Hello, and Thanks for Reading Along!

I’m still getting very positive feedback regarding the blogs, so I thought I would do another one.

A few years back, we attended a very interesting rehabilitative exercise seminar. The presenter spoke of the number of unnecessary low back surgeries- surgeries that were performed to reduce or eliminate pain without any neurologic findings, and failed back surgeries where an outcome other than the one that was desired occurred, i.e. the patient was made worse and needed additional procedures.

Just because I am a chiropractor does not mean that I am, “anti- surgery or anti-medication”.

In fact, I am, “pro-what is best and will actually help the patient return to a happy life”. Sometimes this is surgery and meds… BUT NOT EVERY TIME!!!

With this in mind, I know of a number of patients whose low back situations actually benefitted from spinal surgery, and unfortunately a number whose low back situations were made worse by surgery.

The difference between success and failure is whether or not the patient is really, really, really a surgical case. A true surgical case is one where neurologic findings unless otherwise corrected could leave the patient paralyzed, and/or without bowel or bladder control, or worse.

Chronic pain, and X-ray and MRI findings remarkable for disc bulges, herniations, degeneration, and many other remarkable findings do not a surgical case make!

All too often patients come to me with scary “findings” and have been told that if medication and exercises don’t help then they will probably need surgery.

Sounds reasonable, only it is NOT an accurate conclusion, and could literally ruin the person’s life!

Again, true surgical low back cases are often emergency procedures, because of spinal cord compression, weakness, and the risk of paralysis or worse.

“Oh well, we’ve tried everything else,” simply doesn’t qualify.

Fortunately, a lot of surgeons are adopting this policy, and simply because a person has chronic pain, or remarkable findings are not recommending surgery. No, there are very specific criteria for a surgical case, and if you don’t have them- DON’T HAVE SURGERY!

If you are still not sold, another point made during the seminar was to have the patient who was considering surgery pretend that he had just had the surgery, and ask them,

The Paragon Chiropractic Difference

“Okay, you’ve had your surgery, now what?”

I’m sure most have no idea what to expect, hoping that somehow they will be cured and get back to living. This is rarely the case.

Some might think they’ll need to do some type of rehabilitation to get over the surgery and get them back to proper function. This is most likely true.

But let’s look at it this way. Somehow, someway the person will have to work at restoring normal function back to the mechanics of not just the spine, but the entire body.

So for our discussion let’s send those patients who are truly surgical cases to the surgeon, okay? This leaves everybody else with back pain.

So if you are ultimately going to need to change your daily habits and typical activities of daily living so they no longer continue to harm your spine, AND if you are going to have to make a concentrated effort to restore and rehabilitate normal mechanical function, ALL POST-SURGICAL, why not do that first, without surgery you don’t need?

Well, what about just getting steroid injections and continue to be a jamoke?

Do you realize that for all the people you know who have had spinal injections, the FDA has NOT approved cortisone injections for low back pain? In fact, many researchers are of the opinion that because of the risk and limited results why bother with steroid injections for the low back at all?

Well, here we are again…Why not stop harming and injuring your spine, and work to restore normal function instead?!?

Over many years of medical indoctrination we’ve been taught that knee pain is knee pain, back pain is back pain, shoulder pain is shoulder pain and these are all isolated dysfunctions that have no bearing on the overall functionality of the body. They couldn’t be more wrong.

Because the human body is a series of systems that are interrelated and depend upon the proper function of each system to have total health or holistic wellness if one system is not functioning correctly the whole body is in a state of dis-ease.  Don’t believe me? Try to get a good night’s sleep with back pain. How well do you feel and function the next day? How well are your body’s systems functioning because of pain and lack of sleep, and this is just the stuff you are aware of. It can have an adverse impact on your immune system, hormones, digestion, and on and on.

But as heavy and hopeless as this might sound, we can use this fact to our advantage.

Basically, at Paragon Chiropractic we focus on what you can do and have you do more of that, and this will have a positive influence on the overall function of the entire body!

Why have you focus your attention on things you can’t do, and force you to do things you aren’t able to do and call that health care? Idiotic!

You’ll struggle and fail and eventually give up all hope of ever being well and successful at living. (Don’t worry, I’m sure there are pills to make you okay with this! jk)

As you gain confidence and ability to function your ability to confront not only your body, but the world around you will increase as well, and you’ll start to seek out those things you didn’t think you could do and now conquer them!

Can you only walk around the block? Great, walk around the block and on a gradient scale walk a little longer, or faster, or slower with more control- just work on improving the functions that you already have, and amazingly you will begin to feel better and will be on the road to recovery!

Left knee is stiff and sore? Move the right knee which does function and soon the left knee will function better. This is a neurologic phenomenon called the Consensual Effect. Work with the unaffected partner and achieve at least 30% improvement in the dysfunctional other.

It really is that simple, but there are a lot of parts to this philosophy and we at Paragon Chiropractic would love to help you improve your ability to function!

In the meantime, what can you do? Then do THAT, and you’ll soon find yourself more and more capable and doing more and more of what you think might be impossible right now!

We look forward to helping you, or if you would just like to talk about how focusing on ability makes you more able, and focusing on disability makes you more disable- just send me an e-mail or come in for a visit!

Take Care,

Dr. Dave

As always, feel free to comment below or contact us today to schedule an appointment