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Column Introducing our clinic, part 2: How Back Pain Occurs


In this article, I would like to explain the mechanism of low back pain.

Click here for the previous article → What is the Cellgel Method

About ILC International Lumbago Clinic

Our clinic opened in September 2022 and specializes exclusively on solutions for lumbar pain. We are located in Minato Ward, Tokyo, a 7 minute walk from JR Shinagawa Station.

How back pain occurs

Why does the lower back hurt?

Pain occurs when there is an imbalance in the bones and muscles around the lower back.

Is that so…

To elaborate a little further, pain and numbness symptoms often occur when the bones, intervertebral discs, ligaments, joints, and muscles in the vicinity of the nerves compress them.

The diagram on the left shows an image of a nerve being compressed by a degenerated intervertebral disc.

The figure on the right shows how pain and other symptoms are caused by an imbalance in the bones, joints, and ligaments.

This image shows inflammation of the muscles due to an imbalance of the bones.

If so, does that mean that all bones, discs, ligaments, etc. are bad in a person suffering from back pain?

Even though it depends on the nature of the symptoms, back pain can be caused by many reasons.
Therefore, in the old times, many cases of back pain were unexplained.
However, thanks to improvements in examination techniques, the main cause of back pain has finally been identified.

Now, with the development of MRI, it is possible to determine the cause of back pain.

Our clinic also uses MRI as a basis for diagnosis.

The main cause of back pain is the intervertebral disc!

So, this is where the cause of back pain lies!
In that case, is it caused by the bones?

It is not the bones per se, but the intervertebral disc located near the bone.

Intervertebral disc, you say…?

The intervertebral discs are located between the vertebrae and act as a cushion that absorbs shocks.
When the intervertebral discs fail to perform their cushioning role due to aging or when they leak out after a strong impact, the balance around the lower back is disrupted and back pain occurs.

A normal disc contains water and appears white on MRI.
When the disc degenerates, the original water content is lost, and the disc will appear black.
Degeneration of the disc does not necessarily cause symptoms.

I didn’t realize that. So, can you get rid of the pain by doing the Cellgel procedure to repair the disc?

That’s right. However, as time passes after the intervertebral disc deteriorates, the surrounding bones, ligaments, joints, and muscles degenerate, causing a variety of symptoms.
That is the reason why, if you have been suffering from back pain for a long time, it can be difficult for the symptoms to completely disappear even after the disc is treated.

Does this mean that people who have been suffering from back pain for a long time will never get better?

It means that people who have been suffering from back pain for a relatively short time are more likely to get better if the degeneration has been progressing slowly and only the disc is affected.
However, just as everyone has a different personality, each person’s condition progresses differently.
There are many patients who have been suffering for decades who have gotten better.

That means that even those who have been suffering for a long time can get better!

Yes, it is possible! There are good indications that are suited for the Cellgel method and indications that are difficult to cure. In the next article, I will explain the good indications that are suitable for the Cellgel method along with the name of the disease.

Next time: Good indications for the Cellgel method