Management of a chronic lumbar disk herniation with chiropractic biophysics methods after failed chiropractic manipulative intervention

J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2004 Nov-Dec;27(9):579. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2004.10.003.


Objective: To discuss the use of chiropractic biophysics methods in the treatment and rehabilitation of a patient with a chronic disk herniation at the L5-S1 disk, retrolisthesis of L5, and a reduced lumbar lordosis.

Clinical features: A 23-year-old woman suffered from chronic unremitting symptoms of lower back pain and left-leg pain. She was treated five years prior, without relief. Diagnosis at that time was low-back pain and lumbar subluxation. Approximately 3 years later, she was evaluated by an orthopedic surgeon. Magnetic resonance imaging showed a moderate posterior disk protrusion at L5-S1 with degeneration.

Intervention and outcome: Chiropractic treatment of this patient consisted of mirror-image chiropractic adjustments, 3-point bending lumbar extension traction, and postural exercises. The patient responded well with a complete resolution of her symptoms and a restoration of her lumbar lordosis.

Conclusion: This article suggests that successful management of chronic low-back pain symptoms may require a close analysis of a patient's postural deviations and sagittal plane curves. This study suggests that it is possible to restore lumbar lordosis in some cases and this may have an unforeseen benefit to the patient. Further study is warranted into the treatment of chronic low-back pain with chiropractic biophysics methods.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biophysical Phenomena
  • Biophysics
  • Chronic Disease
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intervertebral Disc Displacement / therapy*
  • Lumbar Vertebrae*
  • Manipulation, Chiropractic / methods*
  • Sacrum*
  • Treatment Failure