NEW WAYS TO EASE BACK PAIN
According to Spanish researchers, wearing shoes with curved soles can reduce the severity of chronic lower back pain. These shoes make you less stable, so more back muscles are activated while you walk, and the lumbar area is strengthened. As well as helping increase muscle strength and spine stability in the lower back, the shoes also improve the degree of curvature in the spine, which helps reduce the amount of disability and pain that people experience. New Australian research suggests that an abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) can improve back pain caused by childbirth. It found that when this procedure involved the repair of muscles (such as that used to treat severe abdominal separation), women experienced a decrease in pain and pain-related disability in as little as six months. This is thought to be due to an increase in ab strength. The procedure is a form of major surgery, so talk to your GP before going ahead. Researchers from the Radiological Society of North America have developed a 10-minute procedure for compressed or herniated discs. Doctors do a CT scan, then emit a dose of radiofrequency energy into the area to reduce inflammation, relieve nerve pain and relax the muscles. During a trial study, 80 per cent of patients who received the treatment were still pain-free after a year, and 90 per cent of patients didn’t require further surgery.