How Chiropractic Can Assist Disc Injuries
One of the most common back related injuries that we hear people talk about is the “Slipped Disc”. This is a term used to describe various types of back pain.
In reality, discs are very firmly attached to the surfaces of the vertebral bones, and are unable to slip anywhere.
When a disc is damaged, it is actually said to be herniated.
A herniated disc can cause excruciating pain if the nerve root in the vicinity of the herniated part is being compressed. Even if the herniated part is not touching the disc directly, swelling or inflammation of the surrounding tissue can compress the nerve as well.
The pain from a herniated disc is often radiating or shooting down one leg. There can also be numbness, weakness or pins and needles. These symptoms are often increased by bending, sneezing or coughing.
If you presented to a chiropractor with these symptoms, we would assess you very carefully to determine whether chiropractic adjustments could help you.
Studies have shown that even with substantial disc herniations, conservative chiropractic care can be of great benefit to patients with disc injuries. The best outcome is if we can help the person resolve their pain and avoid risky spinal surgery.
Excerpts from conclusions of high quality studies stated the following:
- A large percentage of acute and importantly chronic lumbar disc herniation patients treated with chiropractic spinal manipulation reported clinically relevant improvement.
- Most patients in this study, including subacute/chronic patients, with symptomatic magnetic resonance imaging-confirmed CDH treated with spinal manipulative therapy, reported significant improvement with no adverse events.
At Walkerville Chiropractic, our chiropractors are trained in low force techniques that treat people with disc injuries as gently as possible on the way to resolving those debilitating injuries.
The World Federation of Chiropractic has cited the following as a list of the most recent, high quality scientific studies relating to chiropractic care for disc injuries.
Kadow T1, Sowa G, Vo N, Kang JD.Molecular basis of intervertebral disc degeneration and herniations: what are the important translational questions? ClinOrthopRelat Res. 2015 Jun;473(6):1903-12.
Kepler, Christopher K. et al. The molecular basis of intervertebral disc degeneration. The Spine Journal, Volume 13 , Issue 3 , 318 – 330
Freemont AJ1, Watkins A, Le Maitre C, Baird P, Jeziorska M, Knight MT, Ross ER, O’Brien JP, Hoyland JA. Nerve growth factor expression and innervation of the painful intervertebral disc. J Pathol. 2002 Jul;197(3):286-92.
Rajasekaran S1, Babu JN, Arun R, Armstrong BR, Shetty AP, Murugan S. ISSLS prize winner: A study of diffusion in human lumbar discs: a serial magnetic resonance imaging study documenting the influence of the endplate on diffusion in normal and degenerate discs. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2004 Dec 1;29(23):2654-67.
Grunhagen T1, Shirazi-Adl A, Fairbank JC, Urban JP. Intervertebral disk nutrition: a review of factors influencing concentrations of nutrients and metabolites. OrthopClin North Am. 2011 Oct;42(4):465-77, vii
Leemann S, Peterson CK, Schmid C, Anklin B, Humphreys BK. Outcomes of acute and chronic patients with magnetic resonance imaging-confirmed symptomatic lumbar disc herniations receiving high-velocity, low-amplitude, spinal manipulative therapy: a prospective observational cohort study with one-year follow-up. J Manipulative PhysiolTher. 2014 Mar-Apr;37(3):155-63.
Peterson CK, Schmid C, Leemann S, Anklin B, Humphreys BK. Outcomes from magnetic resonance imaging-confirmed symptomatic cervical disk herniation patients treated with high-velocity, low-amplitude spinal manipulative therapy: a prospective cohort study with 3-month follow-up. J Manipulative PhysiolTher. 2013 Oct;36(8):461-7.
W. Mark Erwin, DC, PhD and Katherine E. Hood, DC. The cellular and molecular biology of the intervertebral disc: A clinician’s primer. J Can Chiropr Assoc. 2014 Sep; 58(3): 246–257.
Michael A. Adams, PhD; Peter J. Roughley, PhD. What is Intervertebral Disc Degeneration, and What Causes It? Spine. 2006;31(18):2151-2161.