Skip to main content

Physical therapist treating someone for back pain

Before having spinal fusion surgery, people with degenerative disk disease should first try physical therapy.

A study by Thomas Jefferson University Hospital ("Operative and Nonoperative Treatment Approaches for Lumbar Degenerative Disc Disease Have Similar Long-Term Clinical Outcomes" - September 15, 2013) found that patients with back pain and disk disease did not show a major difference in pain, health status, satisfaction, or disability whether they had surgery or received nonoperative treatment."

This is good news for patients who want to avoid going under the knife. Conservative treatment options, such as physical therapy, are recommended first for most back pain. Now a study shows they can be as effective as surgery, without the risks.

Physical therapists are movement experts. They improve quality of life through hands-on care, patient education, and prescribed movement. You can contact a physical therapist directly for an evaluation. To find a physical therapist in your area, visit Find a PT.

Find a PT Near You!


Related Resources

Additional Information

Access additional Did You Know? pages.

Is this content helpful?

Thanks for the feedback!

Thank you. Your feedback has been sent.

You Might Also Like...

Health Tips

7 Exercises For Healthy Aging

Sep 9, 2021

Including the following exercises into your daily physical activity routine can help you keep your strength, agility, and balance so you can age well.

Patient Stories

Triathlete Who Is Legally Blind Relies on Physical Therapists to Keep Moving

Jul 23, 2021

"The physical therapist and the physical therapy treatment are the only things that have allowed me to be where I am right now."

Health Tips

How Medicare Determines Payment For Therapy in Nursing Homes or Home Health Care

May 18, 2021

If you receive physical therapy, occupational therapy, and/or speech-language language pathology services through a nursing home or home health agency,