Most people with back pain do not need surgery. In fact, surgery is often the treatment of last resort for back pain. However, there are several conditions that may benefit from surgical intervention when other therapies have not succeeded in relieving pain and restoring mobility.
Those conditions include:
Herniated disc, which is when one or more of the discs that cushion the bones of the spine are damaged and the gel-like center of the disc can press against a nerve, causing pain.
Spinal stenosis, which causes the spinal canal to become narrow.
Spondylolisthesis, which is when one or more bones of the spine slip out of place.
Vertebral fracture, which is a broken or crumbled vertebrae.
Degenerative disc disease, which is the disc deterioration that some people experience as they age. The condition can cause some discs to break down and cause severe pain.
In rare cases, when back pain is caused by a tumor, an infection, or a nerve root problem, surgery is needed to ease the pain and prevent more problems.