Just Tell Me What Is Wrong
Earlier this week, a patient was referred to our office with a complaint of lower back pain. We have all been there. Am I right? This woman though has been dealing with pain off and on for several years. She has seen Orthopedists, Pain Management Specialists, Physical Therapists, and another Chiropractor. She has asked each of them "What is wrong with me?" Each of them has answered her question with different answers. You can imagine how frustrating and confusing that must have been for her. When she walked into our office, she was looking for more answers from me. I knew that I was going to disappoint her a little, when I told her that I am far less concerned about what was wrong with her, and was far more concerned about what was right with her!
Recently, The Lancet published what can only be considered an expose that analyzed the impact of the epidemic of lower back pain. The authors discussed the impact that the current medical approach has had on that epidemic (hint: it has not been helpful). One of my favorite quotes from the article is:
"Most low back pain is unrelated to specific identifiable spinal abnormalities..."
Let that sink in for a minute. Most of our patients focus their energy on getting answers as to what is causeing their pain, instead, we need to focus on what they do that makes their pain improve. So the next time a doctor looks at a couple of pictures, then tries to place a lable on you and tell you what is wrong, you need to rememeber tha tquote from The Lancet. Even though we all want to know why we feel the pains that we feel. It is important to remember that those labels can do more harm than good.
Movement is my Medicine,