Orthopedic Doctor, Chiropractor or Physical Therapy – Which is best for pain?
It can be difficult to know where to go for help when you are in pain with mild injuries, soft tissue damage, whiplash, back and neck pain, headaches, migraines, carpal tunnel, and sports injuries. Should you see an Orthopedic doctor, physical therapist or chiropractor for your musculoskeletal pain?
A physical medicine office that offers all these specialties is not only a great choice for providing the relief you need, but having all these services at one location can offer a unique advantage over other healthcare facilities.
Eastside Medical Group, serving Cleveland, Shaker Heights, Cleveland Heights, and surrounding communities, is your one-stop location offering Orthopedic, Chiropractic, and Physical Medicine!
The first step to addressing your pain – get a proper diagnosis
Identifying the cause of your pain is the first step to solving it, therefore a proper diagnosis is essential to create an effective treatment plan. A diagnosis allows you to find the correct treatment, and to rule out more serious disease processes.
Which health specialty is best to go to for an initial diagnosis? Both medical doctors and chiropractors are licensed to diagnose and trained to be primary care physicians. They can provide an initial diagnosis, make treatment recommendations, and, if needed, will refer to other specialists, including oncologists, neurologists, and rheumatologists.
However, if you believe your pain is coming from a structural imbalance, muscle, ligament, soft tissue pain, etc, then it is to your advantage to see a doctor of chiropractic. Both specialties are trained to diagnose all disease, both internal and structural, so if your back pain is coming from a kidney infection, a chiropractor will have no problem catching it.
Did you know?
The fact that chiropractors are trained to be primary care physicians may come as a surprise, as there is often misunderstanding about their role in health care.
Chiropractic doctors receive eight years of training, just as medical doctors do. Both receive a similar education in their first two years of medical education, but in the second two years, their clinical training diverges. A medical degree emphasizes internal medicine, surgery, and pharmaceuticals, where a chiropractic degree emphasizes physical medicine, physical therapy, adjusting, and nutrition. Both are trained extensively in radiology and diagnostic imaging, so they can provide you with x-rays when needed, interpret MRI’s and CT scans.
The second step to addressing your pain – get the proper treatment.
A diagnosis is important, but having right treatment is the key to seeing results. Many times individual treatments offer good results but by combining the conservative treatment options you will see GREAT results. Focusing on these unique treatment plans allow the patient to experience pain relief and in many cases prevent surgery.
Whenever possible, try conservative therapies first. If conservative therapy is not an option, then our Orthopedic Physician and Chiropractor will refer you out accordingly.
Don’t rush to surgery.
Many are not needed. Surgeries are permanent, often over utilized, and can create new complications. You can always try conservative therapy first and then try surgery later, but you cannot do the reverse. Most musculoskeletal pain will respond well to adjustments, physical therapy (physiotherapy), bracing and trigger point injections.