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Low Back Pain


The most common region of the body people injure is the lower back. One out every five people who are on disability can't work because of low back pain. It's a common problem, and you are not alone if you suffer from lower back pain. Almost all of us (85%) will have at least one bout of Low Back Pain ("LBP") during our lives which is severe enough to cause us to be temporarily disabled from work or school!

Since the medical treatment of LBP has been so ineffective, the Federal Government's Agency for Health Care Policy and Research made up a 23 member panel of experts and had them take three years to review 3,400 research studies on LBP. They were asked to conclude what forms of care work best to help this problem. The panel of experts was made up of medical doctors, osteopaths, chiropractors, therapists and was headed up by a prominent orthopedic surgeon.

They concluded that most of the commonly used medical procedures were ineffective, terribly expensive and sometimes dangerous! Prescription drugs were "not recommended" and had a potential for dangerous side effects. There was said to be "no evidence to support the use of invasive epidural injections" although doctors often prescribe the procedure. Common medical interventions like surgery, injections, hospital traction, TENs units, physical therapy and even acupuncture were all rejected as being unproven, ineffective or dangerous to the patient!

The guidelines stated that some interventions cause patients to be even more disabled after treatment! Surgery is the "most obvious example," and "surgical procedures rarely lead to improved outcome." It may be difficult to convince surgeons to stop doing spinal surgery since it has become a multi-billion dollar industry. The fact remains, they felt surgery doesn't work as well in most cases, especially in the long term.

The panel of experts did recommend what chiropractors have always professed: manual adjusting of the spine gives the most consistently effective results over all other interventions! Spinal adjustments, as performed by chiropractors like Dr. Salmi, was the only recommended intervention whose benefit included not only symptomatic relief of pain, but also functional improvement! Isn't that what you want if you have a problem? To improve the underlying cause of the trouble and restore proper function? That is what Dr. James Salmi does!

Reinforcing our Federal Government's guidelines was a separate unbiased study on LBP by the Canadian Government's Ministry of Health, which concluded that chiropractic care is much more cost effective, extremely safe and is more effective than medical treatment of back pain.

lbp1.pngThere can be many different reasons for back pain (see diagram). Some can be slow and insidious like arthritis or disc degeneration, or sudden and acute like a disc herniation from trauma. Very rarely, tumors or infection can be a reason for back pain, so we prudently examine you and review your health history, and may take x-rays or do computerized muscle function tests to determine the cause of your particular trouble. As a chiropractor, Dr. Salmi always looks to correct the underlying causes of any dysfunction so that we can restore perfect function.

Commonly, some of the bones in the spine may not be moving properly, putting pressure upon or irritating the spinal nerves, causing your pain. This is called a "subluxation" and can usually be easily corrected. This helps to end your pain, and more importantly helps to restore proper nerve function. This is important because the nerves from your lower back control the functions of the organs in the pelvis (bowel, bladder, uterus, ovaries, prostate, etc.) besides controlling the muscles and sensation in the low back and legs.

That is why chiropractors can often help bowel and bladder troubles, and often eliminate menstrual pain in women, and sometimes even affect sexual dysfunction in men (without drugs), besides getting people out of pain. We allow your body to express its inherent health, and its ability to function perfectly.

It is up to you, how you care for your own body and correct any problems you may have, but we suggest taking the safest and most effective route to return to full function. Call us to make an appointment, so that you might be able to be pain free with everything working well again. Centrally located on Pacific Ave. off of 5-12. Acts Chiropractic is near PLU in the Tacoma Parkland/Spanaway area. Let's work together so you can enjoy life, and be truly healthy, the way you were designed to be!

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