Physical therapy to decrease both lumbar (low back) and cervical (neck) pain. Treatment focuses on solving the underlying problems instead of simply masking symptoms with opioid pain medications.
Degenerative changes to the spine are normal with aging. However, just because you do not have the same exact spine you had when you were 20 doesn’t mean you should have to suffer. We have very high success rates decreasing pain for patients with arthritic spines.
Unfortunately, the success rate for back surgeries in the US is very poor (around 50%). We believe that this is primarily because patients do not address the muscular and functional deficits before having surgery. Your spine is at the mercy of the forces placed on it by the muscles that surround it. If you have an imbalance in strength or flexibility and do not fix it, simply having surgery to fix the spine could eventually result in a failed procedure. Imagine replacing the worn out tires on your car and never addressing the alignment issue that is causing it to wear poorly in the first place!
We tell our patients that injections and pain medication should be thought of as a “window of opportunity” to address the ACTUAL problem. It is not normal for your spine to hurt, and there is likely a reason why that can be fixed. We recommend medication and/or injections when the pain is so great that we are unable to perform the necessary exercises to fix your strength, flexibility, body mechanics, and posture.