Upper back pain is less common than neck or lower back pain, but when it does occur, it can cause extreme discomfort. When you seek treatment for upper back pain, it’s important to choose a spine doctor with experience in treating this region of the back, particularly if you need surgery. If you’re suffering from upper back pain , here is what you need to know.
Basics of the Upper Back
The upper back is also referred to as the thoracic spine. It sits between the cervical spine in your neck and the lumbar spine in your lower back. The thoracic spine is attached to the ribs, so it doesn’t move nearly as much as the rest of your spine. For this reason, it is less vulnerable to injury and degeneration than the other parts of your back.
Causes of Upper Back Pain
Upper back pain can be acute and occur as the result of a trauma, or it can be chronic and develop over time. Muscular irritation—also called myofascial pain—and joint dysfunction are the two most common causes. Muscular irritation can occur during an auto accident, as the result of a sports injury, or over time due to poor posture or repetitive motions. Joint dysfunction occurs when the joints that connect the spine to the ribs don’t work properly. Less common causes of upper back pain include degenerative disc disease and spinal stenosis.
Treatments for Upper Back Pain
Because the upper back is so close to the heart and lungs, conservative treatments are used as often as possible. These may include spinal manipulation, massage therapy, and trigger point injections. When these methods do not provide sufficient relief, spine surgery, such as thoracic lateral fusion, is recommended.
Dr. Archie C. Perry, Jr. of the Spine Institute of Nevada is experienced in thoracic surgery in Las Vegas and can provide safe treatment for your upper back pain. Don’t let spine problems interfere with your life for another day. Contact us at (702) 479-7417 to schedule an appointment.
If you have been told that you need a cervical surgery near Las Vegas, such as a cervical discectomy, understanding the anatomy of that portion of your spine can help you understand your procedure. The cervical spine supports your head and is responsible for allowing neck movement. This video explains more.
In this video, you’ll see the various structures that make up your cervical spine, including the vertebrae, discs, and lamina. A problem with any one of these structures can lead to neck pain and the need for cervical surgery.
At the Spine Institute of Nevada , we perform minimally invasive surgery for a range of spine problems, including cervical pain. If you’re suffering from back problems , schedule an appointment with a spine surgeon by calling (702) 479-7417.
Many people think of scoliosis as a childhood illness, but it can and does strike during adulthood as well. In adults, degenerative scoliosis is the most common form. It is caused by a deterioration of the facet joints, similar to osteoarthritis, and causes the spine to curve to one side. The pain can be severe, unlike scoliosis in younger patients, and the treatment options for adults are different. If you see a spine doctor near Las Vegas for your scoliosis, here are some of the treatments he or she may recommend.
Medications used to treat osteoarthritis are also used to treat adult scoliosis . These include non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs), including over-the-counter medicines like acetaminophen and ibuprofen as well as prescription medicines such as Celebrex. Epidural injections and facet injections can also be used to decrease inflammation that is causing pain.
Lifestyle Changes and Therapy
Excess weight exacerbates many back problems, including adult scoliosis. By losing weight, you can decrease the pressure on your facet joints to ease the pain. Physical therapy, water therapy, and chiropractic care can also be helpful in relieving pressure on the facet joints and building muscle strength in the back. Be sure to consult with your spine doctor before undergoing any kind of therapy.
If non-surgical treatments are not successful in relieving pain and increasing mobility, then spinal surgery may be the answer. Typically, spinal decompression and spinal fusion are performed to treat adult scoliosis. Pain can linger for up to 12 months following surgery, so it is only recommended for patients with severe scoliosis.
The Spine Institute of Nevada treats scoliosis in patients of all ages using both non-surgical and surgical remedies. Don’t let back problems leave you on the sidelines. Make an appointment today by contacting us at (702) 479-7417, and get on the road to living pain-free.
If you’re having back problems, minimally invasive spine surgery could bring you the relief you need. Taking a minimally invasive approach to spine surgery rather than a traditional, open surgical style has many benefits for patients. Here are a few of the reasons why you should ask your spine surgeon if minimally invasive surgery is right for you.
Faster healing time is one of the biggest advantages of minimally invasive surgery. Open spine surgery almost always involves lengthy recoveries that can last for months, while recovery from minimally invasive surgery happens in a fraction of the time. Additionally, since the incisions are so much smaller, there is less blood loss and a lower risk of infection. A minimally invasive procedure also means a shorter hospital stay and less post-procedure pain.
The Spine Institute of Nevada is pleased to offer minimally invasive surgery as an option for our patients living with back pain. Get a diagnosis of your back problems and find out more about your treatment options by contacting us today at (702) 479-7417.
If you’re scheduled for cervical disc replacement surgery , you are probably wondering what to expect from the procedure. This spinal surgery is performed for patients with neck, shoulder, and arm pain that hasn’t responded to non-surgical treatment. After recovering from your procedure, you should experience a significant reduction in discomfort and an increase in mobility. If you’re having cervical disc replacement surgery, here is what you can expect.
Before your procedure, your spine doctor will determine if you’re a good candidate for surgery . In most cases, your doctor will want you to exhaust all non-surgical options for treating your pain before considering surgery. You won’t be a good candidate for this surgery if you need more than one cervical disc replaced or if the disc is adjacent to the location of a previous cervical fusion. Your spine surgeon will want to ensure that you are in good overall health and that you don’t have any conditions that could interfere with your recovery.
Cervical disc replacement is performed under general anesthesia, so you will be asleep throughout the procedure. The surgery is performed through a small incision in the front of the neck. Via the incision, the damaged disc is removed and the artificial disc is inserted using live X-ray imaging to ensure the right placement. The wound is closed and a drain may be placed to remove excess fluid.
Most patients go home the same day of their spinal surgery or the following day. If you had a drain placed, it will be removed the next day. Pain can be controlled with medications and usually improves within a few days after surgery. You may need to wear a neck collar for up to a week to keep your neck immobilized. Most patients can return to light activity within one to two weeks after the procedure and their normal activities six weeks later.
Your spine surgeon at the Spine Institute of Nevada is always available to answer any questions you may have about a procedure. To schedule a consultation with one of our specialists, please contact us at (702) 479-7417.
- Back Pain
- Spinal Compression Fractures
- Disc Replacement
- Thoracic Spine
- Minimally Invasive Surgery
- Spine Surgery
- Cervical Spine
- Lumbar Laminectomy
- Thoracic Lateral Fusion
- Spinal Tumors
- Vertebroplasty Procedure
- Spinal Deformities
- Herniated Disc
- Bone Grafts
- Kyphoplasty Procedures
- Compression Fractures
- Spinal Stenosis
- Pinched Nerves