Scoliosis with chronic back pain

Patient

Q: The chronic pain in my back hurts so bad even after i take my pain med it takes the pain away for a few hours then comes right back and now im starting to have pain shooting down on my right leg just my right leg and it goes all the way down to my heels is there any thing else i can do do i need to go find another dr that deals with back pain i dont no what to do i take 3 pain pills a day and it releaves the pain for maybee two hrs but thats it

Doctor

A:   When the low back pain is associated with a traveling pain or numbness to the legs, knees or feet, a spinal nerve compression has to be rule out especially in your case with history of scoliosis. The back pain associated to a nerve compression can produce an inflammatory process that affects nerve roots (neuritis), and it manifests as traveling pain to the lower limbs and symptoms as numbness.The treatment strategy would be as follows: try to keep a proper posture, avoiding repetitive cervical and lumbosacral stress (example weight lifting), adhering to a healthy lifestyle and proper nutrition, physical activity, losing excess of weight, smoking cessation, seeking medical advice in a timely manner when indicated. During the pain crisis a physical therapy program should be followed and aimed to reduce pain and inflammation as well as the use of anti-inflammatory drugs (as ibuprofen). You should be independent in a stretching and strengthening program and continue with these exercises under the periodic supervision of a physical therapist initially and then completely on their own. For patients that show poor response to these measures the surgical option may be considered.

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