I want to tell you about a patient in my office who has been able to gain pain relief from his chiropractic care and maintain a lower dose of opioid medication use.
My patient Ray experienced a series of misfortunes years earlier when he was in several automobile accidents. The collisions were major, involving two of his vehicles being totaled. Ray was transported by ambulance to trauma hospitals with multiple injuries including fractures, dislocations and concussions. Fortunately, the trauma centers were able to save his life, but his injuries required years of rehabilitation to help him return to his home and some semblance of normal life.
Ray was not able to return to his occupation of construction work and was considered
disabled. He could walk and drive and do a certain amount of home and yard chores but had to watch that he not do too much physical activity.
Despite the best efforts of his rehabilitative therapy, he had a moderate amount of pain that he endured from his injuries. Most of this was neck and lower back pain that radiated into his arms and legs. To cope with this, he was prescribed opioid medications for pain management.
Acknowledging the opioids helped him tolerate his pain he found they left him fatigued and lethargic.
Ray initially came to me five years ago to see if chiropractic care could help him with pain relief so that he might be able to reduce the amount of pain medication he was taking.
When I initially examined Ray and evaluated his x-ray and MRI imaging, I agreed with his previous healthcare providers that his injuries were permanent. However, since chiropractic care had not yet been part of his therapy, I was confident that improving the alignment of his spine and pelvis could bring a degree of pain relief.
We set out on a multi-faceted course of chiropractic care in our office. His treatment involved traction to decompress his lower back degenerated discs, chiropractic adjustments to realign his spine and pelvis which had not previously been addressed, pressure point therapy to relieve intense muscle spasms and a daily home stretching routine of 15 minutes every morning.
After a couple months of treatment Ray had a 25% reduction of his neck and lower back pain and 50% less pain in his arms and legs. He went back to his pain management physician and they took a gradual course of decreasing his opioid medications.
While he wasn’t able to eliminate his medication entirely, he was able to reduce it to a minimal level that helped him cope with his pain and permanent injuries.
After we had improved his physical pain level as much as possible with chiropractic treatment, I left it up to Ray to call in for an appointment if he needed further care. In the past five years we’ve found that he typically will call in for a visit somewhere between one to three months. Usually, one or two visits of safe, gentle chiropractic care will give him enough pain relief to be able to carry on with his activities of daily living.
By being on a minimal dose of opioid medication Ray finds that he has much more energy and ability to mentally concentrate. We’re all pleased that using an integrative medical and chiropractic approach helps give Ray pain relief from the lamentable injuries inflicted.
Please visit here for your local UPMC chiropractor near me. See your McKnight Road chiropractor for neck and back pain relief.