Mayo Clinic News Network
Got back pain? You’re definitely not alone.
“The majority of the population ─ overwhelming majority of people ─ will experience back or neck pain at some point in their lives,” Dr. Mo Bydon, a spine surgeon at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, says. “Back and neck pain are two of the top five reasons for anyone to see their doctor.”
Dr. Bydon says there is a reason so many have back problems:
“There are many joints in the back, and each of them can degenerate and can cause pain. In addition, as we age, we utilize our back and our neck more and more.”
Dr. Bydon says pinpointing the exact source of the pain and finding the best way to fix it can be tricky but not hopeless:
“Generally, something can be done to help ─ usually starting with nonoperative measures.”
He says in many cases ice packs, heat packs, physical therapy or injections can take care of the problem. Other times, surgery is the only thing that can alleviate the pain.
But, Dr. Bydon says, you do have some control in avoiding back problems.
Strengthening of the musculature around the back, those are important areas to help prevent back pain and to help slow down the rate of degeneration,” he says.