Backpain Overview

Radicular Back Pain

Radicular pain can be described as sciatica which is usually deep and steady and gets reproduced by various activities and positions like walking and sitting. This type of pain is accompanied with tingling, numbness, muscle weakness and loss of specific reflexes.

This type of pain is found in the legs due to sciatic nerve. Radicular pain also gets radiated in to the extreme low covering thighs, calf and foot. Radicular pain is caused due to the compression of certain higher lumbar nerve roots. Sciatica is one of the most common symptom of radicular pain and is caused due to the compression of a spinal nerve in the low back. Radicular pain is often referred as radiculopathy.

Diagnosis of radicular pain
The main causes of radicular pain are compression, inflammation or injury to the spinal nerve root in the low back. Some of the other causes of this type of pain are:

Herniated disc along with nerve compression
Narrowing of the hole through which the spinal nerve exits due to arthritis or bone spurs.
Diabetes
Injuries to nerve roots.
Affect caused by scar tissue on the nerve root from a spinal surgery
The correct diagnosis of radicular pain is found through a combination of patient's history and a physical exam. MRI and CT myelogram are used for diagnosing the pain.

Treatment of radicular pain
Usually conservative treatment is applied for curing this type of pain including physical therapy, medications, spinal injections and others. This treatment is conducted for six to eight months. If this treatment gets unsuccessful than decompression surgery like laminectomy and disectomy are mainly recommended. This surgery has a successful percentage of around 85 % to 90 %. Back surgery is also useful for getting relief from radicular pain. However, if nerve compression is not shown in MRI or CT scan than back surgery is not advised as it would be an unsuccessful one.