Low back pain, also known as lumbago, is a more common condition than it seems and consists of an acute and stabbing discomfort in the lumbar region located in the lower part of our spine. In addition to the constant pain, either in the left or right part of this area, lumbago can also cause other symptoms such as stiffness in the back, difficulty staying straight and poor mobility of the lumbar area, among others.
The reason why this ailment occurs in the left part of the lumbar area can have different causes, so the most appropriate thing would be to consult with a specialist for a better diagnosis. However, in the following article we can tell you some of the causes of left low back pain. Keep reading and discover the possible pathologies that cause this symptom.
Muscle strain in the left lumbar part
One of the causes of left low back pain can be due to an injury known as muscle strain in the left part of the lower back, which occurs when the muscle in this area is torn and consequently causes a deterioration in the ligaments (quite hard muscle fibers that connect the bones with the joints). Among the most frequent reasons why a muscle strain occurs in the lumbar area are sports injuries, too sudden movement or the lifting of a very heavy object.
The most common symptoms of muscle strain in the lower back are as follows:
- Pain in the left part of the lower back or in the right. The pain does not spread to the legs as it does in other diseases such as sciatica.
- The pain can sometimes be debilitating and sometimes appear suddenly. In addition, the ailment can be more acute when the lower back is touched.
- Muscle spasms.
- Difficulty both walking and standing straight and standing.
Abdominal aortic aneurysm causes left low back pain
Another possible cause of discomfort and pain in the left part of the lumbar region is the development of a disease known as abdominal aortic aneurysm. This condition occurs when a part of the aorta, the main artery leading out of the heart that carries blood flow to the abdomen, pelvis, and legs, is abnormally widened or bulged.
Although there are no exact causes for which this health problem appears, there are some factors that increase the risk of suffering from an aortic aneurysm such as smoking, high blood pressure or being over 60 years old (especially in men).
According to Medline Plus, U.S. National Library of Medicine, the symptoms of abdominal aortic aneurysm are as follows:
- Severe pain in the abdomen and/or back (including the lower back). It can spread to other areas such as the buttocks, legs or groin.
- Cold sweating.
- Nausea and vomiting.
- Vertigo and fainting.
- Accelerated heart rate.
Herniated disc in the lumbar region
A herniated disc in the lumbar area occurs when a disc of that part of the spine is forced totally or partially and when this happens an area of the disc is weakened and protrudes, even the disc wears out in large part, which produces a lot of pain. In turn, this can put pressure on the nerves that are near the area. This condition in the back is usually more frequent in elderly people, especially in men, although it may have other factors that increase the risk of suffering from it such as obesity, sedentary lifestyle, smoking or work where heavy objects are frequently lifted and the back is forced.
We include this condition among the causes that can cause lumbago in the left part because a herniated disc can occur in any of the intervertebral discs, including those in the lumbar region, and begin to be noticed more on one side than on another, in this case the left. Symptoms of lumbar herniated disc may include the following:
- Low back pain on the left.
- The pain can spread to other areas such as the legs, hips, and buttocks.
- Numbness in the back or other areas such as the back of the calves and the soles of the feet.
- Weakness in the legs.
Osteoarthritis in the lumbar
Finally, another of the main causes of left low back pain is lumbar osteoarthritis is a disease that wears down the cartilage (tissue that covers and protects the joints of the bone system) of the facet or vertebral joints, which causes the bones of the area to end up rubbing against each other. The most common causes of this condition are usually aging, overweight or injuries to these joints, although there may also be other risk factors such as hormonal problems, pregnancy and genetic inheritance.
Among the symptoms that appear due to osteoarthritis in the lumbar we find the following:
- Low back pain in the left or right area.
- Stiffness in the joints.
- Decreased joint movements.
- Inflammation in the affected joints.