Your experience with pain is not like anyone else, so your relief time is unique to you as well. However, published clinical outcomes can give you insight into what to expect with chiropractic care.
General Healing Time
- Bones tend to mend rather quickly if they have a steady blood supply: 5-6 weeks.
- Ligament and tendons take a bit longer: 6-8 weeks.
- Discs and cartilage take the longest: 3 months or more.
If you have a mixture of these factors, it may take some time. If you smoke, drink alcohol or have a surgical procedure, your mending time may be a bit longer as well.
Disc Healing Time
It takes 3 months to heal a disc before you can expect to go about your activities of daily living like prolonged sitting, bending, lifting and twisting. (1) Like a broken arm that quits hurting after a few days in a cast, you still have to wear the cast for many weeks to allow healing. Your back will also quit hurting early on in the treatment care plan, but you will have to give space for your disc to heal for at least 3 months before challenging it with more demanding activities. "Providing opportunity for the disc to heal" chiropractic activities may include simply remembering that you are mending even though you don't experience pain, doing your exercises, avoiding bending/lifting/twisting, not sitting for long periods of time, etc.
Your Expected Healing Time
Cox Technic chiropractic protocols follow a "Rule of 50%" and emphasize "Control, Not Cure" for spine pain relief:
- At each moment that you demonstrate 50% relief of pain (objectively and subjectively -- mind you it may come within the first visit or two), your chiropractic treatment sessions are cut in half. (ex: If you are seen daily, you would be seen once every two days.) Link to Frequency of Visits
- If you don't have 50% pain alleviation within 30 days of care, you will be referred for more testing or consultation. 91% of patients reported relief within 90 days. Link to Expectations
- Cox Technic Flexion Distraction and Decompression protocols also embrace the phrase "Control, Not Cure" when managing spine pain symptoms. So often the root source of pain doesn't just go away. For instance, a transitional segment is with you for life. Cox Technic chiropractic procedures work hard to help your understanding of your pain symptom and its triggers in order to avoid pain episodes.
Clinical Data Outcomes
Cox Technic protocols are published standards as they guided the collection of data from 30 chiropractic clinics regarding 1,000 low back pain patient cases, the first and largest collection of its kind in chiropractic. Two-hundred ninety-three (293) different variables were gathered from and/or about each patient regarding the patient and his/her condition, history, care, outcomes. (2) This case study uncovered the number of days to maximum improvement (100% relief of pain, 3 months of care, or return to pre-injury state) and the number of visits to maximum improvement.
- The mean number of days is 29.
- The number of visits is 12.
However, some conditions do need more days and chiropractic visits. When conditions are taken into account, the outcomes vary. Examples:
L5 disc herniation
- 86% were maximally improved in less than 3 months
- 64% required fewer than 20 visits
- 70% required fewer than 30 visits
- 91% were maximally improved in less than 3 months
- 71% required fewer than 20 visits
- 91% required fewer than 30 visits
"This information and website content is not intended to diagnose, guarantee results, or recommend specific treatment or activity. It is designed to educate and inform only. Please consult your physician for a thorough examination leading to a diagnosis and well-planned treatment strategy. See more details on the DISCLAIMER
page. Content is reviewed by Dr. James M. Cox I