1 Chiropractic Puts U of Colorado Football Star Back on Feet
Printer Friendly Email a Friend PDF RSS Feed

Dynamic Chiropractic – January 15, 1993, Vol. 11, Issue 02

Chiropractic Puts U of Colorado Football Star Back on Feet

By Barbara Migliaccio
When Roger Ivey, junior offensive guard for the University of Colorado's football team the Buffalos, developed a lower back disc problem, it looked as though surgery would be the only option to relieve his terrible discomfort. Roger had been diagnosed as having two degenerative discs. The debilitating pain that resulted, what Roger called "the worst pain you could ever have," was not only preventing him from playing football, but precluded even sitting in class.

The problem began in September, when Roger developed a backache, which he further aggravated during the Colorado-Iowa game on September 26th. Roger ignored the ache, as players often do, until it worsened. The pain became more intense every day, and during the week of the October 8th game against Missouri, Roger spent most of his practice time lying flat on his stomach on the trainer's table.

The pain increased; even with ice, painkillers, and muscle relaxants, the pain's intensity did not diminish. "The only thing that felt good was when I was lying in bed," Roger told reporters.

When the MRI came back revealing the degenerative discs, surgery was the recommendation of U of C trainer Dave Burton, as was the opinion of many other trainers he contacted regarding Roger's case. A neurologist in Denver, however, bless his conservative care mentality, recommended other treatment options to Dave Burton, including seeing a chiropractor.

The local newspaper reported on Roger's possible surgery, and one reader took special notice: Dr. Jeffrey Prystupa, a Boulder chiropractor. Dr. Prystupa contacted Dave Burton about the newspaper story, and suggested chiropractic care. After listening to Dr. Prystupa and remembering the advice of the Denver neurologist, Mr. Burton set up an appointment for Dr. Prystupa to see Roger. After Dr. Prystupa's first treatment, the football player reported immediate improvement. Mr. Burton was quoted in the Denver Post as saying, "Within a week of those treatments, he started feeling remarkably better."

Dr. Prystupa discovered that Roger had pelvic and muscle imbalances, and the doctor's treatment included exercises to strengthen the lower back extensor muscles. After his second treatment, Roger was lifting weights; after the third, he was back at practice.

Both Roger and Trainer Burton were pleasantly surprised at the results of the chiropractic treatment. "Had you told me two months ago that there was a treatment that would allow for this type of disc problem to respond as positively as this, I probably would have rejected it," Dave Burton told the Denver Post.

In the November 1st nationally-televised game against Nebraska, Roger made his unexpected, triumphant return to the Buffalo's starting lineup. "I couldn't believe I was out there at first," Ivey told reporters. "Two weeks ago I could hardly walk. It was unbelievable. It's still hard to believe."

University of Colorado Coach Bill McCartney also marveled at Ivey's speedy recovery: "It's quite remarkable to me ... The whole set of circumstances is baffling, but I'm happy to see Ivey back in there."

Incredibly, after this amazing recovery via chiropractic, Roger had part of his disc trimmed on November 19th, against Dr. Prystupa's advice. "There were no indications for the surgery. No lower back pain, nothing, just some residual leg weakness, and really that was all. The orthopedic surgeon talked him into it," said Dr. Prystupa.

But Roger is continuing chiropractic treatment on a regular basis. Dr. Prystupa added: "He'll be needing ongoing care and we want him to finish his rehabilitation program."

Barbara Migliaccio
Second Assistant Editor

To report inappropriate ads, click here.