Arthritis in your Back & Spine - Osteoarthritis

Jun 3, 2019

Understanding Back and Spine Arthritis

Arthritis, particularly osteoarthritis, is a common condition that affects millions of people worldwide. It is a degenerative joint disease that can occur in various parts of the body, including the back and spine. At Regency Square Care Center, we specialize in geriatric and aging care, providing comprehensive treatment options for elderly patients with arthritis.

The Impact of Arthritis on the Back and Spine

Arthritis in the back and spine can significantly impact a person's quality of life. The joints in the spine gradually wear down, causing pain, stiffness, and reduced mobility. Osteoarthritis is the most prevalent type of arthritis that affects the back and spine.

What is Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis is a type of arthritis that occurs when the protective cartilage between the joints deteriorates over time. It commonly affects weight-bearing joints such as the knees, hips, and spine. As the cartilage wears down, bones can rub against each other, leading to pain, inflammation, and limited movement.

Causes and Risk Factors

The exact cause of osteoarthritis in the back and spine is not fully understood. However, several risk factors contribute to its development. These include:

  • Age: Osteoarthritis is more common in older individuals.
  • Genetics: Certain gene variations can increase the risk of developing osteoarthritis.
  • Obesity: Excess weight puts added stress on the joints, including the back and spine.
  • Prior injuries: Previous injuries to the back and spine can increase the likelihood of developing arthritis.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Common symptoms of osteoarthritis in the back and spine include:

  • Back pain, especially during movement or after prolonged periods of inactivity
  • Stiffness in the spine, particularly in the morning
  • Decreased flexibility and range of motion
  • Numbness or tingling sensation in the extremities

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is crucial to seek medical attention for an accurate diagnosis. A healthcare professional will conduct a physical examination and may order imaging tests such as X-rays or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to evaluate the condition of your back and spine.

Treatment Options

At Regency Square Care Center, our experienced geriatric and aging care specialists offer comprehensive treatment options to manage and alleviate the symptoms of osteoarthritis in the back and spine. Treatment plans are tailored to each patient's specific needs and may include:


Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and analgesics may be prescribed to reduce pain and inflammation associated with osteoarthritis. Topical creams or patches containing medication may also be recommended for localized relief.

Physical Therapy

A personalized physical therapy program can help strengthen the muscles supporting the back and spine, improve flexibility, and reduce pain. Our skilled therapists work closely with patients to develop exercise routines and techniques to achieve optimal results.

Assistive Devices

Assistive devices such as braces, canes, or orthotics may be recommended to provide additional support to the back and spine, reducing strain on the affected joints.


In some cases, corticosteroid injections or hyaluronic acid injections may be administered directly into the affected joints to reduce inflammation and provide relief from pain.

Surgical Options

If conservative treatments do not effectively manage the symptoms, surgical intervention may be considered. Surgical options for osteoarthritis in the back and spine include spinal fusion or artificial disc replacement.

Prevention and Self-Care

While osteoarthritis cannot be completely prevented, certain measures can help reduce the risk or slow down its progression. Here are some self-care tips that may be beneficial:

Maintain a Healthy Weight

Excess weight can place added stress on the back and spine joints. Maintain a healthy weight through regular exercise and a balanced diet to reduce the strain on your joints.

Exercise Regularly

Engage in low-impact exercises such as swimming, walking, or cycling to strengthen the muscles surrounding the back and spine. Regular exercise can also help maintain joint flexibility and reduce pain.

Practice Good Posture

Maintaining proper posture while standing, sitting, and lifting heavy objects can alleviate unnecessary strain on the back and spine. Use ergonomic furniture and take frequent breaks to avoid prolonged periods of sitting or repetitive motions.

Protect Your Joints

Avoid excessive strain on your back and spine by using proper lifting techniques, using assistive devices when needed, and taking breaks during repetitive activities.

Visit Regency Square Care Center for Expert Arthritis Care

If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of osteoarthritis in the back and spine, Regency Square Care Center is here to help. Our dedicated team of healthcare professionals specializes in geriatric and aging care, providing tailored treatment plans to address the unique needs of each patient. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards managing your arthritis and improving your quality of life.

Joshua Schwass
Great article! 😊 It's important to understand how arthritis affects the back and spine. Thanks for sharing this valuable information!
Oct 9, 2023