Hi, I am Dr Nitish M.D.
This problem is very common and lots of patients face the question of whom to consult.
I want to write my opinion here which can be used for guidance.
I must first disclose that I am a pain physician and hence my advice may not be totally impartial.
If the pain is only few days old and getting better, just take rest and some pain killers. But you should consult a neurosurgeon if neuropathic symptoms like tingling/numbness/weakness appear in your legs.
If it is only pain in back and not going down for 2 weeks or more, you can either see an orthopedician, neurosurgeon our pain physician.
An orthopedician/neurosurgeon will either prescribe analgesics or suggest surgery. Most of the times analgesics and rest is sufficient, if it is only pain.
Surgery becomes necessary of neurological symptoms are there.
Another option is pain physician, he will also suggest analgesics and rest as first option. But if it is an older or severe pain, he will give a tightly targeted injection to the exact pain location.
This will put the required dose at the exact point, which is much more efficient than tablets. Secondly, the medicine will stay at the injected part only and cause minimum side effects.
This injection should be followed by core strengthening exercises to prevent future pain.
Any of these treatments should also incorporate physiotherapy also.
New, mild to moderate pain- pain killers and rest. Can consult any doctor.
Old or severe pain- pain physician
Pain with neurological symptoms-orthopedician/neurosurgeon