2003 Volume 9 Issue 1 Pages 102-106
For lumbar disk herniation, conservative treatments such as medication, physical therapy and neural injection have achieved successful outcomes, with while the time required for the improvement of to improve the clinical symptoms and neural deficit variesd. For the competitive athlete, the optimal management should be designed to completely relieve the lumbago and sciatica, enabling a return to a pre-injury level of sports activity as rapidly as possible. From 1997 to 2002, 55 athletes (43 men, 12 women) were conservatively treated for the lumbar disk herniation at our institute. The teratment included a combination of caudal injection, nerve root injection and stretching exercises for the initial 3 weeks, followed by strengthening exercise of the trunk muscles. Pain relief was achieved within 3 weeks in 29 patients (52.7%), and 45 patients (81.8%) returned to previous levels of their sports activity on an average of 15.6 months. Only 4 patients, who had no improvement of the initial symptoms at 3 weeks or complained of pain during the sports activity at 6 weeks, underwent surgery.