Back pain is one of the most common conditions an individual can suffer and is present in up to 80% of the population. Fortunately, most of the time back pain episodes can resolve on their own with rest and nonsteroidals or other more conservative treatments. In a small percentage of the patients, the pain will continue and become severe or will become chronic and debilitating. In those cases, further diagnostic tests should be done as well as trying other conservative treatments including physical therapy or chiropractic treatments. When further diagnostic tests are done, which include plain x-rays with bending and extending, MRIs, CAT scans, nerve conduction studies, and other; better diagnostic and treatment plans can be done.
Treatment options for severe low back pain after conservative treatments have failed can include trigger point injections, epidural steroid injections, facet injections, sacroiliac joint injections, selective nerve root blocks, facet joint radiofrequency, minimally invasive laser spine discectomy, and more advanced treatments including lumbar surgery; and even more advanced options can be implantation of spinal cord stimulators or intrathecal morphine pumps.