Signs of Serious Back Pain

Back pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide, according to the National Institutes of Health. Because of this, symptoms should never be ignored. Back pain symptoms may range from a muscle ache to shooting or stabbing pains, limited flexibility, limited range of motion, or an inability to stand straight. Chronic back pain is pain that persists for more than 3 months. It is often progressive and the cause can be difficult to determine.

Here are four important warning signs to look out for:

  • Pain involving weakness, numbness or tingling: This could mean damage to the spinal cord.
  • Pain that stretches down to the back of the leg(s): Back pain that goes down this way can be a symptom of sciatica. This is inflammation of the sciatic nerve, the largest in the body.
  • Pain that increases over time rather than decreasing: After a period of time in which