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Has anyone used a spinal manipulation machine?

Hi guys, I am in the process of getting ready for back surgery. I was first injured in 1999. Had a 9cm herniated disc L4L5 with a bone fragment that was broken off. I went to an honest neuro surgeon that I knew professionally. He advised me to try everything before I had surgery. I found a great chiropractor, had never been to one in my life and fixed me up after about 6 months. I've always been very careful about my back with just an occasional flare up. I had two injuries in the last month. A fall and I caught my mom who was about to fall. Two days later I couldn't move. Sciatica that made me want to die. I never even said ouch in labor but this pain was like nothing I've ever imagined. The MRI shows multiple large herniations with something touching the nerve. Subluxations that look scary. I saw that myself on the X-rays. Degeneration etc etc. My MD said do not do anything! No physical therapy. No nothing until you see the back surgeon.
The issue is my chiropractor says there is a new machine he can put me on and slowly fix this. It costs 4500.00 and insurance doesn't cover it. He says an 85% success rate. My MD says she is afraid I will become incontinent with the way my MRI looks and she is pretty open to chiropractic. So has anyone used this machine before?


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    edited 03/25/2014 - 10:15 AM

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • I've never used this machine, but my first thought was....don't do it! Chiropractors have their place, but if your MD is telling you not to do anything until you see a back surgeon, I think you should listen to him. I would never take a chance of doing more harm to myself with this machine. Personally, I don't understand why you would listen to a chiropractic over a physician in this matter. Are you willing to pay $4500 out of your own pocket and possibly end up in worse shape?
    Synovial cyst removal in 2008. L4-L5 facet joint.
    Lumbar fusion at L4-L5 in December 2013. TLIF posterior entry
  • PaulPPaul Posts: 730
    edited 03/25/2014 - 11:15 AM
    I am a fan of the modality.I have tried various traction machines with differing degrees of relief. The first one was the vax-d, then a bunch of its successors. The in-office treatments were very expensive so I purchased a home unit for under $150.

    I feel that it has saved my bacon several times. I still use it for maintenance every so often. There is sales propaganda that claims home units or even office units are of inferior quality to certain brand machines. After having been on them all, I find the home unit pulls just the same as the office versions. The trick is to relax the trunk muscles and to do it the last thing at night in bed. After treatment, I logroll out of the machine and go to sleep for 8 hours. In this manner, I don't put vertical load on the lumbar discs that were just pulled apart. I wake up the next morning feeling great.

    Your mileage may vary.
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • with known spine conditions including herniations or compromise of the nerves or canal, spondylolysthesis or retrolisthesis should NOT allow a chiropractor to make any adjustments or use these decompression machines on them.....there is no evidence scientifically that they work, at least none that I have ever seen....they are expensive treatments , which most insurance won't cover.
  • What does the "machine" do?
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