Health Professional Radio – Knock Out Pain
Neal Howard: Hello and welcome to the program, I’m your host Neal Howard. Thank you for joining us today on Health Professional Radio. Our guest in studio is Dr. Winifred Bragg, she’s an author of ‘Knockout Pain: Secrets to Maintain a Healthy Back,’ but she’s also an expert in providing non-surgical treatment for injuries and pain resulting from spinal and orthopedic conditions. She’s been featured on all the major US television networks as well as in Red Book, Women’s World and Self Magazine and she’s here today with us on Health Professional Radio to discuss her brand new book, Knockout Pain and to talk about the O’s of LIFE that contribute to back pain. Welcome to Health Professional Radio Dr. Bragg.
Dr. Winifred Bragg: Thank you for having me Neal. How are you today?
N: I’m doing very well, thank you so much for asking. Hope that you’re doing well too.
B: I am.
N: Great. You’re an expert in providing non-surgical treatment for injuries and pain resulting as I said from spinal and orthopedic conditions. So we’re talking basically you’re an expert in providing care of those suffering from back pain. Talk a little bit about your background and we’ll get right into your new book.
B: Okay Neal. Well I did my undergraduate training at the University of Alabama and from there I did my Medical School training in Nashville, Tennessee at Meharry Medical College, I did an internship at Baptist Medical Center back in Birmingham and my residency training at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
N: What was it that prompted you to specialize in back pains as opposed to other specialties?
B: Well prior to going to medical school for a couple years I worked as a disability examiner where you would evaluate people’s files for self-security disability. What I found is a lot of people were applying for disability at a very young age and they weren’t goanna be eligible for it so I wanted to take up specialty where I could help people to restore their function and improve their quality of life and decrease their pain so that they could go back to work, so they can have options. So I’m board certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation and one of my specialties and what we work on this improvement of person’s quality of life, decreasing their pain and improving their function and that’s why I wanted to do that and back pain happens to be one of the most common reasons that people were applying for disability is one of the second most common reason that people get disability on the age 45 and so back pain is something that everybody has, 80% of us will have it by age 55. So this is why I wanted to specialize in treating people with back pain and giving them options where they could have better quality of life and restore their function.
N: Now you’ve been in practice for well over 20 years and you treated thousands of patients for back pain, injuries and otherwise associated with the back but you’re also an Author, you’re the Author of a brand new book, Knockout Pain: Secrets to Maintain a Healthy Back. Why did you write the book?
B: Well I wrote the book because I wanted people to be able to know that surgery is not the only option when it comes to back pain. When we have other things wrong with us Neal your heart, your lungs any other part of your body we don’t go to the doctor and say “Hey, can you cut it out? Can you fix it that way?” We go seeking of options but somehow when it comes to orthopedic problems especially your back, your knees, your hips, people seem to think that a surgery is the only answer, yet only about 5% of people who have back pain really should have surgery. So I wrote the book because I wanted to increase people’s awareness and their knowledge to what are their other viable options that they can do to relieve back pain other than just thinking surgery is the only answer coz the truth is after surgery sometimes people have more pain or the surgery does not alleviate their pain. So this is what prompted me to write the book so that people could understand those things.
N: You say that the book is dedicated to your mom for her continuous support and encouragement. Did your mom have anything to do I mean was she suffering from say back pain or did you know a family member that was suffering from back pain and that kind of brought it home for you?
B: I did bring it home my mother was recently was injured a couple of years ago and she’s had a back pain for the first time in her life at age 74 she developed that in the later part of 2012 and was subsequently injured and she told me as I became her primary care giver then she said “You…writing a book to be told…” and she said “If you goanna do it this time then do it to help people” and so not only was I treating people who have back pain I was living it every day at the time because I was my mom’s caregiver, I brought her in for me to care for her and so I was treating back pain at the office and at home with my mother when she came to stay with me in the early part of 2013.
N: You’re talking about surgery and how to avoid surgery and educating people. Injuries don’t necessarily contribute to the back pain all the time, most of the time it’s lifestyle things like posture and things of that nature. Talk about some of the factors that contribute to back pain that aren’t necessarily injuries and don’t necessarily require surgery but if left unaddressed most definitely can require surgery.
B: Well I’ve coined something that I call Neal ‘The O’s of Life’ coz I think that you deal…some of these to remember you got it. So all these things that I say that primarily contribute to back pain start with an O. When we get older we can have back pain simply just arthritis but the truth be told, the spine start showing some part times arthritis around age 29 or 30, so you’re not really that old then but as you get older you can have increased risk of having osteoarthritis for older age, osteoporosis can cause back pain, people can fall their back is weak not having all the mineralization that they have so they’re prone to what we call compression fractures and then the overweight or out of shape can also increase your risk of back pain, overuse during repetitive bending and twisting, bending from the waist rather than using your knees when you do lifting, when you do lifting you should bend your knees, try to keep your back as straight as possible and use your legs, get that power come from your legs not your back to decrease your back pain and so occupational risks sometimes can increase one’s risk for back pain but the truth be told Neal back pain is found equally in blue collar as well as white collar workers. A lot of times people think you have to do heavy labor to have back pain, you don’t have to, you can be a white collar worker, you can be like you Neal I would imagine sitting at a desk. But if you sit there all day long, guess what you can get back pain plus the hour and hour and half I recommend you get up and do some stretches, otherwise you are putting your back on extra stress and you can develop back pain from too much sitting.
N: I understand your primarily location’s there in north of Virginia?
B: Yes. I actually have two offices, one in Norfolk and one in Chesapeake, Virginia which is about 25 miles away and my website is knockoutpain.com, people can sign-up for my monthly tips and I give a tip each month of thing that you could do to prevent back pain. I also have a Facebook page, it’s Spine and Orthopedic Pain Center Facebook page, I do videos to give people tips of things that they can do to prevent back pain and other orthopedic conditions. On my website you can find articles, you can find just different things that I have written to give people education because I think education is power and the more you know about something the better you are to make good choices when it comes the time to your treatment and your own health and the prevention of back pain because prevention is the key with back pain.
N: Absolutely. You’ve been listening to Health Professional Radio, I’m your host Neal Howard and we’ve been in studio talking with Dr. Winifred Bragg, expert in back pain management, non-surgical treatment of injuries associated with spinal and orthopedic conditions and she’s been in studio today with us talking about her brand new book, Knockout Pain: Secrets to Maintain a Health Back and also The O’s of Life which contribute to back pain. It’s been great having you in studio with us today.
B: Thank you Neal.
N: Thank you. Transcripts and audio of this program are available at healthprofessionalradio.com.au and also at hpr.fm and you can subscribe to this podcast on iTunes.