Degeneration – things are not black and white!

arthritis-medication-while-pregnant-follow-up-rheumatoid-groI have lost count the amount of times a patient tells me that the reason for their pain is that they suffer from arthritis because the x-ray or MRI scan reports such findings. They are usually told that nothing can be done as this is an ageing process!!


We as practitioners cannot cure arthritis but we can help alleviate the symptoms it causes.


I guess the point that I am trying to make is that as osteopaths one of the things we look at is fine movement. What do I mean by this?

Well having discussions with colleagues and other healthcare professions we seem to agree that as a whole consultants look at gross movements  – for example does the knee bend whereas we look and feel how it bends.

The consultant will also look at the MRI scan which is a good diagnostic tool but it doesn’t replace clinical findings.  An MRI can throw up a magnitude of sins, most people over the age of 40 who have an MRI scan of their low back will highlight degenerative changes but as I tell people if we can improve their function, how they move the pain usually subsides but degenerative changes are still there.

The majority of patients who present with degenerative changes as indicated by the x-ray or MRI scan, when  examined I often find that their joints aren’t moving like they should and this leads to the muscles of the back contracting causing pain.

When the spinal mechanics and muscle imbalances are addressed the pain usually subsides and this normally will happen after between 2 to 4 treatments.

Hopefully from this blog you can see that not everything is black and white and there are things that can be done to help, so give us a call on 01227 266439 or 01303 257801 and we will be happy to help.