What’s Causing My Sharp Lower Back Pain?

Category: Back Pain | Author: Stefano Sinicropi

Back Pain Treatment Options

Back pain is one of the most common forms of pain that people deal with on a regular basis, but for many, it is in the form of a dull ache as a result of stress and natural spinal degeneration. However, some people deal with sharp, sudden instances of pain in their lower back. What could be causing this sharp pain, and how can it best be treated? We explore the topic in today’s blog.

Causes Of Sharp Lumbar Spine Pain

Sharp or the sudden onset of back pain in your lower spine can develop for a couple of different reasons. Oftentimes, there is an acute moment of injury associated with these injuries, but not always. Some of the more common causes of sharp lower back pain include:

  • Muscle Strains – A muscle strain involves the overstretching or tearing of a muscle in the lower back, and since these muscles are called upon a lot when you move, you’re going to experience a sharp or sudden pain sensation when using that area of your body. Most muscle strains heal well with rest and other conservative techniques, so give your body some time to heal if you suspect you strained a muscle in your lower back.
  • Disc Herniation – Another common cause of sharp lumbar spine pain is due to a disc herniation. When a disc becomes overstressed, it can shift out of place and compress spinal nerves that run through narrow openings in the vertebrae. This compression triggers a pain sensation in the area of nerve impingement. Some herniated discs can heal with rest and physical therapy, but others need to be surgically addressed.
  • Piriformis Syndrome – Piriformis syndrome is a condition that involves an issue with the piriformis muscle located deep in your buttock area. If this muscle is injured or damaged, it tends to manifest in the form of deep lower spine pain. Stretching and physical therapy can help to calm an irritated piriformis muscle.
  • SI Joint Dysfunction – Your sacroiliac joint helps connect your lower spine to your pelvis, and problems with the joint often lead to lower back pain. Acute trauma to the joint or inflammation (called sacroiliitis) can lead to SI joint dysfunction. Anti-inflammatories, pain medications and physical therapy can help improve the health of your SI joint.
  • Compression Fracture – A compression fracture could certainly cause sharp lower spine pain, but it’s a little bit different than the four above causes because most compression fractures are the result of significant trauma to the area for which many people will be seeking out a diagnosis. The other conditions can develop for more innocuous reasons, which is why they are higher on this list, but make no mistake, a compression fracture will lead to sharp pain in the area of the fracture. Treatment will depend on the size and shape of the fracture, but it can be treated using both conservative and surgical methods.

So if you are experiencing sharp back pain in your lower spine, reach out to Dr. Sinicropi to get a diagnosis and develop a treatment plan suited to your individual needs. For more information, give us a call today at (651) 430-3800.

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