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Low Back Pain Causes and Treatments
      Low back pain is the most common pain disorder of modern times. But despite the fact that millions of people suffer through it every year, there exists very few effective treatments for it. Pain killers can help in the short term, but in the long term than can do more harm than good. Chiropractic treatments can hit or miss, and are rarely an effective long term solution. Surgery is an invasive, and inconsistently effective treatment option.
       So why are all these treatment options not really effective? The "big mystery" to understanding low back pain is understanding the source of the pain. The modern medical establishment is trained to examine the nerves and joints for sources of low back pain. While these structures may be involved occasionally, it is the muscular system that takes much of "wear and tear" of daily life and therefore is much more likely to be the source of the pain.
        Acute (one week in duration or less) low back pain disorders respond very well to Clinical Trigger Point Therapy. Long term low back disorders can become complicated, involving many muscle groups and multiple trigger point interactions. It can take some time to effectively address the complexity of chronic back pain conditions, but Clinical Trigger Point Therapy is very effective in these situations.

The Muscles and Trigger Points that Cause Low Back Pain
      There can be as many as twelve muscle groups involved in a low back disorder. A simple case of low back pain may only involve two or three muscle groups, but if left untreated, up to ten additional muscle groups may become involved. The trigger points in these additional muscle groups can produce Sciatica symptoms like radiating pain or numbness that travels down the leg
(click here for more information about Sciatica). The following four muscle groups are primary factors in nearly all low back disorders:
  • The Quadratus Lumborum
  • The Gluteus Medius
  • The IlioPsoas
  • The Rectus Abdominis
       The Quadratus Lumborum muscle group is composed of several small muscles that are located deep within the lower back muscle mass. It attaches to the lowest rib, at several spots along the lower (lumbar) spine, and along the pelvic rim. The Quadratus Lumborum contracts to help stabilize the spine, and to flex the trunk to either side. This muscle group can contain up to four trigger points that refer pain to the low back, groin, hip, and gluteal regions. A person with active Quadratus Lumborum trigger points will typically experience severe pain when their trunk is in an upright position. Often they will instinctively brace and support their upper body with their arms to avoid this severe pain. Alternatively, they may be forced to move about on all fours. Coughing and sneezing produce agaonizing pain. Referred pain from Quadratus Lumborum trigger points may activate other trigger points that in turn produce sciatica-type symptoms.
        Learn more about the Quadratus Lumborum trigger points with this article from Dr. Perry >
The Quadratus Lumborum Trigger Points: Masters of Low Back Pain
      The Gluteus Medius muscle group is a small fan shaped muscle that lies partially underneath the larger Gluteus Maximus muscle group. It attaches just under the rip of the pelvic bone, and runs diagonally downward to attach on the leg bone at the hip joint. This muscle functions to raise the leg to the side, and to stabilize the pelvis during walking. Trigger points in this muscle refer pain to the buttocks and along the belt-line. A person with active Gluteus Medius trigger points will have pain during walking, and difficulty laying on their side while sleeping.
        Learn more about the Gluteus Medius trigger points with this article from Dr. Perry >
How to Release the Gluteus Medius Trigger Points (Video).
     The IlioPsoas muscle group is composed of two distinct, but functionally related muscles, the Iliacus and the Psoas muscles. The muscle group is located very deep in the abdominal cavity, on either side of the spine. It attaches at various points along the spine, to the pelvis, and on the large leg bone (femur). It contracts to stabilize the trunk on the hips, and to flex the trunk forward and/or lift the thigh. Though this muscle is in the front of the body, its trigger points refer pain to the low back, in a vertical pattern that runs parallel with the spine. People with active IlioPsoas trigger points will typically have more pain when standing, and have a difficult time performing a sit-up.
      The Rectus Abdominis muscle is the "six-pack" muscle group in the stomach region. It attaches to the breast bone and adjacent ribs, and runs downward to attach to the pelvis. This muscle contracts to flex or curl the trunk on the pelvis, and helps stabilize the trunk during upright activities. Trigger Points in this muscle group can refer pain to the belt-line, across the mid back, and at various places in the stomach region. Additionally, the trigger points may produce such diverse symptoms such as abdominal bloating, heartburn, nausea, and may even resemble the pain associated with appendicitis.
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Important: The following content is provided for information purposes only. A proper diagnosis of any condition requires a physical examination by a licensed doctor.
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