Most cases of spine, back and neck pain resolve with minimal medical intervention. In fact, we strongly recommend that you see your primary care physician first if you have back or neck pain. He or she can start you on more conservative treatment. Very few people with back and neck pain need a surgical procedure.
There are a wide variety of non-surgical treatments that are usually successful in treating back and neck pain. Some of the most common non-surgical treatment options are physical therapy, medication, spinal injections and alternative medicine such as acupuncture.
Medications can range from from over-the-counter NSAIDs (such as ibuprofen and naproxen), acetaminophen, or COX-2 inhibitors.
Physical therapy combines various treatments with therapeutic exercise to rehabilitate the spine and other parts of the body. Examples of treatments that physical therapists administer to patients include:
- heat/cold therapy
- manual traction
- inversion tables
- transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation
- massage therapy
- aquatic therapy
Physical therapists will often teach patients a program to follow at home, which may include:
- Stretching exercises to increase flexibility
- Strengthening exercises to improve the spine’s ability to absorb stress and strain
- Postural modification to rehabilitate the spine and prevent re-injury
At California Pacific Orthopedics, we use a wide variety of treatments to treat back and neck pain.
Certain spinal conditions may require surgical intervention. Some examples include:
- Disc herniation
- Spine trauma
- Spinal stenosis