/ Tamars machine for back pain treatment?

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Fraser on 31 Dec 2013
Probably not a RockTalk subject, but it might gain most views:

Has anyone tried Tamars treatment for back pain? A few colleagues were talking about assorted injuries, specifically back complaints and one swore by this Tamars machine he'd been recommended by a friend. This colleague plays a lot of football and has had recurring back isues over the years, but by far the best treatment he's had was with this Tamars machine. He only required the one session but said the result was astonishing. I've had ongoing back problems for probably 35 years now, but a recent fall when I decked out seems to have triggered longer lasting pain, particularly first thing in the morning when I can barely move.

It certainly sounds impressive from what he was saying but I'd be interested in hearing opinions from others who've also tried it.

Fraser on 01 Jan 2014
In reply to Fraser:

(Happy) New Year bump.
Batcloud - on 01 Jan 2014
In reply to Fraser:

I've hardly been able to walk for 3 years now due to back pain but have wasted too much money I can ill-afford on ineffective treatments so I tend to be cautious when looking at options.

I'll follow your thread with interest!
Fraser on 01 Jan 2014
In reply to Batcloud:

Hmm, sorry to hear of your condition. Can I ask what other treatments or therapies you have tried so far and of those, which gave the most noticeable improvements?
Mark Morris - on 01 Jan 2014
In reply to Fraser:

Doesn't appear to offer anything that a good sports massage wouldn't offer. Having watched the video, I wouldn't have been able to cope with the pain that machine would cause.

Since herniating a disk (L5/S1)last November, my advice to everyone is to get to a specialist and have an mri. It will show up exactly whats wrong and treatment can be decided from that.

I tried an epidural cortisone injection after the mri, the consultant didn't think it would work (too large a herniation).

Consultant told me to avoid chiropractors as the herniation could have been worsened by the handling.
Mark Morris - on 01 Jan 2014
In reply to Fraser:

Should have said I had nerve decompression surgery in September, and beginning to get active again, nothing like the pain I had before (stiffness mostly) and not taking any pain killers.

Good luck.
Fraser on 01 Jan 2014
In reply to Mark Morris:

Thanks, good luck to you too on the recovery programme.

Part of the problem for me is knowing which type specialist to go to initially. Like everyone with a similar complaint, I want a silver bullet that's guaranteed to work, which is no doubt very unrealistic.
Batcloud - on 01 Jan 2014
In reply to Fraser:
Tried most things, physio, osteopath, chiro, acupuncture, epidurals, nerve blocks, facet injections and too many medications to remember.

Currently on opiate pain patches (horrible) and trying yoga.

'What works bet?' - nothing really but keeping the spine mobilised is essential. (DDD of L5/S1 is my main problem)

Good luck with yours.
Post edited at 11:57
Fraser on 01 Jan 2014
In reply to Batcloud:

Ok, that puts my complaint into perspective! I've been to the GP once last year when it got really bad and I couldn't move without being in agony, and I was prescribed co-codomol and 'mobile rest'. Worked for a while - eventually - but after my fall a couple of months back it seems to have got worse and more sustained. First thing every morning now, my back is extremely inflexible. I do stretches and twists etc which does help, as does the occasional anti-inflammatory, but I don't want to be using them long term.

I think a specialist diagnosis first is probably the way to go, then consider options from there.

Thanks again.
knoxjeffrey - on 01 Jan 2014
In reply to Fraser:
Hello Fraser,

I run the TAMARS clinic in Edinburgh and came across your post so thought I would post some information for you.

I've read the posts and it seems there is some confusion over how the treatment works and what it does. It's a very different treatment to what a Sports Massage offers (although this can work well in conjunction with TAMARS for some conditions). In short, the aim of the treatment is to improve the biomechanical function of the spine and does so by improving spinal alignment and stiffness of the entire spine. Massage has more focus on the muscle, we have more focus on the spine itself.

For example, for someone suffering from disc problems, it is advised to see a specialist if disc prolapse is suspected so an MRI can be arranged to observe the extent of the problem and in order to rule out surgical intervention for example. However, unless the prolapsed was caused by a particular trauma there is a good chance that poor biomechanical function has caused excessive stress on the disc and over time has caused the prolapse. In this case, the idea of the TAMARS treatment would be to do very little mobilisation over the prolapsed area but instead to work either side of the problem to relieve as much stress as possible in order to allow healing of the disc over time. We have had great success with patients with this problem. If you don't correct this biomechanical function then the joint is going to take more stress and also the surrounding discs are going to suffer increased stress over time.

Also, we are not Chiropractors and the treatment technique is different. Chiropractors mainly use manipulation techniques which involves a high velocity thrust through a joint. Personally I don't like this technique either especially for disc problems because a high speed movement just doesn't seem a logical thing to do. Instead TAMARS involves mobilisation which is a much slower speed movement. Also the technology allows us to work with 9 different pressures and 9 different speeds meaning we can adjust treatment depending on the treatment. Although there may be some discomfort with treatment initially, it is by no means painful because we can work very gently and gradually increase pressure as the spinal condition improves.

The other part of the treatment involves stimulating spinal reflexes in order to use the muscle reflex to correct the spinal alignment. Basically this means we don't try to force anything into position, we just stimulate the muscle to allow the muscle to do it by itself.

In addition, most treatments for back pain tend to focus on the area of pain whereas TAMARS involves a full spinal treatment. There's no point in just trying to improve the biomechanics of a small section of the spine if there are problems elsewhere otherwise you just end up getting the same problems coming back pretty quickly. This is why our patients tend to not need very many treatments (4 -6 would be the average).

Anyway, I hope this helps but please free to ask me any more questions or even just give me a call in the clinic (0131 557 4404) and I'll be happy to have a chat.

Many thanks,
Jeff Knox
Post edited at 23:36
Grigor on 02 Jan 2014
In reply to Fraser:

Hi Fraser

If you end up going down the massage route (and if I'm right in thinking you're close to Glasgow) I can thoroughly recommend Gordon at Achilles Heel.

I've had problems with lower back flexibility as well as upper back and shoulder tension with a fair bit of referred pain. I've generally found that my back improves over the course of a few days post-massage - which I've taken as a sign that he's targeting the source effectively.

He's at the Achilles Heel on Great Western Road but also has his own place out in Milgavie.

I wish you all the best in finding a solution. I'll certainly be interested to hear about the tamars if you go for one.

Cheers - Grigor
Fraser on 02 Jan 2014
In reply to knoxjeffrey:

Hi Jeff, thanks for your detailed response and comments. I appreciate the points you're making and now better understand the differences between the various specialist fields. I too would be reluctant to sign up for something which involves sudden or accelerated manipulation for fear of it worsening my back pain. I'll have a further think and maybe give you a call in the next week or so. I hear you've opened a place in Glasgow now which would suit me more than Edinburgh.

In reply to grigor:

Thanks for this. I've been to the Achilles Heel clinic at TCA for an elbow injury and it may in fact have been Gordon I saw. Am also in Milngavie very regularly so there is always that option too. Cheers for the suggestion. Will update if / when things develop.
knoxjeffrey - on 02 Jan 2014
In reply to Fraser:

Hi Fraser,

No problem, we do have a clinic in Glasgow that is open on a Monday from 8am - 9pm and Tuesday 8am - 6pm. The person that runs that clinic is called Daniel and the details are as follows:

21st Century Back Care™, Time Fitness, City Park, 368 Alexandra Parade, Glasgow, G31 3AU
Telephone: +44 (0) 141 416 1596
Email: daniel@tamars.co.uk

What ever option you decide on for your back pain I wish you all the best in becoming pain free!

Many thanks,

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