The research article being looked at today is one that is focused on seeing if chiropractic care and home stretches and exercises were effective for disc bulge/herniation treatment. The comparison in this study was between a group which was receiving chiropractic adjustments as well as at home stretches and exercises. This group was compared with a population only using at home stretching and exercising to treat low back pain and leg pain associated with disc bulge/herniation. There were 192 patients that participated in the study and they were treated for 12 consecutive weeks. The treatment group received 24 adjustments over this time period and performed stretching and exercise at home 3 days a week. With the control performing the same stretches and exercises 3 times a week.
At the end of the study, they found that the group receiving both modes of care had the best results for decreasing pain, increasing quality of life, decreasing medication usage, and general health improvement. Once again this shows us that the adjustment is very important for proper healing in the disc tissue as well as making sure there isn't further damage done to the area. The stretches and exercises are an extra layer of creating movement and beneficial once the body has been relaxed and aligned properly. The control group (stretching and exercise) was not able to achieve satisfactory results because this can help relieve pain temporarily or help decrease bad movement patterns but this alone cannot help with disc damage.
The research team did a follow up to this study at 52 weeks post care and found that only the group which received both the chiropractic care and the stretches/exercises was still reporting a decrease in pain, increased quality of life, decreased medication use, and general health improvement. The long lasting benefits to actually fixing the problem shows here to help deliver longer lasting results. And most importantly helps to prevent similar future damages.