Interactive Tool: Should I Consider Surgery for My Low Back Problem? - What’s next?
If you are concerned about back pain
or other related symptoms such as leg pain, numbness, or weakness, talk to your
doctor about what steps you can take. If surgery is unlikely to help, you can
still take action to reduce and control your symptoms.
Before a doctor can begin treating back pain, he or she may do tests to diagnose what is causing your problem. Unless you are totally immobilized from a back injury, your doctor probably will test your range of motion and nerve function and touch your body to locate the area of discomfort.
Blood and urine tests may be done to be sure the pain is not caused by an infection or other systemic problem. X-rays are useful in pinpointing broken bones or other skeletal defects. To analyze soft-tissue damage...
Carragee EJ, Hannibal M (2004). Diagnostic evaluation of low back pain. Orthopedic Clinics of North America, 35(2004): 7–16.
Hu SS, et al. (2006). Lumbar disc herniation section of Disorders, diseases, and injuries of the spine. In HB Skinner, ed., Current Diagnosis and Treatment in Orthopedics, 4th ed., pp. 246–249. New York: McGraw-Hill.