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Posted on 04-23-2017

History of Auto Accident Induced Lower Back Pain Is a Risk Factor For Developing Future Lower Back Pain

As a Baltimore Chiropractor with two chiropractic clinics in Baltimore, I spend a lot of my time concerning myself with auto accident rehabilitation and auto accident injury treatment in Baltimore. Whenever I find research that relates to it I try and learn about it as it impacts the patients in my clinics everyday.

I came across a study from the European Spine Journal that was posted on April 8, 2017 that spoke about the likelihood of developing lower back pain in the future if an individual suffered from lower back pain as a result of a motor vehicle collision (auto accident injury). You can see a copy of the abstract of the study here.

The researchers randomly selected nearly 800 Saskatchewan adults with either no or mild lower back pain and then asked them if they had ever injured their lower backs in motor vehicle collisions (auto accidents). They then followed up with these individuals at 6 and 12 month periods after their initial contact.

The researchers concluded that there was a "positive crude association between a history of low back injury in a MVC and the development of troublesome LBP over a 12-month period."

Anecdotally I have been seeing this in my Baltimore City chiropractic clinics for years. That is, we would take in a new patient who developed lower back pain following a Baltimore auto accident injury. We would treat them for a short course (6-8 weeks) of chiropractic therapy with physical therapy for their injuries and for the most part (assuming there were no fractures, dislocations, or disc herniations) these patients would typically have their conditions resolve within that course of treatment. However, about half would present for additional follow up care for lower back pain within the next year following the conclusion of their treatment.

While the exact reason as to why lower back pain persists despite a successful outcome with chiropractic care and physical therapy is not yet known, it does demonstrate that I have believed to be true. It implies that healing is a longer process than just a few weeks or months of rehab. I have read research that true healing following the trauma of a motor vehicle collision can take up to a year. This research supports this hypothesis. And while this may prove to be true, insurance carriers will not likely pay for years of on-going chiropractic care or physical therapy. But that's a subject for another time...

If you, or someone you know, has developed lower back pain as a result of a Baltimore auto accident injury and require treatment, please contact us at (443) 842-5500. We would be happy to help you recover at either of our two Baltimore City chiropractic clinics.

Dr. Gulitz

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