Quite often, Dr. Nathan sees patients who have never been to a Chiropractor in their lifetime. This page helps to explain what you can expect during your first appointment with Dr. Nathan.
After reviewing the intake form, Dr. Nathan will go over a medical history of the presenting complaints. The doctor and patient will discuss related areas which include causes, patterns, severity, aggravating and relieving factors, family history, associated symptoms, etc. The history serves as an essential component towards developing a probable diagnosis.
After completing the history, a physical exam of the affected area will be conducted. During the exam process various tests will be performed such as range of motion, strength, neurological function, and orthopaedic tests.
The physical exam will allow Dr. Nathan to gain more information about the patient’s condition and what is causing the issue. Often times, the patient’s complaint is associated with pain. It is important to determine the pain generator in order to fix the problem. It could be muscular, skeletal, soft tissue, joint, or a combination. Usually there are multiple factors at play which are contributing to a patient’s complaint. Gathering as much information as possible is crucial in developing a reasonable and effective diagnosis, and thus better treatment. If Chiropractic is the appropriate treatment, then the rationale will be explained. If Chiropractic is not the appropriate path to take, then Dr. Nathan will explain how alternative forms of treatment can help.
Are x-rays part of the exam?
In certain cases, Dr. Nathan will advise the patient to receive x-rays before commencing with treatment. However, Dr. Nathan does not offer x-rays from his office.
If x-rays have been performed in the past, it is helpful if they are brought into the office for review. Dr. Nathan is happy to go over the x-rays with you and explain what they mean in plain English.
X-rays can prove useful in some cases, but for many people x-rays will not change the course of treatment. Moreover, using x-rays alone to definitively diagnose an issue is often incomplete. Without x-rays to determine what is ‘normal’ for the patient prior to the complaint arising, it is difficult to draw a causative relationship from x-rays done after the patient presents to the doctor’s office.
If Chiropractic care is appropriate, then treatment will start on the first visit. Dr. Nathan will explain the treatment process and how it can benefit the patient. Dr. Nathan’s patients understand how a Chiropractic adjustment will help to restore normal function and movement to areas that are dysfunctional, thus relieving pain.
Dr. Nathan uses a variety of soft tissue treatment techniques such as Active Release Technique (ART), instrument assisted soft tissue manipulation (IASTM), trigger point therapy, and myofascial release. The primary goal of each treatment is for the patient to feel improvements as quickly as possible. Dr. Nathan will also recommend to the patient some beneficial exercises and stretches, lifestyle modifications, and nutritional advice. After the treatment, Dr. Nathan will explain what to expect in the days following. The focus is to educate the patient on ways to get better, prevent further injury, and stay healthy so the patient can enjoy their life without pain.