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spineadvisor: Neck & Back Pain eNewsletter from March 25, 2009
Will This Get Rid of Back Pain?
Sitting, Redefined
Fitness Balls at Work

Some believe swapping your desk chair for a fitness ball will improve the health of your spine.

But could it actually increase your pain?

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Ask The Experts
Understanding Herniated Disc Diagnosis
Ask the Experts Question

I just read an article about the straight leg raise test, but I still don't get it. How does raising my leg help the doctor know if I have a herniated disc? Could you please explain that?
—Walpole, NH

Ask the Experts Answer

Yes, your doctor may use a straight leg raise test to determine whether your low back and/or leg pain is due to a lumbar herniated disc.

The test is easy to perform. In most cases, you will lie down on a table (sitting is a less common variation), and your doctor will lift your straightened leg into the air.

If you feel pain that travels down your leg when it's lifted to the 30° to 70° range, then the straight leg raise test is considered…

Read Complete Answer

Nicola V. Hawkinson, RN, ANP This Week's Expert
Nicola V. Hawkinson, RN, RNFA, NP
Adult Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
NYU - Hospital for Joint Diseases
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Featured Treatment: Biofeedback
Biofeedback Questions and Answers

Managing life’s daily stresses can make a big difference in reducing your pain.

Biofeedback therapy can help you better understand how you react to certain stressors and strengthen your body’s defense against back and neck pain.

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Biofeedback Questions and Answers
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Lumbar Fusion—What You Should Know

Lumbar Fusion—What You Should Know

Most low back pain can be managed with non-surgical treatments. But if you require lumbar fusion surgery, there are several important aspects you need to understand.

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