Imagine living months or years with excruciating back and leg pain. You've been told that surgery might alleviate your pain, but it's too big a "might" to undertake the invasive procedure and suffer through the long recovery. You've heard that non-surgical therapies alleviate back and leg pain, but you're skeptical and are looking for proof. The wait is over. Edward L. Eyerman, M.D. of the St. Louis University School of Medicine reported in the Journal of Neuroimaging
that MRIs show evidence that non-surgical spinal decompression rehydrates and heals herniated lumbar discs.
Edward L. Eyerman, M.D. of the St. Louis University School of Medicine wanted visual proof that non-surgical spinal decompression healed herniated lumbar discs.
Dr. Eyerman knew that medical colleagues were reporting great success in using non-surgical spinal decompression to relieve the pain of patients suffering from herniated lumbar discs. He wondered if positive clinical results could be seen in MRI imaging and if yes, whether MRI findings would shed light on just how non-surgical spinal decompression alleviated patient back and leg pain.
The MRIs showed marked disc herniation reductions in patients treated with non-surgical spinal decompression.
To answer his question, Dr. Eyerman performed MRIs within four weeks before and after treatment of 20 patients: 12 males and 8 females aged 26-74. The MRIs showed marked disc herniation reductions in most of the patients. In one example, 20 treatments completely resolved an acute disc herniation at L2/3 in a 67-year-old man. In other cases, a 40-year-old physical education teacher had complete relief of disabling pain and weakness, and a 28-year-old male chemist who had to lift up to 150 pounds was returned to full work duty within two weeks of completing non-surgical decompression therapy.
In the 20 patients studied, 85% improved clinically and the improvement correlated with MRI changes.
In the 20 patients Dr. Eyerman studied, 85% improved clinically and the improvement could be correlated with MRI changes. The one-year follow up of 17 patients who showed clinical improvement indicated only one to have had a recurrence.
After analyzing the MRIs, Dr. Eyerman concluded that clinical improvement could be explained by joint mobilization and in the freeing up of an impacted nerve root or improvement of nerve root circulation. He determined that reducing the pressure of the intervertebral disc space to accelerate and promote nutrient diffusion was essential to disc repair.
In summary, according to Edward L. Eyerman, M.D. of the St. Louis University School of Medicine, the MRIs proved that non-surgical spinal decompression is a viable alternative to surgery or long-term disability for patients suffering with damaged lumbar discs.