Chiropractic tests used to diagnose your neck and back pain

If you visit a chiropractor for neck or back pain treatment, the practitioner will most likely begin the consultation with a series of chiropractic tests. These tests will help the chiropractor to pinpoint the area of the spine that is causing you pain and to gauge how severe your spinal condition is. He or she also will want to know if certain movements cause your pain to travel from your spine to other parts of the body, as this may help indicate whether neural compression is at fault.

Types of chiropractic tests

Chiropractic tests can take a variety of forms, including:

  • Gait test. The chiropractor will watch you walking or marching back and forth so that he or she can check your posture and detect instability that might indicate pelvic or spinal abnormalities.
  • Movement test. You will be asked to perform a series of movements like bending backward, forward and twisting from side to side so that the practitioner can gauge your range of motion.
  • Straight leg raise test. You will lie on your back and the chiropractor will raise one leg at a time about 30 degrees off the examination table. This test checks for sciatica, which is an assortment of symptoms that arise due to the compression of the sciatic nerve in the lumbar (lower) spine.

Tips for finding a reliable chiropractor

There are two major things to keep in mind as you begin your search for a chiropractor: research and instinct. Compile a list of chiropractors in your area and do a thorough examination of their background, training, education and reputation. Request patient reviews and references. Finally, schedule a meeting with the chiropractor to make sure you feel comfortable and at ease. You can also ask your physician to refer you to a trusted chiropractor.

Other nonsurgical treatments

If you decide to undergo chiropractic treatment, you may want to do so in conjunction with other nonsurgical treatment options. Ask your physician about pain medication, stretching, exercise, behavior modification and hot-cold therapy, which are all ways to combat spine pain due to a pinched nerve, sciatica, slipped disc, bulging disc, bone spurs and a variety of other degenerative spine conditions.

Minimally invasive treatment options

If nonsurgical treatments do not improve your neck or back pain, your physician may recommend minimally invasive surgery. Laser Spine Institute is the nation’s leader in minimally invasive spine surgery.^ Our minimally invasive procedures are a safer and effective alternative to traditional open neck and back procedures.^

Contact us today to learn more about the treatment options we offer for individuals with chronic neck or back pain. We can provide you with a free MRI review* to determine whether you may be a candidate for our minimally invasive procedures.