When it comes to our physical health, gender plays a big part in what you’re at higher risk for. Symptoms can vary, too. When it comes to backpain, it’s not different. Though most back issues can happen to both male or females, here’s 5 conditions that tend to affect women more:
1. DEGENERATIVE SPONDYLOLISTHESIS
Spondylolisthesis means slipped vertebra. occurs when a vertebra slides over the one below it, causing the vertebra to press on the spinal nerves resulting in pain in the legs or lower back. Women may suffer more from spondylolisthesis because of the lower density of their bones, their different hormones, or the different structure of their pelvises.
Physical symptoms are characterized by stiffness, fatigue, and musculoskeletal pain, commonly in the lower back. According to the National Fibromyalgia Association, 75-90 percent of fibromyalgia sufferers are women. It is thought that female hormones have an effect on pain and fibromyalgia symptoms.
3. PIRIFORMIS SYNDROME,
Pain, numbness or tingling in the buttock caused by a spasm in the piriformis muscle located near the top of the hip joint. The nearby sciatic nerve is affected causing pain, numbness, or tingling to radiate down the back of the leg. Women age 40-60 are most affected by Piriformis syndrome. The gender difference is usually attributed to differences in men’s and women’s pelvic anatomy.
4. SACROILIAC JOINT DYSFUNCTION
The sacroiliac joints are the points where the lower spine and pelvis connect. Sacroiliac joint dysfunction happens when inflammation causes pain in the buttocks or lower back which can extend down one or both legs. This is common for women in their childbearing years, especially during pregnancy when hormones relax joints and ligaments to allow space for the baby and the extra weight puts stress on the joints causing sacroiliac pain.
In osteoarthritis, the cartilage that protects the tops of bones wears down, causing swelling and pain. is characterized by back pain or stiffness. In severe cases, it may cause weakness or numbness in the legs or arms. Osteoarthritis is more common among women after age 50 and in people who are overweight.
The Orthopaedic Specialty Group. is a group of seven orthopaedic offices throughout Fairfield County, CT. The Orthopaedic Specialty Group also runs one of the only after-hours orthopaedic walk-in clinics as an affordable alternative to the ER.