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Back pain and pulled hamstring

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I've had lower back pain on the left side since November 2005. The first symptoms were the back pain & the feeling of a pulled hamstring. I went to see a chiropractor who treated me for a pelvis realignment but the back pain persisted. I went to see NHS consultant who could find no problem on the x-ray & MRI scan & he referred me to a NHS physio. I was given massage which relieved the pain for a day but the pain always returned. I was discharged with no conclusion. I went to see an acupuncturist but the only benefit appeared to be from the massage which preceeded the needles. I went to see another NHS physio who claimed to have diagnosed the problem as a muscle imbalance & gave me exercises to cure this. The exercises give some relief but the pain is still present & I have been discharged. The pain is at it's worst if I run. I've also tried posture & core exercises but they don't seem to help. Any guidance on diagnosis,treatment or specialists would be appreciated.


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replied April 18th, 2009
Back Pain Answer A6372
Your question involves your back pain which gets better apparently only with massage therapy.
Usually, when massage therapy is successful, but the results last only temporarily, it is usually indicative of soft-tissue dysfunction. Pain that is relieved with massage is usually generated by trigger points, or ischemic tissue. Both are the result of muscle imbalances and chronic tension in the muscles.
It is generally recommended that following a specific corrective exercise program that emphasizes stretching the tight muscles, while performing exercises that address the weak muscles can dramatically help your situation.
You must also keep in mind that any activities that stimulate the sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) can cause the muscle tension and thus imbalances and pain to return. Evaluating and addressing lifestyle stressors such as eating habits and mental/emotional stress are key for long term success.

Sam Visnic
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