Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Relationship Between Back Pain and PTSD Among American Soldiers

As we honor troops this week and reflect on the many who have served our country throughout history, true sacrifice and thankfulness is what comes to mind.  Not only do soldiers sacrifice the comforts of home and security of family while they are deployed, emotional and physical health are battles that continue to ensue, often long after a soldier's return.  New research has shown a startling link between back pain and PTSD in soldiers who've been to war.

PSTD and back pain

One specific study conducted by Department of Orthopaedics of the University of Utah, researched psychological distress and what relationship it has among spine patients at a VA hospital.  In this study of 149 individuals being treated for spine-related injuries in conjunction with the Distress and Risk Assessment Method (DRAM), 79.9% of patients were identified to have "some degree of psychological distress," while 20.1% were classified as normal.  Of those patients identified to have some degree of distress, 43.6% had levels of distress that were considered severe.  It was concluded that those with high levels of distress had greater levels of neck and back pain, used more narcotics for pain and antidepressants, and without surprise had a history with combat, more than those who did not have high levels of distress.

Dr. Eugene Carragee, a former Army reservist and orthopedic surgeon explained the harsh relationship between PTSD and pain, saying,
“Those who have psychological issues have less reserve to deal with chronic pain, and the flip side is those with chronic pain [lose] their psychological reserves” (Spine Journal).  
According to a study conducted by John Hopkins University school of medicine, "musculoskeletal and connective tissue disorders are now the number one cause of medical evacuations from Iraq and Afghanistan, not combat injuries," (Chiropractic News & Research). 

Chiropractic Reduces Pain in Veterans of War

In a 2011 study, researchers looked at 171 veterans with back pain who served in the Iraq and Vietnam Wars. Of those who were treated with chiropractic care, over half had a significant reduction of symptoms while the average patient had a 37% reduction in pain.

In another study of 54 veteran patients who suffered from back pain, 43% had a significant reduction in neck pain after being treated with chiropractic care, while 67% had significant improvement in pain, cognitive behavioral symptoms and more.

We have solutions

Here at Davis Family Chiropractic, we remind our patients that pain is not a lifestyle.  If you or someone you know is dealing with similar symptoms, please contact our office to set up an appointment.  We feel strongly in helping you live your best, pain-free, natural life, and supporting your health needs.



Health Disclaimer

This information on this web site is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting Dr. Marc, your pediatrician or family doctor.

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