Patients with Lumbar Disc Herniation (LDH) may require hospitalization due to severe pain and consequent disability, but should consider less invasive treatment options before surgery. We report the short-term effects of an integrative treatment for LDH inpatients. We selected 208 inpatients with LDH since June 2012. The demographic characteristics, numeric rating scale (NRS), Oswestry disability index (ODI) for low back and leg pain, lumbar flexion, extension angle and straight leg raising (SLR) scales were assessed at admission (baseline) and discharge. The patients received the following treatment; herbal medicine, bee venom acupuncture, acupuncture, and Chuna. The study population had a mean age of 41.1±12.7 years, and 48 % of the patients were male. The onset of low back or leg pain was 381.9±898.4 days, and the distribution was 34 % acute (<4 wks), 17 % sub-acute (4∼12 wks), and 49 % chronic (≥12 wks). Duration of hospitalization was 20.9±12.1 days. The classification of disc herniation type by MRI was 88 (42%) protrusion, 49 (24%) extrusion and 71 (34%) protrusion with extrusion. The NRS of low back and leg pain and ODI was 5.6±2.3, 4.9±2.8 and 45.5±20.0 at baseline and 2.8±1.8, 2.7±1.9 and 27.2±14.1 at discharge, respectively. The results show a statistically significant decrease from baseline (P<0.0001). In the clinical examination, the ROM of lumbar flexion and extension, and SLR was 70.0±27.1, 15.4±7.2 and 61.3±23.0 at baseline and 80.5±16.9, 18.3±4.2 and 73.2±14.0 at discharge, respectively (P<0.0001). Furthermore, regarding patient satisfaction with the treatment, patients reported: excellent (34%), good (55%), fair (10%), poor (1%) and very poor (0%), showing that 87 % were satisfied with the treatment. In the present study, the LDH patients reported high levels of satisfaction and effectiveness of nonsurgical integrative treatment in the short term.
© 2013 Published by Elsevier Inc.