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Chiropractic for Herniated Discs

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Hi, Dr. Greg Malakoff here, sharing some life experience hoping that it will make your experience of life a little more hopeful and pleasant. 

A herniated lumbar disc is a serious situation and often comes with hard neurological signs such as atrophy of the muscles that are innervated by the nerves that are being compressed by the disc herniation.

Picture a disc herniation as a tube of toothpaste.  If you squeeze on one end of the tube, the gel inside comes out the other end.  If the gel inside the disc comes out but doesn’t touch a nerve then you might not know that your low back or neck is having problems.  But when a disc truly herniates, whether it be a lumbar disc or cervical disc, which is much more severe than a bulged disc, your chances of having a beneficial outcome with chiropractic is decreased. 

It all depends upon which direction the herniations traveled to.  If you are lucky, you could be one of those cases that even though you are showing damaged discs on your MRI, they are not the pain generators.  A bulged disc of 5 mm may not be what is causing your pain, but there is a good chance that situation is not going to remain.  If you swing a sledge hammer for a living, it is more likely than not that 5mm bulge is going to get worse and you could wind up with a true herniation.

More chiropractors are using decompression tables for bulged and herniated discs.  It is the last resort that patients seek out before having surgery.  On average I’d say the results are 50-50.  It all depends upon the severity of the herniation, the weight of the patient, the physical conditioning of the patient, chronicity, and other assorted factors.

If you are searching the internet for information on herniated discs, chances are you could be a little too late for this next sentence.  The trick is to prevent disc injuries and the best way to do that is with developing strong core muscles and regular chiropractic care.

Think of discs as your car tires.  Tires cost about $200 on average and yet you take better care of them than your billion dollar spine.  People put air in their tires, balance them, rotate them and align them in order to get a little more mileage out of them.  Chiropractors balance your spine and one benefit is less wearing on your discs.  You can buy new tires, you cannot as of yet, buy a new spine.

Properly adjusting a low back requires a lot of skill and one method alone does not fit all sizes.  After 34 years in practice I like to think that I have developed the skills to help you.  A new graduate that has read a text book and passed a board exam is of little value to you.  Of course you don’t have to take my word for it, but I think you’ll feel the difference.

Dr. Gregory S. Malakoff, D.C.  D.A.C.N.B.

Office located at 12732 West Washington Blvd.  Suite C  Los Angeles, California  90066  (310) 663-9975 (cell phone)