Avoid Back Surgery With Chiropractic
In our O'Fallon, IL office, we see a lot of patients who are dealing with back pain, and a few of these people have been told they might need surgery to recover. Thankfully, Dr. Komeshak has helped many people get relief without the need for any type of operation. The science confirms the results we see in our practice. One research study published in the academic journal Spine found that consulting with a chiropractor as your first move in overcoming with your back problems may actually keep you out of the operating room.
In this study, medical experts from Dartmouth reviewed statistics from about 1,900 workers from the state of Washington who first saw either a surgeon or a chiropractic doctor for their back pain issues. They then examined three years' worth of follow-up medical records to find out whether the patients wound up having back surgery in an attempt to correct the problem.
What the researchers determined was that about 43% of the people who first consulted with a surgeon for their back issues ended up with surgery in that 3-year time span, whereas only 1.5% of those who first consulted with a chiropractor had the same fate. The authors wrote:
"Even after controlling for injury severity and other measures, workers with an initial visit for the injury to a surgeon had almost nine times the odds of receiving lumbar spine surgery compared to those seeing primary care providers, whereas workers whose first visit was to a chiropractor had significantly lower odds of surgery."
These are remarkable findings. Visiting a chiropractor considerably decreases your odds of getting back surgery, plus the chiropractic patients in this scientific study "had lower odds of chronic work disability" and they also had fewer expensive MRI tests.
Let's also consider this important detail: this study was conducted by orthopedic surgeons from Dartmouth College, and published in the world's most prestigious medical publication on spinal injury.
Why You Should Avoid Surgery
Any surgical procedure has risks, but a serious problem related to spine surgery is that there is a very high failure rate. In an important analysis in the European Spine Journal, researchers wrote:
"Failed back surgery is a problem that has become sufficiently widespread to even warrant its own special conferences, with recent reviews reporting failure rates ranging from 5 to 50%."
The authors of this same study concluded:
"It is extremely difficult to identify unequivocal predictor factors that can be used to accurately predict the outcome of surgery."
As a chiropractor, Dr. Komeshak believes that surgery should be the absolute last resort for treating back pain. Chiropractic works to restore your spine to its normal function--without the need of risky surgery or drugs--and many research studies have documented the usefulness of chiropractic for back pain.
If you live in O'Fallon, IL and you need relief for your back pain, give our practice a call today at (618) 624-4242 for a consultation or an appointment. We'll help get you back on the road to a pain-free life!
- Keeney BJ, Fulton-Kehoe D, Turner JA, Wickizer TM, Chan KC, Franklin GM. Early predictors of lumbar spine surgery after occupational back injury: results from a prospective study of workers in Washington State. Spine 2013;38(11):953-964.
- Mannion AF, Elfering A. Predictors of surgical outcome and their assessment. European Spine Journal 2006;15(Suppl 1):S93-S108.