The most common back pain prescription involves enrolling the patient in a long-term regimen of often poorly conceived therapies. The reason that we feel this way is that most treatments do not target the actual theorized source of pain, but instead only work to make the symptoms more manageable. In essence, they will never cure the condition, only force the patient to keep spending money for ongoing care or risk having the pain return worse than ever before. Medical extortion, if you will.
Most patients go to their care provider hoping to discover the cause of their pain and find a real cure for their agonizing symptoms. Statistically, more patients may win the lottery than ever find this seemingly impossible dream of eliminating their chronic back pain truly and for good.
Patients who seek medical care for chronic symptoms usually fall into one of 2 possible scenarios:
The first case is when a patient is diagnosed with a particular spinal abnormality which is blamed for their pain. The patient is most usually both relieved at understanding why they have pain, but also nervous that a structural cause is present. It is almost unheard of for a patient to question a medical diagnosis when it comes to back pain, even though the majority of structural diagnosed conditions are statistically viewed as being rarely problematic and in some cases may not the actual cause of pain.
The second scenario is when no physical reason for the pain is discovered, but the doctor uses some non-specific term to literally create a diagnosis. Most often, the diagnosis is muscle sprain, muscle imbalance, unstable posture or some other less than specific conclusion. These diagnoses are not verifiable in many cases and amount to little more than saying your back hurts.
Regardless of the conclusion as to why the pain is present, most patients will begin a long journey of treatment hoping to cure their misery. Some will recover quickly and never know how lucky they truly are. Most will not be so fortunate.
The majority of patients will endure a series of conservative treatments which are not likely to permanently resolve their pain. Some therapies will be moderately effective, but short lived in their pain relief. Some will be less effective and some might even make the back pain symptoms worse. Patients often begin to lose hope after 3 or 4 unsuccessful treatment modalities have been abandoned, but don't fear, doctors have plenty of other options for you to try.
While the patient suffers, the cash register is ringing. The back pain industry is huge business and makes care providers rich. This is no secret, but I just like to make it perfectly clear as a reminder of the likely motivation behind your care prescription.
Patients will often tire of getting nowhere in their quest for permanent relief. They will typically move from doctor to doctor looking for better results, but find nothing except further frustration and pain. Patients often blame the unsuccessful therapies on their doctors, but never question their original back pain diagnosis. It really never ceases to amaze me that a patient will consider a doctor’s treatment skills to be a sham, but still give that doctor all the credit in the world for making a perfect and accurate diagnosis. It makes no sense at all.
Patients will usually descend into progressively more invasive treatment options and will commonly finally face inevitable back surgery. Of all treatments, surgery is considered to be a last resort, yet demonstrates horrific results for resolving chronic back pain. If patients only knew that surgery was unlikely to help them long-term and might possibly make them worse, most would never agree to go under the knife.
The research is crystal clear when it comes to back pain. Patients who do not seek medical care at all recover faster and better than patients who do. This is an appalling research statistic and should be the shame of every doctor working in the back care sector. Why is medical treatment known to worsen and perpetuate at least as many pain syndromes as it cures?
The answer is simple.
Doctors love to treat. Treatment is their business. Treatment should continue until the cause is eliminated or the patient’s bank account or insurance coverage is depleted. Often, the only treatment a patient needs is simple reassurance and the truth to enact a speedy and complete recovery. Is this back pain prescription ever offered? Rarely. Why is that? Well I can think of 1 main reason: $$$
Diagnostic guidelines have been revised by many medical associations and authorities specifically warning physicians against diagnosing the source of pain based on presumptively symptomatic structural irregularities found during diagnostic testing. Do doctors listen? In almost every case, no. At least not yet. Maybe someday. We can all hope. In the meantime, why give up all that easy money?
This article is not an attack. It is not aimed at every patient or every back doctor. It is directed at chronic pain patients who have been misled and misdiagnosed with a variety of ever changing treatment-resistant conditions which have enslaved them into a life of medical servitude and fear. It is also directed at the doctors who have enslaved these poor souls and refuse to set them free, while profiting at the expense of human suffering.
How do we know this is happening every day, all over the world, ad nauseum? It happened to me. It is happening to thousands of patients who write their stories and send them to us. It is revolting and the medical community acknowledges the problem, but does not fix it. Doctors continue to treat, treat, treat and treat, but almost never cure.
Why do we allow it?
PS: To all the doctors who are currently writing the hate mail to send us: This article probably does not apply to you. If it did, you would not be the type to care enough to write a letter anyway. You would be too busy counting your money. Save the letter and help me make a change. You know the abuses exist.
Someone has to stand up and fight for those patients who are wrongfully oppressed. If we will not do it, then who will?