Chiropractic More Effective than Nerve Block Injections for Chronic Neck Disk Pain
Patients & Friends,
Results of a just completed study of 52 patients with cervical disk herniation with chronic neck pain shows more improvement with chiropractic compared with an age- and sex-matched cohort that received nerve block injections.
The study, by chiropractic scientist Cynthia K. Peterson, RN, DC, MMedEd and co-workers, appears in the current April issue of the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, the leading science journal for the chiropractic profession.
Peterson was joined by two medical doctors from the radiology department, and four other chiropractors also at the chiropractic medicine department of the Orthopaedic University Hospital Balgrist, at the University of Zurich, in Switzerland.
The study found that patients with acute cervical disk herniations fared equally well with either treatments. However, more patients with chronic neck pain and MRI confirmed cervical disk herniation reported improvement after chiropractic neck adjustments when compared with nerve block injections, at three months follow up.
Findings support earlier research that showed low back and leg pain associated with lumbar disk herniations improved better with chiropractic adjustments when compared with nerve block procedures.
No adverse events were reported for patients receiving either nerve blocks or chiropractic, and total care costs were similar between treatments.
Combined with recent research confirming cost savings and less surgery in large groups of subjects receiving chiropractic for back pain, there is growing evidence that even for serious disk and spine problems, patients and doctors should consider a trial of chiropractic first, prior to use of more invasive procedures such as injections and surgery.
Robert A. Leach, DC, MS, FICC(h), CHES
1. Scientists including chiropractors and medical radiologists in the Orthopedic Hospital at the University of Zurich, Switzerland, found no appreciable difference between outcomes of patients with acute cervical disk pain. However, patients with chronic neck pain secondary to disk herniation had better results after chiropractic when compared with age and sex-matched patients receiving nerve blocks: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27040033
2. Researchers reviewed data from 72, 326 patients and found lower costs for Medicare, and lower rates of surgery, when seniors with chronic low back pain were seen by doctors of chiropractic: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26907615