Research: Manipulation vs Nsaids - Spine 2013.

| by Emma Fretwell

Trial: Spinal high velocity low amplitude manipulation in acute non specific lower back pain: a double minded randomised controlled trial in comparison with naiads and placebo.

2103, von Heymann Schloemer Timm Mühlbauer

Hi, welcome to the research of the month with Emerald Chiropractic! A new initiative to bring you clinical and scientific reasons why we love what we do! Today we will be looking at the study done in 2013, which compared spinal manipulation to Nsaids, compared to placebo or nothing… published in Spine Journal.

Don’t scroll over, this is an amazing study that may just change your life one day! One day when you need it most!

Let me explain some terminology: naiads = Non steroidal Anti Inflammatories: drugs like Naproxen, Diclofenac, and Ibuprofen. HVLA Manipulation is the High Velocity, low amplitude manipulation that we do as Chiropractors and Osteopaths, the type of treatment you would receive every time you came into Emerald! Placebo in this case is the fake or sham treatment and the fake medications that the patients received to make them think they were part of the treatment groups.

The study was carried out on the acute lower back pain patients across 5 outpatient practices… they had to have recent onset lower back pain for less 90 days, and many were excluded from the study for various reasons. The final 101 patients were split into 3 groups: 1 manipulation and fake anti-inflammatories, 2 sham manipulations with real anti-inflammatories, and the third group had sham treatments as well as the fake anti-inflams.

What results!! In technical speak and quoting directly from the paper: for patients with acute non specific lower back pain, spinal manipulation was significantly better than the non steroidal anti-inflammatories, and clinically superior to the placebo group.

Breaking down the data slightly further: in the manipulation group of 37 people, 19 had complete relief of their lower back pain, 10 had significant improvement, 6 had no change, 0 deteriorated. thats over 75% of the trial patients had either complete relief or significant improvement of their acute lower back pain… Wow those stats really speak for themselves!

What does this really mean?

Acute lower back pain that has just come on for no specific reason i.e. not a disc problem, or sciatica, just an achey back and painful back. This has had to be there for less than 90 days… 3 months! That’s the majority of our new patients that come through the door: lower back pain, been there for 3 months or less… does this sound familiar? Is this you we are talking about? or your friend, partner, mum, dad, sister, brother? your husband or wife? Take a look around you, think about the moans and groans that you have listened to in the last few months - tell them about this, and encourage them to get checked out!!

Spinal manipulation has a huge role to play in getting over an acute onset of lower back pain, the visit to a chiropractor or an osteopath with change your outcomes, change your health, and change your recovery times. All for the better.

The authors of this paper also included various check for these patients: they were checked against their own questionnaire scores, self rated disability scores, off work times and if they had to take any rescue medication throughout the trial.

For those employers out there, this can be significant to your sick times, non productivity times, and ultimately your overall profitability of your company… just think, if you could encourage your employees to have spinal manipulation instead of ringing the docs for a prescription - the waiting times to get to see the docs, plus then the time for the anti-inflammatories to kick in, and your employee to feel well enough to come back to work, could all take several days let alone weeks… or you could encourage them to ring Emerald for an appointment for either chiropractic or osteopathic treatment, which should significantly reduce the time your employee is off sick…

If you are self employed - most of us are simply swopping time for money, and so anything that affects our work time, and our ability to work optimally, then we get paid less, and our productivity is vastly effected… chiropractic or osteopathic care can really help - scientifically proven now!!!

So, think slightly out of the box, we are all used to getting a prescription to help us, the magic pill, but this study does pitch spinal manipulation against those magic pills, and the spinal manipulation comes out significantly better. So the next time your back ‘goes’, or you have to listen your work colleague, friend or loved one complaining about their back problems, send them our way! We can do a complimentary assessment to see if we feel that Chiropractic or osteopathic treatments will be able to help…

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