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London Back Pain Clinic

Knowledge Hub

5 mins readFact Checked
Author of post icon

Written By:

Atif Riaz

Medically Reviewed By:

Mr M. Usman

Did you know that over 2.8 million adults in the UK suffer from chronic back pain, often running into months of discomfort and agony? Back pain is also one of the leading causes of disability, posing challenges for individuals and their quality of life. Besides the pain and discomfort, back pain has a substantial negative impact on the economy of the UK, resulting from lost wages, missed work days and layoffs due to the inability to work.

Most back pain problems can be treated, but very effective treatment for back pain starts with proper testing, which The Scan Clinic offers.

What is a Back Pain Clinic?

Back pain is a common condition that can affect many of us at some point in our lives. In many cases, it isn’t a serious problem and might be caused by a simple strain on a muscle or ligament. However, some cases of back pain can be severe and even debilitating.

Back pain is a frequent ailment with a wide range of symptoms. The pain can be subtle, stabbing, throbbing, agonising or burning. It can be consistent, come and go, or get worse with exercise or long periods of sitting. 

There are different types of back pain, each affecting a different part of the back with varying symptoms ranging from poor posture, straining of muscles around the neck and other underlying conditions.

Common types of back pain include

 Thoracic back pain

This pain relates to the thoracic spine, which comprises the twelve vertebrae to which the ribs attach. This is also called the upper back region. Compared with neck or cervical pain and middle and lower back pain, thoracic pain is more likely to be caused by severe underlying conditions. It is important to keep an eye out for specific incidents or symptoms that might come with the pain, such as;

  • Chills or fever
  • Noticeable deformity
  • Unexplained or uncontrollable weight loss
  • Nerve pain, numbness and tingling in the legs or lower body
  • Severe stiffness, especially in the morning
  • Physical trauma
  • Onset of pain before the age of 20
  • Onset of pain after the age of 50
  • Constant severe pain not helped by changing position

Middle back pain

Middle back pain is sometimes synonymous with thoracic pain. It can be described as pain that occurs above the lumbar region of the spine but below the rib cage.

Middle back pain symptoms can be vague and difficult to diagnose, which can be frustrating in chronic chases.

Certain elements can increase a person’s risk of developing middle back pain, including;

  • Pregnancy
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Smoking
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Weight gain and obesity

Lower back pain

This common type of back pain is often not associated with severe disease or back problems. The cause of lower back pain is not clear and is commonly called non-specific lower back pain. Sometimes, lower back pain can be caused by leg issues, such as sciatica, which might cause a strain on the nerves and muscles in the lower back. Some of the common causes of lower back pain include the following;

  • Nerve root pain (sciatica)
  • Arthritis
  • Cauda equina syndrome
  • Some uncommon bone disorders
  • Tumours
  • Infection
  • Pressure from structures near the spine

The symptoms of lower back pain can include;

  • Pain immediately after lifting something heavy
  • Pain after an awkward twisting movement
  • Pain that spreads from the lower back area to one or both thighs or buttocks
  • Pain that is usually easy by lying down flat
  • Pain when moving the back, sneezing or coughing

It is common for people to wake up with lower back pain for no reason. You just sleep and wake up the following day with lower back pain without any warning.

Causes of Back pain

Back pain causes vary widely. Sometimes, the pain can develop without a cause that shows up in a test or imaging study. However, some causes have been identified over the years to cause back pain. But, it’s always a good idea to get a proper diagnosis, which might include imaging to give a detailed perspective of what could be causing your back pain. Common causes of back pain include;

  • Muscle or ligament strain
  • Bulging or ruptured disks
  • Arthritis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Ankylosing spondylitis

Various risk factors can increase your chances of suffering from back pain, such as;

  • Age: Back pain is more common at around 30 or 40.
  • Lack of exercise: Weak unused muscles in the back and abdomen can often lead to back pain
  • Excess weight: Excess body weight puts extra strain on the back, increasing the likelihood of back pain
  • Diseases: Some types of arthritis and cancer can contribute to back pain
  • Improper lifting: using the back instead of the legs can lead to back pain
  • Psychological conditions: People prone to depression and anxiety appear to have a great risk of back pain. Stress can also cause muscle tension, which can contribute to back pain
  • Smoking: Smokers have increased chances of back pain. This could be because smoking causes coughing, which can lead to herniated disks. Smoking also decreases blood flow to the spin and increases the risk of osteoporosis.

Why Might You Visit a London Back Pain Clinic?

Most instances of back pain are easily managed through over-the-counter medication and other pain management methods. However, knowing when you should visit a London back pain clinic is crucial. Some of the reasons you should consider visiting a back pain clinic in London include;

  • Chronic pain: Back pain is considered chronic if it lasts more than three months, while pain that lasts less than three months is considered acute. Although chronic pain might not always warrant a visit to a specialist on its own, if the pain is accompanied by other problems, you should visit a back specialist.
  • Source of pain – You should also consider seeing a back specialist if you can’t remember when your back didn’t hurt or what caused the pain. If the pain starts after an activity like gardening, it can go away through stretching and heating pads.
  • Bowel or bladder problems: A big red flag for back pain is having bowel and bladder problems. If you have a hard time controlling your bowels or going to the bathroom, it could be a sign of a spine tumour or other serious condition. You should go to a back clinic immediately.
  • Pain that travels down your leg: This is caused by pressure or nerve damage, also called radiculopathy. It can cause pain to travel down your back and legs. If you experience this, you should go to a back clinic in London.
  • Leg weakness: Another reason to see a back pain doctor is if the pain also causes leg or hip weakness or numbness that lasts more than a few days.
  • Difficulty with everyday activities: Most people with back pain can still go through the day, work and complete their chores. If your back pain keeps you from doing these things, you should make an appointment at the back pain clinic.
  • Sensation in your feet and legs: Has the back pain changed sensation in your legs or feet? Do you feel a tingling? Some conditions can put pressure on the nerves in your spine, causing tingling. Such additional symptoms indicate that you need professional attention to your back pain.
  • Unexplained weight loss: If you’re losing weight rapidly in addition to back pain, visiting a back pain clinic is vital.
  • Fever with other symptoms: Spine infections are rare but can develop in your vertebrae, joints or discs. The infection comes with a high fever and other symptoms like chills. If you experience any of these together with the back pain, you should consider visiting a back pain clinic in London.
  • Traumatic injuries: Consider visiting a back pain clinic if you suspect your back pain could be a result of a traumatic injury such as a car accident, falling or a sports injury.

It’s also advisable to visit a back pain clinic if you’re experiencing chronic back pain and typical pain management methods don’t seem to work, and the pain keeps coming back.

How to Diagnose Back Pain

When you visit the back pain clinic in London, a diagnosis is among the procedures to expect. Based on the back pain symptoms you present, the doctor could order various tests to determine the cause of the back pain. These could include;

  • X-rays to check for alignment issues, arthritis or fractures
  • CT or MRI imaging to look for herniated disks or musculoskeletal issues
  • Blood tests to check for infections that could be contributing to the pain
  • Bone scans to identify any abnormal growths or tumours
  • Nerve imaging to check for compressions

Depending on the type of back pain and the results of the tests, the treatment procedure can vary from Kenalog injections for some types of lower back pain, which you can get at The Scan Clinic, to surgeries. The Scan Clinic also offers a range of diagnostic tests, including ultrasounds, that can be vital in helping determine the cause of back pain.

What are the 3 Common Causes of Back Pain?  (h2)

Back pain has many causes. But the three common ones are;

  • A pulled muscle or tendon which often happens during exercise or when lifting boxes or heavy objects. It can also happen when you sleep in an awkward position, which can lead to a sore back.
  • Arthritis is another common cause of back pain, often causing stiffness and chronic inflammation in different joints of the body, including the back.
  • The other common reason for back pain is physical trauma, which can cause raptured and herniated disks and other injuries to the back.

Does Chronic Back Pain Ever Go Away?

Most people are concerned about taking pain medication or dealing with back pain for the rest of their lives. Unfortunately, there’s no definitive answer for this. When chronic back pain goes away, it can only be answered on a case-by-case basis.

After the diagnosis, your doctor will work with you to find the best possible treatment plan, which may or may not include medication. Based on the findings of the diagnosis, the doctor should be able to advise on whether the back pain will go away.

London Back Pain FAQs

Q: How is back pain diagnosed

Back pain is diagnosed through a series of tests and assessments, including a physical examination, medical image testing, medical history report and, in some cases, bloodwork to check for infection. Your doctor will request diagnostic tests and procedures depending on your symptoms and their suspicions.

Q: How much is a back pain scan in London?

The cost of a back pain scan in London varies depending on the targeted area. The Scan Clinic offers one-on-one consultations for musculoskeletal assessment with an ultrasound scan, which costs about £190.

Q: Do I need a doctor’s order for a back pain scan?

For some types of back pain tests, we recommend that you see a doctor first so we are sure of what to look for. However, we can provide you with a back pain scan and full report without a doctor’s note.

Q: How soon can I book a back pain assessment appointment?

It depends on the severity of the pain and condition. Normally, we can book you the same week, but in emergencies, we can book patients for same-day assessment. But this is subject to availability.

Q: How long will it take to get the results?

The period it takes to get the results depends on the tests and imaging done. You can leave with a verbal report after the test and an official printed copy within 24 hours for ultrasound scans. Ideally, we strive to ensure we provide you with the test results within two working days at the utmost.

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Fact Check Information

The Scan Clinic is committed to providing accurate and objective educational content about health and medical related topics. We know that there is a lot of misinformation out there, and we take our responsibility to be a trustworthy source of information seriously. Every article on our site is thoroughly fact-checked by our team of writers.

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