Lower Back Pain and left thigh pain from Lumbar Disk Herniation at L1/2, L2/3

T.M.  38 year old, Male.

TM suffered from Lower back pain and left thigh pain since January 27. The pain was so severe that he found it difficult to walk or even stand for more than a few minutes. Because of the pain, he was unable to lay on his back, stomach or right side. Lying on his left side was comfortable, but still for only short periods of time. Sitting on a hard chair, with a cushion supporting his lower back, was the most comfortable position. I performed chiropractic treatment for 4 times from January 28. I mobilized his lumber and sacroiliac joint, and treated the muscles on lower back and left leg. To support his left Erector spinae muscle, I put Kinesio taping on his back. I also put ice pack on his back and advised him to do so at home as well.

Because his pain was still severe after the first 4 times treatments, we discussed his progress and decided he should seek a consultation with an Orthopedic doctor. I issued a referral and letter to the Orthopedic describing TM’s symptoms. TM had an Orthopedic consultation on February 4th and was sent for a MRI the same day. The MRI revealed a Lumbar Disc Herniation at L1/2 and L2/3. Due to the severity of the impact on his mobility, the doctor recommended surgery to remove the herniation. He decided against surgery and was told to expect a 6-8 month recovery. The doctor administered a series of Caudal Block injections, prescribed a pain killer (2 weeks) and a nerve inhibitor (5 days). With his pain managed by medication, we continued the chiropractic treatment. I also introduced to him some exercises to regain strength, stability, and flexibility on his lower back and core muscles. For better improvement we discussed his lifestyle – the way he sits, the way he sleeps, the mattress he slept on etc. and he made the recommended changes. With each treatment, his pain decreased and mobility improved. Actually, I could feel good improvement in his muscle tonus and spine mobility in his lower back with each session. Around the time of his eighth treatment and ninth treatment, from March 1st to March 15th, his pain finally disappeared. It was only 6 weeks since his Lumbar Disc Herniation had been diagnosed.

TM had a scheduled visit with Orthopedic on March 16. The doctor was surprised by his quick recovery and ordered a follow up MRI. The MRI showed the Lumbar Disc Herniation was still present and at the same level. It is my belief that, because he regained good balance on his spine and regained stability, strength and flexibility on his muscles around lower back, his lumbar was able to absorb the disc herniation without allowing damage to the spinal nerves or other tissues surrounding the joints. To date, it has been one and a half years since he has recovered from his symptoms. He continues to take my treatment whenever he felt some discomfort or pain on his body. He enjoys playing squash and other sports. He even climbed Mt.Fuji!



Chiropractic is effective for balancing the whole body, mainly through the spine. Normally, we perform the treatment with patient in the prone position, touching each vertebra and observing the body reaction by raising patient’s legs. With TM’s case, when he had a severe pain, I modified the technique. Because he could not lay on his stomach, I was unable to observe his body reaction through raising his legs. Instead, I observed his body reaction through his wrists and tried to mobilize his spine and joints in a sitting or side lying position. To regain the stability, strength and flexibility on his lumbar and pelvis section, I introduced exercises into his treatment plan. For better improvement, we also discussed his lifestyle. For my part, I helped in balance his spine, joints and muscles. For his part, he adjusted his lifestyle and performed the exercises to regain strength, stability and flexibility in his lower back. As his body regained good balance, his symptoms improved. As in TM’s case, we work in a partnership with our patients. We work for the patients’ benefit, concerned about not only with treating a specific ailment, but also in helping the patient in achieving a healthier lifestyle. Our goal is to achieve balance, allowing the body to harness its natural healing power in order to sustain a healthy body and mind.

Hiroshi Yamada B.App.Sc. B.C.Sc.