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Chicago Chiropractic Care Respects Spinal Extension

Extension of the spine: It’s beneficial. It is harmful. So what’s with spinal extension? Both are accurate: It’s good. It is bad. It is the job of your Chicago chiropractor to help you figure out the role of extension in your Chicago back pain relief plan and Chicago back pain control plan in the future. Your Chicago chiropractor at Chiropractic Care is well experienced in the effects – good and bad – of spinal extension and respects its role in spinal health and mobility.

SPINAL CURVES

Two of the spine’s most noticeable curves – the cervical and lumbar curves – are lordotic curves meaning they curve inwardly. Flexion flattens these curves. Extension magnifies them. When a disc herniates or bulges, it does so into the concavity of the curve and potentially presses on the spinal nerves resulting in pain. Flexion usually permits the disc bulge to get away from the nerve. Extension often allows the disc bulge to press on the nerves more. Chiropractic Care sets out to help lessen painful situations like this!

SPINAL MOTION

75% of the flexion and extension movement in the low back happens at the L5-S1 level of the lumbar spine. 20% happens at the L4-L5 level. Therefore, 95% of flexion and extension of the lumbar spine happens at these two lower disc levels. Here, degenerative disc disease (minor and more advanced) happens most. In the cervical spine, C5-C6 is the spinal level where most of the flexion occurs, and C4-C5 is where most of the extension takes place. Chicago chiropractic patients need beneficial extension!

SPINAL EXTENSION

Chiropractic Care respects extension and gets how it may benefit and hurt. The extensor muscles in the back weaken and degenerate just like discs degenerate. (1) Extension helps strengthen these muscles to support the spine. Extension is essential for this when the spine is healthy enough to perform extension. Extension to a painful spine may hurt. Why? In the cervical spine, flexion decreased disc protrusion and enlarges the sagittal diameter of the vertebral canal while extension increased the disc protrusion and narrowed the vertebral canal causing stenosis. (2) In a degenerative lumbar spine with spinal stenosis, flexion widened the vertebral canal and reduced pain while extension exacerbated the stenosis and caused pain. (3) Chiropractic Care knows the key to eliciting the benefits of extension is in recognizing when to use extension.

Chicago CHIROPRACTIC USE OF EXTENSION

Chicago chiropractic treatment incorporates extension into the Chicago chiropractic treatment plan for its advantages. Cox® Technic applied to the cervical spine dropped intradiscal pressures to as low as 502 mmHg (4) and to as low as -192 mmHg in the lumbar spine. (5) Extension increased pressures in the lumbar spine to 1250 mmHg (the most the transducer could measure). (4) Reducing intradiscal pressures and back pain is what Chiropractic Care does for its Chicago back pain patients.

CONTACT Chiropractic Care

Listen to this PODCAST with Dr. David Atiyeh on the Back Doctor’s Podcast with Dr. Michael Johnson. He shares how he cared for a patient whose back pain persists after multiple back surgeries with flexion distraction which relieves her pain as the table is flexed not extended.

Schedule your Chicago chiropractic appointment with Chiropractic Care today. Let us explore the role extension might play in your back pain recovery and future back pain control strategy.

 Chiropractic Care knows the role of extension in spinal motion, its necessity, its benefits and potential harmful effects.  
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