Back Pain

Back Pain Specialist
An estimated 80% of people experience back pain at some point in their lives. If you're one of the millions currently living with back pain, you probably know just how much the condition can limit your daily life. Pain-management specialist Dr. Randa Jaafar takes pride in helping patients feel their best again. If you're interested in knowing more about what Dr. Jaafar can do for your back, book an appointment online to see her at New York Medicine Doctors, located in Midtown East, New York.

Back Pain Q & A

New York Medicine Doctors

What causes back pain?

Although grouped together and overseen by pain-management specialists like Dr. Jaafar, back pain has a range of causes, including:

  • Disc breakdown (degenerative disc disease)
  • Herniated (slipped or ruptured) disc
  • Muscle tension and spasm
  • Ligament strain
  • Vertebral fractures
  • Some forms of arthritis

Finding out why you're hurting is an important first step toward recovery: It gives Dr. Jaafar a better idea of how to treat your problem.

Why are some people more likely than others to develop back pain?

You probably know that certain types of work — anything that requires a significant amount of repetitive heavy lifting, pushing, or pulling, especially if it involves twisting your torso at the same time — are a major source of injury and back pain. But workers with desk jobs aren't safe, either: Sitting for long periods of time can also contribute to back pain.

Poor overall general health is also a factor for developing back pain, increasing injury risk, severity, and recovery time. In particular, smoking can accelerate disc degeneration, and a chronic smoker's cough can also stress the structures keeping your spine stable. Generally, low levels of physical fitness, whether due to a sedentary lifestyle or as a consequence of an injury or illness, also put you at risk for back pain. Obesity is yet another factor, as extra weight places additional strain on your back.

Some hereditary conditions, such as ankylosing spondylitis, can also cause back pain. If one or more of your close relatives has been diagnosed with such a condition, or has dealt with significant back pain with an unknown cause, you may have a higher risk of developing back pain yourself.

How should you treat acute back pain?

Back pain caused by an acute injury needs time to heal. Depending on its cause and your personal health history, Dr. Jaafar may recommend physical therapy or an exercise regimen to aid your recovery. She may also prescribe medication to reduce inflammation and manage pain in the interim.

Is chronic back pain permanent?

If you've been living with back pain for a long time, it can be hard to imagine relief. While chronic back pain frequently remains difficult to treat, Dr. Jaafar employs modern interventional procedures that can help with back pain. She and her team also perform acupuncture and massage that can complement your individualized back pain-management plan.

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New York Medicine Doctors
800 2nd Avenue
9th Floor, Between 42nd and 43rd Street
New York, NY 10017