1. Meniscus injury doesn't need surgery

    The knee surgery you don't need

    A torn meniscus injury means knee surgery, right? That's what your surgeon would like you to believe. But he's a surgeon -- so of course he wants you to believe that.

    When you believe, he makes money.

    But there's another way.

    I've been able to heal meniscus problems, including a torn meniscus, without my patients going anywhere near a scalpel -- and new research shows how my approach could work for anyone.

    It could work for anyone because in nearly every case, surgery is completely unnecessary.

    In the new study, 146 patients with a meniscus injury were sent into the operating room -- and while all of them had their knees surgically opened, only 70 of them actually had the meniscus repaired and damaged tissue removed.

    The rest had a sham surgery, where the doctors pretended to do the work -- right down to calling for the same instruments -- but didn't actually touch the meniscus injury or remove any damaged tissue.

    If there was a difference, the patients couldn't tell. Both groups had roughly the same improvements in pain and the same level of satisfaction with the procedure. They were so happy with the outcome that 96 percent of those who had the sham procedure said they'd willingly do it again if they had to, compared to 93 percent of those who had real surgery.

    Already, mainstream orthopedic surgeons are making excuses for the study -- but most of them aren't out to save knees.

    They're trying to save their jobs -- because meniscus surgery is one of the most common and lucrative orthopedic procedures in the nation. Every year, 700,000 Americans have it done at a cost of roughly $5,000 a piece.

    That's $3.5 billion a year on unnecessary meniscus surgeries.

    Since much of the pain of a meniscus jury tear comes from the inflammation that accompanies it, the researchers behind the new study are recommending anti-inflammatory drugs along with physical therapy instead of surgery.

    They've got it half right.

    Pass on the drugs (and their side effects) and try drug-free approaches for pain relief instead -- including natural anti-inflammatories such as curcumin or MSM as well as pain treatments such as acupuncture and cold laser.

    But don't stop there. The researchers are correct when they recommend physical therapy -- because other studies have shown that a little PT can be as effective as surgery, but without the scalpel.

  2. Steroid shot no help for back pain

    Just say 'no' to epidurals for back pain

    It's one of the most common approaches to back pain -- one that's used by mainstream docs so often that you almost certainly know someone who's had it.

    Maybe you've even gone through it yourself.

    It's an epidural, a powerful steroid shot delivered right into the spine -- and if you're like most people, you might even think it worked.

    After all, new research confirms you can get about two months of relief from that injection -- and next time you visit the doctor and he recommends a steroid shot, he'll probably be quick to point that out.

    But there's another side to this study that he won't be so willing to talk about -- and that's the fact that patients who get saline placebo injections enjoy the same two months of relief.

    Getting a steroid shot, of course, is expensive and dangerous, with studies showing they can weaken bone over time and increase the risk of breaks and fractures.

    Saline is cheap and safe, but since doctors can't earn much money selling it, they're not likely to start recommending it over big-money steroid shots anytime soon.

    But maybe they should, because this might be more than just the placebo response at work. It could be that the saline itself is therapeutic, that as it rushes through the spine it can reduce inflammation, clean up scar tissue and even restore the flow of blood to damaged nerves, according to the review of 43 studies involving more than 3,600 patients combined.

    That certainly makes sense to me.

    After all, we've seen these results before -- in study after study, placebo injections have matched steroid shots and even shots with other drugs in them, including a study I told you about just a few months back. (You can read more about that one right here.)

    I'm not saying you should rush out for saline injections (although in some cases it might not be the worst idea around).

    What I am saying is that there are clearly much better options for relief from back pain -- and that's true whether your pain is in the upper back, lower back, neck, shoulders or right down the middle.

    For starters, try natural anti-inflammatory supplements such as MSM, bromelain, and turmeric. For more chronic pain -- especially the "non-specific" pain your doc can't quite seem to figure out -- consider the natural pain-beating techniques that have helped millions around the world, including acupuncture, cold laser, chiropractic and even a good massage.

    If the problem doesn't go away over time -- as most cases of back pain do -- you may need a little more help. And by that, I don't mean drugs, shots or surgery.

    You need a doctor who can find the source of your pain, whether it's a posture problem, an undiagnosed injury or something else entirely.

    Once you find the cause, you can get to work on the cure -- and you'll be amazed at how often that cure is little more than an adjustment to how you sit or a few months of gentle physical therapy... not drugs, surgery or a steroid shot.

    Ready to get started? Speak to a holistic medical doctor today.

  3. Codeine side effects make you more sensitive to pain

    Codeine can make your pain worse and in some cases even cause completely different forms of pain, according to new research.
  4. Prescription painkillers increase heart risk

    Common NSAID painkillers can increase the risk of heart attack and death, according to a new study.
  5. Cure back pain with natural anti-inflammatories

    You don't need drugs or surgery to beat back pain. Try these safe all-natural treatments instead.
  6. Common pain meds increase risk after heart attack

    Some of the most commonly used painkillers can increase the risk of a heart attack or even death in patients who've already had a heart attack.
  7. How seniors get hooked on painkillers

    One minute, you're a healthy and active senior who wouldn't dream of popping an Advil, much less a powerful prescription painkiller. The next, you're a certified addict who can't get through the day without an opioid drug.

7 Item(s)