Sports medicine and back pain expert Dr. Sean Wheeler has long been obsessed with pain.

How pain, and its absence, affects behavior, competitiveness, and quality of life.

This obsession turned passion sparked a medical career investigating pain.

Based on an examination and critique of established medical practice, Dr. Sean's new book, UPRISE, offers a new understanding of the body as the finely tuned instrument it is – as not only your body, but as your Body Guitar, and a new, disruptive medical innovation to achieve back pain liberation

Listen as Dr. Sean discusses the passion behind his UPRISE.

Published in Dr. Sean Speaks

Back Pain Fork In The Road Dr Sean WheelerAs sports medicine and back pain expert Dr. Sean Wheeler will soon reveal in his new book UPRISE, existing medical science for the treatment of chronic back pain has reached a fork in the road. 

Who's Who of experts in spinal problems and back pain, led in consultation with Sam W. Wiesel, MD, agree, as discussed in Is Creativity in Back Pain Research in Short Supply? Is Genius Extinct?, appearing in The Back Letter, a monthly newsletter published for healthcare professionals, leading with this:

That the back pain field is in crisis is beyond dispute.

The back pain a poster child for ineffective medical care and wasteful services...

The report continues, making a point we discuss on this page:

The recent Global Burden of Disease Study, published 2012 in The Lancet [and updated this past week] concluded provocatively that back pain is the single most disabling “disease” worldwide.

Some believe the primary problem in the back pain field is a lack of original thinking among researchers and healthcare providers.

Said Aage Indahl, MD, at the International Back Pain Forum XI hosted in Melbourne, Australia—and repeated several times since: 

“We have been wandering in the wilderness for 40 years.  We have nothing to show for it.”

Indahl suggests the field is no closer to resolving the back pain crisis than it was four decades ago...[given] a lack of novel and creative thinking in the back pain field that might lead to scientific breakthroughs...

He notes...novel ideas are much more likely to lead to breakthroughs than refining and distilling the research to date. “Let's get crazy,” Indahl proposes. “We need crazy ideas.”

Challenging the status quo in back pain medicine is sorely needed.

Dr. Sean Wheeler will have much to say about how to achieve back pain liberation - challenging the status quo of back pain medicine - in his new book UPRISE, coming in early 2015.

Published in Medical Research

Sports medicine and back pain expert Dr. Sean Wheeler appreciates music.

He plays the guitar, encourages each of his children to learn about and play a variety of musical instruments, and is leading a rethinking - a healthcare revolution - of how to overcome back pain through a new understanding of the human body as a finely tuned instrument, as your Body Guitar, soon to be detailed in his forthcoming new book UPRISE.

As a music connoisseur and performer, Dr. Wheeler enjoys the music and achievements of a range of artists, including the amazing story of Darlene Love, a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducted in 2011.

As reported in a number of media, Ms. Love will tonight sing “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” on the “Late Show With David Letterman” for the last time. 

Ms. Love’s annual presentation of this song, which she originally recorded in 1963, is one of several customs that will come to an end when Mr. Letterman departs his CBS program on May 20.

Her association with Mr. Letterman goes back to 1986, when she sang the song on his NBC show, “Late Night,” and continued after he moved to CBS.

Steven Van Zandt, the guitarist and member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band, offered a succinct explanation of why Ms. Love has endured in popular music, quoted in The New York Times:

“It’s real simple,” he said with a laugh. “She’s the greatest singer in the world.”

In honor of tonight's final performance, the “Late Show” created a "Best Of" video compilation to Ms. Love performances of "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" on the Letterman Show in advance of tonight's television performance.

Enjoy the compilation above, and tune in later this evening for Darlene Love's performance on the Late Show with David Letterman.

Published in Body Guitar Music

2014-12-17 05.44.30 pm

Sports medicine and back pain expert Dr. Sean M. Wheeler, has been extended an invitation to speak before the 3rd International Conference on Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, hosted May of 2015 in San Antonio, USA.

The 2015 Conference will focus upon Trends and New Approaches in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and attracts world class scientists, researchers, and policy makers, according to Conference organizers:

Research from prominent institutions and thinkers will be discussed during the Conference to promote knowledge dissemination, serving as a public stage in which public/private partnerships, academic and industry collaborations can materialize, leading to research, academic and practical innovation. 

Papers presented during the Conference are published in the International Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation.

Further information will be shared as details become available.


Published in Dr. Sean Speaks

2014-12-17 07.49.35 amAs sports medicine and back pain expert Dr. Sean Wheeler will soon reveal in his new book UPRISE, it is indeed time for a new type of diagnosis in back care.

A Who's Who of experts in spinal problems and back pain, led in consultation with Sam W. Wiesel, MD, agree, as discussed in this report titled Is It Time for a New Type of Diagnosis in Back Care, from The Back Letter, a monthly newsletter published for healthcare professionals, leading with this provocative question:

Is following statement true or false? A scientific approach to the evaluation of back pain will usually lead to a precise diagnosis and specific treatment.

As the back pain...field knows, that statement is clearly false.

The report goes on to say:

The diagnosis of back pain is an exercise in frustration. Back problems result in an accurate and valid diagnosis in only a small minority of cases - less than 15%, according to most estimates.

Read the full story in The Back Letter.

Watch for Dr. Wheeler's book UPRISE – and his breakthrough diagnosis for low back pain – in early 2015.


Published in Medical Research

the-most-valuable-player-in-sports-is--this-doctor-panoramicJames R. Andrews, MDDr. James Andrews is well known for performing orthopedic surgery on high-profile athletes from a wide array of sports.

The subject of an ESPN story praising his talents offered this quote:

"[Andrews] is the alpha doc at the center of a sports-medicine network that extends well beyond doctors. Every athletic trainer, physical therapist, strength-and-conditioning coach in the land seems to have Andrews' cell phone number."

Dr. Andrews, a founding partner and medical director for the Andrews Sports Medicine & Orthopaedic Center, and co-founder of the American Sports Medicine Institute, is also profiled in media such as Sports Illustrated, the Washington Post and Fast Company.

Dr. Andrews has this to say about Dr. Sean Wheeler, himself a sports medicine and back pain expert who trained with Dr. Andrews, and Dr. Wheeler's soon to be published book, UPRISE:

"Dr. Wheeler's book presents interesting ideas challenging conventional thinking.  It is hoped that his sports medicine, outside the box approach contributes to positive movement in spinal health." 

Following on earlier advance praise for UPRISE described here from award-winning Television Writer and Producer, Lynne E. Litt  including the Writers Guild of America Best Dramatic Series Award for the popular Television series LOST  Dr. Wheeler's book UPRISE may be on its way to becoming a must read when published. 

UPRISE will be published in early 2015. 

Published in Praise for UPRISE

Sports medicine and back pain expert Dr. Sean Wheeler speaks of the revolution needed in medicine and patient care, by raising these questions on behalf of back pain sufferers everywhere:

Why can't we fix back pain?

As a sufferer, why must I spend my life in back pain?

Why can't anyone tell me why my pain will not improve beyond existing short-term remedies?

The answer, according to Dr. Wheeler, is due to a fundamental flaw within the healthcare profession, in not looking systematically at the human body to fully understand the role of muscles in causing back pain, and their role in achieving long-term sustain back pain relief.

As outlined in his soon-to-be-published new book UPRISE, Dr. Wheeler is preparing to launch a revolution within healthcare, challenging the status quo based on good medicine and a single big idea, to change the constitution of your life, of your body, to achieve back pain liberation.

Look for more in coming weeks on these pages.

Published in NEWS + DISCUSSION

UPRISE book jacketWhat if everything you think you know about chronic back pain were wrong?

Despite 40 years of breakthroughs in medical science, patients suffering from chronic lower back pain do not experience sustained improvement. When treatments fail, we must ask: what is fundamentally wrong, and what needs to change?

UPRISE shines a spotlight on debilitating chronic back pain and asks the big question – why aren’t patients getting better?

The answer will shock you: your pain treatment is keeping you in pain.

Drawing upon more than a decade of specialized training, patient treatment and medical experience, in his new book UPRISE, Dr. Sean Wheeler explores the relationship between pain, spinal instability, muscle weakness and mobility keeping sufferers locked in a cycle of recurring pain.

UPRISE offers a new understanding of the body as the finely tuned instrument it is – as not only your body, but as your Body Guitar.

UPRISE introduces Tune Me, the new medical “orchestration” for your Body Guitar, a disruptive innovation to achieve back pain liberation – to achieve your UPRISE – so those you love may again hear the unique, beautiful music your life is intended to play. 

For those who suffer from chronic low back pain, hope will soon have a new name: 


Read what others are saying about UPRISE

Published in News

Sports medicine and back pain expert Dr. Sean Wheeler, has long advocated the power of good posture as part of a plan to overcome chronic low back pain.

Social psychologist Amy Cuddy has become a sensation through her rousing presentation at TED Global 2012 in which she demonstrates how "power posing" - standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don't feel confident - can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact on our chances for success, as reported in The New York Times.

Power Posing, as advocated by Ms. Cuddy, serves as an example of how a simple mindset, a mindful reorientation, can achieve significant results for those who adopt the thinking, and the doing.

In much the same way, Dr. Wheeler's anticipated new book, UPRISE, will inform readers of how a 180 degree shift in behavior, requiring 180 days to unlearn what you think you know about low back pain, is needed to make room to learn a new understanding of pelvic neutrality and posture to both strengthen and tune your Bracing Muscles:

A new understanding of your body as the finely tuned instrument it is – as not only your body, but as your Body Guitar - to achieve back pain liberation.

Read more of Dr. Cuddy's story, her research and findings in The New York Times and in other media reports

Published in News

Dr. Sean WheelerDr. Sean WheelerDr. Sean Wheeler has long been obsessed with pain.

How pain, and its absence, affects behavior, competitiveness, and quality of life.

This obsession turned passion sparked a medical career investigating pain, which led to a new way of understanding – and treating – low back pain, as described in his soon to be published book, UPRISE.   

Having served as team physician for several member NCAA, NAIA and NJCAA athletics programs, Dr. Sean is invited to speak at venues such as the University of Notre Dame Athletics Department.

Awarded a Doctor of Medicine from the University of Kansas School of Medicine, and board-certified in Sports Medicine and Pain Management, he has practiced medicine for 20 years. His passions remain Susie, his wife and their six children, playing guitar, and patients everywhere. 

Reserve your copy of UPRISE, scheduled for publishing in early 2015, and learn more about sports medicine and back pain expert Dr. Sean Wheeler, and how back pain liberation is achieved at

Published in Pain Expert
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