Back problems are a range of conditions related to the bones, joints, connective tissue, muscles and nerves of the back. These conditions can affect the neck (cervical spine), upper back (thoracic spine) and lower back (lumbar spine) as well as the sacrum and tailbone (coccyx) (Figure 1).

Back problems include:

  • pain in the neck, lower, middle and upper back
  • pain, tingling, numbness or weakness in the legs starting from the lower back 
  • narrowing of the spine canal through which the spinal cord passes 
  • degeneration of the disc and spinal joints 
  • pressure on the spinal nerve attached to the spinal cord.