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Low back pain

Self-care

Hot or cold packs may ease discomfort. Limited bed rest, followed by regular activities and gentle stretching exercises may help. Avoid sudden and painful movements.

When to seek immediate medical care

See a doctor immediately if:

  • Caused by trauma, such as a car accident or sports injury
  • Fever
  • Difficulty emptying the bowel or with urination

When to make a doctor's appointment

Make an appointment to see a doctor if:

  • Persistent or worsens
  • Travels down one or both legs
  • Weakness, numbness, or tingling in one or both legs
  • Swelling, redness, or unintentional weight loss
  • Unable to work, sleep, or perform daily activities

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