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Spinal Decompression and Physical Therapy

drx9000 in san francisco
Spinal Decompression Therapy with DRX9000

We have been providing spinal decompression treatment in San Francisco for over 11 years now in the Financial District. 

Recently, we were acquired by Chiro-Medical Group, Inc. of San Francisco (CMG). The clinic has been re-named from Executive Express Chiropractic to Chiro-Medical Express (CMGE).

This now gives us the ability to offer a wider range of services to our spinal decompression patients than we could before.  CME is only a few blocks away from CMGE, which is located at the landmark Embarcadero Center (validated parking).

CME has one of the largest and most technologically advanced physical therapy depts. in San Francisco and also has world class medical doctors that specialize in Physical Medicine.

So, what this means is that our san Francisco spinal decompression patients now have access to CME and all it has to offer. We are now able to treat very advanced cases of lumbar and cervical disc herniations and bulges that require extensive post decompression rehabilitation.

Sure, most of our herniated disc patients will not need this…but some will, and we can now take care of them in house. This makes for a much more cohesive treatment and the outcomes so far have been outstanding.

Some of the condition we are able to treat with our DRX9000 spinal decompression system are as follows:

  • Lumbar and cervical disc herniations and bulges
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Facet Syndrome

If you have been diagnosed with any of these conditions and are interested in finding out more about our San Francisco Spinal Decompression program. please call 415-392-2225 and ask for a complimentary consultation. 

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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Spinal Decompression Maintenance Care

drx9000 in san francisco
Spinal Decompression Therapy with DRX9000

We have been providing spinal decompression therapy in downtown San Francisco for over 10 years now.

Over the past 10 years or so we have helped thousands of herniated cervical and lumbar disc patients return to more active lifestyles with the DRX9000. Many have been able to avoid back or neck surgery as well.

Sure, there are always some that do not respond favorably to decompression therapy but they are the minority. What typically happens is that patients end up a lot better than they were and are glad they did the treatment. Some have a complete resolution of symptoms.

As we near the end of the spinal decompression protocol, which is typically around 20 sessions performed over a 6-8 week period, we discuss with the patient the option of continuing on with some sort of ongoing maintenance plan. About 50% choose to do so.

Is DRX9000 spinal decompression maintenance necessary? In some cases YES, in other cases we just don’t know. When we just don’t know, we recommend that our patients listen to their body and call for a decompression session “as needed”. This seems to work very well.

Some patients never need the decompression machine again and choose to keep their spine healthy with chiropractic, exercise, stretching, Yoga or Pilates.

So, if we feel you need cervical or lumbar spinal decompression maintenance care, we will tell you. If not, we will teach you how to take care of your new back or neck so that the results last.

The conditions that respond best to cervical or lumbar spinal decompression therapy are bulging or herniated disc in the neck or low back. Degenerative disc disease, Spinal Stenosis, Facet Syndrome, and Failed Back Surgery cases also respond well.

Not all patients can qualify medically for decompression therapy. The best thing to do is research online, find a spinal decompression doctor near you with lots of experience (this matters most) and make an appointment to find out if you are a good candidate.

If you live or work near the San Francisco Financial District, or have the ability to stay for a month or two, you can see us.

To schedule an appointment at our San Francisco Spinal Decompression Center please call 415-392-2225.

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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Spinal Decompression in San Francisco For Disc Herniation

drx9000 in san francisco
Spinal Decompression Therapy with DRX9000

We have been providing Spinal Decompression in San Francisco for over 10 years now.

Most of the herniated or bulging disc patients that undergo spinal decompression therapy at our Financial District clinic have had previous chiropractic care. While chiropractic achieves favorable outcomes most of the time with herniated discs…sometimes it just can’t deliver.

The reason for this is that the herniated disc has positioned itself in such a way that it does not respond to the chiropractic adjustments or anything else for that matter. In fact, many are told that the only option is back surgery.

It is for this reason that spinal decompression machines such as the DRX9000 were invented.

Spinal decompression machines are designed and built to treat herniated and bulging discs non-surgically. They do this by enlarging the disc space and creating a negative pressure that pulls the herniated disc fragments back to the center of the disc where they belong…away from the delicate nerve roots and spinal cord.

Spinal decompression systems also elongate the spine which stretches the spinal muscles, ligaments and tendons, breaking up scar tissue formation and muscle spasms, which helps to restore lost motion and function. As motion is restored the injured spinal disc is able to regain lost water content which expands the disc creating a more normal separation between the vertebrae above and the one below. This gives the exiting nerve more room.

And of course, patients also feel better. You can get sore at first, but over time pain levels subside.

Some patients report a complete recovery, some very little, and everything in between. But the overwhelming majority of patients that we treat with the DRX9000 for lumbar or cervical disc herniations are glad they did the treatment..

The treatment process is for 20 sessions over 6 weeks. The sessions are one hour long and we reserve the machine for you. It seems like a lot but it goes by quick. And for the most part patients enjoy being on the machine…many fall asleep during the treatment.

At the end of the treatment you may be able resume chiropractic care. While adjustments did not work before the treatment, they will most likely make sense now with your healthier spine.

Sounds pretty good Huh? Well it is!

To find out if you are a candidate for spinal decompression in San Francisco please call 415-392-2225. Ask for a Complimentary Consultation. 

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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Spinal Decompression and Physical Medicine in San Francisco

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Lumbar decompression with the DRX9000

We have been providing nonsurgical spinal decompression for over 10 years now.

Recently, our clinic was acquired by Chiro-Medical Group, Inc. of San Francisco.  Chiro-Medical Group (CMG) is known for it’s multidisciplinary approach to the treatment of sports injuries, chronic back pain, and complex back and neck pain syndromes such as herniated and bulging discs.  They specialize in “Physical Medicine”.

What this means is CMG can co-manage and treat your herniated or bulging disc with an expert team of medical doctors, chiropractors, physical therapists, and trainers.

We have onsite digital x-ray and advanced diagnostic equipment that we can use to quantify and monitor your progress.

Physical therapy and core strengthening can make the difference when it comes to long lasting results from your spinal disc decompression.

Spinal decompression and physical therapy can offer a more permanent solution than spinal decompression alone.

Our two clinics are only a short walk away from each other in the San Francisco Financial District.

So, if you have been diagnosed with a herniated disc in the lumbar or cervical spine and are experiencing neck, low back, arm or leg pain…you may be a candidate for spinal decompression and physical medicine.

To find out if you are a candidate for care please call 415-392-2225 and ask for a spinal decompression assessment. Chances are…you will be glad you did 🙂 

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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Spinal Decompression and Failed Back Surgery

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Lumbar decompression with the DRX9000

We have been providing spinal decompression therapy in San Francisco for over 10 years now. During this time we have helped thousands of herniated discs patients return to more normal lives. We have also assisted in preventing hundreds of low back surgeries.

Every now and then a patient that has had previous back surgery presents for spinal decompression treatment. They had the back surgery and either the symptoms got worse or did not improve…or did not improve much.

Unfortunately, if the back surgery was a spinal fusion, there is nothing we can do. Patients with spinal fusion surgeries are permanently disqualified from spinal decompression.

If the surgery was a discectomy, then there is hope. In fact, we have helped dozens of patients over the past 10 years with spinal decompression that have had failed discectomy back surgery.

This is good news for those who may have been told they have no other treatment options for their chronic low back pain or sciatica.

Sure, we may do the treatment and it does not help…but that is not likely.

And the decompression therapy is very safe and gentle.

We also have a team of medical doctors and physical therapists that can participate in the treatment process, increasing the odds of a favorable outcome.

So, yes…if you have failed surgery you still may be a candidate for spinal decompression on the DRX9000.

To find out if you qualify medically please call 415-392-2225 and make an appointment with one of our San Francisco Spinal Decompression Doctors. Ask for a complimentary consultation.

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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Can Spinal Decompression Make My Sciatica Worse?

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Spinal Decompression Therapy with DRX9000

We have been providing sciatica treatment in San Francisco for over 22 years now in the Financial District.

Sciatica or leg pain is mostly caused by pinched nerves in the low back. Pinched nerves are usually the result of bulging or herniated lumbar discs secondary to spinal degeneration and ongoing misalignment’s and abnormal wear and tear.

The symptom of sciatica, and sciatica is a symptom not a cause, is usually the last thing to occur in the degenerative process, not the first. What this means is that when a patient presents with sciatica they have usually had a problem that has been developing for a long time vs. something that is new.

Once a patient has an MRI and the source of the sciatica is located and quantified (spinal disc level of bulging or herniated disc) we will begin spinal disc decompression per the manufacturers protocols superimposed with common sense and our clinic experience.

The bottom line is this: YES, it is possible for your sciatica to feel worse before it feels better.

Just like many healing or cleansing processes, there are often toxins and inflammation that have been in place for an extended time. Plus, even though the the injured spinal discs are not where they belong, they have become used to being there. When we begin the process of restoring normal position and function the body fights it and there can be an increase in symptoms. Fortunately this is usually temporary, but can go on for several weeks or more.

Sure, spinal disc decompression does not help every single person that does it, but soreness in the beginning is not an indicator of eventual results. Listen to you doctor who will most likely have specific home care recommendations to support your care. And hang in there and let the treatment unfold. In the end…chances are, you will be glad you did 🙂

To schedule an appointment for sciatica treatment in San Francisco call 415-392-2225. Ask for a complimentary consultation.

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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Spinal Decompression or Chiropractic?

drx9000 in san francisco
Spinal Decompression Therapy with DRX9000

We have been providing chiropractic and spinal decompression services in San Francisco for over 20 years in the Financial District.

Often times patients present to our clinic with back or neck pain related to a herniated disc and say they are interested in nonsurgical spinal decompression with the DRX9000 or DRX9000c.

This is great, but it may not make the most sense. The reason I say this is that pinched nerves due to bulging or herniated discs respond favorably to conventional chiropractic care, which is cheaper and less of a time commitment than disc decompression.

Sure, a certain percentage of herniated disc patients will not respond to chiropractic and will end up on the decompression machine…but we find it works best when we try chiropractic first.

Some patients do not want to try chiropractic for various reasons and we will honor their wishes and initiate decompression. Some patients have already tried chiropractic without favorable results so we go right to decompression. And sometimes we do both chiropractic and decompression together.

All cases are different. When you have as much experience as we do treating lumbar and cervical disc herniations non-surgically, you get good at mixing and matching therapies. We also incorporate acupuncture, physical therapy, and deep tissue laser as needed into the mix and the results are outstanding.

So, if you have been diagnosed with a herniated disc and are wondering if you should try chiropractic or spinal decompression, why not go to a chiropractor that does both and has lots of experience. Chances are you will be glad you did 🙂

To schedule an appointment with one of our back pain doctors in San Francisco please call 415-392-2225.

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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Pinched Nerve in the Neck?

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DRX9000c Cervical Decompression

Have you been told you have a Pinched Nerve in the Neck? Or, do you just feel like you have one? What is a pinched nerve anyway?

Well, a pinched nerve in the neck is a term used to describe the pressure or trapping of a cervical nerve root mostly from a bulging or herniated cervical disc. Degenerative disc disease, vertebral subluxatons, and facet syndrome can also cause pinched nerves.

Nerves are very delicate and sensitive to any kind of pressure. Famous research studies from the University of Colorado demonstrated that just the weight of a pencil erasure on a nerve can interfere with the transmission of the nerve impulse by 60%.

When nerves become irritated it can cause severe pain and dysfunction. The nerves that exit from the bones in the neck travel down the arm and into the hand. When these nerves become pinched, stretched or irritated it can cause neck pain, shoulder pain, arm pain, and hand pain. Now this does not mean if you have a pinched nerve you will have all these symptoms, heck you might not have any symptoms at first…these are just some of the symptoms that can present from nerve pressure in the neck.

You may also experience numbness and tingling in the arms or hands, weakness of grip, night pain, and swelling in the hands and fingers. Some patients even get headaches.

The symptoms in the hand can mimic those of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS).  In fact, you can have a herniated or bulging disc in the neck and be experiencing the signs and symptoms of CTS without any neck pain at all. This can lead to a misdiagnoses and unfortunately, unnecessary carpal tunnel surgery.

A chiropractor or orthopedic doctor that specializes in the neck, arms, and hands is your best bet for pinched nerve treatment. They will most likely order cervical x-rays and a cervical MRI…maybe even a nerve conduction test of the upper extremities.

Once a determination and diagnosis is made of the underlying condition, most likely a herniated disc in the neck, then treatment will commence.

Chiropractic care is probably what we would recommend first as it is very safe, gentle and effective. If chiropractic fails to deliver results we can try nonsurgical cervical decompression with the DRX9000c, a machine designed and built to treat pinched nerves resulting from herniated and bulging discs. We would not recommend rushing into neck  surgery unless it is an emergency (most are not). If chiropractic and spinal decompression fail to deliver a favorable outcome you are still whole and can pursue other treatment options, including surgery.

To find out if you are a candidate for care at our San Francisco Spinal Decompression Center please call 415-392-2225 and ask for a complimentary consultation. 

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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Low Back Pain? Things Not To Do

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Low Back Pain


Here is a partial list of things “Not To Do” if you have low back pain or sciatica:

STAY STILL: You’ve heard, “…don’t do that – you’ll get a bad back!” There is something to be said about being careful, but one can be too cautious as well. In order to determine how much activity vs. rest is appropriate, you have to gradually increase your activities by keeping track of how you feel both during and after an activity. If you do notice pain, it may be “safe” to continue depending on the type and intensity of the pain. In general, a sharp, knife-like pain is a warning sign that you should STOP what you’re doing, while an ache is not. Until you’re comfortable about which type of pain is “safe,” start out with the premise, “…if in doubt, stop.” If the recovery time is short (within minutes to hours), then no “harm” was done. If it takes days to recover, you overdid it. Think of a cut on your skin – if you pick at it too soon, it will re-bleed, but if you are careful, you can do a lot of things safely without “re-bleeding.” Talk to us about the proper way to bend, lift, pull, push, and perform any activity that you frequently have to do that often presents problems. There is usually a way to do that activity more safely!


SURGERY IS A “QUICK FIX”: Though in some cases this may inevitably be the end result for your back condition, most of the time, it is not needed. As a rule, don’t jump to a surgical option too soon. It’s tempting to view surgery as a “quick fix,” but non-surgical care at least for 4-6 weeks and maybe several months is usually the best approach. As the old saying goes, you can’t “un-do” a surgery, so wait. UNLESS there are certain warning signs such as: a) bowel or bladder weakness &/or, b) progressive neurological losses (worsening weakness in the leg). If there are no “surgical indicators” meaning, no instability, no radiating leg pain, and only low back pain that is non-specific and hard to isolate what is generating the pain, DO NOT have surgery as the chances of improvement following surgery drops off dramatically in this group. There are guidelines that we all should follow and they all support non-surgical care initially for 4-6 weeks. Chiropractic is one of the best options cited in these guidelines because it’s less costly, involves less time lost from work, and chiropractic carries the highest patient satisfaction. If chiropractic fails to deliver then there is nonsurgical spinal decompression with the DRX9000.


DON’T STRETCH – IT’S HARMFUL: You may have heard or read that stretching can actually increase or worsen your time if you’re a runner, reduce your ability to lift heavy weight (if you’re a weight lifter), or cycle as fast.  Though this seems obviously silly, there IS a growing body of evidence that has found this TO BE TRUE! HOWEVER, it appears (at least at present), that is applies primarily to static, long hold stretching and NOT to dynamic exercising like jumping jacks, toy-soldier like high kicks, or core stabilization. Moreover, no study YET has found a negative effect for non-athletic competitive activities or for low back pain specifically. A good general rule is, if you feel better after exercising, or in this case stretching, it’s probably better for you than not. Also, as stated last month, there is a “right vs. wrong” time to exercise and WAY to exercise. For example, when LBP occurs in flexion but reduces in extension, there is plenty of evidence published that performing exercises INTO the direction of pain relief is VERY helpful. So until you hear differently, KEEP ON STRETCHING, but follow our advice!  


            We realize you have a choice in who you choose to provide your healthcare services.  If you, a friend or family member requires care for low back pain, we sincerely appreciate the trust and confidence shown by choosing our services and look forward in serving you and your family presently and, in the future.

To schedule a complimentary consultation for low back pain relief in San Francisco call 415-392-2225. Mention this blog post.

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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Disc Bulges and Herniations: Most of Us Have Them

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Lumbar decompression with the DRX9000

Disc Bulges and Disc Herniations are Common. That’s right. If we were to randomly select 100 people off the street and perform a diagnostic MRI to their lumbar spines, 60%+ would reveal disc bulges or disc herniations.

And most would not even have any symptoms or loss of function. But some would have severe low back pain and sciatica and be unable to function normally.

Heck, 80% or more of us will have a bout of severe back pain at least once in our life. And the #1 predisposing factor to chronic back pain is previous back pain. Back pain is epidemic.

Some experts believe discs are becoming injured all the time and the body is repairing these injuries itself. In fact, research suggests that it is best to wait and there is no real advantage to having QUICK low back surgery when it is determined a person has a herniated disc in the low back. It may heal on it’s own and there are nonsurgical treatments now to speed up the process or help initiate the process when the body is unable to.

BUT…just like the immune system is always battling germs and fighting disease (and some still get sick)…in some people the disc herniations do not repair themselves and they DO cause symptoms and loss of function….sometimes severe.  From my studies this occurs about 15% of the time and still amounts to a very large number of people. WHY?

Well…the discs get lodged and displaced in a certain way that puts pressure on the delicate spinal cord and nerve fibers and the body is unable to fix it. Then, the immune system attacks the area as if it were an enemy in a war over and over to prevent further harm (the inflammation process). The muscles go into spasms to protect the injured disc and restrict the motion that the disc needs to take in nutrients and waste products. The chain reaction can be devastating to some. The condition becomes chronic (over 90 days) and continues to degenerate until the nerve pressure can be removed.

Does this require surgery? Maybe…but maybe not!

There is a treatment called nonsurgical spinal decompression that is done on a machine that is designed and built to repair disc bulges and disc herniations in the low back and neck. The disc decompression machine we use in San Francisco is the DRX9000.

Just like a “respirator” helps the lungs to breath until they can do it on their own, a “spinal decompression machine” does the same thing for the spinal discs. The decompression process mimics the natural motion of the spine and helps to unlock the herniated discs and relocate them to a more normal position.

Now this does not happen overnight…it takes 20 one hour visits or more and a lot of effort by the patient and doctor. It is NOT a “magic bullet”. What it IS is the most technologically advanced nonsurgical treatment for herniated and bulging disc available in the marketplace today.

Our Spinal Decompression Clinic in San Francisco has been offering the DRX9000 to herniated disc patients as a surgical alternative for almost 10 years now. We introduced San Francisco to spinal decompression and we have helped thousands and thousands of patients avoid back surgery and return to more normal lives.

To find out if you are a candidate for nonsurgical spinal decompression in San Francisco please call 415-392-2225 and ask for a “complimentary consultation”. We validate parking at the Embarcadero Center in the Financial District where we are located.

Scott Calzaretta

Chiro-Medical Group is an innovative collaboration of health care professionals who work together as a team to promote optimal health. Our group includes experts in the fields of medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, nutrition, and personal athletic training.

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