Back pain and feeling like vomiting: Understanding the causes and management tips

want to vomit

You feel back pain accompanied by a desire to vomit? This uncomfortable combination can affect many people.

Even though Causes of this problem may vary, they are sometimes linked to digestive disorders, bone problems, cervical complications, or other back-related conditions.

Throughout this article, written by a general practitioner, we will dive into the exploration of link between back pain and vomiting looking at some of the possible causes.

We will also share practical tips on managing this condition.

The 5 points to remember

1- Back pain associated with vomiting can result from various factors such as digestive disorders, bone problems, or other back-related conditions.

2- Organs such as the liver, stomach and gallbladder can contribute to back pain. Their impact must be assessed for a thorough understanding

3- Links between back pain and vomiting can arise from muscle contractions during vomiting, dehydration, stomach acid, and nerve irritation.

4- Chronic back pain can trigger vomiting due to physiological responses to persistent pain. Side effects of painkillers and stress induced by back pain are also factors.

5- Signals such as persistent pain, severe digestive manifestations, respiratory or cardiac symptoms or significant medical history require a immediate medical consultation.

Spine Definition and Anatomy

Understand the structure of the spine is essential to understand how it may be linked to symptoms such as back pain and vomiting.

La spine, a complex structure made up of bones, joints, muscles and ligaments, plays a crucial role in protecting the spinal cord while providing the body with the ability to bend, twist and move.

In adults, the spine generally consists of 33 vertebrae, grouped into five distinct regions: the cervical spine (neck), thoracic spine (chest), lumbar spine (lower back), the sacrum (coccyx) and the coccyx itself.

The vertebrae, separated by intervertebral discs, act as essential shock absorbers to protect the spinal cord from impacts and potential injuries.

La spinal cord, a bundle of nerves extending from the brain through the spine, facilitates the transmission of signals between the brain and the rest of the body, providing the nerve communication necessary for our daily functioning.

Organs and their impact on back pains

Back pain can result from the complex interaction of several organs, each of which has a distinct influence on back pain. A detailed exploration of key organs allows us to better understand this dynamic:

has. Liver : located in the right hypochondrium, the liver can contribute to back pain in cases of hepatitis, infection, or inflammation. L'liver damage can generate a chest pain posterior.

b. Stomach : positioned in the epigastric region, the stomach is often associated with back pain, especially in the presence of excess gastric acidity. Acidity can cause burning sensation radiating towards the back.

vs. Gallbladder: located under the liver, the gallbladder can influence the pain between the shoulder blades. Gallstones or inflammation of the gallbladder can lead to referred pain in the dorsal region.

d. Pancreas: positioned retro-peritoneally, the pancreas can cause back pain, particularly in cases of pancreatitis. Pancreatic conditions can cause painful radiation to the back.

e. Start of the Small Intestine: the initial part of the small intestine, located in the abdomen, can be associated with lower back pain. Disorders at this level can cause discomfort in the lower back region.

The link between back pain and vomiting

There are several possible explanations for the link between the back pain and vomiting. One is that the two conditions have a common cause, such as a viral infection.

Muscle contraction and abdominal pressure

A plausible explanation for the link between back pain and vomiting lies in the vigorous muscle contractions during the vomiting process.

These contractions can place significant pressure on the abdominal region, thereby influencing lower back.

The back muscles can react to this pressure, triggering or intensifying back pain.

Dehydration and muscle pain

Vomiting often leads to Dehydration, which in turn can cause muscle aches and cramps.

This dehydration induced by vomiting can amplify the sensations of pain in the back region, accentuating the correlation between the two symptoms.

Stomach acid and burning sensations

In some cases, people experience back pain following theaccumulation of stomach acid in the stomach.

Vomiting that follows can expel this acid, causing a burning sensation in the back.

This complex interaction between gastric contents and back pain highlights the multiple facets of this correlation.

Nerve irritation and vomiting reflexes

Another perspective is that back pain can trigger vomiting by irritating the nerves that regulate the stomach muscles.

Studies suggest that this nerve irritation can create a chain reaction, where back pain and gastrointestinal symptoms reinforce each other.

Good to know !
For an in-depth study on the triggering mechanisms of nausea and vomiting, please refer to this survey, published in 2021, by Weixia Zhong and Al, which provides a comprehensive perspective on the various physiological processes involved in these symptoms, thereby enriching our overall understanding.

Correlation between chronic back pain and vomiting

Le chronic back pain often transcends its mechanical perception, being able to trigger complex medical manifestations, among which vomiting occupies a notable place.

Physiological response to pain

Vomiting in association with chronic back pain may result from natural physiological response to persistent pain.

Chemicals released in response to this pain can trigger a vomiting reflex, highlighting the close interaction between back pain and gastrointestinal processes.

Side effects of painkillers

The use of analgesics, includingopioids, is emerging as a potential source of vomiting related to back pain.

Some painkillers can slow down the digestive system, causing nausea and vomiting as side effects.

This drug interaction highlights the importance of careful pain management to prevent gastrointestinal complications.

Stress and anxiety induced by chronic back pain

Chronic back pain has a significant impact on mental and emotional well-being. The increased levels of stress and anxiety resulting from this condition can trigger vomiting.

The stress hormones released in response to persistent pain influence the gastrointestinal system, causing symptoms of nausea and vomiting.

Partial understanding, profound consequences !
Although understanding the link between chronic back pain and vomiting remains incomplete, it is indisputable that these manifestations can have serious consequences on the quality of life.

This awareness highlights the importance of integrated approach to back pain management, taking into account its physiological aspects and their potential medical repercussions.

How to best manage my back pain

Back pain can have many different causes, ranging from poor posture to underlying medical conditions.

There are simple steps everyone can take to help improve back pain management.

  • First of all, it is important to maintain proper posture (not to be confused with good or bad posture). Essentially, the body generally does not tolerate prolonged static positions; so be sure to regularly change your posture at work and at home.
  • Second, a regular exercise can help strengthen your back muscles and improve your overall fitness.
  • Thirdly, watch your weight and a excess weight can put extra strain on your back and contribute to existing back pain.

There are several products and accessories available on the market to relieve lower back pain. It should be remembered that these tools generally offer temporary relief, and should be used sparingly.

Among the products recommended by our professionals, we have:

Medical and natural treatments for vomiting

Vomiting, although often unpleasant, can be managed effectively through a judicious combination of medical and natural approaches. This section explores different treatment options to alleviate these symptoms.

Medical treatment

  • Antacids: antacids, such as proton pump inhibitors, are often prescribed to neutralize excess stomach acid, thereby reducing the risk of heartburn and vomiting linked to hyperacidity.
  • Antiemetics: These medications target the centers of the brain responsible for the vomiting reflex. They are particularly useful for relieving nausea and preventing recurring episodes of vomiting.
  • Intravenous Hydration: In cases of severe dehydration due to persistent vomiting, administration of intravenous fluids may be necessary to restore fluid and electrolyte balance.

Natural approaches

Like accessories and anti-back pain products, natural products and grandmother's remedies are very popular with people suffering from back pain.

Often, these remedies include anti-inflammatory properties to relieve various body pains.

On the other hand, it should be noted that most of these natural products are not scientifically proven. It is therefore important to speak to your doctor before using them, particularly to avoid any interaction with your medications.

Natural remedies that may relieve symptoms include (click on the product you are interested in for purchasing options):


Thanks to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory powers very powerful, turmeric is one of the most used plants in a culinary and therapeutic context. The composition of turmeric is essentially made of essential oils, vitamins (B1, B2, B6, C, E, K) and trace elements. But it is to its composition rich in curcumin and curcuminoids that we owe them and calm skin of this spice.

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In addition to the particular flavor it brings to cooking and its aphrodisiac properties, ginger is a root well known for its anti-inflammatory powers. THE gingerol gives it its anti-inflammatory action. It is an active component acting on the inflammatory pain related to chronic joint inflammatory diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, rheumatic diseases, etc. It has been proven that this active element is also effective in acting on the inflammation linked to arthritis and sciatica. Ginger also has other benefits thanks to its high potassium content and its richness in trace elements (calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium) and vitamins (provitamin and vitamin B9).

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Omega-3s are polyunsaturated fatty acids that play a very important role in the functioning of our body. They are provided by food in three natural forms: docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), alpha linolenic acid (ALA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). Beyond their action on the brain and the cardiovascular system, omega-3s prove to be very effective against inflammation. Indeed, they have the ability to act on the inflammatory mechanisms in osteoarthritis by slowing down cartilage destruction, thus they reduce the intensity of osteoarthritis pain. Sciatica, being most often linked to an inflammation secondary to a herniated disc, it can also respond to omega-3 provided it is consumed regularly. 

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Lemon eucalyptus

Eucalyptus is a plant most often used in the form of herbal tea or essential oil. She would have anti-inflammatory effects which give it the ability to act on the bone and joint pain in general and the pain of sciatica in particular.

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Wintergreen is a shrub from which a very interesting essential oil is extracted. It is one of the essential oils most used in aromatherapy. This oil, extracted from the shrub of the same name, is used in massage to relieve sciatica and act like a analgesic. Indeed, it provides a heating effect thanks to its ability toactivate blood circulation locally.

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When to consult a health professional?

The complexity of back pain associated with vomiting requires particular vigilance.

Although lifestyle changes can bring improvements, specific situations require the in-depth analysis of a healthcare professional.

The following indicators require immediate medical attention:

  • Persistent or acute pain: Persistence of back pain despite self-care measures, or sudden emergence of severe pain, are signs requiring thorough medical evaluation.
  • Severe digestive manifestations: Frequent, persistent vomiting, or accompanied by signs such as gastrointestinal bleeding, black stools, or inexplicable weight loss, are serious reasons requiring an exhaustive medical investigation.
  • Respiratory or cardiac symptoms: The association of back pain with difficulty breathing, chest pain, or other cardiac symptoms should trigger immediate medical attention, due to the potential for underlying cardiovascular problems.
  • Numbness or weakness: Persistent numbness, muscle weakness, or problems controlling bladder or bowel functions may indicate neurological problems, warranting medical intervention.
  • High fever or suspicion of infection: The association of vomiting with substantial fever, signs of infection such as chills, prolonged fever, or general deterioration in health requires immediate medical consultation for further investigation.
  • Medical background : For those with a history of chronic illnesses, gastrointestinal disorders, or documented spinal problems, consultation with a healthcare professional is essential for appropriate management.

In the event of ambiguity or pronounced discomfort, it is imperative to seek the advice of a health professional.

Severe or atypical symptoms may signal underlying medical conditions requiring professional evaluation.

Ignoring these potential signals can have consequences. Thus, taking steps to get proper medical assistance is imperative.

If you are looking for a healthcare professional in your area, consult our directory.


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