Welcome to Chiropractic Research @ Chiro.Org! This section includes research articles,
abstracts, and information pertaining to the growing body of Chiropractic Research.


Chiropractic Research

This section was compiled by Frank M. Painter, D.C.
Send all comments or additions to:

If there are terms in these articles you don't understand, you can get a definition from the Merriam Webster Medical Dictionary.   If you want information about a specific disease, you can access the Merck Manual.   You can also search Pub Med for more abstracts on this, or any other health topic.

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Quote of the Century:

“Even more remarkable is the efficiency of chiropractic research. When compared to the NIH budget of nearly $20 billion, the $10 million investment in federal funds is substantially less than a tenth of 1 percent, which makes it less than a rounding error.

Put another way, as a couple of wags have offered in the past,
the federal government must believe in alternative medicine, because it has given chiropractic researchers homeopathic doses of money with which to work.”

Thanks to Dr. Anthony Rosner for his wonderful sense of humor!
Review his complete presentation to the Institute of Medicine

What's New?

The Chiropractic Research Section only contains a small fraction of the research materials compiled on our web site. If you are interested in a specific topic, please refer to the following topical pages for more information.

   Research Arranged By Topic:   

About Chiropractic

Adverse Events

Antibiotic Abuse


Attention Deficit

Backpack Issues

Biopsychosocial Model

Best Practices

Blood Pressure

Care for Veterans

Carpal Tunnel

Chiropractic Identity

Chronic Neck Pain

Clinical Prediction Rule

Conditions That Respond


Diagnosis & Management

Disc Herniation

Exercise & Chiropractic

Evidence-based Practice

Forward Head Posture


Health Promotion

Iatrogenic Injury


Instrument Adjusting

Low Back Pain


Mild Traumatic Brain

Myofascial Disorder



Outcome Assessment

Pain Management

Patient Satisfaction

Practice Guidelines

Prescription Rights



Rehab Monographs

Repetitive Stress

Safety of Chiropractic

Sciatica and Chiropractic

Senior Care

Shoulder Girdle

Spinal Alignment

Spinal Care Experts

Spinal Palpation


Subluxation Complex

Vertigo & Balance



Workers' Compensation

   And these other useful Sections
   (Most of which have their own dedicated Search Tools)   


Alt Med Abstracts

Case Reports

Chiro Assistant

Chronic Neck Pain

Conditions That Respond



The Global Burden


Initial Provider


Low Back Pain

Medicare Info

Non-pharmacologic Therapy





Search Chiro.Org


What is Subluxation


The Wilk Decision

All About Chiropractic Research

Waste Not, Want Not: Call to Action for
Spinal Manipulative Therapy Researchers

Chiropractic & Manual Therapies 2024 (May 14); 32 (1): 16 ~ FULL TEXT

This call to action is directed to researchers in the field of SMT. It is critical that the SMT research community act to improve the way research is designed, conducted, and disseminated in order to enhance the usefulness of SMT research for clinicians and patients. In pursuit of this goal, we present eight key action points and various resources that are relevant for SMT research.

A Commentary on the Use of Mixed Methods in Chiropractic Research
A Unique Series of 3 Articles

Part 1: Overview of Mixed Methods Eesearch
J Can Chiropr Assoc 2024 (Apr); 68 (1): 8–15 ~ FULL TEXT

We recently each completed doctoral programs where the major focus of our work was in mixed methods research. In the first part of this three-part commentary, we present an overview of mixed methods research. In the second part, we present a summary of our primary and secondary research findings from our doctoral work involving mixed methods. In a third paper, we will discuss integrating qualitative research with randomized controlled trials and how this mixed methods study design can be applied to research within the chiropractic profession.

Our aim with these papers is to increase awareness amongst the chiropractic community of the value (and challenges) of using this unique methodology. We also make recommendations for improving the quality of reporting and conduct of future chiropractic mixed methods studies. Further dissemination of this work will occur through online webinars and conference presentations.

Part 2: Findings and Recommendations for Improving
Future Chiropractic Mixed Methods Studies

J Can Chiropr Assoc 2024 (Apr); 68 (1): 16–25 ~ FULL TEXT

In part 1 of this commentary, we presented an overview of mixed methods research and the rationales for using this methodology with examples from the chiropractic literature. We also introduced readers to the three core mixed methods study designs, as well as the advantages and challenges of employing a mixed methods approach.

In part 2 of this series, we provide a summary of the primary and secondary findings from our doctoral work involving mixed methods research and make recommendations for improving the reporting and conduct of future chiropractic mixed methods studies.

Part 3: Integration of Qualitative Research with
Randomized Controlled Trials

J Can Chiropr Assoc 2024 (Apr); 68 (1): 26-34 ~ FULL TEXT

This is the third of three papers in our series of articles on the use of mixed methods in chiropractic research. In this commentary, we discuss the mixed methods experimental (or intervention) design. This design is a complex mixed methods research design in which qualitative research is integrated with randomized controlled trials.

We provide a brief overview of this study design as well as a case example from the literature to illustrate how this approach can be applied to research within the chiropractic profession.

Best Practices for Chiropractic Management of Adult
Patients With Mechanical Low Back Pain:
A Clinical Practice Guideline for
Chiropractors in the United States

J Manipulative Physiol Ther 2023 (Jun 20); S0161-4754 ~ FULL TEXT

This paper updates the best-practice guideline on chiropractic management of mechanical LBP in adults in the US from the prior iterations. [4, 82] This guideline provides evidence-informed guidance to DCs related to both initial care management and the progression of care throughout an episode of the condition to reduce practice variability among providers while improving outcomes. We identified benchmarks and decision points in care management and provided information related to each issue. Providers can use this document as a reference point for the care they provide their patients. This updated Clinical Practice Guideline (CPG) condensed the number of recommendations from 51 to 38 while providing more evidence-informed insight into the diagnostic considerations for LBP, including the history and examination and diagnostic imaging. This document provides a more comprehensive description of the conservative management approaches to LBP, including chiropractic approaches and co-management considerations for multidisciplinary care.

Do You Want To Become a Research Scientist?
National Institutes of Health (NIH) Research Training and Career Development Programs

  • Learn more about how NIH Institutes and Centers may vary in research and training

  • Contact NIH extramural research training representatives to discuss how specific programs fit your training and career goals.

  • Explore this website for resources for training program leaders and individuals seeking research support at various career stages.

All About the Chiropractic Research Agenda
A Chiro.Org article collection

This section contains articles about the creation of Chiropractic's “Research Agenda”, discriptions of the “Consortial Center for Chiropractic Research”, and information about the “Research Agenda Conferences” (RAC 1–25).

Research @ the Chiropractic Colleges
A Chiro.Org source collection

Review (school by school) the research projects at our Chiropractic Colleges!

Chiropractic Research for a Variety of Conditions
A Chiro.Org article collection

Our newest section is titled: “Maintenance Care, Wellness and Chiropractic”. You may also review the impact oc chiropractic care on Asthma, Attention Deficit, Blindness, Infertility, Otitis Media and a variety of other conditions and disorders.

Articles and News about Chiropractic Research
A Chiro.Org article collection

Explore popular and peer-reviewed commentaries about recent research.

Responses to Previously Published Research
A Chiro.Org article collection

Read published responses to chiropractic research.

The Opinion Department
A Chiro.Org article collection

  General Grants funded by FCER
A Chiro.Org article collection

Just think what it would be like if FCER had ten times their budget!

Our Search Tools
A Chiro.Org article collection

Dig in and find it now !

Federal Regulation of Research
Protections for human subjects of research are required under Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) regulations at 45 CFR 46. Subpart A of the HHS regulations constitutes the Federal Policy (Common Rule) for the Protection of Human Subjects, which has been adopted by an additional 16 Executive Branch Departments and Agencies.

Chiropractic Collection

Chiropractic Research for a Variety of Conditions
A Chiro.Org article collection

Our newest section is titled: “Maintenance Care, Wellness and Chiropractic”. You may also review the impact of chiropractic care on Asthma, Attention Deficit, Blindness, Infertility, Otitis Media and a variety of other conditions and disorders.

Chiropractic and Spinal Pain Management
A Chiro.Org article collection

Several recent guidelines, published in high-visibility journals, including the Canadian Medical Association Journal, JAMA and the Annals of Internal Medicine now all agree that noninvasive, non-drug treatments for low back pain, including chiropractic care, should be fully utilized BEFORE resorting to more invasice but standard medical recommendations.

The Problem with Placebo/Shams
A Chiro.Org article collection

A trial, looking for the effects of chiropractic care for asthma, "seemed" to reveal that chiropractic was "no better" than placebo or sham care. Strangely, both the chiropractic and sham treatment groups improved. This raises interesting questions about how inert the sham care actually was. This page addresses the difficulties of designing a "neutral" sham in a chiropractic (or CAM) trial.

Spinal Allignment & Cervical Curve
A Chiro.Org article collection

Our spine is a “structural” unit. There are 4 curves to the spine. Loss of structural integrity and/or normal function of the spine is the basis for the evolution of the vertebral subluxation. Abnormal stresses occur in the facets, discs and supporting tissues when normal motion of the spine is impaired. Chiropractic analysis should be aimed at locating the specific segments which are subluxated, as well as providing the means to “free” those segments.

Instrument Adjusting, a.k.a. Mechanically-assisted Adjustments
A Chiro.Org article collection

This page gathers articles discussing the use of mechanically-assisted instrument adjusting. If you find any other articles that discuss instrument or drop-table adjusting, would you please contact me?

About Chiropractic Adjusting, a.k.a. Spinal Manipulation
A Chiro.Org article collection

The proper differential diagnosis of somatic vs. visceral dysfunction represents a challenge for both the medical and chiropractic physician. The afferent convergence mechanisms, which can create signs and symptoms that are virtually indistinguishable with respect to their somatic vs. visceral etiologies, need to be appreciated by all portal-of-entry health care providers, to insure timely referral of patients to the health specialist appropriate to their condition.

Chiropractic Research Review 2015
The Practice Analysis of Chiropractic 2015 (Chapter 2)
This is a nice review by someone at the NBCE. The bottom section, titled “Basic Science Research” and in particular the discussion on Neurophysiology is very well done. The articles they review are usually so dense in terminology that it's hard to parse out what they are getting at, so this is a nice Reader's Digest compilation.

A Comprehensive Review of Chiropractic Research
  By Anthony L. Rosner, Ph.D, Director of Research and Education for FCER
In the space of just 115 years from its inception, chiropractic has emerged as the third largest healthcare profession in the United States offering diagnostic as well as therapeutic services to patients. It has reached this lofty height driven by research which has made particularly dramatic strides over the past 30 years, supported by a budget which represents merely an infinitesimal fraction of that applied to medical and pharmaceutical research.

Chiropractic Research & Practice: State of the Art
By Daniel Redwood, D.C., professor, Cleveland Chiropractic College
Since chiropractic’s breakthrough decade in the 1970s — when the U.S. federal government included chiropractic services in Medicare and federal workers’ compensation coverage, approved the Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE) as the accrediting body for chiropractic colleges, and sponsored a National Institutes of Health (NIH) conference on the research status of spinal manipulation—the profession has grown and matured into an essential part of the nation’s healthcare system.

When Research Challenges Our Assumptions
ACA News ~ Sept 2012
When new research, research reviews or practice guidelines support our current beliefs and practices, enthusiasm comes easily. When the 2007 medical practice guidelines on low back pain (LBP) jointly prepared by the American Pain Society and the American College of Physicians recognized spinal manipulation as the only non-pharmacologic method providing “proven benefits” for acute LBP and as one of several methods (including exercise, rehabilitation, acupuncture and yoga) proven effective for chronic LBP, the American Chiropractic Association and doctors of chiropractic (DCs) everywhere welcomed this as a long-overdue recognition of the value of our primary treatment methods.

Research and the Bottom Line: Learn How Research Helps
Overturn Claim Denials and Reverses Insurance Policies

ACAnews May 2009

How often has this happened in your practice? You submit an insurance claim, only to receive a denial, labeling the treatment or diagnostic testing you conducted as "observational" or "investigational." It's a response familiar to many doctors of chiropractic. Organizations like CCGPP and FCER make it their business to stay on top of the latest research affecting chiropractic, and they frequently publish the types of reviews and syntheses that you need to make your case to third-party payers. Learn more here.



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Updated 6-09-2024

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