Back Pain

in Memphis and Union City, TN and Blytheville, AR

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Back Pain

Of all the adults who struggle through a bout of back pain, 1 in 5 won’t improve. Instead, their back pain turns into a long-lasting and often debilitating problem. At Southern Vascular & Pain Management, Thomas Hodgkiss, MD, offer customized treatment for back pain using interventional options that go to the source of your pain. When you need more than conservative medical care for back pain, call one of the offices in Blytheville, Arkansa and Memphis and Union City, Tennessee, or book an appointment online

Back Pain Q&A

What causes back pain?

Back pain often starts when you pull a muscle lifting something heavy, fall, or suffer a sports injury. Overuse injuries are another common cause of back pain. These injuries develop gradually as you repeat the same movements, frequently placing stress on the same muscles.

Over the years, the structures that support your back go through degenerative changes. These changes lead to painful problems such as:

  • Spinal stenosis
  • Herniated discs
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Slipped vertebrae

These conditions often lead to radiculopathy, or as it’s more commonly known, pinched nerves. 

What other symptoms accompany back pain?

In addition to back pain, you may lose some mobility or develop muscle spasms. Pinched nerves can also cause pain and tingling that travel along the length of the nerve. 

Sciatica is a well-known example of radiculopathy. This condition, which is caused by a pinched sciatic nerve, causes severe, sharp pain that shoots down one leg. In severe cases, a pinched nerve leads to numbness and muscle weakness. 

How is back pain diagnosed?

As an interventional radiologist, Dr. Hodgkiss and Dr. Bromley take a unique approach to identify the root cause of your back pain. Your assessment includes a physical exam, a thorough evaluation of your symptoms, and a detailed review of your imaging. 

Depending on the results of your exam, we may perform or order additional tests. You may need blood tests, X-rays, an MRI or CT scan, nerve function studies, or a bone scan.

How is back pain treated?

Back pain treatment typically begins with conservative care such as anti-inflammatory medications, physical therapy, and lifestyle changes that take stress off your back.

When you still have back pain despite your initial treatment, Dr. Hodgkiss recommends treatments that draw from a wide range of interventional therapies, such as:

  • Epidural steroid injections
  • Radiofrequency (RF) ablation
  • Spinal cord stimulation
  • Intrathecal pain pump
  • Therapeutic discography
  • Kyphoplasty
  • Sacroplasty
  • Regenerative medicine therapy
  • Basivertebral RF ablation (for advanced arthritis)

These treatments all target the source of your pain using different techniques. Epidural steroid injections and an intrathecal pain pump both deliver medications into the space along your spine or within your spine. Steroids reduce inflammation, while the pump provides pain-relieving medication to the source.

RF ablation uses heat to temporarily damage the sensory nerves, while spinal cord stimulation uses a mild nonpalpable electrical pulse to block the pain signals that travel from the spinal cord to your brain. 

Kyphoplasty and sacroplasty treat spinal fractures caused by osteoporosis. Both minimally invasive procedures use bone cement to restore and strengthen the collapsed bones. 

Southern Vascular & Pain Management was one of the first clinics to utilize the “Spine Jack”. This innovative treatment for fractures often restores a significant amount of the height loss caused by vertebral fractures.

You can get relief from back pain at Southern Vascular & Pain Management. Schedule an appointment today by calling or booking online.