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What could lower back pain be a symptom of?

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Lower back pain is a possible symptom of back muscle strain, a lumbar herniated disk, degenerative disk disease and isthmic spondylolisthesis, which are diseases that commonly affect people age 30 to 60 years old, reports Spine-Health. Facet joint osteoarthritis, lumbar spinal stenosis and spinal compression fracture are common causes of lower back pain in people above 60 years old.

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Patients with back muscle strain usually experience intense lower back pain after engaging in physical activity, moving suddenly or lifting a heavy item, according to Spine-Health. They find it hard to walk or stand properly and sometimes experience pain that reaches the upper thigh, buttock or groin. In comparison, a lumbar herniated disk causes ongoing lower back pain that radiates to one leg and also affects the buttock and foot.

Persistent, moderate lower back pain involving episodes of serious pain or muscle spasms possibly indicates lumbar degenerative disk disease, states Spine-Health. The pain may last from several days to months. Patients with isthmic spondylolisthesis experience deep lower back pain that aggravates when standing or walking and reaches the buttocks and behind the thighs.

Facet joint osteoarthritis initially causes irregular lower back pain and stiffness, especially after waking up and during sleep, notes Spine-Health. In patients with lumbar spinal stenosis, leg pain occurs after walking or standing, and sitting down provides relief from lower back pain.

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