A person with back pain holds their waist in pain.

What Is Inflammatory Back Pain?

Sixteen million adults in the U.S. suffer from some form of chronic or recurring back pain, which affects their activity levels, movement, and overall health and well-being. Back pain can result from a number of issues, including injuries, accidents, age, health conditions, and general inflammation.

Inflammatory back pain is a lot more common than we realize and affects millions of people each year. It’s a form of chronic back pain that is located at the axial spine and sacroiliac joints in particular.

Here’s what is important to know about it and how you can identify it:

Inflammatory Back Pain Starts before 40

Age is a major factor in mechanical back pain, which is why if you’re struggling with chronic, off-and-on-again back pain well before your 40s, it could be due to inflammation. People who are younger than 40 and generally healthy, without a history of past injury or other orthopedic conditions, are more prone to inflammatory pain.

It Responds Well to NSAIDs for Pain Management

Unlike certain other types of back pain, inflammatory pain responds well to NSAIDs such as ibuprofen and other common anti-inflammatory medications. You might not need prescription-strength medication to manage pain, and it may subside on its own.

Exercise and Physical Activity Help Alleviate It

Lack of movement and sleeping can trigger inflammatory back pain, but physical activity such as exercise, stretching, and walking can help manage it. Morning stiffness and pain are most commonly associated with inflammation, which tends to subside as the day goes on so that you’re likely to experience some form of relief from it. If this sounds familiar, consult a spine specialist and a pain specialist in Houston, TX.

It May Be Linked to Other Symptoms of Inflammation

Another very common symptom or sign of inflammatory back pain is that it’s probably linked to other types of inflammation. Inflammatory bowel disorder, psoriasis, and joint pain in other parts of the body are some of the other issues that exist with it.


It’s important to consult an orthopedic spine specialist in Houston, TX, who can help you manage back pain and develop a treatment plan that will be the most effective for you. Our spine center at Houston Physicians’ Hospital is home to some of the most skilled and experienced specialists in the region. Visit our website to find a doctor who’s right for you.