Nobody wants to have surgery. Fortunately, in our practice, surgery is always the last resort.
It is worthwhile to consider the many options that exist before even considering surgery. This includes:
- Lifestyle modification
Simply changing the pillow that you use at night or the position of your car seat can make a big difference in the level of neck or back pain you experience.
- Weight reduction
Losing as little as 5 or 10 pounds can reduce the burden on your spine and provide a reduction in your daily back pain.
- Physical Therapy
Learning how to properly lift and transfer will reduce the life-long wear and tear on your spine and joints. This can make a big difference over the course of several years.
- Chiropractic Care
For many patients, surgery is simply not an option or not a consideration. Chiropractic manipulation may offer pain reduction without the need for surgery. However, before initiating chiropractic care, we recommend an evaluation by a medical doctor.
Acupuncture is a method of encouraging the body to promote natural healing and to improve functioning. This therapy has certainly stood the test of time and might be a consideration for mild low back pain.
- Epidural Steroid Injections
The direct delivery of steroid medication to the spine has also been around for many years. The steroid medication will treat the inflammation in and around the nerves usually resulting in pain relief.
These non-surgical options are safe to try in most patients. However, in some patients these therapies do not provide the relief that is desired. It is at this point that we must decide between living with the pain and surgical options. There are many different surgical procedures targeted at treating spinal disease. With modern equipment and techniques, most of these surgeries can be performed through one-inch incisions. While many of these minimally invasive procedures require no hospitalization at all, some will require a brief overnight stay.