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  The Chatter Box : Blathering On
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Back Pain by Ken Dunn on 26 July 2008 4:16pm
For the past 5 days I have been immobilised by severe muscle spasms in my back in the vicinity of the top of my left hip and although the number of spasms are decreasing there is a more general ache developing across my back. I have been on painkillers and muscle relaxants for 3 days and doing some gentle mobility exercises to stop it stiffening more seriously.
Can any one suggest anything else I could try to speed up the healing/recovery process?
Re: Back Pain by Spursfan on 26 July 2008 5:41pm
Ken have you tried seeing an osteopath?

I had a severe pain between my shoulder pains for weeks - even a Turkish massage couldn't shift it! It was agony. Two sessions with my osteopath and it was gone!

Re: Back Pain by sighthound on 26 July 2008 7:35pm
I've had acupuncture help in a similar situation. (Although the competency of licenced acupuncturists varies greatly.) Hope you feel better soon, Ken.
Re: Back Pain by Ken Dunn on 26 July 2008 9:33pm
Thanks Spursfan, I'm planning to see a physiotherapist through our local surgery next week if I'm still having pain on Monday and I'll ask about seeing an osteopath or chiropractor.
Re: Back Pain by Lounge Trekker on 26 July 2008 10:15pm
Me and my back constitute a daily rehab program and I'll tell you what I know Ken. You need to be patient for the sharp pain to subside over the next few days or so and consider fitness the best approach to managing your only back for the rest of your life.

Try Robaxacet or less expensive generic brands (read the label for active ingredient) or other muscle relaxants for the first few days. After the MR meds start to work gently stretch the injured muscle. Flexibility is the best (avoidance) treatment for muscle injury.

Use ice. Be dedicated and do ten minutes on ten off whenever you're close to the freezer. I made a huge ice pack by hydrating dried beans and filling a wine concentrate bag. I can sit on this ice pack and get very effective icing over a large area. You might want to have a cuppa while doing this as it can cool your whole body.

After the most serious discomfort is over and you start moving around more, try heat alternated with ice, or ice before your morning shower at least. This will accelerate the healing by encouraging more circulation to the treated area.

I'm afraid to say that your best way to avoid recurrence is fitness of your back, hip, hams, even your lower leg. Good luck with this Ken. Be persistent and develop your own 'program' that works for you. All these prefessionals can only offer relief of the pain, and suggest things for you to do. They don't get paid to offer usefull advice like fitness.

Your best friend will be the physiotherapist. Learn how you can do effective and (long-term) beneficial exersises with the equipment you have at home.

After you get past this injury, then over do it one day and feel a little sore, try rolling around on a tennis ball. I now bring a tennis ball with my when in the steam room. I never need to go for massage, I can do it myself.

Lounge Injury
Re: Back Pain by mrsthing on 26 July 2008 11:20pm
I haven't read the whole thread yet--have you had an x-ray or MRI? Insist on one sooner rather than later, if you have health insurance that will cover it.

I definitely recommend physical therapy. I was having a lot of arthritis pain in my lower back--radiating into my hips and down my legs--and they cured it. I don't even need pain killers anymore! Your problem sounds different, but I still think PT can help.

And Pete's right--once the pain is under control, fitness is the way to keep it from happening again. Especially your abs and hamstrings: strong abs keep your spine aligned better, and strong hams support your weight and take the stress off your spine.

Good luck! I hope you're out of pain soon.
Re: Back Pain by Ken Dunn on 26 July 2008 11:26pm
Many thanks L T. I'm happy to report that I've been sitting at the computer for over an hour and although my back feels delicate I haven't had to lie down flat to rest it. I could only do 15 minutes previously.
I do have a set of back exercises I use but these have been set aside while helping my wife recover from her broken ankle.
I also keep fit, playing badminton but the club is closed for the summer and the exercise I've been getting seems like it hasn't been enough to prevent the injury on Monday.
I'll refer back to your suggestions, L T, tomorrow as it's late here.
Re: Back Pain by tucsonmike on 27 July 2008 6:50am
Good luck with all that Ken. I feel your pain as I am dealing with gout in my feet.
Re: Back Pain by kazzzz on 27 July 2008 2:45pm
Ken I've seen chiropractors and physios and I find that physios are more gentle, chiropractors can be very rough. Don't have traction it's terrible . Back pain is awful, I don't know ANYONE who doesn't suffer with it.
Re: Back Pain by Ken Dunn on 27 July 2008 9:00pm
After noticing the pain easing last night I am very happy to report that my back pain has almost disappeared. It does feel a little stiff where I was getting the spasms but I have had no serious pain today. I'm still moving about carefully and tomorrow am intending to start gentle exercises to get the fitness back into the area.
Thank you all for your advice and suggestions and I'll check in with the physiotherapist to see if I need to revise the set of exercises I'm using.
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