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Lower Back Pain and Osteopathy

osteopath for lower back pain

Osteopathy is becoming one of the fastest growing professions in Australia to help people with back pain. There is a high demand for Osteopaths as their approach to musculoskeletal health care encompasses a whole body approach.

Osteopaths study at university for a minimum of 5 years, and study a range of general subjects including anatomy, physiology, pathology, and radiology. Further studies are also tailored for musculoskeletal health to include practical components, which include comprehensive assessments, treatments and management for back pain and all musculoskeletal complaints.

There are many different types of back pain that present to us in our osteopathy clinic in South Melbourne.

These include conditions in patients of all ages, both men and women, with acute back pain or chronic back pain.

Osteopaths may see patients for 1-3 sessions for a complaint, or for longer term such as 6 weeks, or even for management every month.  It really varies on the presentation, the pain, and history of the patient and their complaint.   But one thing we don’t do as osteopaths is over-treat our patients! We believe that the body has its own ability to fix itself, so in our treatments we encourage and guide the soft tissues of the muscles and joints to ease and hence decrease pain and increase mobility and functional capacity.

Each case that presents to us is treated as individual – there is no one formula of how we treat, manage and care for your issue.

During your initial consultation with an osteopath for lower back pain, we take a thorough case history, do a physical examination, which looks at your movements, and perform appropriate orthopaedic testing. This then allows us to determine what is going on, formulate a working diagnosis and then treat YOU accordingly.

Common conditions that people with back pain see an osteopath for include:

  • Muscle spasm
  • Muscle cramping
  • Joint sprain
  • Disc bulge or Prolapse (also known commonly to people as slipped disc)
  • Arthritis
  • Sciatica
  • Sacroiliac Joint Inflammation
  • Pregnancy related back pain
  • Pelvic girdle pain

More serious issues that present as back pain but need immediate medical referral and attention include kidney, abdominal or pelvic issues, tumours or unexplained pain – we will not treat or assess this, rather refer you immediately back to your GP or emergency department.

Osteopathic treatment involves using “hands on” techniques to help the muscles, joints and connective tissue of the lower back and surrounding structures. We also treat other areas away from where the pain may be as this can be influencing the presenting complaint. For example, your back pain may be affected by tight hip muscles and inner thigh muscles, tight upper back muscles and tight calf muscles. By releasing off these surrounding structures we immediately are able to offload the compression, tightness and pain in the lower back.

Techniques Osteopaths use may include:

  • Soft tissue massage
  • Mobilisation
  • Articulation
  • Myofascial release
  • Dry needling
  • Muscle energy release
  • Rehabilitation exercise

For further information or if you have any questions about your back pain, please be in touch to see how we can be of assistance.

Yours in health,

St Kilda Osteopathy

Categories: Pain Relief