Dr.Pathrose Parathuvayalil, Chief Physician of Parathuvayalil Hospital, Keezhillam near Perumbavoor in Ernakulam District of Kerala has developed a unique method for the treatment of low back pain caused by lumbar disc prolapse. He is a gold medalist in BAM and the first Post Graduate doctor in Kerala with a specialization in Marma Chikilsa- a branch of Ayurveda that deals with injuries and body mechanics. He has over 30 years of expertise and clinical experience in the subject.
In his opinion- Marma Chikilsa – has a greater role to play in treating low back pain caused by disc problems because patients who has undergone surgery for the same are not fully satisfied and a significant percentage of them have recurrence of back pain.
Clinically the patient presents with low back pain with radiation to one of the lower limbs with an acute on set. Even slightest of jerky movements like cough, sneeze, precipitates pain. It is often described as sharp, shock like sensation. Some times the pain is chronic in nature with intermittent frequency aggravated by cold weather, over work and constipation.
Signs elicited are low back tenderness over the spinous process of affected vertebrae with adjacent Paraspinal muscle spasm restricting spinal movements of flexion and extension.
Straight leg raising test may be positive which indicates nerve root pressure exerted by the disc. There may be motor weakness or sensory disturbances of the limbs corresponding to the neurological involvement.
Ankle and toe movements may be affected or there can be pins and needle sensations over specific dermatomes. In long standing cases there may be bowel/bladder disturbances due to loss of function of sphincter muscles.
A preliminary X-ray can show the worn out vertebrae and reduced intervertebral disc space with loss of lumbar lordosis due to muscle spasm.
MRI- can show the accurate level of the vertebrae involved and the extend of nerve compromise.
Back ache has become very common and the main reason for this is the fast paced life style which leaves people with little time to exercise and economic prosperity, which means that people drive even to neighbourhood market. Almost 90% back pain patients are professionals with sedentary jobs. A faulty posture while sitting can cause muscle imbalance and maximum stress on spine. Expanding cities and longer commuting hours have definitely complicated matters. Back pain is believed to have a Psychosomatic element also which is attributed to the rising stress levels.
Dr. Pathrose claims that his unique method of treatment spanning over 21 days which include direct manipulation, reduction and immobilization in a POP cast has been proved beyond doubt, its effectiveness as vindicated by his patients. Back pain was relieved and patients were cured off other neurological symptoms caused by constant nerve pressure in 99% of the cases, even in those who were advised surgery elsewhere. If taken care, it is completely curable.