Friday, March 27, 2009

Physical Therapy is an Effective Treatment for Work-Related Low Back Injuries

A new review article published in the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons by the American Physical Therapy notes that physical therapy, in combination with anti-inflammatory medication, is the most effective treatment for low back pain caused by degenerative disc disease. The review concludes that most patients with symptoms due to degenerative disc disease receive relief from their symptoms without the need for surgical intervention.

Degenerative disc disease can be caused by an old acute injury to the spine, or it can be caused by long-term overuse. Symptomatic lumbar degenerative disc disease develops when a disc weakens, is injured, or deteriorates from aging. As a result, the disc causes the vertebrae to become unstable, which in turn can cause back pain. Approximately 75-85 percent of adults will be affected by low back pain at some point in time.

Exercise and manual therapy, including spinal manipulation was shown to benefit many patients. Additionally, patient education on exercises and appropriate body mechanics is helpful for patients with low back pain.

If conservative treatments fail to reduce a patient’s symptoms, surgery may become an option. However, Dr. Luke Madigan of Knoxville Orthopaedic Clinic in Knoxville, Tennessee, concluded that “[s]urgery should be the last option, but too often patients think of surgery as a cure all and are eager to embark on it.”

For many people with chronic or acute low back pain, whether it is caused by degenerative disc disease, or other spinal disorders, physical therapy may help improve pain symptoms, range of motion, vocational capacity, and quality of life.

If you have suffered a work-related back injury, physical therapy may be of benefit to you. Often, however, workers’ compensation insurance companies are hesitant to authorize or pay for physical therapy programs. If you want help with your Minnesota workers’ compensation case, or have questions about obtaining the medical treatment you need, contact Meuser & Associates for a free consultation. Call us at 877-746-5680 or click here to send us an email to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.

Visit Minnesota Workers' Compensation and Personal Injury Law Firm, Meuser & Associates, P.A., at
Related Posts with Thumbnails