The following is an excerpt from

Rapid Recovery from Back and Neck Pain:

A Nine-Step Recovery Plan

 

R

apid recovery from back and neck pain?! Sounds too good to be possible. But it is. I know, because I have experienced this phenomenon firsthand. After months of suffering from chronic pain in my back, neck, legs, knees, arms, and hands, and total disability—after months of going from one doctor to another with no cure in sight—I was able to recover within four days to live an active and productive life. Others with recurrent or chronic pain have also experienced this rapid recovery following the proven techniques described in this book.

    This book provides you with the scientific research on the cause of most back, neck, and hand pain and shows how you can get rid of the pain quickly and easily. Those who have attended my seminars on rapid recovery from chronic pain and have applied these techniques have noticed significant improvements within a few hours to a few days, and complete recovery shortly afterward.

Skeptical? A healthy dose of skepticism is a good thing. I am very scientific-minded and skeptical myself. When I’m presented with new ideas and new possibilities, though, I do my best to keep an open mind—especially when it comes to my health. I ask you to do the same. Question what you read, but be open to new possibilities. The only way you are ever going to get well is to take charge of this debilitating condition, by learning all you can about it and being willing to take action. Indeed, knowledge is power!

If you suffer from chronic or recurrent back, neck, or hand pain, you know how difficult it can be to find a cure. If you are frustrated, as I was, by the ineffective treatments you have received and want to live a pain-free life again, this book will show you how. It takes you along on my search, like a detective’s, for clues to solve the mystery of my back pain—a mystery because back pain baffles even doctors and surgeons who specialize in treating it. The frustrated patients of these back pain specialists, instead of getting answers or effective treatment, may hear: “Well, that’s how back pain is!” Or worse: “You just have to learn to live with it.”

In contrast, this book will tell you about the revolutionary discovery and treatment program from New York University and give you a nine-step rapid recovery plan made up of easy yet highly effective techniques used by Olympic athletes.

HOW YOU WILL BENEFIT

    How can the concepts and techniques presented in this book help you? To put it simply, if you follow the rapid recovery plan presented here, you can expect to benefit in the following ways:

·   You can become pain-free, as you learn how to eliminate chronic pain quickly and easily.

·   You can become more active and productive, as you live free of the limitations brought on by chronic pain.

·   You can become much healthier, because following this plan leads to many other improvements in your health as well.

·   You will be much happier, not just as you become healthier, but also as you learn many new skills that can make a tremendous difference in all aspects of your life.

    Most of these benefits emerge within a few days—even within a few hours—if you follow the concepts and techniques explained here. These techniques are so effective that you may notice improvements in your level of mobility and pain even before you finish this book. I have seen this phenomenon in those with whom I have had the privilege of sharing this information.

You might be asking yourself, “How can people who have suffered months and years of chronic pain, who have probably tried all kinds of treatments with little success, recover so quickly?”  I will answer this question in some detail in the next few pages and in depth in this book. I understand if you are skeptical. But keep an open mind; read and evaluate what you read carefully. I will provide you the scientific research and proven techniques every step of the way.

Also, keep in mind that I have been there: in pain, night and day—pain in my back, neck, legs, knees, arms, and hands. I was so disabled that I could not climb three steps or write two lines, and I wondered whether I would ever be free of pain again. But I recovered rapidly and completely and now help others by teaching these techniques in my seminars and workshops.

Besides my own recovery, over and over again I have seen men and women who had been told that their conditions were permanent, or that they had to have surgery, improve overnight and recover within a few days following these techniques. Among them is a forty-year-old who is a Stanford graduate in electrical engineering and a professor at the University of California. He suffered from neck pain and numbness in his right arm and fingers. The neurosurgeon had recommended neck surgery for a bulging disc, based on the MRI findings. But once the professor learned the concepts and techniques presented in this book, he recovered quickly and avoided surgery.

And then there was the facility manager who was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome in both hands. Surgery on his right wrist had done little to improve his condition. Following only two of the steps in the nine-step recovery plan helped him improve overnight and recover within a few days. He cancelled the surgery for his left wrist and has been free of pain for more than three years. There are many others, and you can read the letters they sent me in Appendix B.

 BACK FACTS KEPT SECRET!

    If you have read the back-pain literature, you have probably come across the following facts:

·   Eight out of ten adults suffer from back pain at some point in their lives.

·   Back problems are second only to sore throat as this nation's most common ailment.

·   Nineteen million doctor visits are made for back pain annually.

·   Eight million new cases of back pain occur every year.

·   Back pain is the leading cause of work-related disability.

 As I searched the medical literature for information on back pain, however, I discovered some very amazing statistics—statistics rarely found in books on back pain and usually not mentioned by back specialists. Did you know the following surprising facts?

 

·   “Surgery has been found to be helpful in only 1 in 100 cases of low back pain. In some people, surgery can even cause more problems.” So concluded the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services after conducting a comprehensive study of more than 10,000 cases of back pain.[1][1]  Even though I knew back surgery was not a very effective treatment for most people, I was a little shocked to learn that 99 percent of the time it fails to help patients.

 

·   “Injecting methylyprednisolone acetate [cortisone] into the facet joints is of little value in the treatment of patients with chronic low back pain.” This was the conclusion of a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine.[2][2] Researchers found no significant improvement in patients who received a cortisone shot compared to those who were given a shot of saline solution (salt water) in their facet joints or herniated discs![3][3]

         ·   “Treatments [for whiplash-associated disorders] evaluated in a rigorous manner show little or no evidence of efficacy.” This finding was the result of an exhaustive study conducted at McGill University.[4][4] Researchers found treatments ranging from neck collar to traction to be of little or no value. [5][5]

Even though these surprising facts have appeared in some of the most authoritative and prestigious medical journals, you will not learn this crucial information from most back and neck specialists, inside or outside the medical profession. Indeed, these treatments are used so widely that you may be shocked to learn that they don’t work! So take a minute to read over these conclusions of respected medical experts again, to empower yourself to make better decisions regarding your treatment options and avoid ineffective surgeries and shots.[6][6]

Why is it that conventional treatments fail to cure back and neck pain? Because, as The New England Journal of Medicine puts it, “Up to 85 percent of patients with low back pain cannot be given a definitive diagnosis.”[7][7]  That’s right—up to 85 percent! No wonder most of these treatments fail. As the saying goes, “Correct diagnosis is half the cure!” Without the right diagnosis, how can we expect an effective treatment?  As you will see in this section, according to the published scientific research most of the common diagnoses for chronic back pain are unfounded.

You can already see that this book is unique in its approach to back pain. The crucial valuable information set out here results from years of research into the causes and treatments for back, neck, and hand pain. This is information that you can use immediately and benefit from for the rest of your life. At the very least, because of what you have learned so far, you can avoid useless, faddish treatments that actually may do more harm than good.

The possibility that treatments for back pain may actually create additional problems was addressed in a revealing article, “Fads in the Treatment of Low Back Pain,” published in the prestigious The New England Journal of Medicine. Dr. Richard Deyo wrote: “Recent clinical trials have challenged the efficacy of many popular treatments, including bed rest, traction, and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. Such fads are not innocuous; they may lead to unnecessary morbidity and costs, as well as to embarrassment for professionals.”[8][8]

But my aim in this book is not simply to help you avoid useless treatments. In addition, the book provides you with empowering concepts and effective techniques for a rapid and complete recovery. Just imagine being free of pain: moving freely without pain as your guide; sitting and sleeping comfortably; feeling young and healthy again. These are some of the many wonderful benefits I have enjoyed since my rapid recovery, and I believe you will too.

CORRECT DIAGNOSIS
IS HALF THE CURE!

    I already mentioned how crucial a correct diagnosis is for treatment of recurrent and chronic back pain. Before we go any further, I would like to share with you a bit of medical history.

Back pain has become a very frustrating health problem for individuals as well as for the society at large. However, the history of medicine contains other examples of devastating problems with simple solutions. For example: Imagine it is nineteenth-century France. The country is facing a serious public health problem. Women are dying of childbirth fever. So many are dying that one hospital has to be closed for a month while doctors try to discover the cause. Finally one man, a chemist by training, makes the correct diagnosis and prescribes a very effective treatment. This man is Louis Pasteur.

Pasteur determines that the cause of childbirth fever and death is pathogens (germs) spread by doctors and nurses from one patient to another. He offers a very simple and effective solution: doctors and nurses must wash their hands prior to delivering each baby and between patients. He is ridiculed and ignored. Experts of the time taunt Pasteur: “How can tiny germs we cannot see with our naked eyes actually cause disease and death?” “How can the simple act of washing our hands make a difference?”

The “experts” of Pasteur’s day could understand how tiny insects can sting or bite and harm people, but they were not willing to open their minds to the possibility that smaller organisms can also cause harm and disease. Only God knows how many women died in childbirth until Pasteur’s solution was put in practice and handwashing became standard procedure in all hospitals. Millions of lives are saved every year because of Pasteur’s discovery.

In this example, as in the case of back pain, correct diagnosis of a devastating problem can lead to an almost unbelievably simple, very effective solution. Lack of a correct diagnosis is the number-one reason back pain has become such a serious health problem. As mentioned earlier, as many as 85 percent of patients with low back pain never receive a definitive diagnosis. Without a definitive diagnosis, a cure cannot be expected; however, once we have the correct diagnosis, the solution is simple! This is the reason that people who have learned the diagnosis and the simple, effective recovery techniques presented in this book have been able to recover so rapidly from months and years of chronic pain.

As I mentioned earlier, everything I explain here is backed by solid scientific research, but for you to get the most benefit from this book, I ask you to keep an open mind and be willing to consider new possibilities when it comes to understanding the cause and treatment of chronic back, neck, and hand pain. I want you to be one of those people who are pioneers in recognizing new life-enhancing discoveries and who are among the first to embrace them. Having said that, I think you will nevertheless find this book takes a fundamentally common sense approach to diagnosing and treating back and neck pain.

Now let me tell you a little bit about myself: how I began my search for answers, learned how to recover rapidly, and resumed a pain-free, active life.

MY BAD BACK

    As one who suffered from chronic back pain, I am all too familiar with the agony and disability it brings. In addition to living through more than two years of back pain, I developed pain in my neck, both legs, knees, elbows, and one shoulder; suffered gastritis due to my use of prescription and over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications; and experienced other health problems as well.

I was seen by general practitioners as well as back specialists and even a nationally known orthopedic surgeon. Each one had his own diagnosis. I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the spine, degenerated discs, sprained back muscles, pinched nerve, herniated disc, leaky discs, and piriformis syndrome as possible causes for my back and leg pain. I was given a wide variety of different medications and treatments, some of which made my condition worse.[9][9]

I was constantly in pain and became severely disabled. At one point the pain was so severe that I was not able to stand or sit for more that fifteen minutes at a time, to climb three steps, to walk farther than one hundred yards, to carry more than four pounds, to lift a half-gallon milk container, or even to write two lines. My life became limited in ways that I had never imagined. I had to stay away from work and was faced with serious questions about my career, my future, and my life, especially as a husband and father.

SEARCH FOR ANSWERS

 Early in this painful and often frustrating ordeal I discovered that the medical professionals themselves were baffled by back pain. Not only did they have difficulty making a proper diagnosis and prescribing effective treatment, but they were not even capable of providing satisfactory answers to my simplest questions about back pain:

 ·   Why are the majority of people with back pain or chronic pain under fifty            years old?

·   Why, unlike a broken bone, does back pain not heal, instead often lasting for years?

·   If weak muscles are the cause, how strong do back muscles have to be for one to recover? Do we all need to become bodybuilders to be free of pain?

·   If improper sitting and bending can damage the back, why aren’t gymnasts and other athletes who put tremendous pressure on their spines all suffering from debilitating back pain?

 To these and many other questions, which appeared simple enough for back specialists and experts to resolve, the responses were unconvincing answers, shrugged shoulders, or simply: “Well, that’s how back pain is!”

 In the face of the medical community’s apparent ineptitude in treating back pain—and the fact that some of the treatments prescribed for me actually made my condition worse—I realized that I could no longer afford to be a passive patient. I began to take an active role in my diagnosis and treatment, and tried to become an informed consumer, searching the available literature for a cure to my disabling condition—a condition so prevalent that it has become a national health problem. 

Most books and articles on back pain echoed what I was told by my doctors and therapists. Most of what I read attributed the pain to some spinal disorder or to weak muscles, and advised the use of proper body mechanics, good posture, and exercise as means to prevent and improve back problems. Some authors mentioned proper diet, acupressure, meditation, and reducing stress as helpful. Although the information I found helped me avoid unnecessary tests and treatments, I was not able to find answers to my questions about back pain—let alone a cure. At times it seemed I would have to live with pain and disability for years, if not the rest of my life. 

AN ANSWER—AT LAST!

Finally, after months of searching and reading I learned about the discovery at New York University. I think you will be very pleased to discover that combining New York University's treatment program with techniques used by Olympic athletes can result in rapid recovery from chronic and recurrent back and neck, and hand pain.

Here we come to the end of the excerpt. I tried to give you as much information as possible, however, the best way to fully benefit from the rapid recovery plan is to read the book for yourself. I hope you too will soon be among the thousands who have learned the information presented in this book and recovered.


[1] U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, Understanding Acute Low Back Pain Problems, Publication No. 95-0644 (Rockville, Md.: December 1994), p. 12.

[2] Caretter, S., et al., “A Controlled Trial of Corticosteriod Injections into Facet Joints for Chronic Low Vack Pain,” The New England Journal of Medicine 325 (1991): 1001–1007.

[3] Another such study titled, “Epidural Corticosteriod Injections for Sciatica due to Herniated Nucleus Pulposus,” The New England Journal of Medicine 336 (1997):1634–1640, concluded that cortisone injections to relieve sciatica caused by a herniated disc “offer no significant functional benefit” compared to saline solution injections.

[4] Spitzer, W.O., et al., “Scientific Monograph of the Quebec Task Force on Whiplash-Associated Disorders,” Spine 20 (1995): 34S-39S.

[5] Surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome has also been found ineffective: “Correcting carpal tunnel syndrome is one of the most common operations performed today. The only problem is, it often doesn’t work,” concluded researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis (“Surgery Often Useless for Carpal Tunnel Pain,” San Jose Mercury News, February 22, 1995.)

[6] A machinist who attended one of my seminars told me that his surgeon had quoted him an 80 percent success rate for back surgery. The machinist was furious when he learned that back surgery is helpful only 1 percent of the time and can actually cause more problems than it resolves. He avoided surgery and recovered rapidly when he began following the nine-step rapid recovery plan. You might know someone whose condition improved or who possibly recovered as a result of surgery or a cortisone shot. Remember, the findings discussed here were drawn from large-scale studies and group comparisons of patients. You might ask yourself, “Why is it that one treatment for the same diagnosis works for some and not for others?” This is, of course, one of those mysteries of back pain that this book will explain in detail.

[7] Jensen, M.C., et al., “Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the Lumbar Spine in People Without Back Pain,” The New England Journal of Medicine 331 (1994): 69–73.

[8] Deyo, R., “Fads in the Treatment of Low Back Pain,” The New England Journal of Medicine 325 (1991): 1039-1040.

[9] I was too skeptical to try nonconventional treatments such as chiropractic, acupuncture, or other alternative treatments. Although I met people who found these treatments helpful, none of them were permanently cured and all required further treatments, sometimes several times a week. So both conventional medical and alternative treatments appeared ineffective to me.


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