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Myth 8: A cure exists for all spinal pain problems; “I can be fixed!”

One of the myths we frequently encounter is when patients assume surgery will cure their problem. We don’t have a way to replace the anatomy that people had when they were 18 years old.

Most surgeries either ‘remove something’ or ‘put something in you’. ‘Removing it’ might be removing a disc or bone and making room for the nerves. ‘Putting something in you’ might include screws, rods, cages or grafts for a fusion. So we’re not restoring the anatomy.

There are some patients who do truly need surgery; but surgery for back pain should only be undertaken after every other treatment option has been exhausted and the patient is still not able to live with the pain. We consider surgery when patients are taking more medications than they want to, when they’ve tried multiple different treatments (physical therapy, chiropractic care, and injections), and when the pathology makes sense. Back pain surgery is not always successful, so we select our patients very carefully.

Watch Dr. Raub's video series on the '10 most common back pain myths' on VSO's YouTube channel.

Myth 8: A cure exists for all spinal pain problems; "I can be fixed"