I had Spinal Surgery... Now What?
Updated: Dec 3, 2021
Can you still see a Chiropractor if you've had spinal surgery? Should you still see a Chiropractor if you've had spinal surgery?
The answer is YES! Chiropractic care can be tailored to individuals that have had spinal surgery in the past. There is a common misconception that if a spinal surgery has been performed chiropractic care is out of the question. This is simply not true and in fact, post-operative patients may especially benefit from specific and conservative chiropractic care and here's why. Chiropractic care is essential to keep the rest of your spine healthy and can help prevent further spinal decay!
Unfortunately, many patients still suffer from some type of back pain or neck pain even after spinal surgery. Let's say surgery went extremely well and symptoms improve, awesome! Structurally speaking though, a spinal fusion surgery drastically changes the biomechanics within a mobile joint. This new joint restriction transfers more force on the joints above and below the surgery site. That means that the increased load on the surrounding joints make them work even harder to make up from the loss. Many times, more surgeries and the more joints become involved. Additionally, surgery causes soft tissue adhesions and fibrous scar tissue in and around the surgery site. Scar tissue in the body disrupts the normal elasticity, limits blood flow, and restricts movement and flexibility. These changes can lead to uneven muscle tension, increased wearing of the spine, and make you more prone to spinal injury, arthritis, and pain down the road. Chiropractic care can help maintain spinal mobility by treating the areas above and below the surgery site. Remember, these areas are now working double-time!
Ideally, we would see patients early on so that chiropractic care could potentially stop pain conditions before they start and prior to when surgery is needed. Wouldn't that be great? While not all the time, surgery can sometimes be avoided with very early detection and appropriate management. When surgery is needed it is important to set up effective supportive care to keep inflammation levels low and keep all body systems working optimally.
Looking for other alternatives? Acupuncture is another great option for post-operative patients who are still experiencing pain. Acupuncture is most commonly used here in the US to manage chronic pain without drugs or surgery but is can effectively help a variety of conditions including sciatica, neuropathy, disc injuries, stenosis, etc. If you or someone you know is suffering with these types of symptoms please reach out to us! We are here to help!
From the desk of Dr. Lisette Miller Kondrad. Dr. Miller has been in clinical practice for 7 years treating hundreds of patients with chiropractic care and acupuncture. Click here to contact Clark Road Chiropractic Center with any questions or to schedule your appointment!