Do You Have a Bad Back from Nursing?

Nurses General Nursing


You are reading page 4 of Do You Have a Bad Back from Nursing?

  1. How Bad is Your Back from Nursing?

    • 39
      No problems
    • 106
      Occasionally soreness, relieved with prn OTC meds
    • 61
      Severe. Have to medicate every day.
    • 27
      Severe: Have had surgery.
    • 13

246 members have participated


8 Posts

Specializes in L&D, PP, NSY, Med-Surg, Management, Psyc.

Ive been in nursing for 25 yrs. I had back surgery in '05 with not much relief from a L2-L3 herniation. In addition to that I have bulges at L3-L4, L4-L5, L6-S1. I havent been able to work since January of this year and currently in pain managment. In addition to the lumbar, I am having a flare up of past injuries to my cervical discs as well....*sigh*:uhoh3:


1,030 Posts

Specializes in MCH,NICU,NNsy,Educ,Village Nursing.

Yep--back & abdo exercises are a must. I threw my back out a couple of years ago & the doc told me that for someone with a good back they would eventually have trouble moving around patients who weighed 300 lbs., several times a week. He said that for me, 50lb patients several times a week was not good. Made me sad, but I chose to leave the bedside--I have grandchildren & would rather "save" my back for loving on those little ones. I still have back issues, but at least I'm not bound for the OR at this point in time! Even teaching, with all the walking and standing, gave me trouble, but at least I wasn't the only one hauling the heavy patients around. I used myself as an object lesson in good body mechanics, abd exercises, and taking care of oneself...


5 Posts

critical care for 23 years lifting bedridden, vent patients etc.

10 years on the road as a worker's comp nurse car totalled twice and developed a herniated cerivical disc hours on computer typing reports.

L5S1 hyperextended low back rushing to catch train to MD appt.!!

go figure!

nyapa, RN

995 Posts

Specializes in Jack of all trades, and still learning.

I haven't worked caring for dependent / full care patients for a while. When I did, I had a couple of episodes in six months where I found it difficult to move from a sitting to standing position and vice versa, or at one occasion, turning my head or spine a certain way. I have no pain at the moment; there has been no strain on my back. See how I go when I start nursing adults again...

deeDawntee, RN

1,579 Posts

Specializes in Travel Nursing, ICU, tele, etc.

No back problems other than some muscle strain relieved by ibuprofen.

I regularly use my inversion table and I swear by it. It decompresses the spine and relaxes all those muscles. It keeps the spine flexible and long. It also is good for decompressing all the joints. I do it about 10-15 minutes a day. Best thing ever and all it is anti gravity and traction.

I don't fully invert, just about a 65 degree angle, I would say. Highly recommend it.


2 Articles; 372 Posts

Specializes in Trauma ICU,ER,ACLS/BLS instructor.

Never had an huge issue until January 2007 when a bariatric pt was left on an old ER stretcher,it collapsed . I got help and we lifted her, but end of my back. Always have done real physical nursing ,used great body mechanics, but alls it takes is one time! Now on the celbrex,skelactin, use a tens, brace, and I receive epidurals. Hopefull to return to work soon in some form.


799 Posts

Specializes in Step down, ICU, ER, PACU, Amb. Surg.

I have Facet Arthropathy with DDD and ? herniated discs. I go to the chiropractor twice a month, sometimes more, primarily medicate at bedtime with Percocet, Valium and Zanaflex. Tried 2 rounds of PT(the 2nd round was in a nice, toasty pool) with no improvement. I have had multiple trigger point injections, 3 facet joint blocks and 1 median branch nerve block in my lumbar spine. I am now looking at the possibility of radiofrequency therapy. I have been told that I should never return to bedside nursing because of my severely limited ability to stand or walk for a lengthy period of time as well sit(that just about interfers with everything in life, huh?) and was sent to a state vocational program for people with disabilities to attain help in reinventing my nursing career. It has been a bitter pill to swallow and I can not honestly say that I have completely accepted this.

Diary/Dairy, RN

1,785 Posts

My back got really sore after we had a big run of 300 ++ pounders in the ICU. I take extreme care now and it's a lot better. For pain management, I try to use something topical like IcyHot before attempting anything PO.


799 Posts

Specializes in Step down, ICU, ER, PACU, Amb. Surg.

You are fotunate that topicals, like icyhot, and OTC POs still work for you. My injury happened in February 2006. I had a previous, similar injury in 2004 but I recovered nicely, not this time. And the injury was different in all ways. Ah, well!! C'est la vive!


1,355 Posts

DDD,DJD spine and knees, Facet disease, spinal stenosis,some nerve damage in left foot.I take lots of naproxen and use Flexeril PRN for MASSIVE leg spasms and painful but less so than leg, back spasms.


799 Posts

Specializes in Step down, ICU, ER, PACU, Amb. Surg.

I'm beyond flexeril and naproxen....I miss those days!


1,355 Posts

I used to have alot of sciatic nerve pain, that feeling of having a toothache in your leg, but that has gone way over the years and been replaced with some numbness and those god awful spasms from hip to toe, feels like an electrical jolt, then the muscles go crazy in a spasm that just wont quit.I actually did take neurontin for several years, but dont need it anymore, strange, huh?The orthopedic surgeon I saw said that after a while the nerve endings "burn themselves out" ( maybe its self ablation) and the nerve -toothache type pain goes away. Anyone else heard this?

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