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Sept. 20 2006 12:00 AM

            Among the many choices for the treatment of spinal disorders, Physicians Neck & Back Clinics (PNBC) is unique: With five locations in Minnesota, each facility delivers services that have been proven to directly contribute to better long-term outcomes for patients. Is it really cost-effective if days after getting treatment, a client's right back where he started?

            After a back or neck injury, the body automatically begins the healing process, with most healing completed in seven to eight weeks. Symptoms persisting beyond this point are known as chronic. Traditional passive therapies, considered effective treatment during the acute phase (up to eight weeks) of an injury, lose their efficacy once symptoms become chronic. That's where PNBC comes in. "We've proven that long-term relief results from improved spinal fitness," says Brian Nelson, MD, Medical Director.

            Patients of PNBC agree that increasing fitness levels, rather than resting injuries, is the best method of regaining their health. "Over the past few years, I have received treatment for my low back injury and spent countless hours with numerous procedures and therapies," says a satisfied patient named Keith.  "Overall, some have provided limited relief and some increased the pain symptoms. After treatment at PNBC, my pain has decreased, my strength has increased and my flexibility has increased. My only regret is that I didn't go through this program before I had surgery. I could have saved thousands of dollars by using this treatment program."

            They must be doing something right. Since founding PNBC in 1990, Nelson, along with his partners Chuck Kelly, MD and Joe Wegner, MD and staff have treated over 40,000 patients. As medical evidence shows, most patients with chronic spinal pain have weakened spinal muscles and stiff joints caused by disuse. PNBC uses isolated strengthening exercises to recondition the spinal structures and supporting tissue. In three of four cases, PNBC patients achieve long-term restoration of spinal function, activity level and personal independence with little or no need for recurrent medical care.

            Near the end of their treatment at PNBC, patients are instructed in-home exercises, typically adequate to maintain their achieved strength gains. These exercises, however, do not allow for further increases in strength. Therefore, based on feedback from their patients who wanted more, PNBC initiated their CORE Spinal Fitness Program in November 2004 a program designed to directly complement PNBC's rehab program.

The CORE is a program for patients who want to continue increasing their spinal strength once discharged from PNBC. The CORE utilizes equipment similar to that used in PNBC's rehab program, and takes it a step further. The state-of-the-art equipment, which isolates the core muscle groups, is rarely found at heath clubs. For a nominal fee, patients can use the equipment independently, yet have access to professional staff on site for questions and concerns regarding form, technique and weight progression at no extra cost and with no appointments necessary.


            For more information, please visit the Web site at


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