Why Do I Have A Tender Spot On My Spine?

Category: Spine | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: December 19, 2019

Decompression of the Spine

Tenderness is a symptom that is associated with a number of different spinal conditions, but what might be going on inside your body if you have an area of your back that is tender when pressed, and how can you best treat the problem? Below, we take a closer look at what might be causing tenderness at an isolated location in your spine.

Treating Isolated Spinal Tenderness

For this blog, we’re going to focus on cases of isolated and focused tenderness, not just general soreness and tenderness. Many patients with this type of tenderness feel an increase in symptoms if they press on the location of the tenderness. So what could be causing this type of tenderness? It’s in your best interest to have these types of spinal problems evaluated in person by a specialist, but in general, some conditions whose symptoms include isolated spinal tenderness include:

  • Bulging or Herniated Discs – If the pain is located on your spinal column, oftentimes the source of tenderness can be traced back to a spinal disc issue. When a spinal disc begins to bulge or herniate, it can compress nearby nerves, which can lead to tenderness in the area. Many people feel more tenderness when pressing on the area, but for others, compression can actually help to relieve symptoms. Bulging or herniated discs respond well to physical therapy and other conservative care techniques, and they can get worse if you try to just push through the discomfort, so get an evaluation from a spine specialist if you suspect you have a disc issue.
  • Spinal Infection – One of the main symptoms of the presence of a spinal infection is the development of a well-defined tender spot in the spot. Although this isolated tenderness may fade, it usually gives way to deep and consistent pain alongside a fever and the chills. If you recently had a spinal operation or have reason to believe an infection may have developed in your spine, get to a medical center right away. Antibiotics are effective in treating spinal infections, and major damage can take place if the infection isn’t actively treated.
  • Spinal Sprains and Strains – A third and final condition that is sometimes identified by the presence of an isolated tender spot in your spine is a spinal muscle strain. A strained muscle may become inflamed and feel tender to the touch, as can injuries like a spasm or a spinal muscle cramp. These types of injuries are more common after athletic activity, especially if you didn’t stretch or hydrate properly before activity. Trying to play through the pain can increase your risk of a muscle tear, and since many of these strains heal well with rest and physical therapy, it’s a good idea to limit physical activity while the spinal strain heals. A spine specialist can also rule out more serious injuries or help with treatment if pain and tenderness remains after a couple of days.

For more information about isolated spinal tenderness and how to best treat any of the above conditions, reach out to Dr. Sinicropi’s office today.

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