Neck Problems After Unsuccessful Spinal Surgery Helped With Chiropractic
In the September
2001 issue of the peer reviewed, "Journal of Manipulative and Physiological
Therapeutics" comes a case report study titled, "Chiropractic
care of a patient with vertebral subluxations and unsuccessful surgery
of the cervical spine". This was a report of a 55-year-old man who
had neck pain along with radiating pain down both arms after unsuccessful
cervical (neck) spine surgery.
man's history was similar to many seen in chiropractic offices. While
responding to an auto accident during an ice storm, the 55 year old highway
patrolman slipped getting out of his car and fell backward, landing on
his upper back and neck After a few days he began to experience pain in
his neck. Two months later he consulted a medical doctor, who referred
him to a neurologist. During the neurological examination, the patient
experienced a seizure that eventually led to a diagnosis of a tumor of
the adrenal gland. Several weeks later, the patient had surgery to excise
the tumor which resulted in temporary relief of the neck pain.
to work, and 6 weeks after surgery he began to experience neck pain again,
which he described as sharp, along with pain, numbness, and tingling in
both arms. His condition worsened, for about 6 to 7 months, and he was
was referred to a neurosurgeon. The patient eventually consented to neck
surgery, and an anterior cervical diskectomy (disc removal) was performed.
When he returned
to the surgeon for a postsurgery check-up and had continuing complaints,
he then asked when the surgeon wanted to see him again. The reply was,
I never want to see you again. This answer was devastating for the patient,
and he assumed that he was destined to live with these problems for life.
3½ years after surgery, the patient started chiropractic care.
The chiropractic care began and after receiving the first set of adjustments,
the patient indicated that his ability to raise his left arm had increased
by 50% and that his neck pain and arm complaints were also relieved. He
was astonished and excited by the results of the care he received. Within
2 weeks of starting care he was able to fully abduct his left arm and
to loop his belt to his pants. A year after the onset of chiropractic
care, the patient was working on his small ranch performing various odd
jobs and has, on occasion, had some problems because of over activity.
and published case is not unfamiliar to chiropractors world wide. The
unique aspect of this case is the fact that it was published in a peer
reviewed scientific journal. The authors of the study summed this situation
up with the following; "This is the first description in the indexed
literature of the chiropractic care of a patient with vertebral and sacroiliac
subluxations with a history of unsuccessful cervical diskectomy of the
cervical spine. In our experience, allopathic (medical) practitioners
usually do not offer patients the option of chiropractic care before surgery.
Perhaps more rarely is chiropractic care considered a viable option in
instances of unsuccessful surgical care." It is obvious from this
study that chiropractic should have been considered first.