Common Types of Back Injuries

Common Types of Back Injuries

Back injuries can be a source of significant pain and discomfort, affecting our ability to move and perform daily activities. These injuries can occur suddenly due to an awkward movement, overexertion during exercise, or trauma, or they can develop gradually from repetitive strain or overuse of the spine.

Sprains and Strains

Sprains and strains are the most common types of back injuries. They can occur suddenly or gradually due to various factors such as awkward movements, overexertion during exercise, or overuse of the spine at work or home.

Causes and Symptoms

  • Strains: Caused by twisting or pulling muscles or tendons in the back.
  • Sprains: Result from sudden twists, falls, or trauma that disrupts the normal position of a joint.

Symptoms of sprains and strains may include:

  • Audible pop at the time of injury
  • Muscle cramps or spasms
  • Difficulty in standing up, bending, or walking straight
  • Increased pain with certain movements

Herniated or Bulging Discs

Herniated or bulging discs are another common type of back injury. These occur when the rubbery cushions between the vertebrae become damaged. The disc can be likened to a jelly-filled donut, with a soft center and a harder exterior. A herniated disc happens when the “jelly” pushes beyond a tear in the outer layer, irritating nearby nerves and causing pain.


Symptoms of a herniated or bulging disc may include:

  • Leg or arm pain
  • Numbness or tingling sensations
  • Muscle weakness

Not everyone with a herniated disc experiences symptoms.

Fractured Vertebrae

Fractured vertebrae, also known as compression fractures, involve a crack in the vertebra. This condition is typically caused by the natural weakening and aging of the spine, but it can also occur due to trauma or a fall.


Symptoms of fractured vertebrae may include:

  • Acute or chronic back pain
  • Loss of height
  • Hunched posture

This article was written by an Auto Injury Doctor at Florida Medical Pain Management. Florida Medical Pain Management is proud to offer comprehensive pain management services to a diverse group of patients. Patients at Florida Medical Pain Management can get help managing hip, knee, leg, and neck pain. The practice also offers comprehensive arthritis management, along with treatments for auto accidents, sports, and work injuries.

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