Considering acupuncture for spondylolisthesis treatment

Spondylolisthesis, or vertebral slippage, is a condition that ranges in severity. However, even lower-grade cases of spondylolisthesis can cause symptoms that require treatment. In addition to conventional doctor-recommended therapies, many patients will explore alternative treatments that are outside of the medical mainstream.

One type of alternative treatment that is often attempted is acupuncture. Rooted in traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture involves the insertion of tiny needles into specific areas of the body. Although there isn’t enough evidence of its effectiveness to be fully supported by medical doctors, acupuncture is believed to relieve pain by stimulating blood flow and releasing endorphins. These are the body’s natural painkillers and can help patients manage their pain, at least on a short-term basis.

Finding the right acupuncture treatment for you

If you are exploring the possibility of acupuncture as part of a spondylolisthesis treatment plan, the following advice can help you make a more informed decision:

  • Speak with your doctor. Ask your primary care doctor for an informed medical opinion about acupuncture and make sure it is compatible with your current state of health. Some doctors are more open to alternative treatments than others and may be able to recommend a reputable provider.
  • Do your research. Make sure any practitioner you seek out is a licensed professional. Find out how long he or she has been practicing and go online to read reviews.
  • Complement with conservative treatment and healthy life decisions. You shouldn’t expect acupuncture to provide a singular cure to your spondylolisthesis pain. But if successfully combined with methods like medication and physical therapy, as well as lifestyle changes such as weight management and posture improvement, acupuncture can potentially be an important part of finding lasting relief.

Considering surgery for spondylolisthesis treatment

Surgery is not always necessary for spondylolisthesis, but if you have fully explored conservative treatments without finding relief, your doctor may refer you to a surgical specialist for a consultation. If you are considering surgical options but have concerns about the prospect of undergoing a highly invasive traditional open spine surgery, reach out to Laser Spine Institute.

We perform a range of minimally invasive outpatient spine surgery that can help patients find relief while avoiding the higher risk of complication and longer recovery time associated with traditional procedures.^

Find out if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures by getting your no-cost MRI review from our caring and knowledgeable team.*