Kunitachi Ozawa Acupuncture Clinic.

Case Reports

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herniated disc

main symptoms

pain in her lower back and heaviness in her legs.
since last summer, she has been diagnosed with a herniated disc at the hospital.
she also went for a second opinion and was diagnosed as such at 2 different hospitals. (x-rays only)
there is no awareness of numbness.
in August, she was in so much pain that she was bedridden.
spent about 2 months bedridden.
she was given medicine at the first hospital, but it didn't work.
even now, she cannot bend her back.
it is hard to stand up from a sitting position.

visual observation and palpation

on visual observation, her waist was bent, and she was walking with a slight limp.
palpation revealed tenderness in the hips and lower back.

treatment area

lumbar multifidus muscle (upper sacrum)
gluteus medius muscle (iliac crest)

treatment results

after 3 to 6 treatments, the pain that had bothered her for 6 months completely disappeared.


was the diagnosis of herniated disc correct?

in this case, i was surprised to learn that the diagnosis of "herniated disc" was made even though only x-rays were taken at 2 hospitals during the interview stage.
this is because the condition of a herniated disc does not show up on an x-ray.
this is not the case in all hospitals, but it is not uncommon to hear such stories from first-time patients these days.
in addition, the diagnosis was made based on the x-ray examination only, even though there were no subjective symptoms of numbness, paresthesia, or paralysis.
if i were a family member of the patient in this case, i would go and ask why such a diagnosis was made based only on an x-ray examination.
of course, there are some patients who are diagnosed with herniated discs by MRI.
even for those patients, they may come to us with the question, "is the herniation causing this pain?
little by little, patients are learning the possibility that their current pain is related to the imaging diagnosis.

however, considering the time you spent suffering from pain for almost half a year, as an acupuncture therapist, i reflect on the need to spread more awareness of acupuncture treatment.
in this case, because of checking the posture and muscle condition, i judged that a series of symptoms were clearly caused by trigger points in the multifidus lumborum muscle and gluteus medius muscle and treated them.
the trigger points can be identified by palpation and acupuncture.

in so-called MPS (myofascial pain syndrome), trigger points in the muscles can cause symptoms like herniated discs or sciatica.
western medicine treats the symptoms as if they were caused by nerves, but in the case of MPS symptoms, medication does not help at all, or only provides temporary relief.

as the weather gets warmer, muscles that have been tightened up move and trigger points that have been hidden are activated, causing many symptoms to appear.
this time of year, is also very common in terms of back strains. the symptoms of numbness also increase.

we acupuncture therapists must spread awareness of acupuncture, of course.
i am afraid to be frank, but i believe that the time has come for patients to learn more about how to heal their own bodies.