Neck and Back Disc Injuries

Butch was in a car accident, sustained a whiplash injury and had pain down his right arm. The emergency room doctor examined him and took x-rays. He advised Butch that he had a neck sprain. The patient was sent home and instructed to follow up with his medical doctor. His medical doctor examined him and gave him anti-inflammatory medication for two weeks. Since his symptoms persisted, Butch asked to be referred to a Chiropractic Physician, and his medical doctor referred him to Dr. Caraotta, a Chiropractic Orthopedist in Rockford, Illinois for an evaluation.

After the patient was examined by Dr. Caraotta, and his x-rays were reviewed, he was sent for an MRI of the cervical spine. This revealed a “slipped disc” in his neck, which was causing pressure on the nerve that supplies the arm. Many patients have disc injuries in their neck and back that go undetected because they initially present with minimal neck or back pain and have predominantly arm or leg pain. This was the case with Butch who successfully treated with chiropractic, and non-surgical orthopedic care, but the full scope of his injuries could easily have been undetected for months.

It is often thought that when someone has a “slipped disc”, they require surgery. On the contrary most slipped discs can be rehabilitated with a non-surgical approach when caught in a timely
manner. Rehabilitation may include various forms of traction, conservative spinal manipulation, anti-inflammatory medication, exercise, and physical therapy. The more severe the injury is, the more intensive the care must be. With proper management and monitoring most of these conditions respond well to conservative treatment, however in some cases recovery can be a long slow process. The more a patient can rest and avoid offending activities, along with following their doctors advise, the quicker they will heal.

If you ever develop a disc injury or think that you might have one, before contemplating surgery, consult with a Chiropractic Orthopedist They are not only qualified to treat these conditions but recognize when surgery is necessary and usually work with competent, conservative teams who can advise you appropriately.

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