Posted tagged ‘IDD Therapy’

Chiropractic Care for Herniated Disks in the Lower Back: The Latest Research

September 2, 2014

One of the most common causes of lower back pain occurs when the spinal disks in the lumbar area become herniated. A herniated disk happens when the bone of the disk itself has crumbled or fractured and the soft inner core bulges out through the outer portion of the disk. This places pressure on the spinal nerve root that runs through the disks, and the result can be pain in the lower back as well as numbness, tingling, or weakness in the legs and buttocks. Medical doctors tend to treat acutely herniated disks with oral steroids and epidural injections of cortisone, both of which have limited success rates and adverse side effects.

Recently, however, a major study published in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiologic Therapeutics has found that both chronic and acute herniated disks can be effectively treated by chiropractic adjustments. This year-long study followed 148 patients whose lumbar disk herniation had been confirmed by MRI scans. All patients suffered from back pain, sciatica, and radiating leg symptoms, and 79 of them had experienced these symptoms without noticeable relief for over three months.

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The patients in the study were treated with chiropractic adjustments appropriate for their individual cases, characterized by the researchers as “high-velocity, low-amplitude spinal manipulation.” Throughout the study, the patients were examined by doctors at two weeks, one month, three months, six months, and one year. They were also asked to self-assess the success of the treatments at those points, rating their condition on a scale of “much worse, worse, slightly worse, no change, slightly better, better, and much better.”

The results were surprising, especially because the typical clinical expectation is that only 36% of lumbar herniated disk patients will show improvement after two weeks of treatment. However, among the patients who received chiropractic adjustments in this study, 69% reported significant improvement in both mobility and pain reduction after only two weeks. At one month, that number increased, with 79.6% reporting conditions of better or much better. At three months, 90.5% had reported significant improvements. Interestingly, the chiropractic care in the study ended at the three-month mark, but assessments at the six-month and 12-month points found that 88% reported that their condition was still improved.

The authors of the study reported no adverse side-effects and concluded that a large percentage of patients with acute and chronic lumbar disk herniation could be improved by chiropractic care. This likely comes as no surprise to the many chiropractors who have been treating herniated disks and the resulting lower back pain for years—or to their patients who have benefited from that care—but it is heartening to see scientific research catching up to what we’ve known all along: A drug- and surgery-free approach that treats the whole patient and helps their bodies to heal themselves is superior to masking the symptoms with painkillers or relying on dangerous steroids or epidural injections.

So if you have been diagnosed as suffering from one or more herniated disks, see your chiropractor. You have only your chronic pain to lose, and so much to gain.

Contact Dr. Nicholas Carlisle – Atlanta Chiropractor at (404) 316-1190 (Buckhead) or (404) 781-2800 (Southwest Atlanta) for your appointment.

http://www.drcarlisledc.com

http://chiropractors.healthprofs.com/cam/536552

http://www.youtube.com/user/NCarlisleDC

Spinal Decompression Therapy Explained

March 17, 2014

If you are one of the millions of Americans who experience chronic back pain, you know how much it can disrupt your life and turn the simplest of movements into chores that you dread. If other forms of treatment haven’t fully worked for you in the past, one that you may want to investigate is spinal decompression therapy.

The idea behind spinal decompression therapy is that many types of back problems are caused by the spinal disks having become compressed—squeezed between the vertebrae above and below. This can manifest as herniated or bulging disks, which can press up against nerves and cause pain at the site as well as in other areas of your body and may interfere with neural impulses. The good news is that it is often possible to “decompress” the spine and alleviate the pressure WITHOUT resorting to risky and expensive surgeries. Specially trained chiropractors using a variety of advanced equipment offer a conservative alternative that has proven very effective for many people.

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What does spinal decompression therapy involve?

Basically, you recline – fully clothed – on a table as harnesses are attached to your pelvis and to the trunk of your body. Depending on the condition being treated, you may be facing down or up on the traction table. Then the doctor operates a computer-controlled machine to exert a gentle, pulling force that stretches your body—essentially relieving the pressure that gravity places on your spine all day.

Treatments typically last for 30-45 minutes. During the treatment itself, the computer constantly adjusts the force and angle of the applied traction in a series of alternating movements, to reduce the body’s tendency to resist external forces. These alternating movements gently elongate the spine and reduce the pressure on individual disks between the vertebrae. Spinal decompression usually works in very small increments over time.

Many patients experience immediate relief, though most require a series of treatments over several weeks to produce effective, lasting results. Spinal decompression may be supplemented either before or after the treatment with heat therapy, electrical stimulation, or ultrasound to relax your muscles and facilitate the decompression.
In addition to taking pressure off the spinal disks, decompression has another important therapeutic effect. Pulling the vertebrae apart creates “negative pressure”, a sort of vacuum that encourages fluid and nutrients to flow back into the spinal disks. This in turn expands the disks’ volume and provides the materials necessary for them to heal.

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What conditions can be improved using spinal decompression therapy?

Spinal decompression therapy has been approved by the Federal Drug Administration and has brought relief to many people suffering from sciatica, bulging or herniated spinal disks, degenerative disk disease, pinched nerves, worn spinal joints (posterior facet syndrome), and injured or diseased spinal nerve roots (radiculopathy).
The advantages of spinal decompression therapy over surgery are obvious—the former is non-invasive, and does not require hospitalization or the use of general anesthesia. Simply put, it is a more conservative therapy that avoids both the risks and expense of surgery. If you are interested in finding out more about this potentially beneficial treatment, we encourage you to call or visit our office!

Contact Dr. Nicholas Carlisle – Atlanta Chiropractor (404) 781-2800 (Southwest Atlanta) for your appointment.

http://www.drcarlisledc.com

http://chiropractors.healthprofs.com/cam/536552

http://www.youtube.com/user/NCarlisleDC


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