Musculoskeletal disorders are the leading cause of disability worldwide, with low back pain being the primary reason. The breakdown of our back is secondary to the physical and psychosocial demands of daily life.1,2 Whether we are playing sports, sitting unsupported, or lifting too much at once, when we are confronted with low back pain, our usual first thought is to get medication or an image (X-ray or MRI).
Our thinking is that we want to get relief from the pain now. For our peace of mind, we want to know what the exact structural cause is. If it were only that easy! Research has shown that pain has many factors and that just because an X-ray or MRI shows something abnormal does not mean that abnormality is the cause of your pain.3,4
Medications may provide temporary relief. However, without a physical therapy examination to see how your condition presents, a finding on an image may have nothing to do with the pain you are feeling. Without knowing the clinical presentation from a physical therapy exam, you are no closer to finding out what exactly needs to be done to get back to normal life.
Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy (MDT) is a methodical system of assessment and treatment that is equipped to determine several key things to get you on the right path to resolve your lower back pain. Together, we can achieve the following:
1) We can immediately determine whether your low back issue can be treated conservatively and successfully or if you need to be referred back promptly, to your physician for further evaluation. Serious systemic causes of low back pain are rare before the age of 50, but still, need to be thoughtfully screened.5
2) If it is determined that your low back pain can be treated successfully through physical therapy, we expect little to no delay in getting you back to your life, on your terms. We pride ourselves on not wasting time getting you where you need to go!
3) Not sure if you have done all that you can conservatively to avoid low back surgery? This is a common concern that we can help you answer in a fairly short period of time. We and others in your healthcare team want you to feel confident that going through with surgery, is the right decision.
4) Through our partnership, you will learn how to effectively and independently manage your condition for life, through a thorough understanding of the effects of posture on your low back, knowing what exercises to perform to prevent reoccurrence, and a detailed plan to ensure a return to your previous activities!