The Truth About Back Pain

The Truth About Back Pain

By Dr. Hazel Paragua-Zuellig

Studies show that back pain is one of the most common reasons why employees may skip work. Back pain affects a person’s productivity, mobility, interest to travel, drive, or ability to engage in sports and leisure activities.  

But what exactly is painful in back pain? Is it the spine? The muscles? Joints? Nerves? Does one need an Xray? A CT scan? An MRI? What kind of specialist does one need to see…The questions are endless. And a patient could so easily be directed to clinicians who recommend unnecessary procedures and surgeries. 

Back Pain

According to medical research, 80% of MRI examinations on persons above the age of 60, for example, will show “abnormal” results, most findings are age-related and not necessarily symptomatic. In medical school, would-be doctors are taught that they ought to “treat the patient and not the MRI”. 

Most back pains, particularly in the young, are musculoskeletal in origin, brought about by poor posture or sports injuries. Majority of cases respond to a little rest, anti-inflammatory treatment or physical therapy exercises. 

In older individuals, degenerative disc problems are oftentimes the culprit. These can cause nerve root compression in the spine leading to a neuropathic kind of pain. This particular condition requires more than just pain killers and applying over-the-counter heating ointments. This often would require multiple approaches in pain management, physical therapy or even surgery when there are accompanying signs like leg weakness, numbness or urinary and bowel disturbances. Most back pain cases, however, need simple, uncomplicated treatment. But recurrent back pain with signs of spinal cord or nerve abnormalities require more urgent, specialized care.

At CMI, we offer a multi-disciplinary approach to the management of back pain. We have neurologists, rheumatologists, pain management specialists, orthopedic surgeons, rehabilitation medicine experts and even medical acupuncturists. Our CMI care team will help patients figure out what causes their backaches and what treatment modalities would be best to use. 

All this expertise in a discreet, private clinic with hotel-like interiors, relaxing ambience and efficient concierge service.  Because every patient is treated like a VIP at CMI. 

To schedule an appointment, contact us at 02. 8812. 1CMI | 02. 8816 .1035 – 36 or email us at

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