What can I do now?
You and your doctor may decide there are some things you can do now to see if you can manage your pain without surgery.
Treatment without surgery
Talk with your doctor about the kinds of changes in your routine that may help reduce your symptoms. Some may find that being active, losing weight, getting enough rest, quitting smoking, and maintaining good posture can help make a difference.1
Back brace or support
A back brace can help unload some of the weight normally placed on the lower back.2 By reducing spinal pressure, a back brace may lessen painful muscle tension that is a common protective reaction following an injury.2
Physical therapists can help lessen your pain by teaching better posture or “form” for your day-to-day activities. Your physical therapist may also recommend walking and strengthening exercises, depending on your anatomy and disease progression.
Your doctor may recommend over-the-counter or prescription anti-inflammatory medicines to relieve the symptoms you are experiencing. Use of these medications should be monitored by your doctor.
Spinal epidural injections
Spinal epidural injections are a common procedure that deliver a dose of anti-inflammatory medication (usually a steroid) directly to the site of irritation in the back. Most doctors limit how many epidural injections to administer to any one person over the course of a year because of the risk of the medication weakening the bone and surrounding tissue.3
Talk with your doctor about the non-surgical approaches to decreasing your symptoms. If these approaches don’t help, you’ve still got options. Learn more about back surgery
- The Johns Hopkins University. Low back pain. Johns Hopkins Medicine. www.hopkinsmedicine.org/healthlibrary/conditions/orthopaedic_disorders/low_back_pain_85,P01375. Accessed 10 Sept. 2018.
- Dang S. Using a Back Brace for Lower Back Pain Relief. Spine-Health. https://www.spine-health.com/treatment/alternative-care/using-back-brace-lower-back-pain-relief. Accessed 10.26.2021.
- Shiel WC. Epidural steroid injection. MedicineNet. www.medicinenet.com/epidural_steroid_injection/article.htm#what_is_an_epidural_steroid_injection. Accessed 10 Sept. 2018.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT SPINE SURGERY
Some of the images on this website depict Stryker’s products. Please speak to your doctor if you have questions about these products or anything else in this website.
The information presented is for educational purposes only. Stryker is not dispensing medical advice. Please speak to your doctor to decide if spinal surgery is right for you. Only your doctor can make the medical judgment regarding which products and treatments are right for your own individual condition.
As with any surgery, spinal surgery carries certain risks. Your surgeon will explain all the possible complications of the surgery, as well as side effects. Each spinal surgery patient will experience a different post-operative activity level, depending on his/her own individual clinical factors. Your doctor will help counsel about how to best maintain your activities in order to recover properly from your surgery. Such activities include not engaging in high-impact activities that could de-stabilize any instrumentation that may have been implanted.
Stryker Corporation or its divisions or other corporate affiliated entities own, use or have applied for the following trademarks or service marks: Stryker. All other trademarks are trademarks of their respective owners or holders.
Ask your doctor if spine surgery is right for you.