St. Paul Chiropractor Blog

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Caring For The Post-Surgical Spine

St. Paul Chiropractor Cares For Post-Surgical Patients

Post-operation spinal fusion surgery.

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A common occurrence in chiropractic is that patients come to a chiropractor as a last resort.  They’ve tried painkillers and muscle relaxers.  They’ve maybe already went under the knife!  Where other treatments have failed them, chiropractic stands to offer hope.

This is encouraging and I have personally seen several people find relief following surgery.  It is frustrating when the surgical intervention was not the ticket to correcting their problem.

Often times the problem they experience following surgery of the spine is that the segments above or below the area operated on are now forced to do more work.  In other words, they bear the burden for the other areas of the spine that were either fused or removed.

This opens the door for chiropractic to thrive as it restores proper alignment and function throughout the body often time managing and alleviating post-surgical symptoms.

Here is a recent study that illustrates this:

Chiropractic Management of Postsurgical Lumbar Spine Pain

Ralph Kruse, DC, et al.

Objective: Although chiropractic manipulation is commonly used for low back pain, applying this procedure to the patient with postlumbar spine surgery has not been adequately studied. The purpose of this retrospective chart review is to report on the results of chiropractic management (including Cox flexion distraction technique) of patients with postsurgical lumbar spine pain to determine the change in reported pain based on surgical type.

Methods: Ten years of patient files from one chiropractic practice were electronically screened for lumbar spine surgery occurring before presenting for chiropractic care. Of the 58 patients with a postsurgical diagnosis, 32 files contained all pertinent components for this study including treatment with Cox flexion distraction manipulation (in addition to adjunct procedures) for at least two weeks and pretreatment and posttreatment pain measures using the Numeric Pain Scale (NPS) that ranged from 0 (no pain) to 10 (worst pain imaginable).

Results: A change was observed in the mean pretreatment and posttreatment NPS pain scores of 6.4 to 2.3, a reduction of 4.1 of 10. The mean number of treatments was 14, with a range of six to 31. When stratified by surgical type, the mean change in pain was most remarkable in patients who underwent a surgery that combined lumbar discectomy, fusion, and/or laminectomy, with an average NPS pain reduction of 5.7 of 10. No adverse events were reported for any of these postsurgical patients.

Conclusions: The results of this study showed improvement for patients with low back pain subsequent to lumbar spine surgery who were managed with chiropractic care (SOURCE:

It’s not too late to try chiropractic if you have underwent surgery.  Especially if you continue to have pain or symptoms.  Chiropractic  is more cost-effective and has fewer potential risks than surgery that is for sure!

If you have any questions or would like a consultation – please contact us to make an appointment!

Your St. Paul Chiropractor,

Dr. Joel


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