Back pain is one of the most popular reasons for visiting CAM (Complementary and Alternative Medicine) practitioners. In spite of the fact that back pain is usually treated by means of general or traditional medical practice, such CAM practitioners as chiropractors also often provide assistance in treating this condition (Deyo, 2017). The purpose of this report is to describe the visit to the selected CAM practitioner (the chiropractor) from Oasis Chiropractic Center in Miami, Florida, and discuss the practice he used, as well as the provided recommendations.
During the visit, the chiropractic professional asked about the location of the pain and its character. Burning lower back pain was the reason for asking for the consultation of this chiropractic doctor. The duration and frequency of pain, as well as factors that made the pain worse, were discussed. Then, the chiropractic doctor asked about the family history and the past history of diseases and treatments related to back pain and other systems and discussed the occupational history.
At the next stage, the chiropractor conducted the physical examination with the help of palpation techniques. Motion palpation was used when the patient was walking, standing, and sitting in order to examine joint function. The chiropractor concluded that the problem was in the tension in muscles and joints caused by ineffective postures when standing and sitting associated with the patient’s occupation.
After the physical examination, the CAM practitioner proposed conducting some adjustments to relieve pain. The chiropractor performed manual adjustments to address the changed position of the vertebra. He also used controlled force during manipulations in order to improve the quality of motion. The chiropractor explained that he used “release work” and “toggle drop” techniques in order to improve the motion of joints and decrease tension in muscles.
He explained relief with the focus on reducing pressure on joints and muscles after manipulating the position of the vertebra. No instruments were used. The technique was performed for 20 minutes. After that, the chiropractor conducted motion palpation again in order to check any changes in joints’ motion and muscle pressure. Vertebra movements were assessed.
When the manipulation was performed, it was possible to feel that muscles were relaxed, and motions did not cause pain. The overall effect was positive, and it is possible to state that the used techniques contributed to the immediate pain relief. The chiropractor said that the effect would be observed during two or three days, but to achieve better-prolonged results, more procedures were necessary. In addition, recommendations regarding effective postures to sit, stand, and sleep was provided by the CAM practitioner.
He accentuated the importance of selecting appropriate postures for sleeping because the most intense pain was observed in the morning (Globe et al., 2016). He also demonstrated five easy exercises to perform in order to relieve pain while being at home or at work without using any equipment and much space.
It is possible to state that the techniques used by the chiropractor were similar to those ones described in the literature as used by osteopaths, but he did not propose to use massage and stretching because this approach is typical of osteopathy. In spite of the fact that complementary and alternative medicine is not widely regulated in terms of controlling treatments proposed by professionals, the effect of using adjustments can be observed and contribute to relieving pain associated with musculoskeletal disorders. The visit to the CAM practitioner was an important and useful experience.
Deyo, R. A. (2017). The role of spinal manipulation in the treatment of low back pain. JAMA, 317(14), 1418-1419.
Globe, G., Farabaugh, R. J., Hawk, C., Morris, C. E., Baker, G., Whalen, W. M.,… Augat, T. (2016). Clinical practice guideline: Chiropractic care for low back pain. Journal of Manipulative & Physiological Therapeutics, 39(1), 1-22.