I have sometimes heard that chiropractic manipulation increases the risk of getting a stroke. Is there any truth to this?

In February 2008, a conclusive study was published in Spine (a medical journal, not a chiropractic journal) that put this issue to rest. It involved 109 million case studies over 9 years. The verdict is clear: Chiropractic manipulation is safe and does not increase your risk for stroke any more than care from your primary care doctor. Being that chiropractic care is safe, effective, and more conservative than most forms of medical intervention for neck pain, headaches, etc.…, you should consider chiropractic care at the top of your list for such issues.

I recently went to a chiropractic office where they insisted on taking many x-rays and then proceeded to schedule me for three times a week for six weeks, then two times a week for six weeks, and then told me they’d do an evaluation and determine the rest of my care plan at that time. Is this a normal care plan?

No, this is unequivocally not a normal care plan. In regard to X-rays, many chiropractors still take them. Sometimes there is a need, but most times there is not. If they are needed, we will shoot and process them in our office. However, we never shoot an x-ray to see what is going on with your case, we will take them to confirm anything that is found during your extensive examination, and if there is a need we can refer you for any other special testing like MRI or lab work that may need to be performed when there is a medical need for such. In addition, in a lot of advanced soft tissue techniques and cases that we see, we often prefer MRIs as X-rays do not tell us about discs or soft tissues.

The last chiropractor I saw treated me for my low back pain. He did help me a decent amount, but he recommended that I continue to care weekly to maintain those results. He said that I’d likely need to receive care for years. Is it necessary for me to need continual care for years to come?

The answer to this question is a resounding ‘NO’! The job of the chiropractor is to help the patient with their musculoskeletal problem(s) and teach them how to take care of themselves so that they will not need continual care. Too many chiropractors are not trained in advanced soft tissue techniques and/or rehabilitative/stability exercises. Because of this, their ability to help the patient is limited. This limitation means that the patient will need excessive care and will not truly achieve optimal results. A chiropractor should not only be well-versed in the treatment of the joints, but also in the soft tissues and how to address them properly in order to maximize patient results.

My primary care physician advised me to avoid activity and rest until the pain in my low back goes away. You advise improving biomechanics and restoring proper movement mechanics. I’m a little confused…which is better for me?

Unfortunately, too many doctors who do not have proper training in a specific injury or treatment technique will often advise rest. Many times, this is not what is needed and it is always better to seek care from doctors that are specialized in these injuries. So, there will be times that we may not agree with specific recommendations from your medical doctor when we feel that the recommendation is bad for the patient or when a lack of proper care or restrictions can result in complications going forward.

I have had a desk job for years and when looking at my X-rays, it looks like I don’t have a curve in my neck. Is this normal and can this lack of a curve be causing any of my neck pain? Can chiropractic care help with these issues?

It is not normal to lack a cervical lordosis (curve) and care should be geared, at least in part, to helping restore a proper lordosis so that the cervical spine can function as it should. When one loses the curve of the neck, it will cause a decrease in function leading to increased stress, and that alone can cause a great deal of pain and issues with your neck. Chiropractic care can help to restore proper biomechanics and that will help to reduce pain. From that point, exercises and cervical extension/compression traction can be used to stabilize the upper back/neck and help restore a proper cervical lordosis

If you have any questions about the conditions we treat, please contact us today at (610) 430-0894.