No doubt you've experienced back or neck pain, either because you've had an accident or simply because you're getting older.
And although many minor stress or sprain injuries to your back heal with time and rest, almost 20 percent of people affected by acute low back pain develop chronic pain after a year.
Because the spine is so important for mobility, persistent issues with slipped disks or inflammation can make it impossible to work or live a normal life. However, medical advances, including new treatments and minimally invasive surgery, are helping many.
Causes of back and neck pain
Doctors say that back and neck pain account for a large proportion of visits to their office each year, and many are the result of accidents.
"The most common causes of injury I see are traumatic and come from motor vehicle collisions. They might be whiplash, fractures and ligament strains," said Abhishiek Sharma, MD , a neurosurgeon and an independent member of the HonorHealth medical staff.
These types of injuries can benefit from nonsurgical treatments, including nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, plenty of rest for the affected area, physical therapy or injection therapy . However, in special cases more advanced treatments or surgery are necessary.
If you have struggled with back or neck pain from six months to a year, medical experts recommend a new type of surgery that requires fewer incisions and promises faster recovery.
With new minimally invasive spine surgeries , "we can now accomplish great surgical outcomes with smaller incisions, less post-operative pain, less operating time, less anesthesia and quicker post-surgical mobilization," said Dr. Sharma.
Both surgical and nonsurgical treatments now offer hope for those suffering with chronic pain, allowing them to finally live normal lives.
Learn more about options for treating persistent back and neck pain at HonorHealth.com/medical-services/neurosciences/spine-services.