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Chiropractic management of a 47-year-old firefighter with lumbar disk extrusion


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Structural and chiropractic

J Chiropr Med.2008 Dec;7(4):146-54.


M J Schwab


Objective: This case report describes the effect of exercise-based chiropractic treatment on chronic and intractable low back pain complicated by lumbar disk extrusion. Clinical features: A 47-year-old male firefighter experienced chronic, unresponsive low back pain. Pre- and posttreatment outcome analysis was performed on numeric (0-10) pain scale, functional rating index, and the low back pain Oswestry data. Secondary outcome assessments included a 1-rep maximum leg press, balancing times, push-ups and sit-ups the patient performed in 60 seconds, and radiographic analysis. Intervention and outcome: The patient was treated with Pettibon manipulative and rehabilitative techniques. At 4 weeks, spinal decompression therapy was incorporated. After 12 weeks of treatment, the patient's self-reported numeric pain scale had reduced from 6 to 1. There was also overall improvement in muscular strength, balance times, self-rated functional status, low back Oswestry scores, and lumbar lordosis using pre- and posttreatment radiographic information. Conclusion: Comprehensive, exercise-based chiropractic management may contribute to an improvement of physical fitness and to restoration of function, and may be a protective factor for low back injury. This case suggests promising interventions with otherwise intractable low back pain using a multimodal chiropractic approach that includes isometric strengthening, neuromuscular reeducation, and lumbar spinal decompression therapy.

Publication Date: 

2008 Dec



Schwab, JM. (2008) 'Chiropractic management of a 47-year-old firefighter with lumbar disk extrusion', J Chiropr Med.2008 Dec;7(4):146-54.

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