Why Car Accident Victims Should Seek Chiropractic Care

Being involved in a car accident can be one of the most traumatizing events in a person’s life, both physically and emotionally. While no one ever wants to be in an automobile accident, it is important to know how to proceed with treating your injuries should you ever be involved in one. Visiting a chiropractor for evaluation and care is always one of the first things you should do, as these healthcare professionals specialize in treating many of the most common automobile accident-related injuries there are.

In most non-emergency car accident situations, symptoms may not appear until days after the collision, and some injuries don’t present themselves until months prior! Whiplash, in particular, tends to take weeks to present symptoms, and this is one of the most common injuries caused by auto accidents. Some severe cases of whiplash can manifest for up to two years following an auto accident, which is why it is important to always visit a chiropractor for an evaluation, even if you think there may not be a serious injury present. When you treat an injury like this right away, you are putting the body in the best possible position to heal and recover quickly, and most importantly, reduce the risk of causing permanent damage to your back.

The most common symptoms following an auto accident are neck pain, headaches, upper back and shoulder pain, lower back pain, stiff and sore muscles, and even chronic fatigue and mood changes. Whiplash can also result in lower back injuries, muscle injuries, ligament problems, and disc damage. A study done by the University of Bristol concluded that 93% of patients with a whiplash diagnosis responded favorably to chiropractic treatment. Gulf Coast Sport and Spine specializes in soft-tissue injuries that are the result of motor vehicle accidents; a soft-tissue injury can be permanent. Scar tissue can form in your muscles leaving them less flexible and prone to re-injury in the future without treatment. High-speed collisions are not the only ones that can cause damage; many injuries from car accidents occur at speeds less than 20 MPH. In fact, the Journal of Brain Injury published a study that concluded the following: “The amount of damage to the automobile bears little relation to the force applied to the cervical spine (neck) of the occupants.”  In other words, even “minor” accidents are enough to cause significant injury to the spines of accident victims. Moreover, being in a minor accident often increases the chance of victims ignoring their injuries until they get worse.

The best advice I can give anyone who is involved in a car crash is to seek chiropractic care immediately, whether you are experiencing pain or not! Most medical professionals agree that the first 72 hours after an accident are critical, and that is the time treatment can be most effective. The treatment plan for PREVENTING pain is a much quicker and enjoyable process for the patient, as opposed to the treatment plan for RESOLVING pain which can be a much longer time-frame and is more rigorous on the patient. Statistics show the longer you wait for treatment after you are injured, the longer it takes to heal and more treatments are required. Many injuries will not heal on their own. Prompt functional treatment can restore normal function and prevent complications in the future.

Another reason to seek treatment in a prompt manner is to preserve your legal rights and supports any claims you might make regarding accident injuries that involve insurance companies and legal counsel. Many insurance companies set a time limit on claiming injuries related to car accidents. If you wait too long to see a chiropractor and end up with an injury outside of the designated time period, you could lose valuable coverage for treating the injury. The doctors at Gulf Coast Sport and Spine work with various personal injury lawyers in the area, and can give our patients recommendations if they feel the need for legal representation. Insurance companies have lawyers to protect them…shouldn’t you?

The Mystery of Frozen Shoulder

Frozen Shoulder and Treatment

Frozen shoulder, AKA adhesive capsulitis, is inflammation of the capsule in the shoulder joint and therefore causes pain and stiffness in the shoulder. The shoulder is a ball-and-socket joint with a capsule that surrounds the joint. Frozen shoulder causes the capsule to becomes inflamed and thickened which results in less synovial fluid (lubrication) and the formation of adhesions in the joint. Pain is present with active and passive range of motion. This means pain is produced when the patient moves the arm him/herself and when the arm is relaxed and moved for him/her by the doctor. The cause is not fully understood, and seems to have no connection with previous injury, arm dominance, or occupation. Certain risk factors can increase the chance of developing this condition. The most prevalent risk factor is diabetes while others include stroke, thyroid disease, cardiac disease, lung disease, RA, and other autoimmune conditions.

Frozen Shoulder and Treatment - Metairie Louisiana - Chiropractic Remedies

Frozen shoulder occurs in 3 stages:

  1. Freezing (Painful) Phase: pain continues to get worse and worse with severe night pain.  As the pain worsens the shoulder losses range of motion. This typically lasts 6 weeks to 9 months but can be shortened with chiropractic treatments.
  2. Frozen (Stiff) Phase: pain may actually improve, but range of motion is greatly diminished. Daily activities become increasingly difficult, if not impossible to perform.  Activities such as tucking in the back of one’s shirt, reaching for a high shelf, combing hair, or fastening a bra. This typically lasts 4-6 months but can be shortened with chiropractic treatment.
  3. Thawing (Resolving) Phase: pain and range of motion slowly improve. This typically lasts 6 months to 2 years depending on the shoulder severity and the timing of chiropractic remedy.

Affects of Frozen Shoulder

Many women between the ages of 40-60 are affected by Frozen shoulder, which is estimated to be 2-5 percent of the population. It is referred to as “Fifties Shoulder” in Japan. Schedule an appointment with our chiropractic office in Metairie if you have the symptoms of Frozen Shoulder.

Frozen shoulder can take up to 30 months to fully resolve if left untreated. In most cases, treatment with the Niel-Asher Technique (NAT) will speed up recovery by about 10 times. NAT focuses on trigger point therapy to the long head of the biceps and in the muscles that make up the rotator cuff. Along with the trigger point therapy, adjustments to the upper cervical spine and mild physical therapy have been proven to speed up the process of this condition. NAT is a “hands-on” method that utilizes the body’s natural healing mechanisms.

Patients may call our office in Metairie to set up an appointment with Dr. LeBourgeois and he can treat your Frozen Shoulder with chiropractic remedies. Our office provides chiropractic services and a convenient location adjacent to East Jeff Hospital in Doctor’s Row.  Please feel free to call our office at (504) 372-4062 or send us a message from our contact page.

Sciatica Is A Real Pain In The Butt!

Sciatica Nerve Pain and Sciatica Treatment - Metairie Louisiana


Sciatica refers to pain that radiates along the path of the sciatic nerve, which branches from your lower back through your hips and buttocks and down each leg. The sciatic nerve is the longest and widest nerve in the body, which causes it to be easily irritated. The symptoms of sciatica are pain, tingling, or weakness in the lower extremity that starts from the lumbar or pelvic region and radiates down the back of the leg to the foot.

There are many causes of sciatic nerve irritation or compression:

  • Herniated or bulging disc compressing the sciatic nerve
  • Spinal stenosis (narrowing of the spinal cord or exiting nerve roots between each vertebrae) as a result of a disc herniation or degenerative disc disease
  • Piriformis Syndrome which is a condition in which the piriformis muscle, located deep in the buttock region, spasms and pinches the sciatic nerve
  • Pregnancy due to the extra weight and stress put on the spine, in addition of altered pelvic biomechanics which occurs as the baby grows

Although the pain associated with sciatica can be severe, the majority of cases resolve with conservative treatment within a few weeks. The most common treatment protocols for sciatica include:

  • Chiropractic adjustments to realign and mobilize the spine to take pressure off of the nerve
  • Decompression therapy to rehydrate and removed the increased pressure on the intervertebral disc
  • Myofascial release to the piriformis muscle
  • Rehabilitation to the core and pelvic muscles

The Benefits of Chiropractic Care To Pregnant Patients


Chiropractic Care - Pain Relief -Metairie - Louisiana - Pregnancy Care

Chiropractic care throughout pregnancy is becoming a more accepted and more common practice utilized by expecting mothers; in fact, many Obstetricians are now encouraging and referring their patients to chiropractors. A properly aligned spine and hips can help make pregnancy and delivery more comfortable. The old way of thinking was, “pregnancy is supposed to be uncomfortable and sometimes painful”, or “well, it’s only for a few months”. By getting regular adjustments throughout pregnancy, this process can be much more pleasant than women think.

The most common complaint throughout pregnancy is low back pain. This is due to spinal dysfunction related to changing load distributions within the motion segments of the lumbar spine and sacroiliac joints. As the fetus develops during gestation, this weight is projected forward and the lumbar lordosis is increased, placing extra stress on the intervertebral disks and facet joints. Also, as the baby grows, the body is required to make room for the baby; it does this by expanding the pelvic ring. However, if the pelvis is not moving properly, this altered motion can stress the muscles and compress spinal nerves resulting in symptoms such as muscle spasm, sciatica, leg pain, and sharp pains in the low back area. Other common symptoms during pregnancy are headaches, carpal tunnel, rib pain, and nausea; and yes, chiropractic care can help with all of these symptoms listed!

Pain relief is not the only reason chiropractic care is beneficial to pregnant women. Proper spinal and pelvic alignment allows room for the baby to grow, develop, and move. This reduces the risk of having a breeched baby. If an expected mother discovers that her unborn child is in the breeched position, a Doctor of Chiropractic skilled in the Webster In-Utero Technique can naturally correct the baby’s position.

Most women who receive chiropractic care throughout their pregnancy experience a faster delivery which is much safer for both mom and baby; a properly aligned pelvis allows more room for the baby to enter the world with little resistance, and greatly reduces the risk of the Ob to have to resort to suctions, fracturing the child’s clavicle, or performing an emergency C-section.

Chiropractic adjustments are completely safe to both mother and baby; there are no known contraindications to chiropractic care during pregnancy. The ligamentous laxity brought on by pregnancy often makes adjusting comparatively easy using the gentlest of movements. The equipment used when adjusting pregnant patients is specifically tailored for both safety and comfort.