Should You Go to a Surgeon for Low Back Pain?
One of the most common medical conditions in the world is low back pain. Well in fact, it’s quite true that acute low back pain is something we all expect to experience at least once. It also is true that for some people, the pain associated with low back pain can be unbearable. But the good news is that majority of the cases will eventually get better in several weeks without medical intervention.
Now what if you have been suffering from low back pain for more than a couple of months now and yet there seems to be no progress at all? There are countless cases of patients with low back pain like you who wonder if they really have to seek a medical professional’s advice to finally get rid of the condition.
Yes, it is true that a spine surgeon will be the last resort for the most serious cases, but for the majority of low back pain instances, it is recommended that a physical exam will be conducted by the family doctor or a primary care physician. It makes a lot of sense to first visit a family doctor or primary care physician for the purpose of getting prescription for medications like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and non-narcotic pain medications. The primary care doctor likewise can prescribe physical therapy or chiropractic treatment.
When To See the Surgeon
Before you ultimately come to the decision to visit a spine surgeon, you must first get confirmation through imaging studies and the confirmation of the common symptoms that say you’re definitely in need of a back surgery. To figure out if surgery is in fact needed, there has to be an identifiable anatomic cause for your low back pain and the only way to know that is by undergoing advanced lab tests like MRI scanning, routine flexion extension films for instability, and CT scan myelogram. But if that identifiable anatomic cause isn’t there, it means surgery won’t be an option.
One thing you must be reminded though is that if conventional non-surgical treatments don’t help you get the pain treatment you, it doesn’t always translate to spine surgery. But once proof is present that surgery is needed, the decision to be subjected to it lies in your hands since you’re the one suffering from the pain in your lower back. So, even if the spine surgeon wants you to have surgery, you still have all the right in the world to refuse, regardless of what your reasons are.
But for the sake of discussion, you might want to give a minimally invasive back surgery a serious consideration if your ability to function normally is already hindered by your lower back pain and if taking narcotic pain medication isn’t working.