Managing Back Pain During Pregnancy

, Denver Spine and Rehabilitation Center

Disclosures

Medscape General Medicine. 1997;1(2) 

In This Article

Classification

One study of pregnant women documented back pain distributed over 3 areas (Fig. 1). The most frequent site of pain was the sacroiliac area, then pain in the lower back and the upper back.[10] The most common forms of low-back pain during pregnancy can be classified into 3 types:

  • Lumbar pain during pregnancy is back pain from the lumbar area only, with or without radiation to the legs. Lumbar radiculopathy, or true sciatica, is rare and thought to account for 1% of low-back pain in pregnancy.[10,11]

  • Sacroiliac pain is felt distal and lateral to the lumbar spine, with or without lower extremity radiation. It is 4 times more common than lumbar pain.[12]

  • Nocturnal back pain is pain that occurs at night while lying down.

Figure 1. Pain diagram.

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