Low Back Pain

Low Back Pain

Sooner or later, an amazing 8 of every 10 people in Chicago, Lincoln Park, Lake View, Boystown, Lake Front, and Gold Coast will suffer with low back pain. So many people have found relief from back pain through chiropractic care that chiropractors often are thought of as back doctors. Of course, they do specialize in care of the spine, but spinal problems can cause not only back pain but all sorts of health problems throughout your body. Still, chiropractic care is indeed effective for back pain. In fact, The US Agency for Health Care Policy and Research recently appointed a panel of medical experts who reviewed some 3,900 studies on care for acute low back pain.The panel rejected bedrest, surgery (except rare cases), injections into the back, and all oral prescription drugs (such as antidepressants or steroids).In contrast, they found that spinal manipulation, which usually is performed by a chiropractor, “can be helpful for patients with acute low back problems." For pain, they found over-the-counter medications (aspirin, etc.) worked as well as prescriptions but with fewer side effects.

There are fewer studies on long-term chronic back pain than short-term acute back pain. Still, a recent study in the respected medical journal, Spine found chiropractic care beneficial for ongoing chronic back pain. The traditional approach for patients with chronic back pain has been back pain school to teach patients how to cope and live with the pain. Chiropractic care was compared to back pain school in this study, and the chiropractic group did significantly better. The researchers concluded, “spinal manipulation is clinically useful in chronic pain patients who have been suffering for seven weeks or more." Part of your treatment may also include some combination of the following: acupuncture, cold laser therapy, therapeutic exercises, homeopathy, electrical muscle stimulation, ultrasound, and ice or heat therapy.

So many scientific and government studies have proven the effectiveness of chiropractic care for back pain that in 1993, the government of Ontario, in a 216-page study of all available evidence, found chiropractic care of low back pain superior to medical management in terms of safety, evidence of effectiveness, evidence of cost, and patient satisfaction.

If you or anyone you know wants to get the safest, most effective, least expensive, and most satisfying care for low back pain, consult your chiropractor.

  • Christopher Connell, “Back Pain," The Associated Press, December 8, 1994.
  • J. J. Triano, et al., “Manipulative Therapy Versus Education in Chronic Low Back Pain," 1995, Spine, Vol. 20, No. 8, pp. 948-955 (as reported by D. Chapman-Smith, September 1995, The Chronic Report, Fumia Publications, Toronto, Canada, Vol. 9, No. 5, p. 6)
  • P. Manga, D. Agnus, et al., (1993) “The Effectiveness and Cost Effectiveness of Chiropractic Management of Low Back Pain," Pran Manga and Associates, University of Ottawa, Canada (as reported by Chapman-Smith, September 1993, The Chronic Report, Fumia Publications, Toronto, Vol. 7, No. 6, p. 3).
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