The Joint Complex

Chiropractic Care and The Joint Complex of the Lower Back Spine.

The Joint Complex

The Joint Complex

Patients who seek help from their chiropractic physician for relief of low back joint pain are of all ages, sizes and ethnic backgrounds. In fact, the symptoms and causes of low back pain are a universal problem. In this article we will discuss the joint complex mechanism found in lower back pain. Although we know a great deal about the biomechanics of the joint complex, there is still much research that continues to evaluate the joint complex of the lumbar spine.

The Joint Complex of the Lower Back

A thorough knowledge of the joint complex of the spine is essential to diagnose and treat the patient with low back pain. The joint complex is made up of articulating facets on the vertebral bodies that involves a system of ligaments, interposed cartilage, muscles and nerves. This is done to maintain a synergistic and antagonistic precision to stabilize the joint complex and to keep the entire chain from collapsing.
The joint complex mechanism in the neck is different than the lower back and congenital anomalies of the joint complex in the lower back can be a source of pain. Sometimes one facet joint will be in a sagittal plane, while the opposite side will be in a coronal plane. This alignment is known as facet tropism and adds rotational stresses to the joint complex which is already under strain because of their oblique alignment. It is important to make sure the adjustment received is the appropriate technique as to not aggravate the joint complex or cause damage.
In assessing the joint complex physical examination is usually a pre-requisite prior to adjusting as well as visual evaluation by x-ray. Without proper evaluation means a person is guessing what is really there. Prior to adjusting the joint complex of the spine, evaluation should rule out tumors of the spine such as hemangioma, osteoid osteoma, Paget’s disease and osteoblastoma. Secondary malignant tumors are extremely common in the spine because of the very rich venous supply to the vertebrae.
Several spinal manipulative techniques can be used to adjust the joint complex depending on the anatomy, condition and health of the patient. It is important that when a patient is seen by a competent chiropractor a thorough evaluation should take place in order to assess the condition and type of adjusting technique to be used.
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This article on The Joint Complex is informational and not to be used to diagnose or treat any medical condition

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