What Are You Not Being Told About Spinal Injections?

Wednesday, May 11th, 2016
Female Doctor Holding Injection

If you’ve been following along with this blog for any time at all, you are probably noticing that there are a lot of research studies having to do with the lack of effectiveness of spinal injections: both for the short-term and the long-term. Also, there is an emerging theme here in research showing over and over the superiority of chiropractic treatment when compared to spinal injections.

Chiropractic care just isn’t in the mainstream is it? So, a treatment protocol that research has proven over and over to be mostly useless continues to get used before an initial course of chiropractic treatment is used. It continues to make less and less sense the more research comes out on the matter.

The purpose of this study was to compare the outcomes of overall improvement, pain reduction, and cost effectiveness in paired, similar patients with characteristic MRI-confirmed disc herniations in the neck region. The patients were treated with either chiropractic mobilization or injections in the cervical region.

How They Did It

  • The study consisted of 104 patients
  • All had herniated discs in the neck region that were confirmed through MRIs.
  • 52 patients were treated with injections to the neck region.
  • 52 patients treated with chiropractic spinal mobilization.
  • The Numeric Ratings Scale was used to assess pain levels at baseline, at 3 months after treatment.
  • Overall “improvement” was assessed using the Patient Global Impression of Change Scale also at the three month mark.
  • The only responses on the Scale that were accepted as an improvement were “much better” or “better.”
  • NRS numbers were compared at baseline and at the 3 month measuring.

What They Found

  • “Improvement” was reported in 86.5% of the patients that underwent the chiropractic spinal manipulative treatment.
  • Only 49. 0% of patient that underwent the injections reported improvement.
  • Significantly more patients undergoing the injections were in the subacute/chronic category (77%) compared with those patients that were in the spinal manipulative chiropractic treatment group (46%).

Wrap It Up

Subacute/chronic patients treated with SMT were much more likely to report being improved than were those that had injections. For cases that were considered to be acute, there was no difference.

Since chiropractic treatment was superior to the spinal injections in subacute/chronic patients, since several research papers have shown the injections to be strictly short-term in nature with zero long-term effect, since they are far more expensive than chiropractic treatment, and since there was no proven superior effect in the acute patients…..WHY WOULD ANYONE EITHER PRESCRIBE OR UNDERGO THE SPINAL INJECTIONS?!?!?!

Peterson CK, et al. “Symptomatic, Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Confirmed Cervical Disk Herniation Patients: A Comparative-Effectiveness Prospective Observational Study of 2 Age- and Sex-Matched Cohorts Treated With Either Imaging-Guided Indirect Cervical Nerve Root Injections or Spinal Manipulative Therapy.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2016 Mar-Apr;39(3):210-7.

Just another reason to call a chiropractor TODAY!

Research and clinical experience shows that, in about 80%-90% of headaches, neck, and back pain, in comparison to the traditional medical model, patients get good or excellent results with Chiropractic. Chiropractic care is safe, more cost-effective, it decreases your chances of having surgery, and it reduces your chances of becoming disabled. We do this conservatively and non-surgically. In addition, we can do it with minimal time requirements and minimal hassle on the part of the patient. And, if the patient develops a “preventative” mindset going forward from initial recovery, we can likely keep it that way while raising your general, overall level of health! Please feel free to leave a comment and tell me your thoughts. I’d love to hear what you think.

And….SHARE, SHARE, SHARE!! We cannot make a difference without your help.

Till next time……

The Amarillo Chiropractor Blog is written by Dr. Jeff Williams.

Amarillo TX Amarillo Pain & Accident Chiropractic Clinic provides customized chiropractic care to the Amarillo, Canyon, Pampa, Happy, White Deer, Dumas, Groom, Conway, Panhandle, Claude, Clarendon, Borger, Tulia, Hereford, Fritch, Bushland, and Vega communities.

Visit our main website at www.amarillochiropractor.com for customized Chiropractic in Amarillo TX.

Choose several options to schedule your appointment: call (806) 355-3000 or click the button below for our contact info.

by Jeff S. Williams, D.C.
Chiropractors in Amarillo
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