What causes neck and back pain?

November 24, 2019 by Juris Shibayama, MD
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What causes neck or back pain?

Many patients suffering from neck pain or back pain are left asking themselves—what is main cause of my pain? There are a wide range of possible reasons why you may be experiencing neck pain or back pain. Here is a list of some of possible causes of your neck pain or back pain.

Common Causes of Neck Pain

The neck often suffers injury due to rapid movement and frequent wear. There are multiple simple causes behind neck pain:

  • Poor posture
  • Muscle strains and sprains
  • Sleep position
  • Improper weight training exercises
  • Arthritis

Neck pain can include, but is not limited to:

  • Stiffness
  • Headaches
  • Generalized local pain
  • Numbness, weakness, or tingling in arms or hands

If you are experiencing shooting pain, weakness and tingling from your shoulder down to your fingertips, also referred to as cervical radiculopathy, this could likely be due to a pinched nerve root cause by:

If you are experiencing generalized pain, trouble with fine motor skills, or problems with balance and coordination, this could likely be a compressed spinal cord caused by:

  • Herniated disc (most common)

As you age, your neck becomes more fragile and prone to injury which increases the chance of injury.

Common Causes of Back Pain

The lower back is most susceptible to injury due to its weight bearing function in day-to-day activities. There are multiple simple causes behind lower back pain including

  • Being overweight
  • Poor posture
  • Muscle strains and sprains
  • Old age (arthritis)

Lower back pain can include, but is not limited to:

  • Stiffness
  • Radiating pain or tingling down your legs
  • Joint stiffness or pain
  • Immobility

Injury to discs between the bones in the spine (vertebrae) and aging can lead to chronic pain. If you are experiencing chronic low back pain, a compressed nerve may exist along your spinal cord due to:

If you are experiencing pain traveling down your legs, commonly called lumbar radiculopathy, this could be caused by pressure on nerve roots caused by:

If you are having trouble walking or standing for an extended period of time, this may be caused by a degenerative spine condition which as created instability along the spinal cord, making it difficult to move. If you suffer from chronic neck or back pain, you should see a spine specialist who can help determine what treatment is right for you.

If surgery is required, most patients are eligible for minimally invasive spine surgery to resolve their condition. Dr. Juris Shibayama is an orthopedic spine surgeon in the Nashville and Smyrna area who specializes in outpatient, minimally invasive spine surgery. If you are suffering from back and neck pain in the Nashville area, contact Dr. Juris Shibayama to schedule a consultation and learn about your surgery options.

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In Short Words

Dr. Juris Shibayama is an orthopedic surgeon in Smyrna, Tennessee and is affiliated TriStar StoneCrest Medical Center. He received his medical degree from University of Illinois College of Medicine. He did his orthopedic residency training at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, FL. He then completed a one year fellowship dedicated exclusively to spine surgery at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, IL. He has been in practice 13 years.

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