Topical Treatments for Lower Back Pain

Throughout the world, almost 80% of people have the possibility to suffer from back pain problems throughout their whole life. That is the very reason why many people have to lose their jobs. The treatments for back pain are many and various, and it can be ranged from non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) to potent narcotics. Followings are some treatments for those who’d like to relieve their lower back pain with topical treatments, patches and gels.

The moderate-to-severe or chronic back pains can be relieved by pain patches which require a prescription. NSAID, local anesthetic or narcotic painkiller and other related pain medications are all belong to the patches. However, to treat these mild-to-moderate back pains, the over-the-counter (OTC) or non-prescription patches are very effective.

● Ice/Heat Treatment

The mild-to-moderate back pain, such as simple backache, arthritis, bursitis, tendonitis, muscle strains, sprains, bruises and cramps can be alleviated or cured by OTC pain patches which are mainly to cool or warm the painful positions. To the mild-to-moderate back pains, Icy Hot and ThermaCare are popular OTC treatments which have been widely used.

Icy Hot has a cooling and warming sensation since it contains menthol in it, and what’s more, larger back patches are available for you. However, you’d better not to use the Icy Hot if you are going to leave the house immediately due to its far-reaching potent smell.

The natural heat-generating ingredients contained ThermaCare HeatWraps is to deliver low levels of heat for eight hours, which contribute to relax your back muscles, ease pain and improve your blood flow. However, due to its non-smell characteristic, the misuse of this product would lead to burns. If you are diabetics and individuals with poor circulation, rheumatoid arthritis or you are pregnant, before using this product, you’d better to visit your doctor to check whether it suits for you or not.

● Magnet Therapy

In some patches, there is a magnetic area which contained high-purity zinc and copper. Magnet therapy not only contributes to improve your body recovering speed but also can improve your blood flow. The reason is that it can stimulate electrically charged items like salt ions and the iron-rich hemoglobin found in your blood.


To the temporary back pain, an OTC NSAID treatment: Salon Pas which contains methyl salicylate and menthol, is a recommended one. However, the stomach bleeding may occur due to the NSAID components. Compare with the above mentioned ThermaCare and Icy Hot, larger Salon Pas back patches are not available for you.

The Flector patch, also a prescription NSAID patch, contains the NSAID diclofenac epolamine in it. Flector is very effective in relieve the acute pain which cause by minor sprains, contusions and strains. However, the side effect of this treatment would be almost the same as NSAID treatments.

● Local Anesthetic
Lidoderm patches work by blocking nerve signals in the body due to the local anesthetic lidocaine component in it. Originally, FDA used this medication to relieve the pain related shingles. Latter, it also has been widely used in healing back pain by health care provider. However, an allergic skin reaction is more likely to occur when using these patches.

Fentanyl, which is sold under the brand of Duragesic, contains a potent Schedule II opioid painkiller. Duragesic is very effective to people who suffer from moderate-to-severe chronic pain, especially to those who need around-the-clock treatment. If your pain have not got ant improvement from the combination narcotic or non-narcotic pain treatments, you might as well to try Fentanyl.

Do not to expose to Duragesic’s fentanyl gel directly since it will lead to dangerous adverse events, such as respiratory depression. In severe situation, the result would be fatal. So due to the continuous dangerous incidences of death and overdoses with Duragesic and generic fentanyl products, in 2007, FDA issued a second Public Health Advisory which said that The FDA has continued to receive reports of deaths and life-threatening side effects after doctors have inappropriately prescribed the patch or after people incorrectly used it.” So do be careful if you are going to use Duragesic’s fentanyl gel.

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