Maintenance Chiropractic Care for Chronic Low Back Pain

| December 7, 2013 | 0 Comments

Great Article regarding Lower back pain study.

Low back pain (LBP) is the second most common cause of disability among adults in the United States. The total cost of back pain in the U.S., including treatment and lost productivity, ranges between $100 billion to $200 billion a year.

In the past two decades, the use of health care services for chronic LBP (LBP lasting more than 3 months) has substantially increased. In reviewing insurance claims information, researchers note a significant increase in the use of spinal injections, surgery, and narcotic prescriptions. There has been an increase in the use of spinal manipulation by chiropractors, physical therapy services and non-narcotic prescriptions. The reported utilization of these services for chronic LBP was only 3.9 percent in 1992 compared to 10.2 percent in 2006. Researchers are not certain if this increase is due to more people suffering from chronic LBP, more people deciding to seek treatment, or a combination of the two.

Maintenance chiropractic care is well-supported in studies for controlling chronic LBP. A study (SPINE, Vol. 36, No. 18, 8/15/11) written by two medical doctors took 60 patients with chronic LBP and randomly assigned them into one of three groups: 1) 12 treatments of sham (fake) SMT (spinal manipulation) over a one-month period; 2) 12 SMT treatments over a one-month period only; or 3) 12 treatments for one month and then SMT every two weeks for the following nine months.

They measured pain, disability, generic health status, and back-specific patient satisfaction.

They found only the second and third groups experienced significantly lower pain and disability scores after the first month of treatments, and only the third group showed more improvement at the 10-month evaluation. By the tenth month, the pain and disability scores returned back to nearly the initial level in group two.

They concluded, “To obtain long-term benefit, this study suggests maintenance SMT after the initial intensive manipulative therapy.” Other studies have reported fewer medical tests, lower costs, fewer doctor visits, less work absenteeism, and a higher quality of life when maintenance chiropractic visits are utilized.

Thank you Dr. Wendy/Hayden Health

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