Do you suffer with chronic lower back pain? Are you taking medications for pain management? Are you receiving spinal injections, epidurals or other extremely invasive treatments, or other high risk and costly options for management of neck and back pain?
As a chiropractor for over 20 years I have seen the mismanagement of individuals on a daily basis. Chronic lower back pain and neck pain sufferers must seek conservative treatment including chiropractic, herbal remedies, acupuncture, home exercise, massage and stress management for their problems in order to reduce pain and treat their condition with the least harmful side effects. Chronic pain is an exceedingly common condition impacting over 7.5 million Americans, one-third of which describe their pain as severe or “disabling”.
There are other options to taking drugs in the management of chronic lower back pain and for the treatment of its underlying causes. There are alternatives that allow healing or reduce what is truly causing the pain.
We can ask Lisa, a chronic lower back pain sufferer for over two years. After two years of suffering with chronic pain, multiple orthopedic surgeons told her there was no hope and surgery was the only answer. As a last ditch effort before surgery Lisa decided to search for another opinion - was there an alternative? She found herself crying in my office asking for one last chance. A side note, Lisa has been a patient for only three weeks and has received a total of seven treatments to date of this blog.
Lisa’s background, two years ago she was diagnosed with spinal degeneration, disc degeneration, sciatica, and spondylolisthesis (a condition where one vertebrae is slipping forward and causing a pulling on the spinal cord). One does not need to be a medical professional to know all of those diagnoses don’t sound good or promising for pain relief. She underwent spinal injection, epidurals, acupuncture, and physical therapy. She had become house bound and depressed with pain and physical limitations, living with pain and taking high doses of Mobic to get through the day, and not very well at that.
She told me she was afraid since she was told by a prominent orthopedic specialist she must have surgery! So what happened next . . . I started with an examination, I needed to know how bad is bad, what mobility can she handle, what can or can’t she do. Then, reviewing all the diagnostics, x-rays, MRI’s, I said out loud “they are wrong!”
In Lisa's situation, like many others, there is an alternative to her chronic lower back pain. She needs conservative pain management (chiropractic care with physiotherapies), stress management and dietary control (pain and sugar don’t mix, she needed to cut out the sugars). Treatment plus following instructions between treatments are paramount. Lisa has followed all the recommendations to the letter, (she is a star patient). I am happy to report that she had a pain free morning yesterday, a first in over two years! That's not the end of the story for Lisa. There is more to do (exercise therapy with continued pain and stress management), but she now has hope.
According to a 2012 study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine and funded by the National Institutes of Health, medication is not the best option for treating neck pain. The researchers are finding out what chiropractic already knew . . . chiropractic care and exercise beat drugs for chronic lower back pain.
Are you experiencing or facing similar chronic pain? Have you considered alternatives to drugs and surgery? Would you like an independent opinion, and to learn if their is an alternative for you?
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