Back pain related to sciatica is one of the most costly and challenging problems in our healthcare system. Sciatica by definition refers to pain, numbness, and tingling felt along the sciatic nerve, which runs from the lower back, through the buttocks, and down the back of the leg. It develops when the sciatic nerve becomes irritated or impinged as a result of bone spurs, lumbar disc herniation, spinal degeneration, and arthritis.
People whose work requires them to stand all day or lift heavy objects are at an increased risk of developing sciatica. Dr. Geary Michels frequently treats patients in Salem, OR suffering from sciatica and work injuries. Chiropractic adjustments can ease pressure on the impinged sciatic nerve, allowing it to heal while relieving pain.
Research suggests that chiropractic care can help patients return to work sooner after sciatica. A study from Norway included 44 workers with sciatica whose symptoms were painful enough to require hospitalization.
A chiropractor within the hospital's orthopedic department treated the patients with spinal adjustments, soft-tissue therapies, and ice treatment. Patients were treated daily during hospitalization, followed by three sessions per week at a clinic. A subgroup of patients also continued receiving follow-up treatments 1-2 per week for some time, but the number of treatment sessions rarely exceeded 14 treatments, which is the reimbursement limit set by Norwegian public health regulations.
After an average of three weeks of chiropractic care, 91% of patients had returned to working full time. The remaining patients returned to work at 80% and 50% of their previous workload.
While the average Norwegian employee with sciatica requires 72 days of sick leave, these chiropractic patients only had 21 disability days. In other words, chiropractic led to a 71% reduction in the number of disability days.
Michels Spinal Rehab Center is dedicated to helping you return to work as quickly and as safely as possible after work injury. Even if your sciatica has not forced you to take sick leave, you still shouldn't resign yourself to working in pain. Dr. Geary Michels will use safe, effective chiropractic methods of relieving your sciatica and back pain. Call our office in Salem, OR for an appointment today.
Stover BD, Turner JA, Franklin G, et al. Factors associated with early opioid prescription among workers with low back injuries. Journal of Pain 2006;7(10):718-25.
Arana E, Marti-Bonmati L, Vega M, et al. Relationship between low back pain, disability, MR imaging findings and health care provider. Skeletal Radiology 2006;35(9):641-7.
Orlin JR, Didriksen A. Results of chiropractic treatment of lumbopelvic fixation in 44 patients admitted to an orthopedic department. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 2007;30:135-139.