What Is Back Pain?

Nearly 80 percent of people face a painful back problem at some point in their lives. From care for common injuries to complex spine surgery, the Northwestern Medicine spine specialists blend innovation and skill to help restore your movement and improve your quality of life.

Back pain can range from mild, dull, annoying pain to persistent, severe, disabling pain in the back. Pain in the back can restrict mobility and interfere with normal functioning and quality of life.

Pain in the back can be acute, which comes on suddenly and intensely, or chronic, which can last for weeks, months or even years. The pain can be continuous or intermittent.

The Center for Comprehensive Orthopaedic and Spine Care

The Center for Comprehensive Orthopaedic and Spine Care (CCOSC) at Northwestern Memorial Hospital is one of the nation’s premier destinations for musculoskeletal services. With numerous medical specialists and disciplines, along with state-of-the-art imaging and operating room facilities, this collaborative environment ensures more accurate diagnoses, better patient outcomes and streamlined processes. The center specializes in:

  • Arthritis
  • Chronic pain from nerve injuries, failed back or neck surgery
  • Degenerative joint disease
  • Joint replacement
  • Peripheral nerve injuries
  • Physical therapy
  • Rehabilitation for injuries to bones, muscles, tissues, joints, central nervous system
  • Spinal disorders and injuries
  • Sports medicine
The CCOSC has several important initiatives, including the Women’s CCOSC Health Program to ensure women of all ages receive the specialized musculoskeletal care they need. The Sports Medicine, Injury and Rehabilitation Program facilitates a safe, expedient recovery and return to activity for recreational and professional athletes.

Additional CCOSC locations include:

Northwestern Medicine River Forest
420 Thatcher Ave.
River Forest, IL

Northwestern Medicine Elmhurst
1200 S. York Road
Elmhurst, IL

To schedule an appointment at the CCOSC at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Northwestern Medicine River Forest and Northwestern Medicine Elmhurst, please call 855.466.7746.

The Center for Comprehensive Orthopaedic and Spine Care

The Center for Comprehensive Orthopaedic and Spine Care (CCOSC) at Northwestern Medicine Lake Forest Hospital offers comprehensive orthopaedic services and performs more orthopaedic surgeries for Lake County residents than any other hospital. More than 30 of Lake County's top orthopaedic surgeons practice at Northwestern Medicine Lake Forest Hospital, and many have specialized fellowship training. They perform leading-edge procedures both in Lake Forest and at the Grayslake Surgery Center, including:

  • Ankle replacement
  • Anterior approach total hip replacement
  • Arthroscopic cartilage regeneration and reconstruction
  • Arthroscopic hip reconstruction
  • Arthroscopic rotator cuff repair
  • Cartilage repair, restoration and transplantation
  • Cervical disk replacement
  • Computer-guided customized knee replacement
  • Elbow disorders
  • Hand surgery
  • Hip replacements, total and partial
  • Knee replacements, total and partial
  • Ligament reconstruction
  • Minimally invasive knee replacement
  • Minimally invasive surgery
  • Orthobiologics (tissue engineering)
  • Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections
  • Reconstruction of the knee, hip, shoulder, foot/ankle, back and hand
  • Shoulder reconstruction and replacement
To schedule an appointment at the Lake Forest Hospital CCOSC, please call 847.535.8500

To schedule an appointment at the Glenview CCOSC, please call 847.724.4536.

Pain Management

Living with chronic pain can cause physical and emotional stress in your life. Northwestern Medicine offers innovative approaches to pain management provided by compassionate pain specialists on the medical staffs of Northwestern Medicine Central DuPage Hospital and Northwestern Medicine Delnor Hospital to help you relieve your pain. Treatment is provided on an inpatient and outpatient basis for various conditions including back pain.

To schedule an appointment with one of our orthopaedic specialists, please call 630.225.2663.