Osteochondrosis of the lumbar spine: symptoms of the problem and treatment

back pain with osteochondrosis

Connecting the fixed, thoracic and sacral, sections of the spine, the lumbar plays the most important role. It provides mobility to the spinal column.

With the development of degenerative processes in the intervertebral discs, signs of osteochondrosis of the lumbar spine appear. A serious illness can significantly complicate the existence, leading to a decrease in working capacity and even disability.


This disease is spreading all over the world. This is facilitated by such common factors as physical inactivity, poor environmental conditions, malnutrition and obesity. At the same time, it is on the back that the heaviest loads often fall, so it is important to know the causes of lumbar osteochondrosis.

  • More than half of the cases of the disease are associated with a hereditary predisposition, which determines the structure of the intervertebral discs, which are easily deformable.
  • Work associated with regular physical overload is a negative factor that can cause problems with the spine.
  • With incorrect posture, aggravated by hypodynamia, the lumbar region is subjected to greater stress.
  • Injuries to the spine in the future often lead to the manifestation of the disease. Therefore, representatives of professional sports are at risk.
  • Many years ago, osteochondrosis was a disease of the elderly - this has its own logic. Discs are more prone to deformation with age. However, today this disease can be observed in thirty-year-olds. The impetus for the development of osteochondrosis is errors in the independent performance of complex physical exercises.
  • If there are any pathologies of the joints, then severe hypothermia and a sharp tension when lifting a heavy load can provoke pain.
  • Excess weight puts extra stress on all joints of the spine.
  • Often the onset of the disease is associated with pathologies of some internal organs: the liver, kidneys and others.
carrying heavy loads as a cause of lumbar osteochondrosis


So, consider the signs of osteochondrosis of the lumbar spine.

  • The first and main symptom of the disease is pain, at first periodic, occurring in the lumbar region during heavy exertion. At first, it passes after rest, but then becomes permanent, covering not only the lower back, but also the lower part of the body. In the course of further destruction of the vertebra, the pain becomes stronger, there is a feeling of heat or cold in the back.
  • The sensitivity of the skin of the lower body decreases or even completely disappears, a spasm of the arteries may occur. The fact that the vertebra ceases to be fixed by the disk is fraught with serious damage to the internal organs.
  • Symptoms of lumbar osteochondrosis in women are complemented by inflammation in the ovaries, appendages and uterus. This circumstance can mask the main signs and lead to an error in diagnosis.
  • Due to severe pain, a person has to be in an unnatural position most of the time, as a result of which the spine is displaced to one side. A stoop appears in the posture, and tension in the gait.
  • The spine loses its mobility and flexibility. The effect of lumbodynia is observed, when, after prolonged work in a bent state, it is difficult for the patient to straighten up.
  • Compression of the nerve root in the vertebra is accompanied by acute pain and may have consequences in the form of impaired mobility.
  • Osteochondrosis of the lumbar spine is also characterized by symptoms of ischemic syndrome, that is, a group of signs that are associated with a decrease in blood flow in the compressed vessels. At first, spasm of the arteries occurs episodically, accompanied by pain when walking. After rest they pass. However, over time, the spasm becomes prolonged, the pelvic organs cease to receive nutrition, which disrupts their work. Stopping blood flow can lead to paralysis.
  • The disease can provoke pain in the coccyx. Signs of sacral osteochondrosis differ in some originality, so it is more difficult to diagnose. Despite strong, even bursting pains, they are given in the surrounding tissues, so the patient cannot indicate the exact location of their localization. In addition, they are accompanied by inflammatory processes of the genitourinary system. There is frequent urination or urinary incontinence, constipation, it is difficult for the patient to sit and move around.
lower back pain with osteochondrosis


If the problem is not treated, then a progressive disease can lead to serious complications.

  • The result of the rupture of the fibrous ring will be the pinching of the nerve endings by the protruding nucleus pulposus - an intervertebral hernia will occur.
  • Prolonged inflammatory processes in the spine can result in sciatica - a disease of the roots of the spinal nerves.
  • A very serious complication is inflammation of the sciatic nerve, characterized not only by severe pain, but also by numbness in the limbs.
  • Impaired blood flow in the spinal cord can cause compressive myelopathy.
  • Horse tail syndrome is one of the most severe consequences of osteochondrosis. A bundle of nerve endings extending from a vertebra at the end of the spinal cord is responsible for transmitting impulses from the body, allowing the brain to control the body's work. Their acute inflammation can cause dysfunction of the genitourinary system and partial or complete paralysis of the limbs.


Osteochondrosis of the lumbar spine, its symptoms and treatment depend on the place where the nerve ending was clamped, where pain and loss of sensitivity are felt. If therapy is started on time, then it will be quite successful, but, in any case, it will require an integrated approach.

Medications are used only to relieve acute pain. The main goal of therapy is to stop the development of the disease and return the spine to the correct position, restoring normal blood flow in it. This is a complex and lengthy process that requires the use of various methods of rehabilitation.

consultation with a specialist in lumbar osteochondrosis


Therapeutic gymnastics occupies an important place in rehabilitation. It is prescribed a couple of days after the elimination of severe pain, is selected separately for each patient and depends on:

  • disease stage,
  • causes of osteochondrosis of the lumbar,
  • patient's age,
  • pain localization sites,
  • and other factors.

The main goal of therapeutic exercises is to create a reliable muscle corset that will help reduce the load on the intervertebral discs. In the initial period, several exercises with a small load are offered. It gradually increases. Over time, special exercises are added to the general ones.

Gymnastics is first performed lying on your back. At the same time, the load on the spine is minimal, there is no increase in pain. The next stage is exercises, lying on your side, and then on your stomach. You can put a pillow under it, and a roller under the joints of the lower extremities.

At the initial stage, all exercises are performed very slowly and carefully. Gradually, as the amplitude of movements increases, new ones are added to them. After the pain stops and the patient's condition improves, the complex is supplemented with exercises that are performed while standing on all fours, then sitting on a chair, then standing.

If the disease is in a chronic form, then, depending on the patient's well-being, he is allowed to engage in certain sports - swimming, skiing and others. The effectiveness of therapeutic exercises will increase many times over with regular classes.

therapeutic exercises for lumbar osteochondrosis

Manual therapy and massage

Manual therapy is one of the oldest and most effective methods as part of complex measures used to treat lumbar osteochondrosis and its symptoms. The course includes several procedures that can eliminate the cause of pain and numbness in the limbs, relieve tension in muscle fibers, restore blood circulation and joint mobility. When using this technique, you can get a quick and positive effect, comparable to the results of therapeutic exercises. However, it has some contraindications that should be considered when including it in complex treatment.

An excellent tool in the fight against a serious illness is massage. After several sessions, the patient feels better, muscle stiffness disappears and joint mobility is restored. But each case of the disease has its own characteristics, and only a qualified specialist should prescribe this procedure.

There are a number of contraindications, in the presence of which massage is prohibited for a certain category of patients:

  • neoplasms of a different nature;
  • hypertension of the third degree;
  • moles in the massage area;
  • arrhythmia and other pathologies of the heart;
  • blood diseases;
  • women's diseases and some others.

Usually a traditional type of massage is prescribed. The first procedures may be accompanied by slight pain, which will soon stop.

Severe pain during the session is unacceptable. To improve blood flow in the affected area, vacuum massage using cans can be used.

A doctor will help you defeat lumbar osteochondrosis and symptoms, and choose the most effective treatment. Most likely, massage will be included in the list of recommendations.


The complex of therapeutic measures includes physiotherapeutic methods. They allow you to locally act on the affected area and eliminate unpleasant symptoms. The following types of physiotherapy have been widely used:

  • exposure to an electric or electromagnetic field allows you to increase blood flow and metabolic processes in tissues;
  • ultraviolet light relieves inflammation, stimulates the production of vitamin D, strengthens the body's defenses;
  • ultrasonic waves have a high anti-inflammatory effect;
  • Balneotherapy is widely used both in the treatment and prevention of diseases of the spine, thanks to the mild and effective healing effect of mineral springs and therapeutic mud.

This method also has certain contraindications, which should be taken into account when prescribing such procedures.

There are many folk recipes that are widely used for osteochondrosis of the lumbar spine, as proven as effective remedies. They can be a good addition to the main treatment after consultation with a specialist. Ointments and compresses, decoctions of herbs can be used for rubbing or ingested. Self-prepared products can cause allergic reactions. Poisonous plants can also be prescribed in recipes, so you need to follow the exact dosage of such substances, check the body's reaction to their use, and consult a doctor.

physiotherapy treatment of lumbar osteochondrosis


Measures that can prevent this serious disease should be comprehensive and include, above all, physical activity. It can be long walks at a calm pace, regular trips to the pool, sports. Walking and running help to engage the main muscle groups, and water helps them to relax better and increase the range of motion.

Of great importance for health is a balanced fractional diet, in which considerable attention should be paid to foods with a high fiber content. Vegetables and fruits will establish the normal functioning of the digestive system, metabolic products will not linger in the intestines, poisoning the body. Thanks to small portions, the food will be completely processed.

It is necessary to organize a good rest and proper sleep on a flat and hard base. Useful orthopedic mattresses that maintain the natural position of the spine.

The first signs of lumbar osteochondrosis require immediate medical attention, and then there is the possibility of successful treatment and restoration of spinal functions.