Dr Moloney has seen a lot of patients with painful backs that have gone on to have spinal surgery. More often than not he advises his patients to lose weight and do some core strengthening exercises. If you have a strong core you have a lot less strain on your spine and it helps considerably with back pain.
Unfortunately, not everyone is able to lose weight and increase their core muscle strength and those people usually go on to have surgery.
There are some patients who have severe problems that do need surgery but there are a lot who can really benefit from being fitter and healthier before putting themselves through a major operation.
For the few patients that have managed to lose weight and increase their core muscle strength they have been able to maintain their fitness and decrease their back pain to the point that they no longer require surgery and can manage their pain.
If you are hoping to avoid surgery diet and exercise might just be your answer.