In our Humble practice, we see a large number of people who are dealing with back pain, and a few of these people have been advised they might need surgery to recover. Thankfully, Dr. Groneck has helped many people get relief without the need for any type of surgery. The scientific research agrees with the results we see in our practice. One research study published in the academic journal Spine found that seeing a chiropractor as your first step in overcoming with your back issues may literally keep you off of the operating table.
In this report, medical professionals from Dartmouth reviewed statistics from about 1,900 workers from Washington state who first saw either a surgeon or a chiropractor for their low back issues. They then examined three years' worth of follow-up medical information to find out whether the subjects wound up having back surgery in an attempt to correct the problem.
What the researchers determined was that about 43% of the individuals who first consulted with a surgeon for their back pain ended up in surgery in that 3-year time frame, whereas only 1.5% of those who first consulted with a chiropractor had the same fate. The authors wrote:
"Even after controlling for injury severity and other measures, workers with an initial visit for the injury to a surgeon had almost nine times the odds of receiving lumbar spine surgery compared to those seeing primary care providers, whereas workers whose first visit was to a chiropractor had significantly lower odds of surgery."
These are impressive results. Visiting a chiropractor considerably reduces your odds of getting back surgery, plus the chiropractic patients in this report "had lower odds of chronic work disability" and they also had fewer expensive MRI tests.
Let's also keep in mind this important point: this study was conducted by orthopedic surgeons from Dartmouth College, and printed in the world's most prestigious medical publication on spinal injury.
Any surgery has risks, but a major downside linked to spine surgery is that there is a very high rate of failure. In an important analysis in the European Spine Journal, researchers wrote:
"Failed back surgery is a problem that has become sufficiently widespread to even warrant its own special conferences, with recent reviews reporting failure rates ranging from 5 to 50%."
"It is extremely difficult to identify unequivocal predictor factors that can be used to accurately predict the outcome of surgery."
As a chiropractor, Dr. Groneck believes that surgery should be the absolute last choice for treating back pain. Chiropractic works to restore your spine to its normal function--without the need of high-risk surgery or drugs--and many research studies have demonstrated the efficacy of chiropractic for back pain.
If you live in Humble and you need care for your back pain, give our office a call today at (281) 540-7201 for a consultation or an appointment. We'll help get you back on the road to a pain-free life!