Back pain is most likely to occur when the muscles in the back are not up to the task of protecting the spine. This can happen because a person is out of shape, fatigued or when they subject their back to sudden forces or heavy loads.
For the lower thoracic and lumbar spinal regions the most important muscle groups are:
Originates from the last rib (12th) and transverse processes of L1-L4 and inserts at the iliac crest.
Composed of the psoas major and the iliacus.
Origins at the transverse processes and vertebral bodies of T12-L5 and insertions at the lesser trochanter of the femur.
Originates at the anterior margin of the iliac crest and inserts at the lesser trochanter of the femur.
Muscle spasms usually signal irritation of the lower back, and often the injury can be treated conservatively with rest, ice and over-the-counter pain medicine. Muscle spasms are a reaction to both muscle injury and ligament injury, so it can be hard to differentiate at first.
When there is a musculoskeletal injury, most often the muscle is torn to some degree. Because the muscles in the body have ample blood supply, they usually repair quickly and easily within a few days.
Muscle injuries often induce swelling to prevent further movement that could cause more injury. When muscles cease to move, they eventually atrophy and weaken, so it's important to get the swelling down as soon as possible, so you can begin to move the injured muscle more quickly.
Treatment for a musculoskeletal injury with accompanying inflammation calls for ice to reduce the swelling and to relieve the spasm.
The materials on this Web site are for your general educational information only. Information you read on this Web site cannot replace the relationship that you have with your health care professional. We do not practice medicine or provide medical services or advice as a part of this Web site. You should always talk to your health care professional for diagnosis and treatment.