Worrying red flag features of back pain

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1 Cancer as a cause of back pain:

• Unexplained weight loss.

• Failure to improve with therapy.

• Pain persists for more than 4 weeks.

2 Infection as a cause of back pain:

• History of intravenous drug abuse.

• Recent bacterial infection.

• Immunocompromised.

3 Cauda equina syndrome as a cause of back pain (due to large central disc protrusion or other cause of lumbar canal stenosis):

Urinary incontinence or retention.

• Saddle anaesthesia.

• Anal sphincter tone decreased or faecal incontinence.

• Bilateral leg weakness or numbness.

• Progressive neurological deficit.

4 Significant disc herniation as a cause of back pain:

• Major muscle weakness (strength three-fifths or less).

5 Abdominal aortic aneurysm as a cause of back pain:

• Abdominal pulsating mass.

• Atherosclerotic vascular disease.

• Pain at rest or nocturnal pain.

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Hypertension is very common, usually clinically silent, potentially dangerous but treatable. Therefore, measurement of BP should be a routine procedure. The definition of BP above which hypertension is said to exist is difficult since it is distributed in the population as a normal distribution and increases with age. In a young adult BP of > 140/90 mmHg can be considered as hypertension and treatment is likely to be beneficial. In the presence of diabetes or renal disease, achieving levels of BP much lower than this has been shown to be of benefit. In an elderly person BP of 140/90 or higher is common and may only warrant treatment in the presence of other cardiovascular risk factors.

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Dealing With Back Pain

Dealing With Back Pain

Deal With Your Pain, Lead A Wonderful Life An Live Like A 'Normal' Person. Before I really start telling you anything about me or finding out anything about you, I want you to know that I sympathize with you. Not only is it one of the most painful experiences to have backpain. Not only is it the number one excuse for employees not coming into work. But perhaps just as significantly, it is something that I suffered from for years.

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