I have been having lower back pain for a while. My doctor gave me pain meds that relieved the pain for a certain amount of time. I can't bend forward or backward without the pain, and I have to sleep with a pillow under my back to ease some of the pain. Can you please recommend what I should do to get back to myself pain-free? I work with disabled individuals, and I can't work with this pain.

Answer

Unfortunately, there is not a simple answer to your question. I have learned over the last 13 years of working in orthopedics that treatments and treatment responses can vary significantly among patients. What works for one person with back pain may not work for another. If you are not responding to medications, have you been referred for any therapy, such as physical therapy, chiropractic therapy, or acupuncture? All of these are typically recommended on an initial basis before injections. If you have tried therapy without success, I would talk to your doctor about how much pain you're having. If you didn't already have an MRI, that would most likely be your next step. If you do have pathology on the MRI, your doctor will then be able to recommend injections, alternative treatments, or possibly surgery. I understand how you must be feeling, and I'm very sorry that you haven't found any treatments yet that have worked. My recommendation would be to be very honest and frank with your doctor about how much pain you are in and hopefully, he can refer you for imaging, treatments, injections, or to another doctor who can help. I wish you all the best. Feel free to ask another question if I haven't answered this question adequately.

Updated on August 14, 2018

Original Article:

Treatment for Chronic Back Pain: Facet Injections and Radiofrequency Ablation
By Kortney Tholen
working

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