If you have struggled with back pain for any length of time, you may be wondering if spine surgery is your only treatment option. Sometimes, surgery is the only treatment. However, there is good news. The vast majority of back problems can be remedied with non-surgical treatments—often referred to as non-surgical or conservative therapies also.
Improper body mechanics, trauma, structural abnormalities and aging can injure your spine. This causes back pain and other symptoms such as numbness, leg pain or even weakness in legs. Chronic back pain is a condition that requires a team of health professionals to diagnose and treat. Before resigning yourself to surgery, consider getting opinions from several spine specialists. This investment of time and information-gathering will help you make an informed treatment decision that will best support your lifestyle and desired level of physical activity also.
What about conservative treatment?
As with all non-emergency spinal surgeries, a trial of non-operative treatment, such as physical therapy, pain medication—preferably an anti-inflammatory, or bracing observed before considering surgery. The trial period of conservative treatment varies, but six weeks to six months is the general timeframe.
Spine surgery may be recommended if a non-surgical treatment such as medications and physical therapy fails to relieve symptoms. The thought of surgery comes in those cases where the particular origin of pain determined—such as a spinal stenosis, herniated disc, or scoliosis.