Back Pain That Gets Worse When Straightening It

Understand your back pain that gets worse when straightening it symptoms, including 4 causes & common questions.

4 Back Pain That Gets Worse When Straightening It Causes

Low back strain

A strain is defined as a twisting, pulling, or tearing injury to a muscle, or to the tendon that connects the muscle to the bone. (A sprain is an injury to a ligament, which connects two bones together.)

Strains may be acute (happen suddenly) or chronic (show up gradually.) They are usually caused by overuse, improper lifting of heavy objects, or sports. Being overweight or having weak back muscles are both risk factors for back injury.

Symptoms may include a pop or tear at the time of injury; pain that is worse when moving; and sudden muscle cramping or spasm at the site of the injury.

Diagnosis is made through patient history, physical examination, and sometimes x-ray.

Treatment involves rest; ice packs; and over-the-counter pain relievers, followed by a gradual return to normal activities within two weeks. Prolonged immobility actually weakens the back and causes loss of bone density.

Proper lifting techniques, strengthening exercises, and good nutrition can be very helpful in preventing further injury.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: lower back pain, back pain that gets worse when sitting, back pain that gets worse when straightening it, lower left back pain, lower right back pain

Symptoms that always occur with low back strain: lower back pain

Symptoms that never occur with low back strain: involuntary defecation, first time leaking urine, back numbness, toe numbness, foot numbness

Urgency: Self-treatment

Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a set of chronic symptoms that include ongoing fatigue, diffuse tenderness to touch, musculoskeletal pain, and usually some degree of depression.

The cause is not known. When fibromyalgia appears, it is usually after a stressful physical or emotional event such as an automobile accident or a divorce. It may include a genetic component where the person experiences normal sensation as pain.

Almost 90% of fibromyalgia sufferers are women. Anyone with rheumatic disease, such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus, may be more prone to fibromyalgia.

Poor sleep is often a symptom, along with foggy thinking, headaches, painful menstrual periods, and increased sensitivity to heat, cold, bright lights, and loud noises.

There is no standard test for fibromyalgia. The diagnosis is usually made when the above symptoms go on for three months or more with no apparent cause.

Fibromyalgia does not go away on its own but does not get worse, either.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: fatigue, arthralgias or myalgias, anxiety, depressed mood, headache

Symptoms that always occur with fibromyalgia: arthralgias or myalgias

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Herniated (slipped) disk in the lower back

The backbone, or spine, is made up of 26 bones called vertebrae. In between the bones are soft disks filled with a jelly-like substance. These disks cushion the vertebrae and keep them in place. Although people talk about a slipped disk, nothing actually slips out of place. The outer shell of the disk ruptures, and the jelly-like substance bulges out. It may be pressing on a nerve, which is what causes the pain.A slipped disk is more likely to happen due to strain on the back, such as during heavy lifting, and older individuals are at higher risk.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: lower back pain, moderate back pain, back pain that shoots down the leg, back pain that gets worse when sitting, leg weakness

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Mid-back bruise

A bruise is the damage of the blood vessels that return blood to the heart (the capillaries and veins), which causes pooling of the blood. This explains the blue/purple color of most bruises. Bruises of the back are common, given how exposed this area of the body is.

Rarity: Uncommon

Top Symptoms: back pain, constant back pain, mid back pain from an injury, swollen back, bruised back

Symptoms that always occur with mid-back bruise: mid back pain from an injury, constant back pain

Urgency: Self-treatment

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Back Pain That Gets Worse When Straightening It

  • Does your back pain radiate anywhere?
  • Any fever today or during the last week?
  • What is your body mass?
  • Do you currently smoke?

Self-diagnose with our free if you answer yes on any of these questions.

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Back Pain That Gets Worse When Straightening It Symptom Checker Statistics

People who have experienced back pain that gets worse when straightening it have also experienced:

  • 10% Lower Back Pain
  • 2% Back Pain
  • 2% Sharp Lower Back Pain

People who have experienced back pain that gets worse when straightening it were most often matched with:

  • 42% Fibromyalgia
  • 42% Herniated (Slipped) Disk In The Lower Back
  • 14% Low Back Strain

Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from .

Hear what 1 others are saying
Autism child that cannot walk and has low back painPosted May 20, 2020 by A.

Due to her sicknesses, she can't walk. When sitting and lying down, she felt back pain.

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