Again, just the presence of any of the above diagnoses does not indicate that it is the source of pain.  Usually when these conditions exist, they do not cause pain.  Certain additional characteristics make the problem more likely to be painful.   They are:

  • Abnormal or excessive motion between vertebrae—generally more than 3-4 mm
  • A pinched nerve with the resulting pain or neurological deficit in the pattern of that nerve
    • Pressure can be from a bone spur or soft tissue within the spinal canal
  • Deformity that is:
    • Decompensated spinal  (your head not centered over your pelvis)
      • Forward
      • Sideways
      • Both
    • Worse when you are upright compared to lying flat—a “collapsing” curve
    • Progressive
  • A fracture that has not healed
    • Less that four months old
    • Just won’t heal
      • Medications—Predisone, anti-inflammatories, etc.
      • Smoking
      • Obesity

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