Tag: back pain

Yoga and physical therapy effective in treating co-occurring sleep disturbance, back pain

Yoga and physical therapy (PT) are effective approaches to treating co-occurring sleep disturbance and back pain while reducing the need for medication, according to a new study from Boston Medical Center (BMC). Published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, the research showed significant improvements in sleep quality lasting 52 weeks after 12 weeks of yoga classes or 1-on-1 PT, which suggests a long-term benefit of these non-pharmacologic approaches. In addition, participants with early improvements in pain after 6 weeks of treatment were three and a half times more likely to have improvements in sleep after the full, 12-week treatment, highlighting that pain and sleep are closely related.

Sleep disturbance and insomnia are common among people with chronic low back pain (cLBP). Previous research showed that 59% of people with cLBP experience poor sleep quality and 53% are diagnosed with insomnia disorder. Medication for both sleep and back pain can have serious side effects, and risk of opioid-related overdose and death increases with use of sleep medications.

Full story at News-Medical.net

Surgery and other treatments offer viable options for adult scoliosis

For years, spine surgeons have debated the best methods for treating scoliosis in adults. Spinal curvature often results in more back pain, leg pain and other symptoms for adults than teens because adults also can have degeneration in the discs between vertebrae, and spinal stenosis — a narrowing of the opening for the spinal nerves. Still, there hasn’t been good evidence regarding whether it’s better for adults with scoliosis to have corrective surgery or whether nonoperative treatment, such as physical therapy or nerve injections, is adequate.

To help answer that question, doctors at nine centers in North America followed more than 200 adults who had discomfort due to lumbar scoliosis — deformities affecting the lower part of the spine. The NIH-funded trial ran from 2010-2017 and is the only government-funded study of spinal deformity in adults.

The research effort — led by spine surgeon Keith H. Bridwell, MD, at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis — found that surgery usually helped patients improve. It helped correct their curvature, and they had less pain. But the researchers also found that those who didn’t have surgery usually did not go on to experience more severe pain or a more extreme spinal deformity during a two-year follow-up period. In fact, they found that the most important factor in deciding whether to operate was the extent of a patient’s disability, and how much that disability interfered with day-to-day life.

Full story at news-medical.net

8 stretches for the middle back

Mid back pain or stiffness can have a significant impact on daily life. However, certain stretches can help relieve pain and improve flexibility.

Back pain, especially short-term pain, is one of the most common medical complaints in the United States. A variety of lifestyle factors, medical conditions, and injuries can lead to pain in the middle back.

Symptoms of mid back pain can include:

  • short, sharp pains
  • a dull, constant ache
  • muscle tightness or stiffness
  • a reduced range of motion\

Full story at Medical News Today

Study highlights growing problem of ‘iPad neck’ among young adults and women

Is your iPad being a literal pain in the neck?

The answer is likely yes -; especially if you’re a young adult or a woman. “iPad neck” -; persistent pain in the neck and upper shoulders caused by slouching or bending into extreme positions while using tablet computers -; is a growing problem among Americans, according to a new UNLV study. Findings, released last week in The Journal of Physical Therapy Science, show:

  • “iPad neck,” sometimes called “tablet neck,” is usually associated with sitting without back support, such as on a bench or on the ground, or slumping over the tablet while it rests in the user’s lap. Other postures significantly associated with pain included using tablets while lying on the side or back.

Full story at Medical News Today

Osteopathy can be used to treat mental health related to back pain – new study

Millions worldwide suffer from chronic musculoskeletal back pain (lasting more than three months). The problem is so big that in the UK alone, it is estimated that 116m days of work are lost, a million hospital appointments are made and five million GP visits are scheduled – just for low back pain.

The physical agony is often not a standalone problem, however. 35% of people who suffer with low back pain are also diagnosed with depression, anxiety and social isolation.

NICE guidelines suggest that chronic back pain sufferers should have physical therapy as part of a broader package of treatment which includes psychological help. But we have been exploring how one single type of osteopathic treatment can be used to treat both the physical and mental conditions.

Full story at Medical Xpress

Back pain: we’re treating it all wrong

Imagine a medical condition that becomes worse the more it’s treated – let’s call it Malady X. Millions are spent on expensive therapies, on surgery, injections and pills, yet Malady X continues to strike down the young and the old, and especially the poor.

In less affluent times, Malady X sufferers kept working because they had no choice. In most cases their trouble eventually went away.

But then the world became richer, people exercised less and medicine became more sophisticated. Paradoxically, this has caused Malady X – otherwise known as low back pain – to become a bigger problem.

In fact, it’s now the number-one cause of disability worldwide, with the proportion of global disability due to low back pain doubling in the past 25 years. (In Australia, it causes more disability than lung, bowel and breast cancer combined.)

Full story at Medical Xpress

Middle back pain: Causes and relief

Middle back pain refers to pain or discomfort in the thoracic spine — the region of the back between the rib cage and the base of the neck.

In this region, there are 12 spinal disks, several vertebrae, and many muscles and ligaments. Any of these structures can become irritated or damaged, leading to middle back pain.

Read on to learn more about the causes of middle back pain and discover techniques to find relief.

Full story at Medical News Today

Flex CEUs: Removal of Older CEU Courses


***This course will be expiring on 9/27/2017***

This course systematically reviews the efficacy, effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and harms of acupuncture, spinal manipulation, mobilization, and massage techniques in management of back, neck, and/or thoracic pain.  In addition, the contraindications and safety profile of the three most prevalent complementary and alternative medicine therapies for back pain in adults compared to that for other complementary and alternative medicine therapies, conventional therapies, placebo, or no treatment will be investigated.


***This course will be expiring on 9/27/2017***

This course provides an overview of dystonia, a disorder characterized by involuntary muscle contractions. The symptoms are different depending upon the form of dystonia. The classifications of dystonia are presented, along with their symptoms. Current treatments for the disorder are reviewed, followed by an update on research being performed.

For more information, visit Flex CEUs

Personalized, Rather Than Generic, Physical Therapy May Help Improve Back Pain

A study conducted by scientists at the University of Eastern Finland compared the use of personalized physical therapy to a generic exercise program to help affect the functional ability among patients with back pain who had impaired movement control in the lower back.

They suggest that a physical therapy regimen consisting of manual therapy and exercise targeting movement control impairment, rather than the generic exercise program, was more beneficial for such patients.

Treatment results also persisted among the patients at their 12-month follow-up, the researchers add, per a media release from University of Eastern Finland.

Full story of personalized PT improves back pain at PT Products Online

More Studies Question Advisability of Imaging for Back Pain

Last week, PT in Motion News reported on a new study supporting the idea that initial referral to a physical therapist (PT) for new uncomplicated low back pain (LBP) resulted in lower overall costs and utilization than referral for advanced imaging. Since then, more articles have surfaced that question imaging as a “go to” strategy for the condition.

According to an article in HealthDay News, a March 17 study published in JAMA concludes that for older adults, receiving diagnostic imaging for new back pain not only fails to produce better outcomes but actually tends to increase the costs associated with health care over time.

“Although early imaging is not associated with better pain and function outcomes, it is associated with greater use of health care services, such as visits [and] injections,” study author Jeffrey Jarvik, MD, MPH, is quoted as saying in the HealthDay article, adding that it’s a difference that “translates into a nearly $1,500 per patient additional cost, for no measurable benefit.”

Full story of imaging back pain questions at APTA