What causes a burning sensation in the back? Is it a serious situation? What problems does it indicate? Do you need to see a doctor? You can find the answers to all these questions and much more below.
What is a burning sensation in the back?
A burning sensation in the back is any sensation that causes a feeling of warmth anywhere in the back and may or may not be accompanied by pain. A burning sensation in the back can be accompanied by a wide variety of other symptoms, including a tingling, numbness or itching sensation.
A number of underlying events or conditions can cause a burning sensation in the back. These include, but are not limited to, burns, including chemical, thermal, or electrical burns. Neurological problems including nerve compression , infectious conditions such as shingles , muscle sprains and muscle strains are among the possible causes of a burning sensation in the back. Underlying diseases such as multiple sclerosis or encephalitis can also cause a burning sensation anywhere in the back.
Most people will experience back pain at some point in their lives . While not all back pain is associated with a burning sensation in the back, this sensation is also quite common. Anyone can experience a burning sensation in the lower back, but older people experience these symptoms more often. Because they are more susceptible to many underlying causes of these symptoms.
Because of the wide variety of potential causes underlying a burning sensation in the back, you should always seek professional medical attention whenever you experience this symptom. Often, back pain, including a burning sensation anywhere in the lower back, will be treated with rest and pain medication.
A burning sensation in the back may be an indication of a serious underlying condition or disease. If the burning sensation in your back is due to a severe burn or traumatic injury, or if you have severe leg weakness, urinary or stool incontinence, and a high fever, it is recommended to seek medical attention immediately.
What causes a burning sensation in the back?
A burning sensation in the back can be due to a variety of physical causes or underlying conditions. For example, a burning sensation anywhere on the back can be caused by actual burns on the back. Alternatively, they may be due to an underlying disorder that affects the nervous system, causing the nerves in the back to produce a burning sensation.
Causes of the back
A burning sensation in the lower back can be caused by events or conditions that originate in the back, including:
- Burns, including thermal, chemical, electrical, or radiation burns and sunburn
- Degenerative disc disease (wear and tear caused by the effects of aging on the spine)
- Kas burkulması
- muscle tension
- Nerve entrapment
- spinal cord injury
- spinal cord tumor
Causes from other conditions or diseases
Back sensation can also be caused by systemic conditions or diseases including:
- Alcohol-induced neuropathy (nerve damage associated with excessive alcohol consumption)
- Diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage due to high blood sugar levels associated with diabetes)
- Encephalitis (inflammation and swelling of the brain due to a viral infection or other causes)
- Multiple sclerosis (disease that affects the brain and spinal cord, causing weakness, loss of coordination, balance difficulties, and other problems)
- Rheumatoid arthritis (chronic autoimmune disease characterized by joint inflammation )
- Shingles (herpes zoster)
- Systemic lupus erythematosus (disorder in which the body attacks its own healthy cells and tissues)
- Transverse myelitis (neurological disorder that causes inflammation in the spinal cord)
- Vitamin deficiencies
Serious or life-threatening causes
In some cases, a burning sensation in the back may be a symptom of a serious or life-threatening condition that should be evaluated immediately in an emergency setting. These include:
- broken bones
- Epidural abscess (infection around the spinal cord)
- severe burns
- Spinal cord compression due to tumor or other factors
Questions to diagnose the cause of the burning sensation in the back
To diagnose your condition, your doctor will ask you a few questions about your problem, including:
- When did you first experience these feelings?
- Have you recently hurt your back (including a sprain or strain)?
- Does the burning sensation get worse or better depending on what you’re doing?
- Are the burning sensations in a specific spot on your back or are they general?
- Do you take any medications?
- Do you have a history of back problems?
- Do you have any other symptoms?
What other symptoms can occur with a burning sensation in the back?
A burning sensation in the back may accompany other symptoms that will vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. These underlying conditions can also cause symptoms in other parts of the body.
A feeling of warmth in your back may accompany other symptoms that affect the back, including:
- Needle prickling (pins and needles) sensation
- redness, warmth, or swelling
Symptoms related to other body systems may also accompany a burning sensation in the back. These symptoms include:
- Loss of urine or stool control
- muscle weakness
- Neuralgia (feeling of pain in the nerves)
- Pain while walking
- touch sensitivity
Serious symptoms that may indicate a life-threatening condition
In some cases, a burning sensation in the back can be a symptom of a life-threatening condition that needs immediate evaluation in an emergency setting. It is recommended that you seek immediate medical attention if you or a loved one has any of the life-threatening symptoms, including:
- Serious burns (thermal, electrical, or chemical)
- High fever
- Loss of urine or stool control
- Paralysis, albeit temporary
- feeling severe pain
What are the possible complications of a burning sensation in the back?
A burning sensation in the back, although rare, can be caused by serious underlying conditions or diseases that need immediate treatment. Since it can be linked to serious illness, untreated can cause serious complications and permanent damage. Once the underlying cause has been diagnosed, it is important not to delay the treatment your doctor recommends to reduce the risk of potential complications.
Possible complications associated with a burning sensation in the back include:
- Being disabled (untreated)
- Permanent nerve damage, including paralysis (due to nerve compression)
- Possible spread of cancer
- Possible spread of infection
- Loss of consciousness