“For acute back pain, the analogy is to the common cold,” Dr. Deyo said. “It is very common and very annoying when it happens. But most of the time it will not result in anything major or serious.”
Moreover, invasive treatments can cause real problems. These include finding things in scans that look like abnormalities that really have nothing to do with the pain, getting patients hooked on powerful prescription drugs, or taking on the risks of invasive surgeries.
Patients want cures, and doctors and insurance companies are primed to try shots, pills, and advanced treatments. But we should all stop “medicalizing” this problem, Dr. James Weinstein, a back pain specialist and chief executive of Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health System told the Times. “I know your back hurts, but go run, be active, instead of taking a pill.”
The US really needs to stop advertising prescription medicine to the general public. To paraphrase one of the favorite things a doctor ever shared with me: "If I'm about to die, western medicine is the best in the world. But if I'm just in some pain or have a chronic issue, surgeries and pills are only going to make it worse." These commercials just serve to support the hypothesis that any ailment is serious and should be immediately treated with drastic methods.