A Sad Story about Back Surgery

A patient from Cresskill came in recently with a sad story. He told me he used to be a runner until herniating a disc in his lower back. The pain started slowly but very soon it had progressed enough to make even walking too painful to bear. He didn’t want to give up running so he tried resting, physical therapy and even pain management. Nothing really worked and eventually he ended up having back surgery.

Photo of a back surgery operation. Credit: Platinus/iStock.

Back surgery – the last place you want to end up. Credit_Platinus_iStock.jpg

His surgeon promised to do his best to help get him back to running. However a very short time after the surgery, the pain in my patient’s lower back and down his leg (sciatica) had returned. The only suggestion he got from his doctor was to have more surgery and to remove another disc.

The patient came to me desperate to avoid another failed back surgery and hoping to MAYBE get back to running a bit. The past surgery made it a more difficult case but after examining his spine and looking at his MRI, I placed him on a program of soft instrument adjustments, cold laser and spinal decompression using our “Discforce” table.

After a very short period of time, the pain had practically disappeared in both his back and in his leg. We have started him on his core training program and have high hopes we will be able help him to start running again.

Back surgery is almost always a last resort. Just about half of the time, lower back disc surgeries fail within the first year and leave the patient worse off than they started. Fortunately, our office has the tools to help most who are thinking about having back surgery. If you are thinking that surgery is your answer, give us a call to find out if you are a candidate for our program. Maybe we can give your story a happy ending!


The Back Care Center is located in Dumont, NJ and we see patients from our surrounding towns including Bergenfield, Closter, Cresskill, Demarest, Dumont, Emerson, Englewood, Harrington Park, Haworth, New Milford, Ridgefield Park, Teaneck and Tenafly in Northern New Jersey. Call us at 201-387-7463 to schedule an appointment today.

One Answer to the Growing Opioid Epidemic: Chiropractic Care

I am a fan of John Oliver’s HBO show “Last Week Tonight”. His way of adding humor to current news and issues is very entertaining. Recently he did a piece about increased levels of addiction to prescription pain medications and the related increase in the numbers of people turning to heroin as an alternative when they can no longer get their medication legally.

John Oliver takes on the opioid epidemic on Last Week Tonight with John Oliver on HBO.

Image Credit: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO).

The issue is not new. President Obama has been criticized for not being more aggressive in fighting this growing problem during his time in office. Additionally, our current presidential hopefuls have both commented on the problem in their bid for the White House.

The problem is already huge and growing fast. As stated on Oliver’s show, as of 2015 it’s estimated that 2.6 million people in the US are addicted to these types of drugs and nationwide over 30,000 deaths a year involve prescription opioids or heroin. They also brought up that an estimated 75% of current heroin users started with prescription opioid pain killers (like Oxycodone, Vicodin and Percocet). Because the pharmaceutical companies have been making so much money from the problem, it doesn’t look like it is going to end any time soon.

About a year ago, the CDC recommended that doctors utilize non-opioid medication for chronic pain. Many doctors voiced concern over the recommendation and on Oliver’s show, a pain management specialist was complaining that alternatives to these types of drugs are often not available.

It was at that point that the show became less entertaining than normally. As a practicing chiropractor, I know that chiropractic adjustments are about 80-85% effective for back and neck pain. There are no side effects from adjustments and you can’t become addicted to chiropractic care. Additionally, chiropractic services are available in every area of our country. So, I can’t understand why the medical community is so focused upon pushing these addictive drugs and why they believe that there are no available alternatives.

Chiropractic care is by far the best, most affordable and safest answer to chronic back and neck pain. Maybe it is time for the medical community, the drug companies, the media and even our politicians to pay better attention.


The Back Care Center is located in Dumont, NJ and we see patients from our surrounding towns including Bergenfield, Closter, Cresskill, Demarest, Dumont, Emerson, Englewood, Harrington Park, Haworth, New Milford, Ridgefield Park, Teaneck and Tenafly in Northern New Jersey. Call us at 201-387-7463 to schedule an appointment today.

A Hawk Doesn’t Resent Gravity!

This past Sunday I was out riding my bicycle in Washington Township and was struggling up a pretty steep hill. I was about half way up and could see the top. My legs were hurting, I was breathing hard and all I could think was “I really hate gravity.”

Photo of man biking up a hill for The Back Care Center blog post about doing what needs to be done. Credit_Design Pics-Thinkstock.

Credit: Design Pics/Thinkstock.

Suddenly a hawk leapt from its perch on a low tree branch and passed in front of me just a few feet off the ground. It flapped furiously to gain some height and just managed to clear the trees in front of me. I watched as it kept on climbing until it was high enough to begin circling and gliding.

As I watched the hawk fly, I realized that unlike me on my bike, it didn’t seem to resent the gravity: it just did what it had to do to get high enough to fly and hunt. I felt inspired by the thought and I pushed my way up the hill.

During the rest of the ride, I had time to think. Many of us spend time resenting things we need to do instead of just doing what needs to be done. It doesn’t matter how important the issue, there always seems to be a reason why we avoid getting it accomplished. So it really isn’t a surprise that when it comes to health, some people don’t want to do what’s necessary.

When patients come into my office with pain, my job is to evaluate their problem and create a plan for a solution. If I am going to help, they have to stick to the plan and do things like keep their appointments, do their exercises, and make changes to their diet. Most work with me and get positive results; however, some resent the process, don’t follow through with the plan, and never get better.

If you are suffering with something like neck pain or back pain and it is stopping you from doing the things you love, you can do something about it. But if you decide to improve your health, then don’t get frustrated by the process. Pedal harder and get to the top of your hill.

We may not be able to help you fly like a hawk, but we can help you get the relief you need.


The Back Care Center is located in Dumont, NJ and we see patients from our surrounding towns including Bergenfield, Closter, Cresskill, Demarest, Dumont, Emerson, Englewood, Harrington Park, Haworth, New Milford, Ridgefield Park, Teaneck and Tenafly in Northern New Jersey. Call us at 201-387-7463 to schedule an appointment today.

You Can’t Do That!

A patient from Harrington Park came to see me because he was having lower back pain. The pain had started in his back and was traveling into his leg all the way into his foot. The MRI showed that he had a herniated disc that was pinching a nerve in his lower back. Not only was it causing him pain but also it was making his leg so weak that his toes dragged on the ground when he walked (called a foot drop).

image of neurologist saying no when a chiropractor says yes

Don’t let “Doctor No” force you into unnecessary surgery!

 

 

We started care and he began to improve but his wife had made him an appointment in a neurologist’s office and she insisted that he keep the appointment. The neurologist was alarmed about the foot drop and, even though he was showing improvement, he recommended surgery on the herniated disc.

I called the neurologist and spoke with him about the case. I outlined the progress we had made at The Back Care Center and let him know that we have had great results with similar cases. He told me, “You can’t do that.” He insisted there was no way I could help a patient with a herniated disc and a foot drop.

The patient wasn’t too keen on the idea of surgery and was pleased with the results we had been getting, so he continued to work with me. We used spinal decompression, chiropractic and exercise therapy together and I am happy to say the patient made a full recovery.

I sent the Neurologist a final report when we finished up with the patient’s care. For some reason I never heard back from the neurologist about the case. I hate when someone tells me “You can’t do that” – especially when I can.

Has somebody told you that you can’t get healthy without surgery? Are you looking for a non-surgical path out of pain and back to health? Call us at The Back Care Center and let’s see what we’re able to accomplish together.


The Back Care Center is located in Dumont, NJ and we see patients from our surrounding towns including Bergenfield, Closter, Cresskill, Demarest, Dumont, Emerson, Englewood, Harrington Park, Haworth, New Milford, Ridgefield Park, Teaneck and Tenafly in Northern New Jersey. Call us at 201-387-7463 to schedule an appointment today.

The Back Care Center will be closed for Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving from the Back Care Center of Dumont, NJ! Please note that The Back Care Center will be closed for the holiday until next Monday, November 26th.

Dr. David Schwartz and the staff of The Back Care Center want to wish all of our patients, neighbors and friends in Dumont, Bergenfield, Bogota, Closter, Cresskill, Englewood, Harrington Park, New Milford, Ridgefield Park, Teaneck and Tenafly a wonderful and joyous Thanksgiving.

After the month we’ve had thanks to Sandy, we all could use it.

Sandy Knocked Us Down, But We’re Back Open, But No Power!

Hurt your back clearing damage from Superstorm Sandy? Or maybe sleeping in your basement or on the floor of a shelter has given you a stiff neck or sciatica?

Well, we’ve got a tiny bit of good news for you: The Back Care Center of Dumont, NJ is back open and operating. We have no power, but Dr. David Schwartz is in the office and treating patients from Bergenfield, Bogota, Closter, Cresskill, Dumont, Englewood, Harrington Park, Haworth, New Milford, Ridgefield Park, Teaneck and Tenafly.

Please call the office before coming down.

Thank You for Supporting Shelter Our Sisters at The Back Care Center

We wanted to thank all of you who made our “Shelter Our Sisters” fundraising week at The Back Care Center of Dumont, NJ a success. We especially wanted to say thanks to all the new patients who came in for adjustments, including the ladies from the Haworth Women’s Craft and Flea Market. We had new patients from Ridgefield Park, Bogota, New Milford, Teaneck, Dumont and, of course, Haworth.

It’s been a tough year for everyone, so it’s not surprising that we didn’t raise as much as we have in previous years. So even though our fundraising drive for Shelter Our Sisters is over, we wanted to take one last opportunity to remind you what a worthy cause they are.

Shelter Our Sisters is always there for women and children who have been the victims of domestic violence, and they never stop needing your help. They need donations, of course, but you can also help by donating your time, or goods like clothing, toys, disposable diapers and more.

You can find out more about “Shelter Our Sisters” by clicking on their name and visiting their website today.