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Non Specific Back Pain - this term should be abolished. Mr Hamlyn responds to the Daily Mail

Mr Peter Hamlyn Consultant Neurological and Spinal Surgeon speak to us about a Daily Mail article that highlights the issue of unexplained back pain and that recent advances in imaging and tests means that all back pain can be diagnosed and treated. 

"The Mail's article brings to our attention a very important issue which I see in many different guises each week. Namely, that because most back pain is due to "wear and tear" all of it gets diagnosed as such and the many other causes go undiagnosed and untreated.
 
Low back pain is not a diagnosis. We would not treat appendicitis as "bad tummy pain on the right" and expect good outcomes. Why then back pain? This is a management which reflects an understanding of back pain we have long since surpassed.
 
With modern scanning techniques, specialised blood tests as here and a host of other new techniques we can now establish a specific diagnosis and tailor treatment to that problem. The advances in treatment with disc replacements, needle based treatments and keyhole surgery mean that few conditions are now beyond and more and more of the elderly population can benefit from treatment that would have been until recent days physically beyond them. Patients from our own clinic demonstrate this. 

The term "non-specific low back pain" needs to be abandoned and early referral for investigation and diagnosis based treatment has instead to become the norm. This is the biggest cause of disability in this and any advanced nation and we dismiss - to our national and personal costs."
  

If you would like to See Mr Peter Hamlyn then please contact us