Patients who have undergone back surgery are often unpleasantly surprised to find out that they still suffer from some measure of pain or discomfort. Pain or discomfort occurs in various conditions in which conservative treatments often fail, including herniated disks, spinal degeneration, and acute injuries. Read this article to know about Is It Safe to Have Chiropractic Care After Back Surgery?
Unfortunately, after back surgery, chronic pain is so common that nearly two-thirds of all patients enrolled in pain centers across the U.S. suffer from failed back surgery syndrome.
Back surgery is most effective for treating underlying conditions when combined with post-surgery therapies such as chiropractic care. When performed by a knowledgeable, licensed chiropractor, these treatments are safe, effective, and can dramatically improve your quality of life.
The key here is in the timing. To be safe, you should wait until your spine has healed entirely after surgery to begin any type of chiropractic therapy, and only with the approval of a back pain doctor.
When Is It Safe to Start?
Before seeking any kind of chiropractic treatment after surgery, it’s vital to let the body heal and recover. For many, a six-month waiting period will be enough. In most cases, you will be able to start chiropractic therapy with one year of post-surgery recovery.
For example, after spinal fusion surgery, it takes at least three months for the vertebrae to fuse and create an immobilized graft. After that, you will require at least a few months of physical therapy to strengthen the muscles. The initial recovery and physical therapy period will usually equal a full year combined.
During the recovery period, be careful and avoid straining your back, or you may experience reinjury, various complications, and a prolonged recovery time. Everyone’s healing process is different. Make sure to consult your surgeon before you begin chiropractic care.
Like any procedure, post-surgery chiropractic care may carry risks if performed incorrectly. That’s why it is crucial to choose a licensed chiropractor with plenty of experience in post-surgery treatment.
Possible Risks of Chiropractic Care After Back Surgery
Spinal fusion permanently connects two or more vertebrae in your spine, preventing all motion between the fused vertebrae. After healing, the vertebrae form one solid unit or surgical graft.
If the area has not healed fully, any premature chiropractic treatment could damage the graft and cause serious complications. Spinal fusion patients should never undergo rotational-type chiropractic treatments.
What Can Post-Surgery Chiropractic Care Do for You?
Many patients experience a dramatic improvement in their comfort levels and quality of life from seeing a post-surgery chiropractic physician. Benefits may include:
- Back and neck pain relief
- Less joint pain
- Improved nerve communication
- Better range of motion
- Better overall health
Your chiropractor will treat you with a gentle approach, including gentle, non-rotational manipulations that carry no risk of further spinal injury.
If you have had back surgery but are still experiencing chronic pain, you are not alone. Many back surgery patients, particularly after spinal fusion, experience dissatisfaction with the surgery results. Many patients undergo repeated surgeries or resort to chronic medication use for pain management.
Depending on your condition, chiropractic care can offer safe, effective pain relief. Often, even if you do need a repeat surgery, chiropractic therapy can facilitate a better outcome.
How Does It Work?
Chiropractic care for patients after spinal surgery may include:
- Muscle rehab to reduce spinal tension and pain
- Adjustments or traction treatments modified to avoid compression on the area of the surgery
- Electric muscle stimulation to reduce inflammation, ease muscle spasms, and relieve back and neck pain
In addition, the chiropractor may also recommend lifestyle changes such as dietary adjustments, at-home heat and ice treatments, and daily exercises and stretches.
The Gonstead Chiropractic Method
At Nordik Chiropractic, we use the Gonstead method to treat chronic back pain. The diagnosis includes a thorough application of six criteria:
- Full-spine digital X-rays for postural analysis
- Motion palpation to locate problematic areas with high precision
- Static palpation to identify areas of chronic vs. acute pain
- Instrumentation using a bilateral nervoscope to locate areas of nerve pressure and inflammation
- A visual analysis
- Individual case management for corrective care and improvement of the spinal structure and function
This method enables highly specific, individually planned adjustments to meet your unique health needs. Our combination of physical therapy and non-invasive adjustments has helped many patients relieve pain and improve mobility after back surgery.
Nordik Chiropractic: Chiropractor in Jupiter, FL
Have you undergone back surgery? Are you still suffering from pain and discomfort? At Nordik Chiropractic, we are committed to providing the highest standard of patient care, focusing on the underlying cause rather than just treating the symptoms. We specialize in post-surgery pain relief and can help your body heal.
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4601 Military Trail #209
Jupiter, FL 33458