Many people experience knee and leg aches and pains but do not actually address the reason as to why they are in pain.
Common, local factors that typically trigger knee and leg pain include:
- Soft tissue, joint, muscle, ligament, tendon, bone or knee injury.
- Knee joint dysfunction.
- Sprains and muscle strains.
- Varicose veins.
- Overuse of the leg(s).
- Various types of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis.
Leg pain can also be caused by a bad back and oftentimes goes hand in hand with chronic low back pain. Other symptoms that may be present include joint pain (that can affect one or more of the knee, hip and spinal joints), stiffness, weakness and walking problems.
Knee and leg pain that is due to back problems happens when something in the lumbar spine (lower back) causes pain that is referred to other parts of the body. As such, it is highly possible that your back might be causing you leg and knee problems.
Referred pain is pain that is triggered by something that is situated elsewhere from where the pain manifests. That is why sometimes back problems can lead to pain in other parts of the body, such as the limbs.
When it comes to pain in the legs and knee problems, some of the following issues that occur in the lower back may be to blame:
Often the result of a herniated disc or spinal compression, sciatica is a form of pain that manifests along the sciatic nerve. This nerve extends from the lower back, through the hips and buttocks, and down the back on each thigh.
Because of the path this nerve takes, it can easily affect the upper part of the legs, as well as the knees. In rare occasions, it can cause the pain to extend even further, down to the calves, feet, or even toes.
There are many reasons why the sciatic nerve may become pinched, which makes it one of the more common causes of leg and knee pain caused by back problems. Some factors that may lead to sciatica include the following:
- Disc problems, including disc herniation, a prolapsed disc, and degenerative disc disease.
- Spinal stenosis, which is the narrowing of the spinal canal, a hollow tube-like formation that houses the spinal cord.
- Piriformis syndrome, which consists of the piriformis muscle becoming tight around the sciatic nerve, placing pressure on it.
- Spondylolisthesis, where a vertebra slips forward, out of its regular anatomical space, and presses against other structures within the spine, such as nerve roots.
Lumbar Herniated Disk
A lumbar herniated disk is a ruptured disc in your lower back. It occurs when the nucleus or “jelly” of the disc is pushed out of the hard outer layer that contains it.
A ruptured disc may obstruct or impinge upon other spinal structures and can for example put pressure on a spinal nerve root. In turn, pain receptors located within the nerve are triggered and lead to sensations of severe pain, numbness, and sometimes weakness.
Ankylosing spondylitis, which is an inflammatory type of arthritis, tends to cause inflammation, stiffness, pain and swelling in the spine.
It tends to start at the lower base of the spine, but if it progresses, it can extend to other parts of the spine or body. As such, at some point its effects may be felt in the lower part of the body, affecting the legs, as well as the knee joints, and in some extreme cases the heels as well.
It is important to pinpoint the source of the pain in order to determine where the trigger is located, so that you can address the problem properly. The process of diagnosis usually starts with taking a history and carrying out a physical examination. Sometimes additional tests such as bone scans, imaging tests or blood tests may be required to reach a conclusion.
A diagnosis also helps rule out other possible causes for your pain, such as patellofemoral pain syndrome, a torn meniscus (C-shaped cartilage of the knee), iliotibial band syndrome, or even fractures.
How do you treat knee and leg pain that originates in the spine?
Treatment for referred pain that originates within the spine should focus on addressing the core of the issue in order to relieve pain and prevent it from returning.
Provided that the source of your knee and leg pain does originate within the spine, one of the best solutions is to engage in spinal decompression therapy to help free any trapped nerve and restore the natural space in between each vertebra. You can achieve that by using a special orthopaedic spinal decompression device, called the Spinal Backrack.
Backrack - Highly Effective Spinal Decompression Device
How does spinal decompression help with pain in the legs and knees?
Spinal decompression therapy may act locally on the spine, but its benefits extend beyond these regions. When it comes to leg and knee pain, decompressing the spine helps to deal not only with the symptoms, but more importantly the causes, therefore eliminating your pain.
Provided that pain in your legs or knees originates from the spine, decompression of the vertebrae helps eliminate the spinal problem, and ultimately the pain you feel.
Decompressing your spine with the Backrack is rather easy as all the exercises are performed while laying down, and they can be done at your own pace. As you perform these exercises, the nodules on the rack massage your spine and gently push the vertebrae back into the place they should normally be. With repeated use, the natural space between the vertebrae is restored, and any spinal issues that were causing leg or knee pain shall disappear.
On top of fixing such issues, the Backrack is also a great tool for prevention of both back and leg pain.
Author: Spinal Backrack