Primary Spine Care
What Is Primary Spine Care
Primary Spine Care (PSC) represents the first line physician referral option for the evaluation of all spinal related issues and subsequently, the management of these issues other than fracture, tumor or infection. Consequently, PSC must be provided by a physician who is qualified as a Primary Spine Care Provider (PSCP).
Respectively, a PSCP can also be regarded as a Primary Spine Care Physician or a Spine Management Physician since the primary role of a PSCP is spinal management. Identifying this is a physician provider is important because non-physician providers classify the consequences of spinal disorders and by licensure do not differentially diagnose the underlying cause of the spinal disorder and injury. Conversely, while physician providers may describe the consequences of a spinal disorder, a physician provider has autonomy and is fully licensed to differentially diagnose the underlying cause of spinal disorders and injuries.
When you see a PSCP, you can regard it as having an appointment with a physician for spine management. Many people are familiar with patients being referred to a medical or osteopathic physician for pain management. However, pain management is not the starting place for someone with a spinal related issue. So, what is the starting point? Save for a medical emergency, the starting point should be spine management from a physician qualified as a Primary Spine Care Provider.
Another important thing to understand is the purpose of spine management is getting an accurate diagnosis of the underlying spinal condition before treatment begins. Often times when people see a chiropractor, they think of seeing them for an adjustment. While this is typically a primary aspect of the treatment rendered, the most important step is an evaluation to obtain an accurate diagnosis. Consequently, once a specific diagnosis is rendered, it is then and only then that treatment can be recommended.
In some cases, patients will need to be referred and co-managed by another medical specialist such as an orthopedic spine surgeon, neurosurgeon or pain management physician. In other words, while spine management is the starting point of care when a referral is indicated, co-management with a PSCP means a patient will continue with spine management for non-specialist related spinal care.
Regarding treatment, you will notice in reviewing the site, Dr. Erickson’s treatment approach falls under a category of chiropractic called STRUCTURAL CORRECTION which is different than conventional methods of chiropractic that most chiropractors utilize.
In addition to structural corrective care, you will see below that Dr. Erickson has extensive post-graduate training having completed a 2-year Fellowship in Spinal Biomechanics and Trauma* along with becoming Trauma Qualified**, Primary Spine Care Qualified** and Interprofessional Hospital Qualified** through the Academy of Chiropractic.
What this essentially means is that Dr. Erickson is a physician that has additional post-graduate training enabling him to focus his practice in non-surgical PRIMARY SPINE CARE. The extensive post-graduate training has provided him with additional knowledge to better diagnose and manage a wider variety of spinal issues.
You can also think of PRIMARY SPINE CARE like Primary Care except for the spine. A Primary Care Physician (PCP) is a physician who typically provides both the first contact for a person with an undiagnosed health concern as well as continuing care of a variety of medical conditions. However, a PCP’s focus is typically not in the care of the spine. That is not to say a PCP does not see patients with spinal issues, as many patients with a spine issue go to their PCP first. However, many PCP’s are extremely busy providing services for non-spine related issues. This is where a Doctor of Chiropractic having extensive post-graduate training in Primary Spine Care can step in and unburden the very busy PCP, by taking over the first-line role in the diagnosis and management of patients with spine-related issues.
As a Doctor of Chiropractic who focuses on PRIMARY SPINE CARE, Dr. Erickson coordinates with your PCP, as well as coordinates with pain management doctors, physical medicine and rehabilitation doctors, neurologists, orthopedic surgeons, orthopedic spine surgeons and neurosurgeons. In addition, Dr. Erickson can also coordinate with other health care providers like a nurse practitioner, physical therapist or massage therapist.
In other words, beyond providing structural corrective care, Dr. Erickson’s practice focus is in PRIMARY SPINE CARE and as such he is a physician you see for spine management. Thus, he is not just a Doctor where you go get your spine aligned, he is also a Doctor where you go to have your spine thoroughly examined, to have additional diagnostic tests ordered (X-rays, MRI, CT, Bone Scan, Nerve Testing and Spine Engineering Studies) when necessary, as well as a Doctor who coordinates care with other providers that may be needed beyond the treatment methods he provides.
A Doctor of Chiropractic who focuses on PRIMARY SPINE CARE also plays a role in helping patients recover from their spinal issues without drugs and surgery. On the back of the current opioid epidemic, there is a great need in the public for patients to have a provider who can help diagnose and manage their spine-related issues and coordinate care as indicated and this is where Dr. Erickson plays a key role in the health care delivery system.
Further, while Dr. Erickson’s primary focus is PRIMARY SPINE CARE, he has an additional area of focus in the non-surgical diagnosis, management and treatment of extremity related issues. While attending Palmer College of Chiropractic, Dr. Erickson had extensive extraspinal training outside the primary curriculum through Palmer College of Chiropractic’s Sports Injury Club. Subsequent to this the training, he underwent rigorous testing and became an intern the Sports Injury Club where he helped to teach fellow chiropractic students as well as seasoned Doctors of Chiropractic in diagnosing, managing and treating extremity related issues.
Also, as part of his fellowship program in Spinal Biomechanics and Trauma, Dr. Erickson further enhanced his training in extremity care when he completed an observational clinical and orthopedic surgical rotation. Thus, Dr. Erickson has extensive graduate and post-graduate training with extraspinal issues (TMJ, shoulders, elbows, wrists/hands, hips, knees and ankles/feet). In total, Dr. Erickson has over 20 years of clinical experience in spine and extremity care and through his training, he is able to manage a variety of complex spine and extremity issues. As such, while his primary focus is PRIMARY SPINE CARE, Dr. Erickson is unique in that he has an additional area of focus in the non-surgical diagnosis, management and treatment of extremity related issues.
You can learn more about the extensive post-graduate training Dr. Erickson has completed to focus his practice in PRIMARY SPINE CARE by clicking on the link ABOUT DR. ERICKSON.