Spine - Medical Journal

Spine (The Spine Journal: A Multidisciplinary Journal of Spinal disorders) is one of the most prestigious medical Journals in the field of diagnosing and treating spine injuries and neck and back pain. The website for the Spine journal is www.spinejournal.com. Spine is a multinational peer-reviewed medical journal and is published every other week. The following international organizations are affiliated with Spine:
  • Spine Society of Europe
  • Spine Society of Australia
  • Spine Section of the Hellenic Orthopaedic Association
  • Scoliosis Research Society
  • Korean Society of Spine Surgery
  • Japan Spine Research Society
  • International Society for the Study of the Lumbar Spine
  • Finnish Spine Research Society
  • Chinese Orthopaedic Association
  • Cervical Spine Research Society
  • Asia Pacific Orthopaedic Association - Spinal Section
  • Argentine Society for the Study of Spine Pathology

There have been several landmark journal articles in Spine that have rocked (or at least gotten a lot of attention among back doctors, physical therapists, and chiropractors) the world of back pain medicine. The studies that tend to get the most attention on across medical websites and those who treat back problems include studies among large patient populations comparing one back pain treatment to another.

On February 15, 2011, a research report took a look a lumbago patient populations who elected to undergo intradiscal steroid injections to treat their symptoms. This technique is fairly commonly performed in hospitals and pain clinics across the United States, though there have been few comprehensive studies (with significant patient population) on the procedure to look at the results. The results of the study indicate short-term pain relief with the intradiscal steroid injections. Though all surgical procedures carry with them some risk, this minimally invasive surgery is considered relatively safe, with few reported side effects. Some patients of this procedure report immediate results, while still others report an improvement in their symptoms that last up to a year. The results are considered by experts to be very encouraging, though there are already calls for more related studies to conform the same results, if present. Though intradiscal steroid injections are considered an alternative to more invasive procedures such as spinal fusion surgery, they are not considered to be a conservative therapy the way icing, and physical therapy is.

A study published in the February 2001 issue of Spine promised to rock the back science community; or at least it surprised the heck out of me. The study was fairly robust comparing two large groups of patients among the following two low back pain treatments: one group of 750 had lumbar fusion surgery, while the second group were given the conservative treatment of physical therapy. Spinal fusion surgery has increased over 200 percent since 1990. So many doctors must be performing the procedure, with so many patients accepting it, because it must work right? Not so fast says the February 15 issue of Spine. The dependant variables for the results of the study included the type of pain medicines used long after the procedure, pain levels, and ability to return after work after recovery. The results indicated that the post surgical candidates reported a higher frequency of opiod use and size of dose of medication over the conservative group. The patients who had the surgical procedure were also more likely to have a higher level of pain after recovery, as well as permanent disability.