Medical Society tackles back pain

Local News

The Monroe County Medical Society is working to bring relief to those who suffer from acute back pain.

Dr. Mathew Devine, the Medical Director for Accountable Health Partners and the Associate Medical Director for Highland Family Medicine, explained how the MCMS is working to help patients Friday during News 8 at Sunrise.

“It’s been around for 198 years,” Dr. Devine said of the Monroe County Medical Society. “It really is the culmination of all the physician who are in the associated counties that get together. It has a lot of services that’s patient oriented like if you need to find a physician, as well as a lot of physician services in regards to putting out guidelines and the like.”

Recently the MCMS has put a focus on updating guidelines for acute back pain. “This guideline really focuses on helping the physicians treat individuals when they have acute back pain,” said Dr. Devine. “So and example is, you don’t want to just get in bed and lie there for a couple of days. You really want to stay active. You really want to have them maybe get you to the chiropractor, get you to physical therapy, get you moving, stay active with your activities. And the biggest thing is, a lot of times we think we need imaging and we really don’t need imaging unless there are some warning signs that are there, and so kind of waiting that out. A lot of times we show up and we want back x-rays or MRIs and sometimes those things are necessary, but most of the time they’re not readily needed at that time.”

The Monroe County Medical Society has compiled a lengthy list of recommendations for medical professionals from the update:

Continue to reassure patients that movement and activity is helpful. Motion heals.

Find a position of comfort.

Address any fear avoidance behavior.

Consider chiropractic/spinal manipulation therapy referral.

Consider a physical therapy referral.

Do not recommend bed rest for more than 48 hours when treating low back pain.

Avoid routine imaging which usually does not improve outcomes in patients with non-specific pain.

In the absence of red flags, advise patients to limit bed rest and continue ordinary daily activity as tolerated.

NSAIDs – or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs – are an effective treatment for non-specific acute lower back pain.

Consider muscle relaxants based on side effect profile as second line therapy.

Opioids are not suggested.

Possibly Acetaminophen.

In part two of our conversation about acute back pain, Dr. Devine will explain what you can do to provide some relief. That will air next Thursday, January 31 during News 8 at Sunrise.

To learn more about the Monroe County Medical Society visit

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