Misdiagnosed sciatica is the most logical and widespread reason why so many patients with chronic symptoms can not find real relief from their pain. Generally, persistent back or neck pain syndromes are statistically some of the least accurately diagnosed conditions. The diagnostic errors of physicians and chiropractors often cost patients, such as myself, vast sums of time, money and suffering.
This crucial article details the incredibly common incidence of misdiagnosis within the sciatica treatment industry. Furthermore, this essay provides some helpful advice which may help patients to prevent themselves from being victimized by clueless and financially-motivated care providers.
It is always possible for a doctor to make a diagnostic error when evaluating any sciatica syndrome. The back and spine are complicated structures and might demonstrate more than one possible cause of pain. However, with advanced diagnostic tools, such as X-rays, CT scans and MRI, you would think that misdiagnosis would be rare. However, this is not the case.
Instead, some of these wonderful technologies actually increase the chances of an incorrect diagnostic conclusion being reached. This is especially true when patients do not receive the complete neurological correlation of all symptoms against the theory of the suspected causation.
Basically what this means is that without a complete and thorough objective diagnostic process completed by a neurologist, patients have an increased chance of suffering misdiagnosis of many nerve-related pain conditions which might be mistakenly attributed to non-causative spinal abnormalities.
One less considered example of dire misdiagnosis is the traditional medical establishment’s vehement denial of the psychosomatic process, as it relates to sciatica. Most doctors are simply not trained to diagnose mindbody conditions and feel uncomfortable even discussing this unfamiliar territory with an inquisitive patient.
The medical system has long embraced the Cartesian philosophy that the body and mind are separate entities, even though this theory has proven to be completely false. The documented list of mindbody reactions is extensive and we are just learning to appreciate the full extent of how the mind can enact anatomical change.
Research has shown that the majority of chronic sciatica pain syndromes have a psychoemotional factor in their causation or perpetuation, yet many in the back pain industry continue to blame the symptoms on innocent and coincidental spinal scapegoat conditions which are proven to rarely cause chronic pain.
Things are changing fast in this regard, as more and more young doctors are being better prepared to deal with these types of mindbody health conditions through an open-minded and comprehensive educational process.
You do not have to look far to see mindbody medicine in action every day now in traditional medical care. After all, it has become an inherent component of treatment for cancer care, AIDS care, addiction therapy and of course, chronic pain treatment.
An accurate diagnosis is the most important part of the sciatica treatment process. If the diagnosis is not correct, subsequent treatment options will not be directed at the actual cause of pain. If these treatments are not targeted correctly, then they have absolutely no hope of succeeding.
The common misdiagnosis of lower back and leg pain is the main underlying cause for the abysmal curative statistics offered by traditional therapies. Unfortunately, it takes most patients many years of trying everything, before they finally get some clue that something in their diagnosis is amiss. Typically, patients try different care providers and various treatments, but will continue to hang on to that mistaken diagnosis.
It is a real shame to be sure and certainly reflects my own experiences battling sciatica unsuccessfully for decades.
You must trust in your doctor and give them the benefit of the doubt. This is common sense. However, you can not just lie back, switch to autopilot and take no responsibility for your own health and sciatica care.
Be a learned patient. Be informed and make wise choices based on considerable independent research. There are many great sciatica articles out there. Take the time and read them. Remember, the diversity of possible sciatica causes and contributors is well detailed throughout this website.
There is a vast selection of spinal structural issues which can be causing the pain and some might not be obvious at all, especially when incidental lumbar disc or bone issues are mistakenly taking the blame. There are nonspinal structural issues involving muscular nerve compression and various types of joint pain syndromes which may be the true source of suffering.
There are nonstructural processes, like diabetes, peripheral neuropathy, fibromyalgia, localized injury, muscular imbalances and disease which can create sciatica. Of course, there is always ischemia, which can be caused by anatomical or mindbody reasons.
The diagnostic process can be complicated and is often watered down with terrible consequences. Learn all you can, since this knowledge is truly needed in order to stand any chance of regaining your life after suffering with chronic sciatica pain.
Knowledge therapy is far more than an effective treatment for mindbody sciatica. It is also a wonderful tool to discover if your diagnosis is actually sound or might be full of proverbial holes. This is precisely why I recommend this approach to virtually all suffering chronic back and neck pain patients, since it can do no harm and can mean the difference between enduring lasting pain and finding a permanent cure.
I focus an entire book on the misdiagnosis of back pain, which is available as part of our proprietary pain relief program on our product page.