It’s known as dorsalgia, when the dorsal spine is reinforced by a series of muscles that tend to contract, causing persistent and diffuse pain, fibrosis, or muscle spasm.
What does “Dorsalgia” mean?
Dorsalgia means back or spine pain, including low back, mid-back, and sciatic pain. Back pain can range from a muscle aching to a shooting, burning, or stabbing sensation.
However, the pain may radiate down your leg and worsen with bending, twisting, lifting, standing, and walking.
List Some most Common Causes.
Bulging or herniated discs can cause dorsalgia. Other most common causes are,
- Muscle strain.
- Ligament strain
- Ruptured discs
- Skeletal irregularities
What Causes Chronic Back Pain or Dorsalgia?
Back pain is called chronic or dorsalgia when it lasts more than three months. It may come and go, or it might be constant. It’s not as common as acute back pain, which comes on suddenly and lasts less than six weeks.
Some common causes of chronic back pain are:
- Bulging or herniated discs. Spinal discs are soft cushions between the vertebrae. You can have damaged spinal discs without back pain, but the discs often pinch a nerve. That causes back pain.
- Spinal Stenosis. Spinal stenosis can shrink the space inside the vertebrae. As a result, the bones squeeze the spinal cord, causing pain in the back.
- Osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is one of the most common types of arthritis. It is more prevalent in the larger weight-bearing joints such as knees or hips but can occur at any joint in the body.
However, six types of dorsalgia causes usually vary according to them.
What are its 6 types?
These are listed here:
- Cervical dorsalgia.
- Cervicothoracic dorsalgia.
- Thoracic dorsalgia.
- Thoracolumbar dorsalgia.
- Lumbar dorsalgia.
- Lumbosacral dorsalgia.
However, If we talk in specific terms, the pain involved comes from the spine. Accordingly, the spine section, the sacral spines responsible for the pain, makes for a particular type of back pain.
In all, there are six known types of dorsalgia. These are listed here:
Cervical dorsalgia is also medically termed as cervicalgia. It is a type in which the cervical spine is involved.
However, The pain you feel is in the neck region and occurs due to some injury or degeneration of the cervical spine.
- Cervicothoracic dorsalgia
This type of dorsalgia involves cervical and thoracic regions of the spine. The cervical spine is the uppermost part of the vertebral column in the neck region. Whereas the thoracic spine is the second portion of the vertebral column. It is located between the cervical spine and lumbar spine. However, the pain comes from both of these portions.
This type of back pain comes from only the thoracic vertebral segments. So, this type is rare.
Thoracolumbar dorsalgia involves both the thoracic and lumbar spine. Usually, this type involves both upper and lower back pain.
The lumbar spine is located where the thoracic spine ends and continues down to the sacral spine. This part of the back is the most used in our daily movements. However, this type is more common among patients with this disease.
This type involves back pain that roots from the spine lumbar and sacral spine.
What are the Common Symptoms?
Varying between the six types, the symptoms of this disease are usually common across patients.
- You may feel a sharp or stinging pain in your back or only your neck.
- Difficulty in changing position like climbing the stairs or rising from a chair or bed.
- Facing pain or difficulty while bending down.
- Stiff Back.
- You may feel a burning sensation.
However, a change of posture is painful for patients with this condition. In some cases where nerves are compromised due to a bulge of spinal discs, the symptoms usually also include numbness in the upper and lower extremities.
Also, a stinging sensation is experienced. These problems make it difficult for the patient to carry out everyday activities with ease.
However, Dorsalgia can also cause a stiff neck.
Is back stiffness a symptom of dorsalgia?
There are many underlying causes of a stiff back including dorsalgia, trauma, overuse or repetitive stress, and poor posture. A sudden traumatic injury from lifting improperly, a fall, or an accident, typically leads to pain, inflammation, and muscle spasms causing back stiffness.
What are the Non-Surgical Treatments?
NSAIDs or Muscle Relaxants:
When surgery is not involved, treatment is mainly relied on with pain relief medications and physical therapy. The drugs include NSAIDs such as aspirin, ibuprofen, Aleve, or Indocin.
However, If your pain stiff back is persistent and doesn’t respond to first-line, over-the-counter treatments, you may want to talk to your doctor about muscle relaxants.
Facet Injections of Lidocaine or Steroids:
Especially in the case of acute lumbar back pain, facet injections of lidocaine and steroids have demonstrated therapeutic effects.
However, Cortisone can relieve pain for months, but you may not feel pain relief until several days after the injection.
Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is a possible therapy for middle back pain. TENS units are small, handheld, battery-operated devices that block nerve impulses.
When Surgery is Necessary?
These are the less conservative treatments if medications or other therapies are not working. These include microdiscectomy, electrical stimulation for dorsalgia, artificial disc replacement, spinal fusion, and vertebroplasty.
How to Get Rid of It?
While managing dorsalgia, be sure to talk with your Riverside Pain physician about improving and maintaining quality mental health. Your physician can guide you toward a mental health plan that benefits your condition. You can also try some life changes as well:
Try to Get Enough Rest
When you’re experiencing dorsalgia, the idea of getting enough sleep often sounds just as impossible as staying positive. However, a good night’s sleep is essential for good health. A lack of sleep can lead to more health problems. Talk with your doctor about any issues that you have with sleep, but you can also try gentle, approved exercises
- before bed
- a warm bath.
- Or a relaxing novel to wind down.
Dorsalgia is a very painful ailment that can prevent you from doing certain day-to-day activities. Because of this, you should start the treatment of back pain as soon as possible. And, above all, learn about its causes. This will help you act on them and prevent them from reappearing.