When a new patient comes to see me they do so the majority of the time due to pain. Whether that is back pain, neck pain, headaches shoulder pain etc.… Before I will treat anyone I perform a case history and examination that I use to determine the answer to 3 main questions. When I have the answer to these I can formulate a plan on how best to help someone.
So what are the 3 main questions?
1) Is there anything more serious that could be causing this pain?
The vast majority of time the pain a person is suffering when they come to me for help is due to Musculoskeletal problems ie the pain is originating from muscles pain or joints. However other things that are rare but more serious can also produce pain. For example cancer, infection or fractures. As a Chiropractor I am trained to identify when one of these issues is potentially the cause and to refer to another appropriate health care profession for further investigation.
2) What are the main pain generating structures?
With information from the case history and a series of orthopaedic and neurological tests I try to identify what are the structures that are causing the pain- is it a disc, a facet joint, muscle, tendon. This helps form my diagnosis as to the cause of your pain. And therefore what are the best techniques and exercises that are going to alleviate it
3) Are there any other barriers to you making a full recovery?
We know people with the same amount of damage will recover differently despite the injury being the same. This third question helps to identify are there any psychosocial barriers to you making a full recovery and we can address those as well. These are things such as stress, lack of sleep, poor diet, how you think and respond to your pain, issues regarding work. They are different for everybody and for some people may result in pain persisting or an inadequate recovery so we aim to identify those so that we can address them as best as we can in our plan.
Once I have the answers to these 3 questions I will put together a bespoke plan along with discussion with you as the patient as to the best way we can get you out of pain and make a full recovery.