By James E. Cheeley
Cheeley Chiropractic, Inc.
11/10/2022 at 2:36 PM
Chiropractic primarily focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of neuromuscular disorders with an emphasis on treatment using manual adjustments and other types of spinal manipulation and/or mobilization. Chiropractic is classified as a form of primary care because anyone can choose to see a doctor of chiropractic without a referral.
A 2010 meta-analysis reviewed a number of published studies to determine the strength of scientific evidence regarding the effectiveness of manual therapy for musculoskeletal (MSK) and non-musculoskeletal (non-MSK) conditions.
Lead author Dr. Gert Bronfort reviewed 49 relevant systematic reviews and 16 evidence-based clinical guidelines and concluded that he and the other review authors found TMS/mobilization to be effective in adults for the following conditions: acute, subacute and chronic low back pain. pain; migraine and cervicogenic headache; cervicogenic vertigo; and several joint conditions of the extremities. Interestingly, Dr. Bronfort and his team noted that chest manipulation/mobilization was effective for both acute and subacute neck pain, but the evidence available at the time was inconclusive for neck manipulation/mobilization alone for pain. neck pain of any duration.
The evidence was also inconclusive for TMS/mobilization for mid-back pain, sciatica, tension headache, coccydynia, temporomandibular joint disorder, fibromyalgia, premenstrual syndrome and pneumonia in the elderly. Additionally, they found that TMS/mobilization was not effective for asthma, dysmenorrhea (compared to sham TMS), or stage 1 hypertension when added to an antihypertensive regimen. In children, the evidence was inconclusive regarding the effectiveness of TMS/mobilization for otitis media and enuresis, and they also noted that TMS/mobilization was not effective for infantile colic and asthma versus TMS simulation.
In a 2014 follow-up study, lead author Dr Christine Clar confirmed most of the previously “inconclusive” or “moderate” evidence ratings in the 2010 evidence report. However, the availability of new research motivated Dr. Clar to note moderate evidence for these conditions: manipulation/mobilization (with exercise) for rotator cuff disorders, spinal mobilization for cervicogenic headaches, and mobilization for various headaches.
These two meta-analyses are very helpful for those considering chiropractic care for specific conditions. Reviews like this are planned for the future, and the list of conditions that respond well to chiropractic care is expected to grow as areas requiring further study are determined and more research is published.