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Failed Back Surgery Syndrome and Chiropractic

It has been estimated that 80% of people will experience back pain at some point in their life time. At initial onset, people will often consult their PCP for this problem which will likely prescribe a muscle relaxer and rest. When this does not help many people feel that their only option is surgery.

Failed Back Surgery Syndrome is not a syndrome but rather a term that’s used to describe individuals that have had a less than favorable outcome with surgery. While surgery is occasionally necessary it is advised that other, less invasive treatment forms are tried first, Chiropractic care meets that description.

Many people find that 5 or more years post surgery they begin to again experience symptoms of pain, tingling, numbness in the leg, etc. The question I often get is, “But I have been symptom free for 5 years, why is this happening again now?” The answer is, like when we get a cut on our skin our bodies response is to heal that area via a scab and occasionally a scar. It is important to keep in mind that even though the surgery maybe minimally invasive  there is much tissue that must dissected through just to get to the spine. Over time our bodies healing response is to lay down collagen, since this collagen will not be as strong as the original it usually heals in a scar like fashion. With this healing response over time this may lead to scar tissue build-up around the spinal nerve which will cause similar pre-surgery symptoms.

As a Board Certified Chiropractic Physician I am trained to restore normal biomechanics to the body. Spinal manipulation along with Instrument Assisted Soft-Tissue Mobilization (IASTM) is an effective treatment for the build-up of post surgical scar tissue. By breaking the adhesions in the joints and muscles we can restore normal function.

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