I often hear people including those working in the food industry complain about back pain. I also suffer from this kind of pain once in a while, where the pain can range from simply annoying to severe. Usually, the pain just goes away on its own in less than a week, especially after I get a relaxing back massage. That is why I don’t worry that much when I have back pain because I always assume that it could not be something serious.
While most back pain, whether middle back pain, left or right side back pain or upper back pain are caused by improper posture or other less serious conditions, there are cases when the pain should cause you to worry and contact a doctor.
Back Pain that Lingers for More than Two Weeks
Many doctors follow the “two week rule” for back pain. They believe that most of the musculoskeletal pain should already resolve on its own at the end of two weeks unless something more serious is causing the pain. If your back pain still lingers after two weeks despite trying home remedies, it would be good to have it checked by a doctor. However, there are cases when the two week rule must be disregarded and immediate medical attention must be delivered within the two-week period. It is when several other symptoms are present.
Back Pain Caused by Acute Trauma
If an accident in the past has caused the pain, such as from a fall or a car accident, the condition should be immediately checked by your doctor. Necessary evaluation and tests including MRIs and X-rays must be done on the affected area to know if there are broken bones or other internal injuries that are causing the pain.
A Worst Pain Experience
If you feel that your back pain is the worst pain you have ever experienced, it is enough reason for you to worry and see your doctor. A worst back pain experience may be caused by serious conditions such as appendicitis, heart attack or aneurysm.
History of Cancer
Back pain especially in the lower back of patients with a history of cancer is considered to be metastatic unless otherwise proven.
History of Neurological Symptoms
If you have back pain and you have a history of neurological symptoms such as tingling sensation and numbness, you should see your doctor for diagnosis. The back pain could just be a delayed symptom of a neurological problem which needs special attention by a doctor.
Weight Loss or Fever
Back pain that comes with fever or weight loss is something that should be taken seriously.
Back Pain that Disrupts Sleep
More often, back pain at night is more serious than pain occurring during the day. Cancer is just one of the conditions that may cause this problem.
Many people believe that their back pain is nothing serious. As a result, some of them are not able to get early treatment for underlying conditions they might be suffering from. Knowing when to visit your doctor and seek medical help for back pain is important to avoid further problems and complications from happening.