On your first visit to The Spine Team you will be welcomed and after some paperwork you will be seen by your practitioner for a consultation to determine what is wrong and what can be done about it
As chiropractors we specialise in the diagnosis and treatment of mechanical pain which makes up between 97% and 98% of all back pain. Our consultation designed to ensure that you do have mechanical back pain and to rule out any suspicion that something else could be causing your pain. If we are not certain we will refer you back to your GP or arrange an investigation.
The consultation begins with questions about the area, pattern, duration, onset and history of the complaint. First of all to help us be certain it is mechanical problem but then each type of complaint has a character and what you feel helps us to understand it. Importantly we also need ‘measures of outcome’, these can then be used to determine improvement, for example when you come in you may describe pain rising after sitting and to get an improvement that must get easier.
Firstly we inspect the area of complaint, this may well involve removing some of your clothes. It is important to us that your dignity is preserved but also that we are able to carry out the examination necessary. We provide gowns for the female patients if they prefer but most of our patients come in with relaxed clothing and for the ladies a camisole or vest is both practical and modest.
Having understood your complaint we can then test the structures that might be involved. Obviously with consideration to your pain we use ‘provocative tests’ to stress the structures that may be producing your pain. We will also test any related structures if the pain radiates away from the primary site, such as the tolerance and function of nerves.
Once the history and examination is complete we should be in a position to explain your problem to you with a ‘report of findings’ and propose a treatment.
There are occasions when further investigation, such as scans, may be indicated and this will be discussed with you, we may also ask you to take time to think through what we have proposed before treatment begins.
Depending on the problem we may be able to do treatment on the same day. Treatment is likely to include soft tissue work and manipulation, but you understanding the exact mechanics of the pain and how to help yourself is central to the way we work and may differentiate us from other clinics.
It is highly likely that the treatment plan will include advice on self help although although that will depend on the problem. We may propose another parallel treatment, for example massage, or some exercises during the course of treatment, again that and the reasons why will be explained.
We recognise that advice has to be relevant and accessible, it is important you understand why the advice is being given and are resolved to make a difference. We are easy to talk to and if you have any problems please speak to us.