At Advanced Health, we treat a lot of personal injuries, people who’ve been in motor vehicle accidents. It all starts with a thorough evaluation, a history of the accident, going through the mechanism of injury, and then a thorough evaluation of the spine and the soft tissue. We do an orthopedic examination, and then a neurological examination. We make sure the joint affected and/or the spine isn’t showing any red flags. We then shoot some X-rays. From there we’ll be able to kind of diagnose the issue and then build out the treatment plan. And in the early phase, it’s the acute phase. People are in a lot of pain, there’s a lot of inflammation, just basic functions are a challenge. Our goal is to essentially do exactly the opposite of that, so decrease the pain levels, decrease the inflammation and then start improving function.
How would we do that at Advanced Health Chiropractic? We will adjust the spine, but we tend to start with instruments on the lighter side of adjustment. We’ll do lots of what we call stim and ice, so apply electrical current into the muscle, it helps muscle recovery, and then ice helps with the inflammation. Usually it can take anywhere from three to six visits before we start seeing some improvement in how patients are feeling. “I have less pain. I can get dressed easier in the morning, sleep easier at night” Then we can start adding in treatment protocols.
The first treatment protocol is to improve range of motion, that’s a prerequisite for healthy joints. Improve, restore range of motion. So, that could be lots of soft tissue work, lots of stretching, lots of mobility work and some kind of basic stability work. As we start seeing improvement in range of motion, less pain, improvement in the function, then we can obviously start ramping up the PT protocols.
We’ll move into a manual adjustment, start them with spinal traction and then really start working them through the PT aspect of it. And the second and third phase goals for us are to improve stability within the joint and the spine. Once the stability is there, then we’ll start improving the strength of the joint and the spine and obviously just progress them through. By the time they’re finished with the treatment, they should be back to MMI, Maximum Medical Improvement.