Back Pain Specialist

Richard B. Kim, MD -  - Neurosurgery

Richard B. Kim, MD

Neurosurgery located in Newport Beach, CA

If you're finding life hard to manage because of back pain, you need a specialist who has the experience and expertise to diagnose and treat your back effectively and promptly. Board-certified neurosurgeon Richard Kim MD MS Inc uses state-of-the-art technologies at his practice in Newport Beach, California, to provide expert care for people with back pain. Get a resolution for your back pain by calling Dr. Kim today or book an appointment online.

Back Pain

What causes back pain?

There are numerous causes of back pain. Injuries like vertebral fractures and muscular strains can cause acute back pain, while the effects of aging cause tissue deterioration that often leads to chronic pain. Common causes of back pain include:

  • Arthritis
  • Sciatica
  • Radiculopathy (pinched nerves)
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Herniated discs
  • Spinal stenosis (narrowing of the spine)
  • Osteoporosis
  • Spondylosis
  • Facet joint syndrome
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Spinal tumors

Sometimes, tissue deterioration leads to acute injuries. For instance, osteoporosis causes your bones to weaken and crumble, which can lead to compression fractures. Degenerative disc disease can weaken the outer casing of your spinal discs and lead to herniation.

There are also congenital causes of back pain conditions you're born with, like scoliosis, where your spine develops a sideways curvature. Back pain can sometimes be due to a tumor or mass growing on your spine.

In addition to back pain, these conditions may cause other symptoms if they're interfering with the nerves in or around your spinal cord. You could have sensations like burning, tingling, or prickling in your limbs. Or you might feel numbness or experience a loss of function.

How is back pain diagnosed?

To treat your back pain effectively, Dr. Kim needs to diagnose the root cause of your condition. At your initial consultation, he reviews your medical history and current symptoms and conducts a physical examination. Based on his findings, he might then recommend further diagnostic tests. These could include:

  • X-rays
  • MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan
  • CT (computed tomography) scan
  • Bone density scan
  • Electromyogram
  • Nerve conduction velocity tests
  • Nerve blocks

These tests enable Dr. Kim to see the structures of your spine in detail and assess nerve function. Once he determines the cause of your back pain, he creates a personalized treatment program for you.

What treatments are used for back pain?

People with back pain often respond well to conservative treatments, which could include physical therapy, medication, and activity modification. If these methods aren't enough, there are a range of spinal injections that can ease pain and inflammation.

If your back pain doesn't improve despite these measures, Dr. Kim might need to perform surgery. He has exceptional skills in minimally-invasive spine surgery and excels in procedures such as:

  • Artificial disc replacement
  • Cervical fusion
  • Microdiscectomy
  • Lumbar fusion
  • Sacroiliac joint fusion
  • Spinal tumor removal

Dr. Kim makes use of the most advanced technologies when performing spine surgery, such as stereotactic navigation to visualize the surgery site during a minimally invasive procedure.

Call the office of Richard Kim MD MS Inc today for more information or book an appointment online.