Extension of the spine: It’s beneficial. It’s harmful.
So what’s with extension for the spine?
Both are accurate: It is good. It’s
bad. It’s the job of your Carrolltown chiropractor to help you decide the role of extension in your Carrolltown
back pain relief plan and Carrolltown back pain control plan in the future.
Your Carrolltown chiropractor at Gormish Chiropractic & Rehabilitation is well versed
in the effects – good and bad – of spinal extension and respects its role in spinal
health and motion.
Two of the spine’s most noticeable curves –
the cervical and lumbar curves – are lordotic curves meaning they curve concavely.
Flexion flattens these curves. Extension magnifies them. When a disc herniates
or bulges, it does so into the concavity of the curve and potentially pushes
on the spinal nerves causing pain. Flexion usually
allows the disc bulge to get away from the
nerve. Extension often permits the disc bulge to press on
the nerves more. Gormish Chiropractic & Rehabilitation wants to help reduce
painful situations like this!
75% of the flexion and extension movement in the low back is
at the L5-S1 level of the lumbar spine. 20% is at the
L4-L5 level. Therefore, 95% of flexion and extension of the lumbar spine occurs
at these two lower disc levels. Here, degenerative disc disease (minor and more
advanced) occurs most. In the cervical spine, C5-C6 is the spinal
level where most of the flexion takes place, and C4-C5 is where
most of the extension takes place. Carrolltown chiropractic
patients need beneficial extension!
Gormish Chiropractic & Rehabilitation respects extension and gets
how it may benefit and harm. The extensor muscles in the
back weaken and degenerate just like discs degenerate. (1)
Extension helps strengthen these muscles to support the spine. Extension is necessary
for this when the spine is healthy enough to perform extension. Extension to a painful spine may be
harmful. Why? In the cervical spine, flexion reduced disc
protrusion and enlarges the sagittal diameter of the vertebral
canal while extension increased the disc protrusion and narrowed the vertebral canal causing
stenosis. (2) In a degenerative lumbar spine with spinal stenosis, flexion widened
the vertebral canal and reduced pain while extension exacerbated
the stenosis and produced pain. (3) Gormish Chiropractic & Rehabilitation knows
the key to getting the benefits of extension is in knowing
when to apply extension.
Carrolltown CHIROPRACTIC USE OF EXTENSION
Carrolltown chiropractic treatment incorporates
extension into the Carrolltown chiropractic treatment plan for its benefits.
Cox® Technic applied to the cervical spine reduced
intradiscal pressures to as low as 502 mmHg (4) and to as low as -192 mmHg in
the lumbar spine. (5) Extension increased pressures in the lumbar
spine to 1250 mmHg (the highest amount the transducer could measure).
(4) Reducing intradiscal pressures and back pain is what
Gormish Chiropractic & Rehabilitation does for its Carrolltown back pain
CONTACT Gormish Chiropractic & Rehabilitation
Listen to this PODCAST with Dr. David Atiyeh on the Back
Doctor’s Podcast with Dr. Michael Johnson. He shares how he cared for
a patient whose back pain continues after multiple back
surgeries with flexion distraction which gives her relief
as the table is flexed not extended.
Schedule your Carrolltown chiropractic appointment
with Gormish Chiropractic & Rehabilitation today. Let’s explore
the role extension might play in your back pain recovery and future
back pain control strategy.