Low Back Pain

“Oh my aching low back!”

One of the most common conditions that drives people to see a Doctor of Chiropractic is low back pain. It is estimated that in America, over 31 million people are suffering from low back pain at any given time. (1)

Back Facts

  • Worldwide, low back pain is the number one cause of disability – Global Burden of Disease 2010.
  • Each year, of all Americans that work, one half experience back pain (2)
    Back pain is reported to be the most common reason people visit a doctor and is a common reason for missing work
  • Most low back pain is not due to an organic issue: meaning it is mechanical and not due to other disease process such as infection, cancer or fractures.
  • On a yearly basis, in the USA, we spend over $50 BILLION dollars on treating back pain. (3)
    It is estimated that 80% of the population will experience some form of back pain during their lifetime. (4)

Causes of Low Back Pain

Our back is composed of bones (vertebra) joints, ligaments and muscles arraigned in a complicated structure. This allow us to walk upright and function with full range of motion.  Any damage or irritation to these structures can result in a loss of function and mobility, resulting in inflammation and pain.

Various structures that can be injured or stressed include: muscles, ligaments, joint capsules and discs, all of which can result in low back pain. Common sources of injury include car accidents, sports and work injury as well as slip and falls.

Another means by which these structures are irritated is poor body posture or mechanics over long periods of time. The way we sit, stand or lift day in day out can slowly stretch ligaments and muscles allowing the spinal bones to misalign and result in joint irritation and back pain.

How Chiropractors Can Help Back Pain

Doctors of Chiropractic are the specialist trained in the effective use of the spinal adjustment. This form of treatment is safe and effectve for treating low back pain that is related to the structural issues of the spine and pelvis. Research has shown it to be one if not the most affective treatment for low back pain. Spinal adjustments are proven to decrease the need of medication, reduce pain, and speed the affect of physical therapy. (5)

The American Chiropractic Association states that:

“After an extensive study of all currently available care for low back problems, the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research—a federal government research organization—recommended that low back pain sufferers choose the most conservative care first. And it recommended spinal manipulation as the only safe and effective, drugless form of initial professional treatment for acute low back problems in adults. (6).”

Further, the ACA quotes the Journal of the American Medical Association as suggesting “chiropractic care as an option for people suffering from low back pain–and noted that surgery is usually not needed and should only be tried if other therapies fail (7).”

If you are experiencing low back pain, we encourage you to contact us or call (314) 731-4383 and schedule an appointment. Why waste your time and prolong your suffering with proven, less effective treatments?

1. Jensen M, Brant-Zawadzki M, Obuchowski N, et al. Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the Lumbar Spine in People Without Back Pain. N Engl J Med 1994; 331: 69-116.
2. Vallfors B. Acute, Subacute and Chronic Low Back Pain: Clinical Symptoms, Absenteeism and Working Environment. Scan J Rehab Med Suppl 1985; 11: 1-98.
3. This total represents only the more readily identifiable costs for medical care, workers compensation payments and time lost from work. It does not include costs associated with lost personal income due to acquired physical limitation resulting from a back problem and lost employer productivity due to employee medical absence. In Project Briefs: Back Pain Patient Outcomes Assessment Team (BOAT). In MEDTEP Update, Vol. 1 Issue 1, Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, Rockville,
4. In Vallfors B, previously cited.
5. Time to recognize value of chiropractic care? Science and patient satisfaction surveys cite usefulness of spinal manipulation. Orthopedics Today 2003 Feb; 23(2):14-15.
6. Bigos S, Bowyer O, Braen G, et al. Acute Low Back Problems in Adults. Clinical Practice Guideline No.14. AHCPR Publication No. 95-0642. Rockville, MD: Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, Public Health Service, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, December, 1994.
7. Goodman D, Burke A, Livingston E. Low Back Pain. JAMA. 2013; 309(16):1738.