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Avoid Back Surgery With Chiropractic

Harrisburg chiropractic back pain treatmentIn our Harrisburg practice, we see plenty of people who are struggling with back pain, and some of these people have been informed they might need surgery to recover. Thankfully, Dr. Blake has helped many people get pain relief without the need for any type of surgical procedure. The scientific research agrees with the results we see in our office. One study published in the medical journal Spine found that seeing a chiropractor as your first move in dealing with your back problems may literally keep you off of the operating table.

In this study, medical professionals from Dartmouth reviewed statistics from 1,885 workers from Washington state who first saw either an orthopedic surgeon or a chiropractic doctor for their back-related issues. They then used three years' worth of follow-up medical data to ascertain whether the individuals wound up having back surgery in an attempt to treat the problem.

What the authors found was that 42.7% of the patients who first saw a surgeon for their back issues ended up with surgery in that 3-year time frame, whereas only 1.5% of those who first saw 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 remarkable outcomes. Visiting a chiropractor dramatically reduces your odds of having back surgery, plus the chiropractic patients in this scientific study "had lower odds of chronic work disability" and they also had fewer expensive MRI tests.

Let's also consider 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.

Why You Should Avoid Surgery

Any surgery has risks, but a major problem related to spinal surgery is that there is a very high failure rate. 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%."

The authors of this same study concluded:

"It is extremely difficult to identify unequivocal predictor factors that can be used to accurately predict the outcome of surgery."

As a chiropractor, Dr. Blake believes that surgery should be the absolute last resort for treating back pain. Chiropractic care works to restore your spine to its normal function--without risky surgery or drugs--and many scientific studies have confirmed the effectiveness of chiropractic for back pain.

If you live in Harrisburg and you need care for your back pain, give our practice a call today at (717) 657-2561 for a consultation or an appointment. We'll help get you back on the road to a pain-free life!

Studies

  • Keeney BJ, Fulton-Kehoe D, Turner JA, Wickizer TM, Chan KC, Franklin GM. Early predictors of lumbar spine surgery after occupational back injury: results from a prospective study of workers in Washington State. Spine 2013;38(11):953-964.
  • Mannion AF, Elfering A. Predictors of surgical outcome and their assessment. European Spine Journal 2006;15(Suppl 1):S93-S108.
 

Back Pain and Car Crashes

We work with many car accident cases in in our Harrisburg office, and a common symptom we see in our patients is back pain. Let's take a look at why back pain is commonly experienced after a car crash and see how chiropractic can help you recover.

During a rear-end auto collision, your car and car seat are quickly accelerated forward against your body. Since car seats don't perfectly align with the curve of your spinal column, the car seat can put uneven force on your back. This can cause some of your spinal vertebrae to move in one direction while an adjacent vertebrae might move in another direction. This differential motion can sprain or strain the tissues that hold your spine together. These types of injuries can cause chronic back pain if not treated promptly. Thankfully, chiropractic is one of the most effective ways to treat back pain.

Dr. Blake is here in Harrisburg to help you recover from back pain. We've been helping patients since 1983 and we can probably help you, too. The first step is to get an accurate diagnosis to determine what's causing your symptoms and then we will determine an appropriate treatment approach. Ready to make an appointment? Give us a call at (717) 657-2561 and we'll get you back on the road to health.

 

Chiropractic Helps Prevent Lower Limb Injuries for Athletes

Harrisburg-sports-therapyWhen playing sports activities that require a lot of lower body movement, like football, soccer, and basketball, it's common to sustain some type of injury to your lower extremities. Between pulled hamstrings, sprained ankles, knee injuries, and more, many people have found themselves sidelined. Dr. Blake has seen all of these problems in our Harrisburg patients. Fortunately, chiropractic can help prevent some of these injuries from occurring and research proves it.

Research Shows Chiropractic Helps With Sports Injuries & Recovery

Dr. Blake keeps current with all of the latest scientific research, and in a paper published in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, researchers from Macquarie University in Australia studied 59 semi-elite Australian Rules football players. Roughly one-half were placed in a control group and the others were put in a treatment group that received sports chiropractic care at regular intervals. During the first six weeks, this meant getting care once per week. The following three months consisted of an adjustment every two weeks before reducing those to one visit monthly for the final three months of the study.

Researchers noted that there was a "significant" decrease in the number of leg strains the players received in the treatment group when compared to the control. In addition, they noticed that the subjects who received chiropractic also had fewer weeks of missed practice and games as a result of non-contact knee injuries. This led them to determine that sports chiropractic intervention should be added to "the current best practice management."

Every major sports team in the US and the US Olympic Team has chiropractors on staff for their athletes, because they know that chiropractic really works. If you live near our practice in Harrisburg and would like to see if Dr. Blake can help you boost your performance or reduce sports injuries, give our office a call today at (717) 657-2561 for an appointment.

Dr. Blake Can Help Patients Find Relief From Sports Injuries and Recover Faster

If you're suffering with severe pain, Dr. Blake and our staff are here to help you recover. Give our Harrisburg office a call today at (717) 657-2561 for an appointment today.

Reference

Hoskins W, Pollard H. The effect of a sports chiropractic manual therapy intervention on the prevention of back pain, hamstring and lower limb injuries in semi-elite Australian rules footballers: a randomized controlled trial. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2010;11(64).

 

What Is Spinal Decompression?

Spinal decompression therapy in HarrisburgWe work with many back pain patients in our Harrisburg chiropractic office, and Dr. Blake and our staff uses an assortment of techniques to help get you out of pain and restore your spine's normal, healthy function. We find spinal decompression to be an effective approach.

Understanding Spinal Decompression Therapy

To help you better understand spinal decompression therapy, think of the discs in your spine like small balloons filled with jelly. When you squeeze them (which occurs due to normal living, sustaining an injury, or other medical conditions), they can protrude, placing pressure on the nerves in your spinal column. This affects your brain's ability to communicate with tissues in the rest of your body.

If the force on the discs becomes too high, the discs can herniate or bulge. This reduces the cushioning between your vertebrae and can cause pain. The purpose of spinal decompression therapy is to reduce this pressure to help restore your body's function and also reduce your level of pain.

Can Spinal Decompression Therapy Help Me?

Spinal decompression therapy relieves disc pressure through the use of a specially designed table that carefully elongates your spinal column through slow and controlled movements. This decreases the pressure placed on your discs. Some studies report an increase in disc height by as much as 1.3 millimeters after just six weeks of spinal decompression therapy.

If you're wondering if spinal decompression therapy could help you feel and function better, simply call our Harrisburg office and schedule an appointment with Dr. Blake today. Your optimal health is our number one goal!

Resources

Apfel CC, Cakmakkaya OS, Richmond C, et al. Restoration of disk height through non-surgical spinal decompression is associated with decreased discogenic low back pain: a retrospective cohort study. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2010;11(155). doi:10.1186/1471-2474-11-155

 

Faster Sciatica Improvement with Chiropractic Care

In our Harrisburg office, it isn't uncommon for us to see people troubled with sciatica pain, and Dr. Blake has helped many of these people improve with chiropractic. What makes chiropractic so useful to those who suffer with sciatica? For starters, it reduces their recovery time and a Norwegian research study confirms it.

In the study, which took place in a Norwegian hospital's orthopedic division, researchers looked at 44 patients who presented with sudden low back pain that was identified as acute sciatica. The participants were all treated by a chiropractor, with the average follow-up being two years after treatment.

The researchers discovered that all but two patients returned to work after receiving chiropractic care, which is a 95% success rate. What's more, the average amount of time that the patients spent off work "was reduced by two thirds as compared with that associated with conventional medical treatment."

Given the fact that the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that over 170,000 workdays were lost in 2013 due to employees dealing with back or spine-related issues, that is about 112,500 work days that could potentially be recovered each and every year solely by receiving chiropractic care. Not only could that increase productivity, but it would also reduce costs to businesses and workers from lost work.

If you live in Harrisburg and you suffer with sciatic pain, Dr. Blake is here to help. Give us a call at (717) 657-2561 and we'll work with you to find the root cause of your sciatic pain and get you back on the road to health.

Orlin JR, Didriksen A. Results of chiropractic treatment of lumbopelvic fixation in 44 patients admitted to an orthopedic department. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 2007;30(2):135-139.

 

Harrisburg Neck Pain and Headache Care

Harrisburg neck pain and headache treatmentHeadache and neck pain are common problems that affect millions of people around the world. If you are suffering from this type of problem, you're not alone. The good news is that chiropractic is an excellent way to not only treat these common issues, but also help avoid future episodes.

Research Proves Chiropractic Helps With Neck Pain and Headaches

For many years, people with neck and headache pain in Harrisburg have been helped by the chiropractic care of Dr. Blake. Our experience is backed up by a recent review done in Canada that found that non-invasive, non-drug solutions are the best choice for neck and headache pain.

The report looked at 15 studies from 1990 to 2015 and found that conservative treatment comprised of chiropractic adjustments, exercises, and stretches was suggested before turning to drugs or more invasive procedures.

Previous studies have shown that chiropractic is effective and safe for neck pain and many other health conditions.

We Can Help Patients Find Relief From Neck Pain and Headaches

If you're struggling with neck pain or headaches, Dr. Blake and our staff are here to help you heal. Give our Harrisburg office a call today at (717) 657-2561 for an appointment today.

Reference

Varatharajan S, Ferguson B, Chrobak K, et al. Are non-invasive interventions effective for the management of headaches associated with neck pain? An update of the Bone and Joint Decade Task Force on Neck Pain and Its Associated Disorders by the Ontario Protocol for Traffic Injury Management (OPTIMa) Collaboration. European Spine Journal 2016; February 6:1-29.

 

Harrisburg Chiropractic and Cervicogenic Headache

We see a considerable number of individuals with headaches in our Harrisburg office, and Dr. Blake has been able to support many of them. Additionally, the World Health Organization (WHO) reports that 50% of all adults have difficulties with some sort of headache condition, so this actually isn’t a surprise. One of the most frequent types of headaches that our patients are afflicted with is cervicogenic headache which, luckily, chiropractic can usually help.

Cervicogenic Headaches Explained

A cervicogenic headache is one that starts from problems in the cervical spine. It can be because of a problem with either the spine itself (in particular, the vertebrae, joints, or discs), or it might be triggered by a problem in the muscles and tendons of your neck. This dysfunction in your spine produces compaction or irritation of the spinal nerves, which can bring about headache pain.

How do you distinguish if the headache you are going through is a cervicogenic headache? Other than receiving a diagnosis from a healthcare professional, a typical symptom of cervicogenic headaches is tenderness or discomfort in your neck. This is occasionally associated with pain in the back of your head or between your shoulder blades.

How Chiropractic Helps with Cervicogenic Headaches

Because cervicogenic headaches will not go away until whatever issue is inducing them is corrected, it is crucial to receive treatment rather than just trying to "wait it out." Chiropractic care is an effective approach, and one that provides a great deal of pain relief.

In one study reported in Chiropractic & Osteopathy, researchers evaluated 80 people who had recurring cervicogenic headaches. Fifty percent received chiropractic care and the other fifty percent underwent light massage therapy. Each participant was evaluated 12 and 24 weeks after the procedures and it was found that chiropractic offered the optimum effects.

In particular, this study uncovered that chiropractic adjustments gave patients more significant pain relief and reduced the frequency of headaches that occurred. Moreover, it also diminished the disability that resulted from these painful headaches.

To find out what Dr. Blake can do for you and your headache pain, call us today. We'll do our best to get you the pain relief you need!

References

  • Haas M, Schneider M, Vavrek D. Illustrating risk difference and number needed to treat from a randomized controlled trial of spinal manipulation for cervicogenic headache. Chiropractic & Osteopathy 2010 18(9).
  • World Health Organization. (2012, October). Headache disorders. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs277/en/
 

Chiropractic Works for Ankle Sprains

Harrisburg natural ankle sprain treatmentWe see many patients in our Harrisburg office with ankle sprains but Dr. Blake has had a lot of success helping them heal more quickly. Why are ankle sprains so common and how can chiropractic help?

According to the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), approximately 25,000 people in the US sprain their ankles every day. As a matter of fact, these injuries make up almost half of all sports injuries, causing people to spend time away from the activities they enjoy most.

Like any injury, there are many causes of ankle sprains. The most common is inversion, or when the ankle rolls inward. This injury can occur due to one forceful movement, or it can develop over time, and activities that increase the risk for this type of ankle sprain include running and jumping. You're also at risk if you have past ankle injuries, poor posture or balance, weak muscles, and reduced range of motion.

How Can Chiropractic Treatments and Dr. Blake Help?

A report printed in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics set out to discover chiropractic's role when it comes to ankle sprain recovery. The authors enrolled 33 individuals between the ages of 18 and 45 who had a history of ankle inversion sprains, who were reporting tenderness and/or pain, and had not re-injured the ankle in the previous six weeks.

18 of the subjects were assigned to receive rehabilitation and the remaining 15 subjects received chiropractic adjustments in addition to rehabilitation. Each person had five full weeks of therapy, with the rehabilitation group receiving therapies seven days a week and the rehab plus chiropractic group receiving treatment six out of the seven days.

Research Supports Chiropractic Helps With Ankle Sprains

The study found that the individuals who had both rehabilitation and chiropractic fared the best at the 4-week mark when it came to pain and joint restriction. Additionally, no bad effects were reported, showing that this treatment option is safe.

If you're near our office in Harrisburg and you're recovering from an ankle injury, give us a call. We'll do what we can to keep you up and moving... literally!

Sources

  • American College of Sports Medicine. (n.d.). Ankle sprains and the athlete. Retrieved from https://www.acsm.org/docs/current-comments/anklesprainstemp.pdf
  • Lubbe, D et al. (2015, January). Manipulative therapy and rehabilitation for recurrent ankle sprain with functional instability: a short-term, assessor-blind, parallel-group randomized trial. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 38(1), 22-34, doi:10.1016/j.jmpt.2014.10.001
 

Chiropractic Offers Long Term Benefits for Fibromyalgia Sufferers

Harrisburg natural fibromyalgia treatmentIf you suffer with fibromyalgia, you are not alone, as Dr. Blake sees many patients with this particular condition in our Harrisburg chiropractic office. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that roughly two percent of all adults in the United States have fibromyalgia. Thankfully, chiropractic care is one treatment option that can provide positive results.

In a medical study published in mid-2015, 215 women and men with fibromyalgia were evaluated based on factors ranging from pain to quality of sleep to the levels of depression or anxiety they felt. Then they were divided into two groups with one group receiving a multi-modal therapy plan for three months and the second group receiving the same program plus chiropractic adjustments (specifically, to the upper neck area) for the same length of time.

The individuals who received chiropractic care in addition to the multi-modal therapy program reported greater benefits in all areas (pain, sleep, depression, and anxiety) at 12 weeks post-treatment when compared to the study patients who received multi-modal therapy without chiropractic care. Furthermore, those positive outcomes were long-lasting as the subjects reported continued improvement one full year later.

Fibromyalgia can significantly reduce your quality of life, both psychologically and physically. If you're suffering from fibromyalgia, we might be able to help.

You don't have to suffer! To find out what Dr. Blake can do for your fibromyalgia, call our Harrisburg chiropractic office today.

References

  • Fibromyalgia. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/arthritis/basics/fibromyalgia.htm on November 2, 2015.
  • Moustafa I & Diab A. (2015, July). The addition of upper cervical manipulative therapy in the treatment of patients with fibromyalgia: a randomized controlled trial. Rheumatology International;35(7):1163-74.
 

Chiropractic Helps Relieve Herniated Disc Problems

Harrisburg chiropractic disc herniation treatmentUnfortunately, many of our Harrisburg patients are familiar with the pain associated with a herniated disc all too well. Fortunately, Dr. Blake has helped many people with disc pain, and a number of medical studies have verified that chiropractic can help people recover from this kind of condition.

Research on Chiropractic and Disc Herniations

In one study, specialists from Switzerland selected 148 patients who were coping with pain in their low back and legs due to a disc herniation (which was confirmed through magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI). Each individual then received chiropractic adjustments that focused on the location of his or her disc herniation.

Data was gathered after the initial treatment session at set intervals--namely, 2 weeks, 4 weeks, 12 weeks, 6 months, and 1 year--to ascertain what type of short-term and long-term effects, if any, chiropractic care offers when it comes to treating this particular problem. Among the information collected was the individual's self-reported changes in both back and leg pain.

The authors found that, as a whole, the patients reported "significant improvement" for both types of pain every time the results were collected. In fact, over 90% of the individuals reported that their pain "improved" within the first three months, with 88% still citing improvement one year after their first treatment session.

Even those people who were defined as "chronic" still claimed an improvement in pain at a rate of 89 percent one year beyond when treatment first began. This is the same positive effect that was found in the following case study.

Disc Herniation and Chiropractic: A Case Study

In this report, a 26-year-old man had presented with disc herniation symptoms such as pain in the low back, left leg, and left groin area, along with left foot drop and muscle weakness. He had endured these issues for more than two years after sustaining a sports injury, and his herniated disc was confirmed via MRI.

After receiving chiropractic, "The patient responded favorably and his multi-symptom complex resolved within 90 days of treatment." Furthermore, the patient was still enjoying relief one year after the chiropractic intervention.

Studies like these show how helpful chiropractic can be when it comes to alleviating herniated disc pain and relieving the symptoms they produce. So, if you are suffering from back pain caused by a herniated disc and wish to find some relief, chiropractic can be an effective solution.

Don't suffer from chronic herniated disc pain. Give our Harrisburg office a call today at (717) 657-2561 for a consultation or appointment.

References

  • 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. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 2014;37(3):155-163.
  • Polkinghorn BS, Colloca CJ. Treatment of symptomatic lumbar disc herniation using activator methods chiropractic technique. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 1998;21(3):187-196.