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Back Pain Health Center

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Ozone May Help Herniated Disc Pain

Injecting Ozone Gas Into the Spine May Relieve Lower Back Pain, Study Says

Ozone First Used in Italy

Murphy tells WebMD that in recent years more than 14,000 lower back pain patients have been treated with ozone therapy in Europe, mostly in Italy, where the procedure was developed.

He says he first became aware of the treatment in 2003 while attending a medical conference in Venice.

“When I first heard about it, I thought, ‘This is either madness or genius,’” he says.

He became so intrigued by the treatment that he invented and patented his own oxygen/ozone delivery device that is about the size of a cigar.

Computer imaging guides the needle used to deliver the ozone/oxygen treatment to the herniated disc. Patients require no more than a local anesthetic, and Murphy says most of his patients have reported improvements in pain within 48 hours of the treatment.

At the San Diego meeting, Murphy presented his analysis of 12 studies involving more than 8,000 patients treated with the ozone/oxygen in Italy and elsewhere in Europe.

He says the analysis suggests that ozone therapy is as effective as surgery for relieving pain caused by a herniated disc, with a much lower incidence of complications and much quicker recovery times.

“I do believe that this will become a standard therapy, but I understand why many people within the (medical) community would be skeptical,” he says.

Boden is one of those people.

He says until rigorously designed studies are conducted, the usefulness of ozone therapy for the treatment of herniated disc pain remains unknown.

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