21 March 2014 | Admin
Lumbago is just an old term used to describe pain in the lower back Lumbago is another term for low back pain a condition experienced by up to 80% of people in the industrialised Western world at some point in their lives. The term first appeared in the 1600s, then used mainly by doctors. It became more popular amongst the medical profession and was widely used even in the 1960s and 70s. Lumbago is a meaningless term often used by GPs to give an instant diagnosis, just as the term slipped disc is meaningless, both terms have no place in the modern world and only serve to confuse patients even more. The term lumbago is derived from Latin – with lumbus meaning loin. Hence, lumbago means ‘weakness in the loins’ (which does conjure up a number of visions), or alternatively, ‘weakness in the lower back’ which is a more accurate description. We commonly consider lower back pain to be a modern-day phenomenon and indeed, it appears that the sedentary lifestyle enjoyed in our civilised world may contribute to the problem. However, the fact that lumbago was described in the 1600s suggests that our ancestors also suffered back problems. It is likely however, that in those days, it was not a lack of exercise or bad posture that contributed to the problem, but rather, degenerative conditions such as arthritis.