Chronic Low Back Pain

  • Stephen MayEmail author


Virtually everyone has vague and non-specific ‘aches and pains’ at some point in their life and affecting all areas of the body. It might be in your back, neck, shoulder or knee, which are the commonest areas affected, but very few people go through life without it. These are termed as ‘musculoskeletal pains’, which as the name suggests is a rather vague and an ambiguous term. There is a reason for this ambiguity, which we will return to later. How we respond to these symptoms however is different. We might, for instance, live with them and not do anything about it, which many people do, or we might go to see a health professional, such as a chiropractor, physical therapist or a medical practitioner, or take some analgesics, or alternatively go down an expensive and unsatisfactory route of further assessments and interventions. But most of us live with these problems, as ‘part of the ageing process’ or whatever you have told yourself to normalise these problems. Most commonly it is the spine that affects us, giving us low back pain and neck pain, which are the commonest of all musculoskeletal problems, but shoulder and knee problems are very common as well. The focus of this chapter is on chronic low back pain. Because of the extent and breadth of literature, it is not possible to discuss all musculoskeletal problems, but it has to be emphasised that the perspectives raised in this chapter, and the possible solutions, do apply to all non-specific musculoskeletal ‘aches and pains’.


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sheffield Hallam University, Collegiate Crescent CampusSheffieldUK

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