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Back Pain: What You Should Know

Back pain is one of the most common reasons for medical visits. In many cases, back pain is “non-specific”, meaning that the pain results from a muscle strain of some kind. This kind of pain usually resolves itself and the discomfort can be managed with over-the-counter pain medication. In some cases, however, back pain can be a real cause for concern. Here are some back pain red flags:

  • Pain that has not improved after 4 weeks.
  • Pain that goes down the leg especially when there is weakness.
  • Pain that does not get better even when lying down.
  • Pain that is accompanied by loss of bowel or bladder control.
  • Pain associated with fever, weight loss, or a history of cancer.
  • Pain that results from a fall or some other type of trauma.

Contact your doctor immediately if you experience these symptoms.

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