The seasons change and so do we. Superficially, it may not appear as if we're undergoing perpetual metamorphosis, but we are. Just as trees replace their leaves and birds shed their feathers, we t ...View Article
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We provide advanced spinal correction and chiropractic adjustments utilizing "state of the art" chiropractic techniques in Palm Beach Gardens, Port St Lucie and Jupiter, FL. Never in the history of chiropractic care have chiropractors been able to provide the level of help and expertise that is available today. Many of the newest chiropractic techniques are actually safer, more comfortable and more effective than ever before. As a chiropractor who cares about utilizing the most advanced chiropractic techniques, Dr. Michael Papa has years of training, expertise and experience in helping patients get pain relief for back pain, neck pain, headaches, and other related conditions originating from the spine.
Chiropractic care under a trained professional can even be used to prevent injuries and help you achieve total health or wellness. One of the most common reasons people often seek out a chiropractor is to treat back pain.
According the the New England Journal of Medicine:
Sprains and strains can occur all over the body, including the back. For patients that complain of back pain, sprains or strains are the most common cause. A sprain refers to an injury of the ligament, while a strain is an injury to a muscle or tendon. Trauma, poor posture, overuse or a lack of proper conditioning can result in a sprain or strain. A chiropractor can help you identify these kind of injuries and provide you with a treatment program. Treatment plans typically prescribe a period of rest followed by a period of physical therapy exercises to increase flexibility and strength in the affected area - Not only to heal the area but to prevent further injury.
Dislocations, the medical term for when two bones that normally work together have become misaligned at the joint, can occur in the spinal column. Aside from causing pain, dislocations can be dangerous as they destabilize the spine and make the spinal cord vulnerable to injury. One of the reasons a chiropractor will often begin your treatment with an xray is to check for things like dislocations.
Degenerative Disc Disease
The cartilage between each vertebra that serve as the spine’s shock absorbers. The deterioration of these discs is called Degenerative Disc Disease (DDD). In DDD, the discs no longer contain the normal amount of fluid, and the protein-based structure has weakened. Basically, the discs can no longer absorb stress as well as they used to. DDD, which occurs gradually, is a fairly common result of aging. A traumatic accident to the back can also cause DDD. Surgery can be used to treat this condition, but normally other, less intensive treatments are used to relieve DDD-related pain. A qualified chiropractor can help you determine your best treatment options for DDD.
In healthy discs , the fibrous tissues of the annulus fibrosis fully enclose the gelatinous nucleus pulposus. In a herniated disc, however, the nucleus has protruded through its encasement and is putting pressure on nerves. The result may be pain, tingling, numbness, or weakness in the limbs or body. If the herniation is in the upper (cervical) region of the spine, symptoms might be experienced in the arms or hands. Lower spinal herniations can affect the legs and feet. The risk of herniationbegins to increase after age 30.
Informally known as the “fragile bone disease” and most common in post-menopausal women, osteoporosis is the condition in which bones lose their density because of a deficiency in certain minerals and vitamins like calcium. Osteoporosis itself does not cuase pain but this loss of bone mineral density causes bones to be weaker and increases the risk of fracture from daily activities. In the back, osteoporosis can result in compression fractures and other painful conditions.
Osteoarthritis is a condition in which the cartilage that serves as a cushion and lubricant between joints is worn down. Also known as degenerative joint disease (DJD), this most common form of arthritis can cause stiffness, pain, and cracking noises at the joints and carries an increased risk of injury. Severe cases can result in bone damage. Osteoarthritis can occur in spinal joints and is also common in fingers, knees, and hips.
The medical term for a “slipped disc,” spondylolisthesis is the condition in which a vertebra has slid forward, or translated, and is no longer in line with adjacent vertebrae. Spondylolisthesis compromises spinal stability and can put pressure on the spinal cord and nerves, possibly resulting in symptoms of pain, numbness, tingling, burning, or weakness of the limbs. Many things can cause spondylolisthesis, including joint degeneration, disc degeneration, trauma, or a defect in the vertebrae. Surgery is sometimes necessary to treat severe cases of spondylolisthesis - a qualified chiropractor will be able to advise you on the severity of your injury.
Facet joints link vertebrae to each other and are key for movement and flexibility of the spine. When these joints are over-stressed, the result can be stretched ligaments, cartilage can be worn-down, and all of this causes friction. The pain the results from facet syndrome is most commonly felt at the spine itself in the neck or lumbar regions. On occasion, the effects may extend to limbs or other parts of the body.
Nerves extending from the spinal cord to other parts of the body pass through intervertebral foramen, the medical term for these specialized passages in the vertebrae. An injury, aging- related change, disease-related change, or a birth defect can render these passages too narrow. This condition of too narrow pinches the nerves and can cause sensations of numbness, tingling, or burning in limbs or other parts of the body.
Spinal stenosis is a condition where the channel that allows the spinal cord to pass through the vertebrae is too narrow. Spinal stenosis, which can be caused by injury or aging- or disease-related change, will press on the spinal cord and can result in weakness, numbness, tingling, or burning sensations. Loss of function or disability can result from extreme cases. The risk of spinal stenosis starts to increase after age 50.
Back Pain Testing
The causes of back pain can be as complex as the spine itself.
Before a doctor or chiropractor can successfully treat a patient’s pain, the cause of the problem first needs to be determined.
The following is a list of common medical evaluation procedures that qualified chiropractors use to diagnose their patients’ back pain:
Magnetic Resonance Imagining (MRI) – An MRI is the test most commonly used to diagnose pain in the lumbar region of the spine. MRI devices generate a powerful magnetic field to create an image of the inside of the body and are used in many medical specialties. For back pain diagnoses, MRIs can evaluate bones, discs, joints, nerves, and soft tissues.
Cat Scan (CT) – Cat Scans are useful for bone diagnoses when MRIs are not suitable for a patient.
X-rays – X-rays are the most commonly used diagnostic tool and use electromagnetic radiation to create an image which doctors evaluate to diagnose spinal irregularities with bones, joints, and degenerative lesions.
Myelography – In myelograms, a dye is injected into a patient in order to improve the contrast of X-ray images for physician evaluation.
Discography – A discogram procedure can help determine if a lumbar disc is the source of a patient’s pain
Electromyography (EMG) – An EMG/Nerve Conduction Study is used to evaluate the condition of nerves in the arms and legs.
Bone density test – Used to determine skeletal strength and diagnose osteoporosis and osteopenia, a bone density test scans an area of bone with a special machine. This simple test can be done while the patient is fully clothed and lasts only a few minutes.
Bone scan test – This test uses nuclear technology to evaluate bone cancer, infections, and other conditions. Three hours before the test, the patient receives a injection of a radioactive tracer, which has no side effects. Once the tracer is absorbed into the bones, a “gamma camera” scans the body and uses the tracer to create an image for doctor evaluation.
Back Pain Treatment Options
|Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression System||Yes||Yes|
|Laminectomy (Surgical Excision of Herniated Disc)||No||Standard Surgical and Anesthesia Risks|
|Discectomy (Surgical Removal of diseased Disc)||No||Standard Surgical and Anesthesia Risks|
|IDET (Intradiscal Electrothermal Treatment)||No||Minimal Surgical risks|
|Do Nothing||Yes||Condition Usually Continues to Get Worse|