the disc injury always relate to the severity of the symptoms. Particularly as we get older, many people have disc bulges or similar changes to their spine and have no pain or symptoms! As a result, imaging or scans is not always necessary in the management of these conditions.
Physiotherapy offers many ways to manage the effects of discogenic low back pain. Through a comprehensive assessment, we can prescribe specific exercises to help strengthen, provide stability and support the spine. The goal of rehabilitation exercises will be to help alleviate pain, improve stability, promote proper posture and reduce the load on the intervertebral discs.
Our goal is to improve any functional limitations by using a variety of techniques such as manual therapy, mobilisations, range of motion and strength exercises. Additionally physiotherapists will be able to help develop self management and pain management strategies to ensure a healthy spine and prevent future recurrences of low back pain.
Facet Related Lower Back Pain
Facetogenic low back pain occurs when the facet joints of the vertebrae become irritated and inflamed. These symptoms can result from various factors such as age related degenerative changes, poor posture, spinal or sporting injuries. Repetitive motions or excessive strain on the facet joints can also contribute to facetogenic low back pain occurring.
Positions involving poor control when moving into arched or extended positions are typically the culprit for the onset of this condition. This can be common in sports such as rowing, swimming, cricket, weight-training and running.
Typically facetogenic low back pain will be on one side and can be exacerbated by certain movements or positions, such as bending and twisting. Other symptoms may include stiffness, muscle spasms, reduced range of motion and pain in the lower back.
Physiotherapy treatment aims to reduce irritation and pain as well as improve spinal function and movement patterns. Physiotherapy goals will be to aim to improve flexibility, strengthen core muscles and improve range of motion.