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Treatment of Patients with Low Back Pain: A Comparison of Physical Therapy and Chiropractic Manipulation

By |March 5, 2020|Categories: Cost-Effectiveness of Chiropractic|

Treatment of Patients with Low Back Pain: A Comparison of Physical Therapy and Chiropractic Manipulation

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SOURCE:   Healthcare (Basel). 2020 (Feb 24); 8 (1): E44

Nima Khodakarami

Department of Health Policy and Management,
Texas A&M University,
College Station, TX 77843, USA.



Low back pain (LBP) is a pandemic and costly musculoskeletal condition in the United States (U.S.). Patients with LBP may endure surgery, injections, and expensive visits to emergency departments. Some suggest that using physical therapy (PT) or chiropractic in the earlier stage of LBP reduces the utilization of expensive health services and lowers the treatment costs. Given that there are costs and benefits with each of these treatments, the remaining question is in a short period of time which of these treatments is optimal. The purpose of this study was to investigate the cost-effectiveness of chiropractic versus PT in the U.S. A decision tree analytic model was used for estimating the economic outcomes. The findings showed that the total average cost in the chiropractic group was $48.56 lower than the PT group. The findings also showed that the daily adjusted life years (DALY) in the chiropractic group was 0.0043 higher than the PT group. Chiropractic care was shown to be a cost-effective alternative compared with PT for adults with at least three weeks of LBP over six months.

KEYWORDS:   Keywords: chiropractic; physical therapy; treatment outcome; low back pain; therapy; economics; patient satisfaction; recurrence; health care costs; illness

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Benefits and Harms of Spinal Manipulative Therapy for the Treatment of Chronic Low Back Pain

By |February 28, 2020|Categories: Adverse Events|

Benefits and Harms of Spinal Manipulative Therapy for the Treatment of Chronic Low Back Pain: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Randomised Controlled Trials

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SOURCE:   British Medical Journal 2019 (Mar 13)

Sidney M Rubinstein, Annemarie de Zoete, Marienke van Middelkoop, Willem J J Assendelft, Michiel R de Boer, and Maurits W van Tulder

Department of Health Sciences,
Faculty of Science,
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam,
De Boelelaan 1085, 1081HV
Amsterdam, Netherlands


OBJECTIVE:   To assess the benefits and harms of spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) for the treatment of chronic low back pain.

DESIGN:   Systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.

DATA SOURCES:   Medline, PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), CINAHL, Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro), Index to Chiropractic Literature, and trial registries up to 4 May 2018, including reference lists of eligible trials and related reviews.

ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA FOR SELECTING STUDIES:   Randomised controlled trials examining the effect of spinal manipulation or mobilisation in adults (≥18 years) with chronic low back pain with or without referred pain. Studies that exclusively examined sciatica were excluded, as was grey literature. No restrictions were applied to language or setting.

REVIEW METHODS:   Two reviewers independently selected studies, extracted data, and assessed risk of bias and quality of the evidence.


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The Myth of the Placebo Response

By |February 26, 2020|Categories: Placebo|

The Myth of the Placebo Response

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SOURCE:   Frontiers in Pychiatry 2019 (Aug 16); 10: 577

Wayne Jonas, MD

Department of Family Medicine,
Uniformed Services University,
Bethesda, MD, United States.


The placebo response is a myth. It does not exist in reality, and continuing to name it is hindering the optimal application of science to healing in medicine. On the surface, it is obvious that, when defined as a biological response to an inert pill (like a sugar pill), the idea of a “response” to a placebo is impossible. Inert treatments by definition do not produce responses. So why do we continue to ponder why people get better from taking inert substances and base our acceptance of legitimate treatments on demonstrating that they go beyond that response? The problem arises because we have flawed assumptions of the value that reductionistic science and the demonstration of specific effects has for healing. To support those flawed assumptions, we support the idea of “the placebo response.” This causes confusion among patients, clinicians, regulators, and even scientists.

Legitimate medical treatments have become defined as those that do more than produce a placebo response. An entire pharmaceutical industry and its regulators attempt to control and profit by proving that small molecules produce a clinical effect greater than the placebo response. Billions of dollars are made when that is proven, often even when the size of the response in the active over the placebo group is miniscule. The fact is people heal and that inherent healing capacity is both powerful and influenced by mental, social, and contextual factors that are embedded in every medical encounter since the idea of treatment began. In this chapter, I argue that our understanding of healing and ability to enhance it will be accelerated if we stop using the term “placebo response” and call it what it is – the meaning response, and its special application in medicine called the healing response.

KEYWORDS:   healing; myth; placebo; response; traditional

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Outcome Measures for Assessing the Effectiveness of Non-pharmacological Interventions in Frequent Episodic or Chronic Migraine

By |February 17, 2020|Categories: Migraine|

Outcome Measures for Assessing the Effectiveness of Non-pharmacological Interventions in Frequent Episodic or Chronic Migraine: A Delphi Study

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SOURCE:   BMJ Open. 2020 (Feb 12); 10 (2): e029855

Kerstin Luedtke, Annika Basener, Stephanie Bedei, Rene Castien, Aleksander Chaibi, et al

Pain and Exercise Research,
Universitat zu Lubeck Sektion Medizin,
Lubeck, Germany
kerstin.luedtke@uni-luebeck.de


OBJECTIVES:   The aim of this Delphi survey was to establish an international consensus on the most useful outcome measures for research on the effectiveness of non-pharmacological interventions for migraine. This is important, since guidelines for pharmacological trials recommend measuring the frequency of headaches with 50% reduction considered a clinically meaningful effect. It is unclear whether the same recommendations apply to complementary (or adjunct) non-pharmacological approaches, whether the same cut-off levels need to be considered for effectiveness when used as an adjunct or stand-alone intervention, and what is meaningful to patients.

SETTING:   University-initiated international survey.

PARTICIPANTS:   The expert panel was chosen based on publications on non-pharmacological interventions in migraine populations and from personal contacts. 35 eligible researchers were contacted, 12 agreed to participate and 10 completed all 3 rounds of the survey. To further explore how migraine patients viewed potential outcome measures, four migraine patients were interviewed and presented with the same measurement tools as the researchers.

PROCEDURES:   The initial Delphi round was based on a systematic search of the literature for outcome measures used in non-pharmacological interventions for headache.

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Does Manual Therapy Affect Functional and Biomechanical Outcomes of a Sit-To-Stand Task in a Population with Low Back Pain?

By |February 11, 2020|Categories: Low Back Pain|

Does Manual Therapy Affect Functional and Biomechanical Outcomes of a Sit-To-Stand Task in a Population with Low Back Pain? A Preliminary Analysis

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SOURCE:   Chiropractic & Manual Therapies 2020 (Jan 24)

Giancarlo Carpino, Steven Tran, Stuart Currie, Brian Enebo, Bradley S. Davidson, and Samuel J. Howarth

Division of Research and Innovation,
Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College,
Toronto, ON M2H 3 J1 Canada


INTRODUCTION:   Manual therapy (MT) hypothetically affects discrepant neuromuscular control and movement observed in populations with low back pain (LBP). Previous studies have demonstrated the limited influence of MT on movement, predominately during range of motion (ROM) testing. It remains unclear if MT affects neuromuscular control in mobility-based activities of daily living (ADLs). The sit-to-stand (STS) task represents a commonly-performed ADL that is used in a variety of clinical settings to assess functional and biomechanical performance.

OBJECTIVE:   To determine whether MT affects functional performance and biomechanical performance during a STS task in a population with LBP.

METHODS:   Kinematic data were recorded from the pelvis and thorax of participants with LBP, using an optoelectronic motion capture system as they performed a STS task before and after MT from November 2011 to August 2014. MT for each participant consisted of two high-velocity low-amplitude spinal manipulations, as well as two grade IV mobilizations of the lumbar spine and pelvis targeted toward the third lumbar vertebra and sacroiliac joint in a side-lying position; the order of these treatments was randomized. Pelvis and thorax kinematic data were used to derive the time-varying lumbar angle in the sagittal plane for each STS trial.

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Chiropractic Treatment of Older Adults with Neck Pain with or without Headache or Dizziness

By |January 31, 2020|Categories: Headache, Neck Pain, Vertigo|

Chiropractic Treatment of Older Adults with Neck Pain with or without Headache or Dizziness: Analysis of 288 Australian Chiropractors’ Self-reported Views

The Chiro.Org Blog


SOURCE:   Chiropractic & Manual Therapies 2019 (Dec 18); 27: 65

Dein Vindigni, Laura Zark, Tobias Sundberg, Matthew Leach, Jon Adams, and Michael F. Azari

Chiropractic Discipline,
School of Health and Biomedical Sciences,
RMIT University,
Melbourne, Australia.


BACKGROUND:   Neck pain is a leading cause of individual and societal burden worldwide, affecting an estimated 1 in 5 people aged 70 years and older. The nature and outcomes of chiropractic care for older adults with neck pain, particularly those with co-morbid headaches, remains poorly understood. Therefore, we sought to ascertain: What proportion of Australian chiropractors’ caseload comprises older adults with neck pain (with or without headache); How are these conditions treated; What are the reported outcomes?

METHODS:   An online survey examining practitioner and practice characteristics, clinical patient presentations, chiropractic treatment methods and outcomes, and other health service use, was distributed to a random nationally representative sample of 800 Australian chiropractors. Quantitative methods were used to analyze the data.

RESULTS:   Two hundred eighty-eight chiropractors (response rate = 36%) completed the survey between August and November 2017. Approximately one-third (M 28.5%, SD 14.2) of the chiropractors’ patients were older adults (i.e. aged ≥65 years), of which 45.5% (SD 20.6) presented with neck pain and 31.3% (SD 20.3) had co-morbid headache. Chiropractors reported to combine a range of physical and manual therapy treatments, exercises and self-management practices in their care of these patients particularly:

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