Spine, Back & Neck

Spine, Back & Neck Conditions

Northern California Spine Orthopedic Care

The spine, made up of a column of bones called vertebrae, is the part of the skeleton that extends down the center of the back. The spine plays an important role in posture and movement, and it also protects the spinal cord.

The human spine consists of 33 vertebrae, but some of them grow together in adults. There are 7 cervical (neck), 12 thoracic (chest region), 5 lumbar (lower back), 5 sacral (hip region), and 4 coccygeal (tailbone region) vertebrae.

The vertebrae are held in place by muscles and strong connective tissue called ligaments. Most vertebrae have fibrous intervertebral discs between them to absorb shock and enable the spine to bend.

The back’s intricate structure makes it capable of incredible flexibility and strength. However, when pain and injury disrupt the normal function of the spine, even simple activities can become difficult.

Back & Neck Pain, Conditions & Injury

Back pain affects about 80 percent of adults at least once in their lives and is the leading cause of disability and workers’ compensation claims in the United States. Pain can occur in any of the back muscles, tendons, ligaments, bones, and/or discs (spongy pads that cushion the bones of the spine).

Back pain can be caused by many factors, including age, lifestyle and health habits, lack of exercise, smoking, and family history.

Back pain is often the result of improper or heavy lifting, strained muscles and ligaments, long periods of sitting, repetitive motions, or sudden, awkward movements. Trauma and injury from car accidents or falls can also be a source of back pain or spine injury. Most back pain has no direct cause.

Spine, back, and neck conditions we treat at Muir Orthopaedic Specialists include:

Patients experience back and neck pain in different ways. It may occur as a muscle ache or shooting pain, or the pain may radiate down the leg. Back problems may limit a patient’s range of motion, or make it difficult or impossible to stand up straight.

Muir Orthopaedic Specialists provides orthopedic care for spine, back, and neck pain in Walnut Creek, San Ramon, Brentwood, Concord, and the greater San Francisco Bay area. Contact us today.