“Herniated discs” is a term that can often be heard anywhere. Recently I went to China and met an old friend from the hospital I worked in. As three years ago she talked about her husband’s herniated discs problem, and it was still not healed. There were also several other friends, even their children, who got the problem. As their friend I felt anxious for them. Therefore, I decided to write about the proper treatment of herniated discs.
Now, before starting on the subject, let us have a look at the major features of herniated discs:
1. The strong feeling of pain will be concentrating in the back and legs;
2. Pain will happen often and will be happening repetitively due to long time sitting, driving, or carrying heavy subjects;
3. More importantly, this problem is self-curable——it can be healed.
When the above points are clear, method of treatment can be decided. For herniated discs, conservative treatment is the most popular all over the world. Surgery operation is always second or last choice.
I have been treating herniated discs for over 20 years, and here I would make some statements of my personal opinions:
1. No traction therapy is required:
Traction therapy would indeed somehow enhance the treatment for some, and I used this method in the earlier years of my career. However, after several years of clinical study I found that with or without traction therapy shows no difference on the effects of treatment. Therefore I stopped using it because I believe the more conservative the treatment and the less the use of outside force means shorter treatment time.
2. Massage is NOT recommended:
Physically, herniated discs is caused by extreme unbalance of forces between the spine discs. Massage, especially when being applied to the back will cause the stomach pressure to rise, resulting in more forces in the spine discs. This is why some patients become worse after receiving massage. I have seen many patients like this, the most serious one even become paralyzed. Therefore I do not recommend using massage to treat the problem.
3. The best treatment:
Physical therapy such as osteopath, medicine, traditional Chinese herb medicine would have some effects. Yet the most effective way of healing herniated discs, out of my experience in China and Canada, is acupuncture. This is because of the quick and effective results and the degree safety due to no outside force is applied.
4. Adjuvant therapy:
Exercising the muscle on the back and belly, under professional direction is very effective adjuvant therapy. However, one needs to know his limit and not pushing too much.
5. TCM herbal treatment:
The herbal medicines that are aimed at strengthening the kidney and restoring the healing energy are also very effective for the treatment. According to this theory, our clinic made the “Back and Sciatica” herbal pills, which are widely loved by the patients.
6. No matter how serious the situation of one patient, a cure is always possible.
Many patients are suffering from it for years, accompanying with lumbar spinal stenosis and pain or numbing in both the lower limbs. However, if they can take the right treatment consistently, they also have a chance to recover.
Above are my personal thoughts and opinions regarding herniated discs. I hope it can be helpful.
补肾，通络的中药在治疗过程中有很大的帮助。我们诊所根据此理论设计的“Back and Sciatica”（腰及坐骨神经丸）深受病人的喜爱。