Dr. Florentius Koech, a neurosurgeon at Top Hill Hospital, paints a concerning picture of rising back pain cases in Kenya, attributing it to a convergence of factors that require individual and societal action.
Motorbikes: A Double-Edged Sword: While motorbikes provide an affordable and accessible transportation option for many Kenyans, Dr. Koech highlights their inherent design limitations for carrying passengers regularly. This, coupled with the decline in walking due to motorbike reliance, weakens crucial back muscles, leading to pain and discomfort. He acknowledges the complex policy implications of addressing this issue, suggesting a potential need for reevaluation and alternative transport infrastructure development.
Beyond Bikes: The Posture Peril: Dr. Koech extends his gaze beyond motorbikes, pinpointing the perils of poor posture in the modern workplace. Sedentary lifestyles and prolonged sitting in ill-designed office chairs wreak havoc on spinal alignment, contributing significantly to back pain. To combat this, he advocates for ergonomic improvements in workplaces, urging employers to invest in supportive chairs and encourage regular breaks to promote movement and proper posture.
Lifestyle Choices: The Missing Puzzle Pieces: The doctor doesn’t shy away from addressing personal responsibility. He cites smoking as a significant contributor to back pain, emphasizing the long-term detrimental effects of the habit. Additionally, he underscores the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle with regular exercise, emphasizing its role in strengthening core muscles and preventing back issues.
Prevention is Key: A Call for Individual and Collective Action: Dr. Koech emphasizes the importance of prevention, advocating for a multi-pronged approach. Individuals are encouraged to embrace healthy habits, maintain good posture, and prioritize exercise. He reiterates the need for ergonomic improvements in workplaces and urges the government to consider policy changes regarding motorbike usage and accident prevention. Ultimately, he stresses the need for collaboration between individuals and policymakers to create a society that prioritizes spinal health and well-being.
Beyond this summary, it’s crucial to remember that Dr. Koech’s insights offer a starting point for deeper exploration. Consulting with a medical professional for personalized advice on back pain prevention and treatment is always recommended.
Additionally, staying informed about ongoing research and public health initiatives focused on musculoskeletal health can empower individuals to make informed choices and advocate for a healthier future.
Top Hill Brain and Spine Hospital is a multispeciality private level 5 hospital located in Eldoret’s Elgonview estate, along Garden road, next to Boma Inn.