Chiropractors (or chiropractic doctors, chiropractic physicians) are medical professionals that diagnose and treat disorders related to mechanical activities, such as the spine and musculoskeletal system. The practice is aimed at improving muscle tone and health. Activities include manual treatments, such as spinal adjustments, joint adjustments and soft tissue manipulation. Depending on the patient’s needs, the chiropractor will develop a treatment management plan and help the patient enforce it, providing training and counseling as necessary.
The professional practice was founded in 1895 in the USA and is now spread in more than 100 countries. Being part of an array of alternative medicine professions, it has been the subject of confusion, controversy and criticism of the original principles that the practice was based upon. In time the methods evolved into standardized medical approaches, cutting any relation to metaphysical explanations and focusing on neuromuscular approach. Most of these techniques are regarded as conservative, natural, preventive and non-invasive approaches to health care.
Symptoms of back pain produced by the musculoskeletal structure of the spine may subside or reappear with regularity, indicating either acute or chronic pain. Chronic pain will affect most adults and it disrupts their daily activities, creating more sick leaves and doctor visits than any other medical condition. Its debilitating effects may require back surgery. Modern back surgery techniques such as laser back surgery enjoy high success rates, of 95% and above. Recovery procedures need the attentive care of a chiropractor after back surgery has been performed. Doctors of chiropractic will not use drugs or surgery in their practice, but will recommend another professional to the patient if he considers these would viable treatment methods.
Controlling pain after back surgery is an important objective for a patient as there are several causes. Simple measures such as massaging or cooling the affected area and certain positions and movements of the spine will decrease pain. Physical therapy applied to the muscles and tissues around the incision area will help protect the site from further damage. Greater importance is attributed to the vertebral muscles, which give the spine active support. The patient has to experiment the range of motions that he can not use in daily activities. Active physical exercises are recommended.
Patients should also apply some lifestyle changes as recommended by the chiropractor after back surgery to improve healing time and lower the risk of complications.