What can cause back pain

Low back pain is the leading cause of disability in the world and 85% of us will experience back pain at some stage in our lives. 20-35% of those people will have pain that becomes persistent and limits sporting activity, physical function and the quality of a person’s life. A worrying trend is the more we spend on imaging, treatments, and medication, the chronic nature and cost of low back pain are increasing.

Low back pain can have different causes

Like most pain, low back pain is considered to be multifactorial in nature. Serious pathology such as cancer can be considered for 1-2% of patients, and specific pathology such as a fracture can be considered for 5-10%. This leaves close to 90% of patients having no definitive structural diagnoses.

At Hong Kong Sports Clinic we recognize that factors contributing to low back pain can be strongly associated with a variety of modifiable physical, lifestyle, psychological and neurophysiological factors.

Sport-specific factors

Training intensity, volume and technical aspects of sports are closely related to low back pain. These factors are deemed as extrinsic factors. Your clinician at Hong Kong Sports Clinic will attempt to understand as much as they can about these parameters so as they can adjust mechanics and training load appropriately to reduce pain but maintain training and/or sport if possible.

Lifestyle factors

Sedentary behavior, sudden increases in training, sleep deficits and excessive alcohol and smoking can all contribute to your pain and perception. We will educate you as much as possible about how to optimize your lifestyle in order to mitigate these factors.

Emotional factors

Stress, anxiety, depression, and anger can also further enhance pain mechanisms. We can also give advice as to how to understand and then control these factors through personalized management strategies.

At Hong Kong Sports Clinic we are progressive in our understanding of the multifactorial nature of back pain, and how we, as clinicians, can have a positive effect on managing these different factors.

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