>Many times a visit to your family physician can end with his or her telling you your ailment needs conservative care. But what exactly is that?
Conservative care is what it sounds like. No surgery or anything invasive. The problem will be managed conservatively typically with an anti-inflammatory medicine to deal with inflammation or perhaps some type of muscle relaxant. In some instances a narcotic or pain medication will help us get you through that acute or systematic phase.
The goal with initially with any type of complaint is to go back and properly diagnose it and determine what the problem is. And from there recommend a treatment plan. Conservative care could include chiropractic care and physical therapy. First, we want to sit down and figure out what the patient doing and what are some of the aggravating factors and make recommendations.
We might call them self-management strategies. We make recommendations to modify their activity or possibly avoid those things that could potentially be harmful or dangerous. Or more importantly just increases the pain.
Conservative care might mean a three to four day course of medication management with some self-management strategies and a couple of stretches. Sometimes we hear conservative and we think, oh gosh, that’s going to drag out forever. But not necessarily.
Chiropractic care that focuses on joint mobilization, soft tissue mobilization, adjustments, and manipulation, along with physical therapy is a big part of what we do to determine some stability issues or weaknesses. And we educate patients on what they need to be doing. They may only come on our office once or twice.
Other forms of conservative care can be a little more invasive such as an epidural steroid injection. You go to a specialist such as a board certified pain management specialist, an anesthesiologist that will put a little bit of medicine in the disc or in a joint under fluoroscopy or an x-ray. It’s an outpatient procedure that takes all of 10 or 15 minutes and you’re home doing what you needed to do later that day. This can be very effective for low back and neck problems as well.
But the level of conservative care can be dictated by the amount of pain you are experiencing. When you check in with your primary care physician or family physician its to get through that symptomatic or acute or that very painful phase. Then we can transition you into more active care.
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