back pain doctor Rockville MD

Can I Go to the Chiropractor After Back Surgery?

Back Pain Doctor

Surgery is often the best course of action when patients suffer from extreme lower back pain. Back pain can result from degeneration, herniated disks, or other injuries. However, spinal surgery doesn’t guarantee that the back pain will go away. As a back pain doctor like our friends at AmeriWell Clinics can explain, many spinal surgery patients experience pain or discomfort for a long time after surgery.

Can you still get chiropractic care after back surgery? Every case is different, but it is possible chiropractic treatment may help ease your discomfort. Keep reading to learn more.

Why Do I Need Chiropractic Care?

In chiropractic care, health professionals use manipulations to adjust or realign bones, often in the spine. Patients who have had a spinal fusion or other back surgery are often wary about receiving treatment, as it involves manipulation.

Having spinal surgery changes the way the bones in your back function. Whether you’ve had something removed, added, or fused together, your range of motion will be affected. To compensate for the limited capacity, you may use other areas more extensively.

Over time, poor mechanics can cause your vertebrae and discs to wear unevenly. You may also experience muscle overuse and injury. By adjusting the spinal areas around the surgical site, you can maintain proper alignment and increase your range of motion. Chiropractic care may help prevent joint degeneration and arthritis in the future.

How Long Should I Wait?

It takes some time for spinal or regenerative procedures to recover and heal. If you don’t wait long enough to heal before seeking chiropractic treatment, you could receive further injuries. This is especially true if you’ve had a spinal fusion.

The joints between the vertebrae in your spine can take up to three months to fully fuse and become immobilized after spinal fusion surgery. Following the formation of the graft, your muscles usually need another few months of physical therapy to strengthen. In total, most patients can expect to take a year to recover from their initial illness plus physical therapy time.

How Should I Proceed?

After a year, discuss the possibility of chiropractic care with your physician. They can help you determine whether your spine is healthy enough to withstand manipulation.

With your doctor’s approval, contact a chiropractor for a consultation. They can assess your health and create a personalized plan for you. Chiropractic care may reduce your pain and increase your mobility, allowing you to take good care of your spine for many years to come.