NV Business magazine article-Nagy

Whether you work in an office, a hospital or a construction site, back pain can have a major impact on your career. Get to know your body and the true source of your back pain

Back Pain At Work
Why Making Small Changes Can Have a Lifetime of Payoff

By Aury Nagy, MD
Exclusive to Nevada Business magazine

Whether you work in an office, a hospital or a construction site, back pain can have a major impact on your career. Get to know your body and the true source of your back pain to ensure it will support you through all of life’s heavy lifting.

There are four main causes of back pain at work: staying still too long, repetitive movements, heavy lifting and fatigue.

  1. Prolonged sitting or standing is one of your back’s worst enemies. Your body doesn’t like to stand or sit in one position more than about 20 minutes, yet most office workers sit at their desks for hours at a time. The solution is simple. Whether you’re sitting in an office chair or standing in a line, change positions frequently. Just move. Stand or sit, stretch, take a short walk. Your joints, as well as your back, will respond positively to the change.
  2. Repetitive movements can bind the joints. Unlike jobs that require long-term seating in an office chair, jobs that require frequent repetitive motion can also cause discomfort. Any job that requires heavy lifting, overhead lifting or repetitive twisting may lead to a future back injury. Change your position as often as possible.
  3. Heavy lifting is one of the top causes of back injuries on the job. Remember to use the correct tools at all times to minimize stress on your body.
  4. Fatigue can be caused by sitting or standing in the same position for too long, but it can also be caused by outside sources and exacerbated at work. If you feel overworked or fatigued, get some rest and especially avoid lifting heavy objects. The stress on your back when you are fatigued is increased and could cause an injury.

There are simple remedies to easing or avoiding back pain at work. The hardest part is remembering to listen to your body.


Your mother was right. To look your best and put the least amount of stress on your back, stand or sit straight up. Many people stand in a swayback position and sit with a slouch, which exaggerates your back’s natural curves and can lead to fatigue and injury. Good posture relaxes your muscles and requires minimal effort to balance your body.


When you feel stressed out or anxiety at work, your muscles usually tense, making you more prone to injury. And the more stress you feel, the lower your tolerance for pain. Try to minimize your sources of stress both on the job and at home. When you feel your body getting stressed, try a few deep-breathing exercises, take a walk around the block or talk about your frustrations with a trusted friend.


That yoga or pilates class you’ve been thinking of taking might be a great remedy for your back pain. Not only will it strengthen your core muscles that support the back, but it will teach you breathing exercises and appropriate stretching. Of course, consult your doctor if you’re not sure whether certain forms of exercise will cause additional stress on your back.

Your back is one of the most important parts of your body. When it is healthy and strong, so are you. Make the commitment to give it the support it deserves!

Aury Nagy, MD, is a Las Vegas-based neurosurgeon with offices in Nevada Brain and Spine Care, Kingman Arizona and Bullhead City, Arizona. For more information on Dr. Nagy and his specialties, call 7028382219 or visit www.motionpreservationspinesurgery.com.

About the author