Low back pain is one of the most common reasons for seeing a physical therapist. Pain in the low back is usually caused by a disruption to the lumbar spine anatomy. The lumbar spine consists of 5 vertebrae as well as an extensive anatomy of muscles, nerves, tendons, ligaments and discs. These vertebrae function to house the spinal cord and to help carry the load and bear the weight of your body. Injuries can occur to the lumbar spine either traumatically or through wear and tear of every day activities. Common injuries and conditions that occur include degenerative disc disease, displaced or herniated disc, stenosis, osteoarthritis, muscle strain, and sciatica. These conditions can then lead to a number of impairments including pain in the low back and hip, stiffness, and numbness and tingling into the buttocks and legs.
Your Physical Therapist will conduct a thorough evaluation to determine which structure is causing your pain and develop a treatment plan. This plan will include any combination or all of the following: therapeutic exercise, manual therapy, electric stimulation, hot and cold therapy, functional training, joint mobilization, soft tissue mobilization and cardiovascular exercise.