Back Pain and Diagnosis

Did you know that many doctors miss areas of concern that could lead to cures? Did you know that back pain is common, yet many doctors fail to see the cause? The answer is simple. The reason is most medical doctors have little experience in the system of healing so to speak. Rather many doctors focus on prescribing medicines and searching for answers, which many times rest in front of them. Don’t get me wrong, good doctors reach everywhere, yet these people lack educational knowledge of the spinal column, central nervous system and so on. As well, these people fail to see that many causes of back pain rests in misaligned bones, or spine. Of course, diseases may cause back pain as well. Sitting too long, lack of stretch exercises, etc, all cause lower back pain. 

 

If the back pain is serious it will often show up in MRI or CT scans. X-rays will show back conditions, however since doctors review all areas, except the alignment of the bones and spine, thus most times the x-rays only reveal what the doctor wants to see. This happens to many people, including myself. A pro in analyzing the spine and bones is the man you want to see if you have chronic back conditions.

The types of back pain include sciatica. The back problem may be listed as slip disk in some instances, yet the pain often challenges doctors diagnose since a sharp, electrical shock-like and distressing ache starts at the back and then travels to the legs. Sometimes the pain is intermittent, while other times the pain may be chronic. The particular problem often requires surgery to correct. Sciatica according to few experts is one of the worst backaches endured, since even when the pain has mild pain it is difficult to bend forward and over to tie a shoe. The problem rests in the spine, joints, and connective elements of the spinal column that links to the entire body. 

The spinal column makes up muscles, bones, central nerves, etc. What holds the spine together is disks, connective tissues, tendons, ligaments, etc? When a person stands erect, the spine’s elements will join to apply tension. You can visualize the tension by considering how a string will respond when you pull it down. The changes assist the body in mobility; as well, it determines how the body responds to movement. 

The lower back is made up of large-scale structures, including the backbone and the hip joints. The hip joints connect to the pelvis and each element joins with the spinal column at the triangle bone in the lower back and at the baseline of the spine that joins the hipbones on either side and forms part of the pelvis. (Sacrum) 

The large bones attach to the legs, which provide us strength and support to the vertical spinal column. We have thick bones that start at the opposite side of the thick cord of nerve tissues (Spinal Cord) that is near the neck. Along this area, the joints are thick and the bones start to thin and shrink.  The spinal cord is a “thick whitish” nerve cord surrounded by tissues and extends from the base of the brain and continues to the spinal column, giving mount to a pair of spinal nerves that contribute the body. 

Combining these elements give us the ability to move and provides flexibility. In addition, the organs are directed by these elements. 

The spine is held up by the larger group of bones at the lower region, smaller base, and the top architectures. Stress occurs at the area, since below this region larger muscles work by directing and sparking movement. This is how the legs are able to move, which brute stress is applied to the vertebrae. At the back, we also have a lumbar spinal disk. The disk is affected by the brute stress, since each time we bend and sit, we are applying more than 500 pounds to this area, yet it stretches to a “square inch” around the disks and per count along the area. 

Acute Edema and Back Pain

Back pain is caused from a variety of problems including “Acute Pulmonary Edema.” Edema builds up abnormal and excessive fluids that cause serious actions to the tissue cells. What happens is similar to over watering plants. The plant will swell and gradually wither away.

Edema in acute stages is defined as heart failure to one side, yet the problem extends to cause pain in the back. What occurs is when the heart is interrupted; it channels the fluids to tubes, vessels, ducts, and passageways that extend to the lungs.

Causes of edema:
Edema may arise from inhaling smoke, MI, CHF, Myocarditis, excessive I.V. intakes of fluid, Valvular disease, overdose of drugs, such as morphine, barbiturates, and heroin. Acute edema arises from ARDS (Adult Respiratory Distress Syndrome) and Atherosclerosis.

The lack of heart pumping can cause stress to the chest, which when the chest is scarred it affects the spines structure and mobility. Overarching the back is where back pain starts, since the chest is restricted from scarring and/or edema.

Experts will often use X-rays, ABG tests, ECG, and monitor Homodynamic to discover edema. Of course, edema can lead to major problems, such as Hypernatremia, Digoxin Toxicity, Hypokalemia, Excessive Fluid, and Pulmonary Blockage of the arteries, (Embolism), which starts blood clotting and affects blood circulation. Hypokalemia will decrease potassium intake that is required by blood. What happens is the decrease of potassium to the blood causes excessive excretion of fluids that lead to the muscles, which cause weakness. The back pain is not necessary the issue at this stage, since the heart is the starting point, which could lead to cardiac arrest.

When acute edema is present, experts will often restrict fluid intake, while administering I.V. fluids to substitute. Oxygen and meds are prescribed. Often the doctor will request that the patient remain consistent in a high position, such as “Fowler’s.”

Symptoms:
Edema may present fatigue, coughing, JVD, Hypophysis, murmurs, Orthopnea, one-side heart failure (Right often), low output of cardiac, exerted Dyspnea, and so on. The condition can cause various other symptoms to emerge as well.

Experts will request that the patient limit fluid intake, and join in oxygen therapy. Since edema causes excessive fluid buildup, isometric exercises, and bed, rest is required. Isometric workouts is the process of pushing muscles next to a sturdy surface, whereas the muscles are put under tension, yet restricted from contractions. The exercises are recommended in a variety of medical treatments when back pain is involved.

Edema also affects the joints, cartilages, muscles etc, which can cause tenderness, ulcers of the legs, changes of stasis, and so forth. Edema affects the veins found in the neck as well, which is one of the leading starts of back pain. To avoid traveling into the heart cavity and discussing heart conditions, I will sum up edema and the causes of back pain.

As mentioned earlier, back pain starts with edema since when the heart is not pumping blood it affects the connective tissues, ligaments, tendons, muscles, cells, joints, etc. As you can see, when the skeleton elements are targeted pain will occur from swelling and inflammation. The cause of back pain then starts with excessive fluid buildup emerging from acute edema and/or peripheral edema conditions.

To learn more about edema and back pain consider tendons, ligaments, disks, joints, connective tissues, neurological disorders, and so on.

Back pain has affected millions of people, yet the leading causes emerge from nerve and musculoskeletal disorders. Still, many diseases and disorders can cause back pain, including edema. In fact, when doctors discover musculoskeletal and nerve disorders, they often link one of the potential causes to edema.

Benefits of Stretching

The body is flexible. It is supposed to be flexible. You must be able to bend and reach that something you dropped on the floor. You must be able to zip the back of your favorite dress on your own. You must be able to reach that book you need to read at the top shelf.

These are simple activities. Nothing grand about them, you merely stretched out a bit. However, if there are difficulties in doing such simple motions, then you have to stretch your limits. You already need a stretching program.

What Is Stretching?

Stretching is simply the act of extending to full length the body or simply a part of it. This activity involves straightening or stretching the structure or the limbs.

How Does One Do the Stretching?

Stretching is fairly easy. As mentioned in the introduction, it is involved in the normal activities. It can be done by any people, regardless of age.

However the extent of stretching and flexing differs. The muscles tighten as a person ages. The range of joint movements can be minimized. This can very well obstruct an on-the-go lifestyle. That is why as the person grows older, bending or flexing becomes more limited. This is why stretching regularly, as part of a routine is very important.

Simple stretches can be done everyday. It can be incorporated in the lifestyle and the daily activities. It does not require much of your time.

Stretching exercises can also be done while training. Actually, stretching is an essential part of any training or sport. It must be done first before anything else. Stretching the body and the limbs is a good preparation for a more rigorous activity.

Most athletes would do the sit and reach, wherein they position on the floor, extend their legs and reach the tip of their foot with the tip of their hand. Actually, most trainers actually require their athletes to really do the stretching before playing.

There is actually an ideal length of time in stretching. It is best to do it in 10 minutes. This will give the body enough opportunity to move and flex the muscles, thus preparing it for more complicated and strenuous movements.

Experts however would frown upon going way beyond 10 minutes. Stretching the exercise to 30 minutes or more will already wear out the body. This will not be favorable if one is preparing for a game.

What Are the Benefits of Stretching?

1. Increase the Range of Movement
As one constantly do the stretching exercises, the length of the muscles and the tendons are also increased. This will help in increasing the range of your movement. Thus, the limbs and joints will be able to move, way before an injury can take place. You are definitely physically fit.

2. Increased Ability to Perform Skills
When you have a wide range of movement, the more you will be able to do more things. For example, you can jump high without feeling any pain when you land back on the floor. This will also help you start a new sport or improve more if you are in one. Stretching in this aspect also allows you to have a more active lifestyle.

3. Injury Prevention
One can prevent injury to joints, tendons and muscles with stretching. When the muscles and tendons are well-flexed, they are considered in good working order. This will help in a faster recovery and decreased soreness. The muscles of the body will be able to take more exhausting and rigorous movements with less probability of being injured.

4. Reduce Muscle Tension
If the muscles are given their regular exercises and stretching, it is less likely that they will contract. This will definitely relieve you of any muscle pain or problems.

5. Enhance Energy
Being able to move more will also give you more energy. Stretching will also help enhance your awareness, like knowing that you have a body that is capable of doing many things. As such, you are going to be more driven to move rather than sulk in the corner.

6. Reduces Cholesterol
Research also shows that doing prolonged stretching exercises, like yoga, will help reduce the cholesterol in the body. This of course must be done with a healthy diet at hand. This could prevent and even reverse the hardening of the arteries, allowing you to avoid coronary diseases.

Incorporate stretching in your everyday lifestyle. It has benefits you can not say no to. It also does not require much. It can be your usual activities, bending and flexing every now and then. After all, your fitness is everything so do what it takes to keep the body healthy.

Why Muscles Get Sore

What is muscle soreness?

As people age, they begin to complain more of pains in their muscles and joints. They seem to stiffen up with age, and such commonplace activities as bending over for the morning paper can make them wince.

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Such pain can grip so fiercely that they are sure it begins deep in their bones. But the real cause of stiffness and soreness lies not in the joints or bones, according to research at the Johns Hopkins Medical School, but in the muscles and connective tissues that move the joints.

The frictional resistance generated by the two rubbing surfaces of bones in the joints is negligible, even in joints damaged by arthritis.

Flexibility is the medical term used to describe the range of a joint’s motion from full movement in one direction to full movement in the other. The greater the range of movement, the more flexible the joint.

If you bend forward at the hips and touch your toes with your fingertips, you have good flexibility, or range of motion of the hip joints. But can you bend over easily with a minimal expenditure of energy and force? The exertion required to flex a joint is just as important as its range of possible motion.

Different factors limit the flexibility and ease of movement in different joints and muscles. In the elbow and knee, the bony structure itself sets a definite limit. In other joints, such as the ankle, hip, and back, the soft tissue—muscle and connective tissue—limit the motion range.

The problem of inflexible joints and muscles is similar to the difficulty of opening and closing a gate because of a rarely used and rusty hinge that has become balky.

Hence, if people do not regularly move their muscles and joints through their full ranges of motion, they lose some of their potential. That is why when these people will try to move a joint after a long period of inactivity, they feel pain, and that discourages further use

What happens next is that the muscles become shortened with prolonged disuse and produces spasms and cramps that can be irritating and extremely painful. The immobilization of muscles, as researchers have demonstrated with laboratory animals, brings about biochemical changes in the tissue.

Triggers For Muscle Soreness

1. Too much exercise

Have you always believed on the saying, “No pain, no gain?” If you do, then, it is not so surprising if you have already experienced sore muscles.

The problem with most people is that they exercise too much thinking that it is the fastest and the surest way to lose weight. Until they ache, they tend to ignore their muscles and connective tissue, even though they are what quite literally holds the body together.

2. Aging and inactivity

Connective tissue binds muscle to bone by tendons, binds bone to bone by ligaments, and covers and unites muscles with sheaths called fasciae. With age, the tendons, ligaments, and fasciae become less extensible. The tendons, with their densely packed fibers, are the most difficult to stretch. The easiest are the fasciae. But if they are not stretched to improve joint mobility, the fasciae shorten, placing undue pressure on the nerve pathways in the muscle fasciae. Many aches and pains are the result of nerve impulses traveling along these pressured pathways.

3. Immobility

Sore muscles or muscle pain can be excruciating, owing to the body’s reaction to a cramp or ache. In this reaction, called the splinting reflex, the body automatically immobilizes a sore muscle by making it contract. Thus, a sore muscle can set off a vicious cycle pain.

First, an unused muscle becomes sore from exercise or being held in an unusual position. The body then responds with the splinting reflex, shortening the connective tissue around the muscle. This cause more pain, and eventually the whole area is aching. One of the most common sites for this problem is the lower back.

4. Spasm theory

In the physiology laboratory at the University of Southern California, some people have set out to learn more about this cycle of pain.

Using some device, they measured electrical activity in the muscles. The researchers knew that normal, well-relaxed muscles produce no electrical activity, whereas, muscles that are not fully relaxed show considerable activity.

In one experiment, the researchers measured these electrical signals in the muscles of persons with athletic injuries, first with the muscle immobilized, and then, after the muscle had been stretched.

In almost every case, exercises that stretched or lengthened the muscle diminished electrical activity and relieved pain, either totally or partially.

These experiments led to the “spasm theory,” an explanation of the development and persistence of muscle pain in the absence of any obvious cause, such as traumatic injury.

According to this theory, a muscle that is overworked or used in a strange position becomes fatigued and as a result, sore muscles.

Hence, it is extremely important to know the limitations and capacity of the muscles in order to avoid sore muscles. This goes to show that there is no truth in the saying, “No pain, no gain.” What matters most is on how people stay fit by exercising regularly at a normal range than once rarely but on a rigid routine.

What You Can Do

If you think you suffer from spam theory or muscle pain due to over activity contact our office at 312-949-1289 and schedule a free consultation with one of our doctors.  Our doctors are certified in advanced techniques to quickly find permanent relief from this condition. Chicago InHealth Center

Published by Graham Pommerehn, DC. 

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Great service and great people.  I’ve had chronic back problems over the last 20 years and have been to a number of loop area places and Chicago Whole Health is definitely the standout.  On my first visit it was clear that their interests truly lie in resolving the issue rather than ensuring a larger number of visits (they showed me how to effectively self treat to the extent possible).  While I went there only for lower back issues, they offer a pretty expansive line of services.  I highly recommend this place to anyone.
Paul
I have had some medical issues that I have not been able to resolve for the past few years. Having tried Western medicine and holistic methods, I decided to try out acupuncture. I was not sure where to find a good acupuncturist (other than Chinatown). I really wanted someone I could communicate my problems to and who could communicate with me so that I could understand everything. Dr. Zhao was the answer to my problems. She speaks English and some Mandarin! I had told Dr. Zhao that it was my first time to acupuncture and told her my problems.  She explained everything thoroughly to me a…
Janet
Let me first start by saying that I was totally against any type of chiropractic care until I hurt my back earlier this year.  After some nudging from a coworker, I decided it was time to get help.  I searched for a Chiropractor in my area and the Chicago Whole Health Center came up.  I called immediately and spoke with Dr. Graham Pommerehn aka “Dr. Feel Good”!  I was truly surprised and overjoyed that I felt so much better after my first visit!  “Dr. Feel Good” worked his magic on me and did it with the best bedside manner I have ever experienced.  He is patient, gentle, funny and kind. I…
Carolyn
The doctors here are wonderful. Dr Pommerehn helped me find ways to take care of my back after it had left me immobilized and unable to go to work.
Sean
This is a great place.  Dr. Pommerehn was so good. I had lots of problems with my shoulder, which we tried therapy on to fix.  He explained everything in detail, and finally when my shoulder did not get completely better, he sent me for an MRI, which showed a tear.  He said I would might need surgery. No one could believe that a Chiropractor was helping me so much – I really appreciated the work that he did with me, and the honesty with which he treated me. I will definitely use this place again.
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I had broken my tailbone a few years ago and recently was having more pain around it. I thought surgery may be my only option, but decided to try chiropractic care for the injury and I’m so glad I found this place! Dr. Pommerehn is amazing! He was very upfront and honest during our initial exam and thoroughly explained every part of the treatment plan. Given the extent of my I injury we weren’t sure treatment would help, but his patience and treatment paid off! After a few weeks of intense treatment (three times a week) I have been able to manage the pain of this injury. I no longer have r…
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