IS PAIN SLOWLY, BUT SURELY KILLING YOU?
I’d like to go over with you some information on chronic pain. There’s a lot of information out there, and I want to let you know that how I used to address chronic pain is very different than how I do address chronic pain. Most of the time now in my clinic, it doesn’t matter the type of pain that you come in with or where it is. We usually don’t even go after that specific area. So if it was a neck pain, or if it was a shoulder pain or even a knee pain, we normally don’t go after it directly in the beginning. What we try to do is we try to clean up the mess as to why the system is not working optimally.
There’s really three different models with pain. There’s the allopathic model that usually has to deal with drugs. Then there’s the integrative model which may include Chiropractic, acupuncture, it could be some massage therapy, it could be some other alternative or integrative type approach. Then there’s what we’re doing, which is looking at how do things work and why may the body produce pain. If you had surgery and you have pain, that’s a different story. If you have a toothache and you have pain, that’s a different story. What I’m talking about here is a lot of chronic pain. The areas that we really focus on would be head pain, neck pain, back pain, hips, knees, joints, shoulders, that kind of stuff. What we do is break down how the body and the brain works so we can try to figure out what’s not working and what may be the underlying root functional causes creating your pain. What I’ve found is that many times with pain there’s going to be multiple contributing factors.
It’s not as easy as saying, “oh, you have arthritis in your knee.” Or saying, “oh, you have a rotator cuff problem.” Or saying, “oh, you have a little bit of sprain strain in your neck.” Those are very oversimplified orthopedic approaches to pain. I’ve found that they don’t work for a lot of people. I want to go over with you the two big problems that I see with chronic pain patients. Once we clean up these two big problems, then we can actually go at the local tissue. So if we’re talking about a knee problem, then we can look right at the knee for talking about a neck or back. Then we can look at those specifically.
“But most of the time we start off with cleaning up the big problems first and then get very specific.” From there we can look right out at the direct area of pain that you have. We have wonderful pieces of technology here that can really shut down pain relatively quickly in five, 10, or 15 visits. The first thing I’d like to go over with you is understanding that your musculoskeletal system, which is really the neuromuscular skeletal system, is run by the brain. If our brain is breaking down, we can get autonomic dysfunction. That person with chronic pain may also be complaining of erectile dysfunction, constipation, not sleeping well, their moods are off, energy is low, and, or, their knee hurts, or back, or their neck.
IS YOUR PAIN A SIGN OF FUTURE NEURODEGENERATION?
As the brain breaks down, they may notice other things like issues with memory. They can’t remember things. They may also notice little tremors in their body. They may notice that there’s a general stiffness, their balance goes off. They may notice that driving in a car or going on a boat may not make them feel well. They may notice that when they read they get fatigued relatively quickly. Back to the brain, when we look at the backside of the brain, the two big lobes that hang off the bottom is your cerebellum. The right side of your body activates your Cerebellum, which then activates your left Cortex. The left side of the body, activates the left cerebellum, which then activates the right cortex. That’s the normal input that then activates the brain, and then you get normal output.
“What I found in almost all chronic pain cases, is that there are issues going on where the brain is not working properly for multiple different reasons.”
This is how the neuromuscular skeletal imbalance is created. I walk and I move, and I walk and I move and I wear things out. There’s a joint that looks nice, the ridges along the joint are nice, the space is nice, and that’s a healthy joint. When the joint starts to break down, the joint didn’t cause it. The joint breakdown, and the arthritis, and the spring, and the even possible stenosis if we’re talking about the spine, is in effect of absolutely the brain breaking down, which creates musculoskeletal and then other factors specific to you. As we start to move, were like a hinge on a door. Our bodies move and our musculoskeletal system, we have our normal biomechanics, and as we move around we’re supposed to be nice and smooth. If we’re not nice and smooth, just like the door, then after a while we may put pressure on a joint.
Once we put pressure on a joint, it could be your shoulder joint, your neck, your back, your knee, your hip, whatever it may be, gradually there’s going to be pressure on that joint. After awhile, the irritation on that joint, the chronic rubbing, chronic irritation from the brain breaking down will create the tension there. It can over time start to make that area somewhat of a pain area. So, the brain has to be looked at in all chronic pain cases. Not only does the brain influence the muscular skeletal system, but the brain is how we perceive pain. When the brain is breaking down, your pain is almost a guarantee. As we get the brain working better, we can see many things will change inside the person and chronic pain goes down rapidly in a lot of different people, in a lot of different places when we approach it from looking at the brain as one of the chief areas.
“The next thing that we’d like to look at is this process called sustained inflammation.”
There’s a lot of research out there, but Dr. Alex Vasquez has done a lot of research on sustained inflammation. You can throw it into four big buckets. Number One, metabolic inflammation. Number two, allergic inflammation. Number three, autoimmune slash cancer and a number for pain. Pain anywhere has to be viewed as there’s a sustained inflammatory response going on inside the brain of the body. We have to get rid of this word chronic because chronic means we have no idea why the immune system is staying lit up. When we look at it from a sustained point of view, we go, “Wait a minute here, it’s not a chronic problem. It’s just that we keep doing something to sustain the inflammation.” If we can identify what it is that you are doing to sustain the inflammation and we could correct those underlying root functional causes along with looking at the brain, we may be able to fix this problem.
“In my clinic, 90% of patients see results in two to four weeks and chronic pain patients are definitely in that group there.”
It is very common for people to come back and say, “my hands feel better, my shoulder feels better, all my neck tension is better and my knee is 60% better. I can walk around now.” You can have multiple areas get better even without working directly on those areas. Your diagnosis may be in the neck, in the shoulder, in your back, in the hip, and or the knee. Wherever it may be, we don’t even necessarily have to look per se at that tissue in the beginning. Most of the time we fix these things that we’re talking about, and everything gets better. Then you’ll say, “Oh, by the way doc, since you’ve been doing this stuff with the brain, not only is my pain better, but I’m no longer constipated. I noticed that my energy is way up. I noticed that my blood pressure’s regulating better and I noticed that my skin is doing much better also.”
What is that? That’s because the whole nervous system has gone up in function. As a byproduct, one of those things that will change is the brain becomes less sensitive for pain and your musculoskeletal system will allow you to move easier and better and your balance can get better and you’re walking and get better and your strength and get better and the pain can go down. So back to sustained inflammation.
“One of the things that you want to know is that all sustained inflammation starts in the gut because 85% of everyone’s immune system is inside the gut.”
That means that your food is a major player in your pain.
“If you jump on one of these anti-inflammatory diets, it’s not specific enough.”
75% of people will not get a result from that. Either they don’t know what they’re doing exactly, or it’s not specific enough for them. We can’t have general protocols. We have to have specifics for each individual person, come up with proper testing, and then a proper root functional cause diagnosis specific to the individual. And then lastly, what’s the plan specific for you. The inflammation can show up inside of us and most of the people with chronic pain, I’ll tell them that there’s all four of these big buckets happening at the exact same timeframe.
“No one has ever explained sustained inflammation to them so they just view their knee pain or back pain or neck pain as pain. It has nothing to do with their blood pressure issues or their constipation or their depression.”
They don’t see them as being connected, bur they very much are.
Under metabolic inflammation we can see cancer, cardiovascular disease, pulmonary issues, arthritis (so any of the joints). I want to be clear here, whether we’re talking about whatever joint we’re talking about, if your doctor tells you that you have arthritis, that is not the cause. That is the effect of something being off over a long timeframe, now the joint has worn out. Now we take the extra and we go, “Oh look, there it is. Oh, it’s bone on bone, Mrs. Jones.” Well, that bone on bone has been there for years and years. Why all of a sudden now is the joint killing me? There has to be some other mechanism as well. Metabolic inflammation also can include hypertension, diabetes, weight gain, obesity, metabolic syndrome, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, anxiety, depression, bipolar, and addictions can all happen from this metabolic inflammation.
Next, allergic inflammation. That can include asthma, Eczema, seasonal allergies, dogs, cats, and foods. If you have any of these things that we’re talking about and you have chronic pain, this can be the same underlying mechanism and there’s a sustained inflammatory response taking place. Then there’s this thing called autoimmune. I put autoimmune and cancer together because they’re similar in a sense that the immune system is totally out of balance. After a while, once the immune system is out of balance, you may take your own tissue. You might have an autoimmune reaction against your joints, against your skin, against your muscles, creating some of your chronic pain. It could be directly against your brain, creating some of your chronic pain. If you’re an already an autoimmune patient, psoriasis, thyroid, diabetes, any gastrointestinal issue, any kind of tremor, rheumatoid arthritis, Lupus, any of that, we have to consider this major immune dysfunction inside of you which could be one of the main things creating a sustained inflammation, and then creating your knee pain, or back pain, or neck pain or head pain.
Those are the main areas that we look at here in my clinic.
“We have all of the best pain equipment possible.”
We do a complete analysis, determine if your case would qualify or not. We do proper testing, and then we’d get a proper root functional cause diagnosis to see which gears are off. And then from there we give you a proper treatment plan aimed at going after the specific functional problems that we find inside of you. This is not a replacement for your knee problem.
“This is the way to look at the whole system, and then see how the whole system is impacting the specific area of the knee, or your back, or your neck.”
Again, we have the best technologies available here. We have things that most of the time, within two to four weeks almost everyone is telling us that they’re feeling better, and pain is probably within the top four or five things that people report to us. It can be just multiple areas of pain, not just their knee. There’s a different approach that you can take for chronic pain. We can’t help everyone. Your case would have to qualify. So we go through a three step process where we do the consultation, and then we would determine whether you move on to step two examination, and then ultimately whether your case would qualify. If you do qualify, what we would do would we be specific to you and your case, and that would be based on what is required to get you the ultimate outcome.
“If your case does qualify, maybe we can stop this pain and suffering that you’ve been having and get you out of the rut that you’ve been in and get your life back on track and start living again.”