Lumbar pain, soreness, or ache may be a life-long source of discomfort, even agony.  Some people–usually on the advice of their doctors–opt for surgery, but does this really bring relief?

In most cases, no.

There are many causes of lower back pain, including:

  • Sudden movement
  • Inappropriate sitting or walking posture, leading to muscular exhaustion
  • Long-term exposure to cold and/or dampness (TCM theory)
  • Current or pre-existing trauma
  • Congenital deficiency
  • Excessive sexual intercourse (TCM view)
  • Sacroiliac joint misalignment
  • Lumbar Disc Protrusion
  • Lumbar Vertebra 3 Syndrome
  • Referral pain from internal organs
  • Inflammatory pelvic disease
  • Complex regional pain syndrome (often triggered by trauma or nerve damage)
  • Radiculopathy (damage to nerve roots from the spinal cord)
  • Spondylolisthesis (when one vertebrae extends over another)
  • Ankylosing Spondylitis

In many, if not, most, cases having surgery for lower back pain does not bring the relief and pain-free existence many people hope for. While people may feel better for a short time or even a few years immediately following surgery, in the long run pain in the lumbar region comes back. Doctors often explain it as fibrosis after surgery, saying they alleviated the source of the pain, but the scar tissue and the healing of the surgery causes the pain. Whether this is the case or not, is irrelevant.

The patient still feels pain and/or discomfort in the lumbar region.

I have a friend here who had back surgery less than 9 months ago and because of the surgery was unable exercise for a number of weeks, leading to weight gain. The weight gain, plus smoking, and drinking too much cold coca-cola certainly doesn’t help his health.  But not surprisingly, he still suffers from lower back pain, to the point he often walks with a limp or constantly has a bit of pained look on his face.

Does surgery work? You tell me. But most patients will tell you, no. The one exception may be congenital defects.

Furthermore, the Chinese medicine belief is that any surgery reduces kidney essence. Kidney essence is essentially our life store, something that cannot be replaced, generated, or produced, and once our kidney essence is totally consumed, our life is over. That means each surgery shortens your life.

Acupuncture-Moxibustion for Back Pain

Now, what can you do?

Aren’t all of those better options than surgery that probably won’t relieve your pain anyway, and may shorten your life?

Think about that.