FBSS- Failed Back Surgery Syndrome

Failed back surgery syndrome (FBBS) is commonplace in the US.  Click here to read this eye-opening article.  In the medical profession usually every (i) is dotted and (t) is crossed, statistically speaking. As you will note in the fact sheet link mentioned above, this doesn’t seem to be the case for percentages of failed back surgeries. Not only do they not know what percent of surgeries are failed (upwards of 30% in this article) but interestingly they make a blanket statement with no actual studies at all- that the reason they fail is because these MUST be more difficult cases. The excuse they try to insinuate here is that they have failed even with conservative care.   What do they determine to be conservative care? As I previously noted, there are no actual studies conducted to indicate what they consider to be “conservative care.”

The moniker FBSS, or failed back surgery syndrome, is also known as post-laminectomy syndrome. Click this link on the Mayo Clinic website to see a graphic illustration of what a laminectomy is. I include this because I believe that the people undergoing surgery do not know what they are actually doing. I for one would not think it is a good idea to have the spinal cord directly exposed to skin, muscle and fascia without the bony protection of the spine around it.

Here are some of the opening statements published on chiropractic:

There have been a number of large investigations conducted on chiropractic by the American, Canadian, New Zealand, Swedish and Australian governments over the last few decades. In all cases, their findings have supported the effectiveness and efficacy of Chiropractic.

Canada’s 1993 Manga Report strongly recommended chiropractic care over medical care for the treatment and management of most low-back conditions. The 1994 AHCPR Study from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services suggested that chiropractic spinal manipulation was a conservative and safe treatment for many low-back conditions and should be utilized prior to any surgical interventions in most cases.

Doctors of Chiropractic have now become integral to the development of governmental guidelines for the treatment of back conditions in Canada and the U.S. In addition, many hospitals are extending privileges to chiropractors and referrals between medical doctors and chiropractors are becoming increasingly common.


The Manga Report

As the largest existing analysis of scientific literature on low back pain, the 1993 Ontario Ministry of Health commissioned study drew international attention when it recommended the management of low back pain be moved from medical doctors to chiropractic doctors.

Due to serious financial problems with the Canadian governments, the different types of treatments for low back conditions were evaluated in an effort to reduce and contain health care costs. Their findings showed chiropractic manipulation was the most cost effective and efficacious care for low back pain.

The researchers also stated that studies on the prevalence and incidence of low back pain suggest that it is the leading cause of disability and morbidity in middle-aged persons, and is by far the most expensive source of workers’ compensation costs North America.


This 377-page report, Chiropractic In New Zealandwas the most comprehensive and detailed independent examination of chiropractic ever undertaken at that time. The report withstood judicial hearings and extensive investigations by the Commission in New Zealand, the United States, Canada, England and Australia.

According to the researchers, “We entered into our inquiry in early 1978. We had no clear idea what might emerge. We knew little about chiropractors. None of us had undergone any personal experience of chiropractic treatment. If we had any general impression of chiropractic it was probably that shared by many in the community: that chiropractic was an unscientific cult, not to be compared with orthodox medical or paramedical services. We might well have thought that chiropractors were people with perhaps a strong urge for healing, who had for some reason not been able to get into a field recognized by orthodox medicine and who had found an outlet outside the fringes of orthodoxy.”

“But as we prepared ourselves for this inquiry it became apparent that much lay beneath the surface of these apparently simple terms of reference. In the first place it transpired that for many years chiropractors had been making strenuous efforts to gain recognition and acceptance as members of the established health care team. Secondly, it was clear that organized medicine in New Zealand was adamantly opposed to this on a variety of grounds which appeared logical and responsible. Thirdly, however, it became only too plain that the argument had been going on ever since chiropractic was developed as an individual discipline in the late 1800’s, and that in the years between then and now the debate had generated considerable more heat than light.”

“By the end of the inquiry we found ourselves irresistibly and with complete unanimity drawn to the conclusion that modern chiropractic is a soundly based and valuable branch of the health care in a specialized area…”

The entire study summary can be found here: http://www.dcdoctor.com/pages/rightpages_allaboutchiro/research/research_government.html

Although there have been many studies done, even here in the US, the fact that Chiropractic is still maligned and misunderstood is surprising. I tried to provide studies that show that Chiropractic is not effective, to be fair, all I could find was the usual angry ramblings of backwoods medical doctors that got their degrees in the 40s or PTs and recent MD grads that got their “medical education” from the same angry MDs who still teach at current medical schools and routinely go on about chiropractic being a cult STILL, after all the evidence I just presented.

Bottom line, doctors and health care professionals of ANY branch are not gods, do not know everything, and should not be treated as though they do. The human body is too complicated for ONE person to know everything and treat every condition. That is why we have specialties. Chiropractors are specialists at treating neck and back conditions, but, even those can be complicated. Chiropractors are also effective at treating many extremity joint problems, because they can relate joint dysfunction problems and trace them to other areas through aberrant motion of the body. Chiropractic scope of practice allows them to treat soft tissue injuries as well, but all different CONSERVATIVE treatment options should be evaluated. Always be wary of someone that is a DIRECT COMPETITOR of another branch of health care who tells you that the other guy’s stuff is a cult, doesn’t work, or is dangerous. If you are saying I tried chiropractic once and it didn’t work, yes, that happens with MDs, PTs, auto mechanics, and restaurants. TRY ANOTHER. Lastly, we at Utah Sports and Wellness stand ready to help you achieve your health and wellness goals. Give us a call.

2016-11-30T03:52:45+00:00 April 26th, 2016|