Exercise Alleviates Back Pain

Pharmacy Times, Volume 0, 0

Research has shown that chronic low back pain is often debilitating. In fact, ~80% of Americans?4 in 5?experience low backpain at some point in their lives. While there are a range of treatment options available for back pain, a growing number of physiciansare recommending exercise programs to help individuals with chronic back pain.

"There is a growing movement towards fitness as an approach to chronic back pain," said Brian W. Nelson, MD, an orthopedicsurgeon and medical director of Physician's Neck and Back Clinic in Roseville, Minn. "I've come to believe that this is the way to gofor the vast majority of people with back pain [and] I think that 10 years from now, it will be the mainstay of treatment because it isso dramatically cost effective."

Therefore, the programs offered at Nelson's clinic aim at strengthening the back muscles. Nelson said that most individuals withchronic back pain have lost significant strength in their lumbar extensor muscles. Patients can reverse the condition, however, withaggressive strengthening exercises that focus on the lumbar extensor muscle group. Furthermore, Nelson recommended incorporatingexercises specific to the torso rotation muscles and underlying abdominal muscles.