Trigger points in the low back

Trigger points in the low back

Trigger points are localised, discrete and hypersensitive spots located within with low back muscles. In simple terms they are sore spots. Low back muscle trigger points have the ability to cause pain locally at their location or cause pain to radiate out in a referred pattern. Low back trigger points usually accompany other chronic low back pain conditions. Low back trigger points can be caused by acute injury or chronic repetitive injury.

Symptoms of trigger points in the low back

Trigger points are usually described as localised and persistence pain that limits the amount of low back movement. The muscles that are most affected in the low back are the postural muscles. The pain associated with trigger points in the low back can either be described constant (all the time) or mechanically induced (painful only on low back movements). The key thing with trigger points is that the pain is reproducible and although may refer to other areas (referred pain) doesn’t follow the specific path of a nerve (radicular pain). In the low back and hips trigger points may be a source of headache, jaw pain and other associated vague pain in and around the head region. It’s important to have these looked at by a chiropractor or physiotherapist.

Treatments of trigger points in the low back

At Sydney Spine & Sports Centre (S3C) low back trigger points are a common presentation to our chiropractors and physiotherapists. One treatment doesn’t seem to work superiorly to other treatments in all people for all trigger points so a variety of treatments are used for trigger points in the low back. Treatments may consist of ultrasound, dry needling, and stretching, manual medicine methods such as manipulation, heat and ice techniques and instrument assisted massage. What treatments we use will depend on a case-by-case basis. Although the research on low back trigger point treatments is limited the chiropractors and physiotherapists at our Balmain and Dee Why Spine Centre’s use an evidence-based approach to ensure the best outcome is achieved.

Causes of low back pain

The following conditions are common causes of low back pain.