Spine symptoms

 

Serious Symptoms / Red Flags

Loss of bladder or bowel control

Impaired balance and coordination

Abnormal or Loss of sensation in a limb or limbs

Muscle weakness in the arms or legs

Numbness

Loss of hand control and coordination

 

 

Pain

Dull, constant aching

Shooting

Sharp

 

Stiffness

Sciatica

Muscle spasms

Muscle weakness

RED FLAGS

Cancer

History of cancer

Unexplained weight loss

Age >50 yr

Failure to respond to >1 mo of

conservative care

Duration of pain >1 mo

No pain relief with bed rest

Night pain

History of smoking

 

Fracture

Known osteopenia or osteoporosis

History of corticosteroid use

Age >50 yr

DISH or ankylosing spondylitis

Trauma (major in younger individual,

minor in older individual)

 

Infection

Fever

Illicit use of intravenous or percutaneously injected drugs

Recent or known infection

Immunosuppressive illness

Use of immunosuppressive medications

Tuberculosis exposure

 

 

Cauda equina or spinal cord injury

Progressive weakness in limbs

Progressive balance deficit or loss of coordination

Bowel or bladder dysfunction or urinary retention

Sexual dysfunction

Numbness or paresthesias in perineum or saddle anesthesia

Significant weakness of major muscle group or progressive motor loss in limb

Severe or progressive radiculopathy


Cervical Spine Pain Referral