If these are needed, we specialize in getting you back to your normal life with as little medication or injections as possible and without having more surgery.
We specialize in helping people get back to normal NATURALLY — without medications, injections, or surgery. Some people do need these invasive procedures.
People That Have X-rays & MRIs End-up with More Medication, Injections & Surgery
There is no question about it… there are tons of studies that show this is true. We want you and your family and friends to know the research.
Let’s use back pain as an example. If you start with your PCP and get X-rays and a MRI they will “see something.” You are likely to end up in an orthopedic surgery office. In the end it will cost a lot more, and you are more likely to get medication, an injection, or surgery.
Back Pain Example
If you begin your treatment with someone that orders X-rays or an MRI, you are likely to end up with unnecessary medication, injections, and surgery.
You get the pictures taken. You sit down with the surgeon to review the pictures. You see where the disc collapsed. You see herniated discs and bone spurs. You see where the nerve is getting pinched.
It makes sense to try medication to get rid of the swelling. Then an injection is given to direct the medication to the problem area. Then surgery is ordered to relieve the pressure.
It’s not that the surgeon is trying to trick you. This is how they are trained to address your pain.
“If You Can’t See It… Then How Can You Treat It?”
This quote is from a commercial for a national radiology business with offices in Connecticut. It is such a big business it has offices in all 50 states.
Don’t take the bait and make this mistake. What you see is normal, and no treatment is needed.
“What You See is Normal – No Treatment Needed.”
Fifty of one hundred people that are fifty years old and pain-free will show similar results. Herniated discs, bulging discs, degenerative discs, pinched nerves… you get the picture. These are people without pain. Do they all need medication, injections, or surgery?
Pain or no pain, these spinal issues are normal – not something that needs fixing. Most people don’t know this. Now you do.
The Radiology Ad: “Sharon’s Spinal Stenosis Story”
The same radiology business advertises Sharon’s story. It’s a story we hear all the time.
“I tried alternative treatments. I went to a PT that said it was a structural problem. I didn’t get better. I went to an orthopedic surgeon. He did an MRI and discovered it was spinal stenosis. I did injections. They helped but I had to keep getting them. I decided to have fusion surgery.”
The Real Spinal Stenosis Story
Here’s what the ad left out about spinal stenosis.
There are simple clinical diagnostic criteria – no MRI needed – to determine if spinal stenosis is the problem. In a group of people 60 years old without back pain, 20% will have spinal stenosis based on an MRI.
In a major 2015 study conducted by neurosurgeons and physical therapists at a major teaching hospital, people treated with just physical therapy had the same result as people treated with surgery and then PT.
Unfortunately, in “Sharon’s Story” it sounds like the treatment did not match the condition. We see this all the time. If the physical therapist doesn’t match the right treatment to the right condition you won’t get better.
According to the Dartmouth Institute 2015 Spinal Stenosis Report for spinal stenosis fusion surgery:
Life threatening complications occur in 3% of the surgeries.
Re-hospitalization after surgery occurs 25% of the time.
The surgery had to be repeated 17% of the time.
30% of the people had severe pain at 4-years post-surgery.
Same Story for Other Problems
It turns out the same is true for other joints – shoulder, knee, hips and for other conditions like carpal tunnel.
What you see on an X-ray, MRI, or other testing is usually normal. Treatment with physical therapy is as effective as surgery.
Treatment without medications, injections, and surgery comes with less risk, costs less, and on average takes less time.
Christopher DiPasquale, PhD, PT, OCS, SCS, CHT is a physical therapist at Performance Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine with offices in Hebron and Colchester, Connecticut. He is board certified by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties in Orthopedic Physical Therapy and Sports Physical Therapy and a Certified Hand Therapist by the Hand Therapy Certification Committee.
For more information visit pptsm.com or call the office: Colchester 860-537-3014 or Hebron 860-228-4883