Your Back Pain: Crucial Facts Your Doc Forgot To Tell You

by Ed

Some of these facts most doctors don’t even know!

One fact every surgeon should tell you is that research shows that surgery does not have a better success rate on back pain than other treatment modalities, such as physical therapy or acupuncture.

Here is another juicy one. Usually they don’t even know what is wrong with you. Let me quote an important text book:

“The causes of many painful conditions of the low back remain obscure. Low back pain, which is one of the most common types of pain, continues to puzzle experts…Even when these signs and symptoms are objective, variation is often found between examiners as to the proper interpretation of their clinical significance.”

Muscles: Testing and Function With Posture and Pain, Kendell et al.

Posture has a great deal to do with back pain. Most Doctors won’t even mention that unless you have obviously bad posture. Correcting subtle structural misalignments can go a long way toward getting free from back pain. There are two good self help books for assessing and improving your postural imbalances.

Back Care Basics: A Doctor’s Gentle Yoga Program for Back and Neck Pain Relief

The Egoscue Method of Health Through Motion: Revolutionary Program That Lets You Rediscover the Body’s Power to Rejuvenate It

Here’s a biggy: Pain medication tends to have a rebound effect. Did your doctor tell you that when prescribing them? You will tend to feel worse when the drugs wear off. I wonder if the drug companies do that on purpose, to sell more drugs.

Increased self awareness combined with appropriate exercise are probably the best things you can do for your back. And acupuncture works wonders, of course.


1 Evan Hadkins 12.05.07 at 3:31 pm

Thanks. This is really clear and well put.

What is the Egoscue method? Have you tried out Feldenkrais? – I have done a few classes and found them delightful, but I wasn’t going for a specific problem.

2 Ed 12.05.07 at 3:47 pm

Hi Evan
The Egoscue Method is a method for correcting structural misalignments and postural imbalances by creating an individualized program of exercises. Pete Egoscue’s books teach the basics, and many people improve by using them. If you really want to fix your posture, though, it’s best to see a therapist trained in The Egoscue technique.
I have found Feldenkrais techniques to be helpful in improving range of motion and bodily awareness, which I think is important for pain-free living.

3 Ashleigh 12.17.07 at 2:27 pm

Hi Ed,

Thanks for your support of the Egoscue Method. We have been helping people to take responsibility for their own health through posture for over 30 years. If we can be of any assistance to either you or your subscribers please let us know. Ashleigh Roda

4 Anthony 01.21.08 at 9:40 am

HI Ed, this is great information. As someone who does a lot of work around the yard, I was thinking about looking into pain meds for some back pain. I guess I have some other options. Thanks.

5 Jon-Erik Lido 06.21.11 at 10:54 am

As an acupuncturist I see lots of patients who have had back surgery. I would say about 40% are happy with the results. Almost none are pain free. This includes people who are coming to me primarily for issues other than back pain. If I had those kinds of results I’d consider myself a failure and close up shop! I wish there was better disclosure to patients.

6 North Perth Acupuncture 10.24.12 at 8:13 pm

Awareness plays a big factor in our everyday life. We need to be aware of the alternative things that we can do in order to cure or improve a certain body illness. Back pain is often cause by a bad posture and can be corrected without surgery. You just need to find the alternative treatment that will work best for you.

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