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Low Back Pain Specialist

Apex Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

John H. Bissell, MD

Physiatrist and Pain Management Physician located in Colorado Springs, CO

Low back pain has plagued people for generations and is still one of the most common causes of long-term musculoskeletal issues. If you're affected by low back pain, quadruple board-certified pain management physician John Bissell, MD, of Apex Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation in Colorado Springs, Colorado, offers a range of solutions that don't involve surgery. For more information about ketamine infusions, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy, epidural injections, and other cutting-edge approaches to low back pain, visit Apex Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Schedule an appointment by phone or book online today.

Low Back Pain Q&A

Where is my low back pain coming from?

Your spine consists of a column of bones called vertebrae. Your lumbar vertebrae connect to small facet joints, allowing your spine’s normal range of motion in your low back. Each set of vertebrae has a shock-absorbent disc made of a soft, jelly-like center with a tough outer coating.

Connecting the vertebrae, holding them in place, and providing stability to your spine are ligaments, tendons, muscles, and cartilage. There's also your spinal cord, which, along with your brain, makes up your central nervous system (CNS).

Your spinal cord is a thick mass of nerves from which the peripheral nerves spread out to the rest of your body. The concentration of nerves in and around your spinal column is vulnerable to pressure from surrounding bones and other tissues in your spine, meaning back pain is a common problem.

What conditions commonly cause low back pain?

Low back pain might develop from an injury to one of the structures that form part of your spinal column, or their gradual deterioration.

Poor posture, exceeding your fitness level, overreaching, moving awkwardly, and using the wrong technique to lift heavy items are frequent causes of low back pain.

Some of the most widespread causes of low back pain include:

  • Herniated lumbar discs
  • Sciatica
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Lumbar spinal stenosis
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Other types of arthritis
  • Facet arthropathy
  • Piriformis syndrome
  • Osteoporosis

Acute injuries often become chronic pain problems because the damaged tissues don't heal well. Dr. Bissell specializes in treating low back pain caused by poorly healed sports injuries.

What other symptoms are caused by low back pain conditions?

Low back pain is often due to nerve compression in or around your spine. Nerve compression causes symptoms such as:

  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Prickling sensation
  • Pins and needles
  • Loss of feeling
  • Loss of function

Nerve pain is often shooting and intense. Sciatica, for example, causes shooting pain down one leg, following the path of the sciatic nerve. 

The discomfort you feel with spinal stenosis, herniated discs, and degenerative disc disease are typically due to pressure or irritation of the spinal nerves.

How is low back pain treated?

Treatments for low back pain include:

  • Physical therapy
  • Epidural injections
  • Transforaminal epidural steroid injection (TFESI)
  • Manual therapy
  • Strengthening program
  • Anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Ketamine infusions
  • Platelet-rich plasma (PRP)

The treatment Dr. Bissell recommends for your low back pain depends on what's causing it, the effects it's having, and other considerations like your age and general health.

To receive the most effective care for your low back pain, call Apex Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation or book a consultation online today.