Below are some medical FAQs that may answer some questions that you may have.

What causes back pain?

Your back is a complex structure of vertebrae separated by discs, that is held together by ligaments and muscles. It must be flexible enough have a wide range of movements and strong enough to protect the spinal cord and nerve fibers which exit between the vertebrae. The spine functions as a whole, so if you have mechanical disturbances in one part of the spine, it can influence conditions in another area of the spine. Back pain can be caused by any combination of sprained ligaments, strained muscles, ruptured disks, and irritated joints, any or all of which can lead to pain.

Your spine could be normal and then become injured in a fall, accident, or injury. However, it is just as common that weaknesses from lesser, earlier injuries compound over the years. Basically this means that eventually the simplest of movements-for example, bending over to tie your shoes – can have painful results. Arthritis, poor posture, lack of exercise, weight gain, and psychological stress can also cause or complicate back pain. Most back pain is mechanical in nature. Less frequently back pain can also directly result from medical pathology such as kidney stones, infections, blood clots, bone loss (osteoporosis), and others.

What causes Osteoarthritis?

When a joint has abnormal or excessive stress the cartilage wears down, but as the joint surfaces become less protected by cartilage, the bone beneath may be exposed and damaged. Over time re-growth occurs which leads to increase in cellular growth called hypertrophy. Osteoarthrisis is this excessive stress to a joint that results in a build up of bone. This is the most common type of arthritis.

What is the primary cause of disability?

According to the Centers for Disease Control, Arthritis is #1 of the top 10 causes of disability in the US. The #2 cause is back or spine problems followed by #3 heart trouble. Arthritis of the spine combines the risk factors of the top two groups. Typically when you have this type of pain, you may be discouraged from exercising. Lack of exercise, and often associated obesity, contribute to heart as well as back troubles.

What is a Spinal disc?

The spinal disc is a soft cushion that is in between the vertebrae of the spine. When you are younger, the disc is soft and elastic, but as you age, the disc gradually looses its elasticity, become more rigid and is more vulnerable to injury.

What causes symptoms of a Herniated Disc?

When a herniated disc ruptures and pushes out, the nerves may become irritated and pinched. This may occur gradually with repetitive straining of the spine or suddenly in an injury. When the spinal cord or spinal nerves become compressed, they don’t work properly. This means that abnormal signals may get passed from the compressed nerves, or may not get passed at all. Some symptoms of a herniated disc include: electric shock-like pain, tingling and numbness.

What is Chiropractic?


Chiropractic is a philosophy, science and art of things natural. It is a system of adjusting the segments of the spinal column, (often by hand) for the correction of the cause of disease. Chiropractic has been research and validated by the federal government for decades.

Chiropractic is safe and effective and has helped millions of people to restore their bodies to a greater level of health and wholeness. The chiropractic profession, with over 60,000 doctors, comprises the second largest health care field in the United States. The education process for a Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) is much like that of medical doctors (M.D.), dentists (D.D.S.) and osteopaths (D.O.).

The Doctor of Chiropractic must earn his degree after 4 years of undergraduate studies followed by 5 years of Chiropractic education at an accredited university. There is also a 2-year clinical internship required for the degree.

What makes Chiropractic different?

Every science of healing has what is known as an “avenue of approach.” For example, in the field of medicine, a hypodermic needle injects drugs through the skin or a pill is ingested into the stomach. There need not be anything wrong with the skin or stomach. They are the “avenues” through which the drugs gain access to the body.

Another “avenue of approach,” is the SPINE because it houses and protects the spinal cord — the “switchboard” of the nervous system — through which nerves pass from the brain to different parts of the body. The nerves leave the spinal cord through openings between movable spinal bones called vertebrae. Research shows that when these vertebrae degenerate or move out of proper alignment there can be interference with the normal activity of the nerves. This interference can disturb function throughout the body and can cause pain and disease.

Most conditions of ill health are the result of some underlying cause within the body. Research has developed specific techniques and technology for locating and correcting spinal misalignments that often cause pain and disturb nerve function in the organs, tissues, and cells of the body.

What causes the vertebra to be out of alignment?

Many things can cause spinal misalignments. Our bodies are stressed 24 hours a day. Stress encompasses all aspects of our existence. Posture, gravity, employment, sleep positions and emotional tension all accumulate to make our bodies constantly compensate. Auto accidents, work injuries and sports injuries are also often a more immediate cause of spinal trauma.

What causes the popping sound?

Most adjusting techniques never involve any popping or cracking. However, lubricating fluids separate the bones of each spinal joint. Some adjusting methods can produce a sound when the gas and fluids in the joint shift. It’s like removing a suction cup – it is NOT the bones cracking! This sound has nothing to do with the quality or value of the adjustment.

Can I “adjust” myself?


No. Some people can make their joints ‘pop’, but that’s not an adjustment! In fact, damage can occur by INDISCRIMINATELY mobilizing a joint, causing ligaments to weaken. The body will build up bone in these weakened ligaments over time to stabilize itself, causing osteoarthritis.

Chiropractic adjustments are specific and take years to master. Only a Doctor of Chiropractic is qualified to give an adjustment. Only the spinal joints that the doctor locates receive adjustments, allowing weakened muscles and ligaments to stabilize and health to be restored.

Do I have to come in for more than one treatment?

One adjustment usually cannot reverse a lifetime of compensating for day-to-day stresses. We will often prescribe a treatment plan that spans a specific period of time. It is important to remember that each treatment builds on the next. The body heals slowly, so your treatment plan will be determined by your condition.

Once I go to a Chiropractor, do I have to go forever?

Some people use chiropractic to relieve symptoms while others receive chiropractic to improve their overall health and quality of life. We try to educate our patients on the benefits of chiropractic care and allow each person to decide on the treatment that is right for them.

Levels of chiropractic care include relief care (symptom oriented), corrective care (correcting malfunctions) and maintenance care (fostering optimum joint and nervous system function). Just like you would go to a dentist forever to maintain good dental hygiene, we suggest that people get a periodic spinal check up.

This simple routine check up can help prevent joint injury, joint deterioration and improve nervous system function, which improves your over all health. The frequency of treatment depends on other lifestyle factors such as exercise, stress reduction and nutrition to name a few.

How can Chiropractic add comfort during pregnancy?

Chiropractic care during a pregnancy is an essential part of your prenatal care. During a normal pregnancy a tremendous amount of women experience back discomfort and pain. This is often due to the rapid growth of the baby and interference to your body’s structural adaptations to that growth. Preexisting unnoticed imbalances in your spine and pelvis become overtaxed during these times. The added stress to the body during the pregnancy often leads to discomfort and difficulty while performing routine, daily activities. Chiropractic care throughout the pregnancy can relieve and even prevent these discomforts experienced by the mother to be. Specific adjustments eliminate these stresses in your spine, restore balance and result in greater comfort and lifestyle improvements. The physicians at the Myrtle Beach Spine Center have extended training and board certifications to perform the necessary care during the pregnancy. Please visit for more information.

I was recently in a car accident and I feel pain in my neck and shoulders. I was taken to the ER and released with pain medication. I’m still having pain. Why do I still hurt?

Symptoms often take several days to manifest. Any sudden impact can place unnatural demand on the musculoskeletal system. Chiropractors are specifically trained in soft tissue damage as it is related to the neck and back. In addition, our office has successfully diagnosed and treated many whiplash injuries. We suggest you come into the office for an evaluation if you are still in pain.

I was diagnosed with a bulging disc. Surgery was recommended, but I’m afraid. Is there anything that a Chiropractor can do for this problem?


Depending on the nature and severity of the bulging disc, chiropractic decompression therapy along with corrective spinal adjustments and supportive rehabilitation has shown good results in the majority of cases. If the bulging disc is left untreated, it may become more severe and herniate. In order to determine your individual needs, it is necessary for you to be fully evaluated by a doctor in our office to determine if your condition can be helped with chiropractic or spinal decompression.

I have Sciatica, can you help?

Sciatica is an abnormal and painful condition of the sciatic nerve. Symptoms include pain, numbness and muscle weakness in the affected areas. The pain usually radiates into the buttocks, descends the back of the leg and sometimes into the foot. Chiropractic is the method of choice for correcting the cause of sciatica. If you have symptoms similar to this, you may have sciatica and should be evaluated in our office. The only thing you have to lose is your pain.

I have had headaches for many years. I’ve tried over-the-counter medications and various prescriptions and nothing has helped. Why do I continue to suffer?

Research has shown that many reoccurring headaches or migraines are related to the misalignment of one or more vertebrae in the neck or spasm of the small muscles that control head and neck movement. Often this condition gets worse with stress or poor posture. If left uncorrected headaches may last for years. If you have been suffering from migraines or chronic headaches, we advise you to have a chiropractic evaluation in our office.

I am an athlete and in the best shape of my life. What can Chiropractic do for me?

Chiropractic helps athletes perform at their optimal level. A balanced body will perform better with less risk for injuries. Many professional athletes, including Tiger Woods and Evander Holyfield, get regular chiropractic adjustments. They know that chiropractic helps them heal faster and keeps them performing at peak levels. Often the difference between first and third place is only a fraction of a second. In addition, chiropractic physicians are included as team doctors for many professional and Olympic teams.

Why hasn’t my doctor referred me to a Chiropractor for back pain?

The number one reason most medical professionals do not refer you to a chiropractor is because they probably don’t know one. Generally speaking, there are ten times more family physicians than chiropractors in any given town. Our office makes referrals to physicians whom we know and trust; your family physician probably does the same. Our office cooperates with many healthcare professionals and if your family physician has not referred you to a chiropractor, we would be happy to meet with your physician and co-manage your case.

What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS)? Can Chiropractic help?

CTS is defined as the entrapment of the median nerve as it passes deep to the transverse carpal ligament of the wrist. The nerve is pinched causing tingling and painful burning sensations to the fingers. Chiropractic utilizes adjustments and specific exercises that enable you to continue to use your wrist rather than immobilize it. We make corrections relieving pressure on the inflamed nerves. The inflammation stops; healing takes place. If you suffer from CTS, call our office today. We may be able to provide the relief you’ve been looking for.

My daughter always hunches her shoulder and slouches. Can Chiropractic help with her posture?


Your child’s posture is a good indication of her spinal alignment. As your daughter grows and develops, her posture is very important. Uncorrected poor posture can result in adult symptoms such as severe back pain, neck pain and headaches. With proper spinal rehabilitation and corrective chiropractic adjustments, your child’s poor posture can be dramatically improved. For more information on posture and spinal alignment call our office today. Remember, a balanced body is a better body – be your best in health!

Is there anything Chiropractic can do for stress and loss of energy?

A loss of energy may be caused by many different things and can be very serious. Often your body is overworked which leaves you feeling exhausted by the end of the day and a loss of energy can be related to poor posture. Poor posture can be a result of repetitive stress or old injuries that have gone uncorrected. With a chiropractic treatment plan including proper nutrition, exercise and spinal alignment, you may regain your lost energy. For more healthy tips visit our website.

I have arthritis – can Chiropractic help?

The word arthritis means joint inflammation and there are many types of arthritis. If you suffer from arthritis, we can help you plan an individualized treatment program to achieve maximal health benefits with minimal discomfort. We can help restore the lost range of motion to your joints, improve flexibility and endurance and increase your muscle tone and strength. Our office can also give you nutrition and supplementation advice that can be helpful in controlling and reducing joint inflammation. Just remember, the better your body moves, the better your body will age.

Do I have Fibromyalgia?

A person with pain, fatigue and a loss of motivation may be suffering from a chronic soft tissue disorder known as fibromyalgia. The most common symptoms are chronic fatigue, sleep disturbances, depression and anxiety. Associated symptoms may be headaches, pain, and numbness or tingling sensations. This can interfere with a person’s ability to work or perform daily activities. Years of prolonged sitting/standing excessive computer use and being physically overworked can contribute to these symptoms. For an evaluation to see if you have fibromyalgia, contact our office. You have nothing to lose but your pain.

Why should I get Chiropractic treatment while I am pregnant?

The uterus is supported by ligaments that attach to the pelvis. If the pelvic bones are misaligned, they can put tension on those ligaments. This can cause back pain, cramping, and a difficult labor. It is important to ensure that the pelvis is aligned properly to allow optimal movement during labor. Women who have undergone chiropractic adjustments during their pregnancy report that their labor is easier and less stressful on their bodies. Our Doctors are certified in perinatal care, contact the office today!

Should someone who has had neck or back surgery go to a Chiropractor?

Yes. Chiropractors are trained to adapt their techniques to almost any health condition. Chiropractic has been shown to help prevent future injuries. Past spinal surgeries should be clearly documented in your medical history and discussed with the Chiropractor on the first consultation. After spinal surgery, the quality of your post – operative rehab is a major factor in your success. If you are considering going to a Chiropractor, find an office that incorporates rehab. Call our office today for more information.

I’m 55 years old with pain and stiffness in my lower back, hips, and knees. Am I “just getting older?”

“Just getting older” is no excuse for poor strength and lack of flexibility. We will identify your physical needs and recommend a total health maintenance program for you. This could involve specific nutritional and exercise protocols designed to improve strength and prevent illness. Periodic adjustments would be recommended to help restore circulation, flexibility, and proper body alignment. Remember, the better your body moves, the better your body will age! Be your best in health! Call us for additional information.

I am interested in seeing a Chiropractor, but I don’t know which one is right for me. Where do I begin?

Choosing any healthcare provider can be difficult. Quality of care usually speaks for itself in the form of referrals from friends and family. Key considerations you should have: Does the office treat children and adults? Do they offer other services such as, rehab, massage, or nutrition? Do they accept insurance? Are the office hours and location convenient for your schedule? Does the Doctor use X-rays before treatment? For answers to these particular questions, please review our website or call the office.

My brother has gone to a Chiropractor for many years and gets “adjusted” every month. Why does he do this?

Chiropractors “adjust” to help reduce joint pain, swelling, and tight muscles. An adjustment can restore ligament and muscle flexibility, tone, and coordination. It improves alignment of new connective tissues after injury or surgery and can prevent scar tissue, stiffness, and degeneration of spinal joints. Spinal manipulation can also promote quicker healing. Periodic adjustments will reduce the risk of re-injury and prevent further damage to the spine. It sounds like your brother values health, do you?

I don’t know if I can afford Chiropractic treatment. Is it expensive?

By every test of cost and effectiveness, compared to most other medical procedures evidence shows Chiropractic to provide important health benefits, at economical costs. Our office accepts and files Insurance, Medicare, and Medicaid for you. In fact, many patients who cannot afford health insurance can afford our fees. Our office may offer a complementary consultation and once the doctor has determined what procedures need to be done, charges are discussed with you before services are rendered. To schedule a consultation, call us today.

What is “whiplash” in your neck?


Whiplash is a hyperflexion-hyperextension injury that involves a strain-sprain of the soft tissues of the cervical spine. It may be caused by car accidents, work or sport related injuries. Whiplash can cause injuries to muscles and decrease function resulting in muscles spasms, stiffness and inflammation. Pain after an accident may be immediate or occur within 24 hours to weeks after trauma. Pain may be located in the shoulders, neck and mid back area and may be accompanied by headaches. If you think you’ve suffered whiplash, contact our office immediately for an evaluation.

What is TMJ? Can you help?

Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ) can result from alteration of less than 1 mm in the space of the TM joint. Proper movement of the lower jaw is regulated by the head and neck muscles. The coordination of these muscles is linked to the first and second vertebrae of the cervical spine. Symptoms of TMJ disorder include: muscular pain, nausea, sleeplessness, jaw pain, and clicking sounds. A Chiropractor may need to adjust the cervical spine to correct the displacement of TM joints. Along with the adjustment a supportive mouth piece is often recommended.

Can a Chiropractor help me lose weight?

Yes. Most Chiropractic Physicians are well trained in total health and wellness. Often people get “out of shape” because they have difficulty moving due to joint pain or poor nutritional habits. Losing weight requires a change in lifestyle, effective nutritional counseling, specific exercises, and emotional support. A Chiropractor has extensive training in nutrition and exercise science and may be a good coach. We can design a total wellness plan that will meet your specific weight loss needs.

I suffer from migraine headaches and have been taking medicine for many years, but they still won’t go away. Can you help me?

Chiropractors correct the cause of a patient’s health problem rather than give painkillers and other drugs, which only treat the symptoms. Chiropractic specializes in restoring the body to its proper function and alignment. Often migraine headaches are a result of inadequate blood and nerve supply to the head because the delicate muscles and soft tissues of the neck and head are malfunctioning. When these structures are irritated, headaches may result. Call us for more information.

I am in my early 20s and am having back pain, am I too young for this?

Regardless of age, low back pain is very common; about 85% of the population will experience it at least once during their lifetime. Most often the nerves exiting between your spinal bones can become impinged or irritated. Covering up the pain with medication can ignore the underlying cause and often delay the healing process. Chiropractors gently and painlessly realign your spinal column releasing pressure on your nerves so your entire body may function at its optimum. Contact our office for more information.

I have a clicking and popping noise inside my neck, is that normal?

No. This is not a normal sign. However, this may be a sign of unstable spinal bones and ligaments, weak muscles, or even the early signs of spinal arthritis. This condition can be corrected if it is detected and treated soon enough, before any permanent damage is done. A personalized corrective care plan should be designed for you to restore, strengthen and prevent any future problems. If you are concerned with a grinding, popping, or clicking noise in your neck or back, call us today for a consultation.

I was recently in a car accident – what should I do?

Anyone who has been in an accident or trauma should see a chiropractor. Every trauma, even a mild one, has the potential to cause abnormal stress in your spine. It is an unfortunate fact that over half of the victims of auto accidents never fully recover. This can upset body balance, compress your nerves and affect your overall health. Although many accidents may be unavoidable, much of the pain and suffering resulting from the injuries may be avoided with chiropractic care. Contact our office today.

What are trigger points and can Chiropractic help with my muscle spasms?

Trigger points are tender, sensitive areas that can be exquisitely painful. They may refer pain to other areas of the body and are common in chronic muscle spasms, strains, sprains and joint problems. The Chiropractic adjustment removes severe stress from the spine, nerves and other soft tissues including muscles, bones, joints, and ligaments. This permits your body to function better, thus promoting faster healing. A balanced body is less likely to suffer from muscle spasms and trigger points. Contact our office for more information!

How do I know if I have Scoliosis?

A change in your posture is usually the first sign that you or your child may have an abnormal curvature of the spine. Scoliosis is predominately found in females. X-ray is one tool used by Chiropractors to detect and measure scoliosis. No one dies from scoliosis, but in some cases, a person can have breathing or heart problems if the curve is very severe. Many cases of scoliosis go undiagnosed. Scoliosis sufferers should be under chiropractic care to restore their postural abnormalities. If you suspect a problem contact our office today.