Reasons to See a PT First for Lower Back Pain
By Jaclyn Caddy, Physical Therapist and Clinic Director with Ivy Rehab Network Clinic Spectrum Physical Therapy in Culpeper, Virginia.
With the growing awareness of the opioid epidemic occurring nationwide, there is also a growing body of evidence that physical therapy offers a great first line of defense against low back pain (LBP). Physical therapy’s effectiveness as a treatment for low back pain also offers additional benefits.
Save Money: see a PT first for lower back pain
Trying physical therapy first could save money and dramatically reduce the chance of receiving an opioid prescription down the road. Researchers have found that patients with LBP who received care from a physical therapist first experienced lower out-of-pocket, pharmacy, and outpatient costs after 1 year. Patients also reduced their likelihood of receiving an opioid prescription by 87% compared with patients who never visited a physical therapist. The PT-first group also was associated with a 28% lower probability of having imaging services and 15% lower odds of making a visit to an emergency department.
Physical Therapists Get to the Root of Lower Back Pain
Physical therapists provide care that aims to resolve low back pain by addressing musculoskeletal causes first. If this problem does not get resolved, physical therapists may refer patients appropriately for more specialized care. The public may not know that most states have direct access provisions for physical therapy. This means that a physician referral is not necessary to begin physical therapy treatment. This makes it easier for patients to receive the more effective, cost-effective care that physical therapy can offer. Don’t wait, try PT first for lower back pain!
October is National Physical Therapy Month and we are here to help with safe, effective care for your lower back pain. If you’re struggling with lower back pain and don’t want to use opioids, contact your local Ivy Rehab Network clinic for more information on therapies that can help you.