Red Flag Signs and Symptoms of Back Pain

The red-flag symptoms and signs of back pain that may indicate a medical emergency and warrant immediate medical attention are:

  • Sudden loss of sensation in one or both legs, the groin and genital area, and/or the anal region
  • Back pain that radiates to the abdomen in front
  • Back pain that follows a trauma, such as a fall, sports injury, or car accident
  • Difficulty in passing urine or uncontrolled bladder movements
  • Inability to walk or stand
  • Inability to control bowel movements
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Sudden, intolerable pain in the lower back and/or legs

This information is not intended or implied as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content, including text, graphics, images or other information provided is intended for general information purposes only. Always consult with your physician for diagnosis or treatment.