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Chiropractic Patients Less Likely to Suffer Drug Reactions

Posted on 30 January, 2019 at 14:20 Comments comments (2)


 

Author: Michael Melton No Comments Share:

Most people experience back pain, and many of these patients use drugs for pain relief. A 2014 study1 found that of older adults with chronic back pain, 72% of them were using some kind of analgesic to help cope with the pain. Another study2 found that 32% of back pain patients in their analysis were using prescribed opiates for relief.

 

It’s unfortunate that so many patients depend on drugs for musculoskeletal aches and pains, especially when chiropractic is an effective and safe way to not only relieve pain, but also prevent future pain episodes.

 

Now a new study3 shows that chiropractic also is linked to a lower risk of adverse drug reactions in patients with back pain. In this study, the authors looked at the medical records of over 19,000 adults in New Hampshire who had at least two doctor visits for back pain. 9.810 of these patients used chiropractic care; 9,343 patients used regular medical care. The researchers analyzed the number of adverse drug effects (ADEs) experienced by the two groups.

 

The authors found:

 

Younger patients were more likely to use chiropractic care.

Non-chiropractic patients tended to have more health problems, in general, when compared to those who used chiropractic.

Chiropractic patients experienced 51% fewer adverse drug reactions (.4% vs .9%) compared to medical patients.

15 non-chiropractic patients were diagnosed with drug withdrawal, while zero chiropractic patients had drug withdrawal.

This study had some limitations, as the study data didn’t included details about the types of drugs the patients were using or how frequently they were using medications. But the authors conclude that the “utilization of chiropractic care may be associated with reduced risk of ADEs; however, no causal relationship has been established.”

 

Another study by the same group of researchers found that chiropractic patients were 55% less likely to be prescribed opiates for their pain and had lower health care bills.

 

With the opiate epidemic in the US, it’s critical that we find non-opiate approaches to back pain treatment. Chiropractic is about restoring health without the use of drugs. By helping the body heal naturally, chiropractic can help you stay well and help you avoid unnecessary adverse drug reactions, too!

 

Enthoven WT, Scheele J, Bierma-Zeinstra SM, Bueving HJ, Bohnen AM, Peul WC, van Tulder MW, Berger MY, Koes BW, Luijsterburg PA. Analgesic use in older adults with back pain: the BACE study. Pain Medicine 2014 Oct;15(10):1704-14. Doi: 10.1111/pme.12515.

Ashworth J, Green DJ, Dunn KM, Jordan KP. Opioid use among low back pain patients in primary care: Is opioid prescription associated with disability at 6-month follow-up? Pain. 2013 Jul;154(7):1038-44. doi: 10.1016/j.pain.2013.03.011.

Whedon JM, Toler AWJ, Goehl JM, Kazal LA. Association Between Utilization of Chiropractic Services for Treatment of Low Back Pain and Risk of Adverse Drug Events. Journal of Manipulative & Physiological Therapeutics 2018 May 26. pii: S0161-4754(17)30136-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2018.01.004.

Written by: Michael Melton on June 6, 2018.

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VA Study Finds Chiropractic Linked to Lower Opiate Usage

 

The Effectiveness of Chiropractic Maintenance Care

Posted on 24 January, 2019 at 0:45 Comments comments (0)

Author: Michael Melton No Comments Share:

The Effectiveness of Chiropractic Maintenance Care

The scientific literature is clear that chiropractic adjustments can be beneficial for acute and chronic low pain, sciatica, and other musculoskeletal conditions. Over 1 million chiropractic adjustments are performed every day around the world and people have benefited and avoided surgery and risky medications by seeing chiropractors.

 

Many people who see chiropractors also do so on a maintenance basis, with the objective of preventing future episodes or exacerbation of their symptoms. Previous research has found that chiropractic can effectively prevent future back pain, but this approach hasn’t been studied extensively.

 

Now, a Swedish study has given us some new data on the benefits of chiropractic maintenance care.

 

In this study, the authors started with a group of people who came to see a chiropractor for recurrent or persistent back pain. Of these patients, the researcher took those patients who experienced “definite improvement” from the chiropractic care and entered them into the main part of the study.

 

These 328 patients were then randomly assigned to two groups. The first group received Maintenance Care (MC): they were put on a chiropractic adjustment schedule that was determined by the chiropractor. The second group was the control group, and their chiropractic care was symptom-guided: the patients would come in for an adjustment when they felt like they needed one. This portion of the study lasted 52 weeks.

 

The authors describe the philosophy of the two types of care:

 

“In the MC group, the aim was to schedule patients before substantial pain reoccurred (i.e. controlled by the clinician), while in the control group patients were instructed to call in if and when the pain recurred (patient controlled). If patients in the control group made a new appointment, they were treated at one or several sessions until maximum benefit was reached and were once again instructed to call when in pain. If patients in the MC group experienced a new pain episode prior to the next scheduled visit, they were instructed to call for an earlier appointment and were cared for accordingly until they were ready to be scheduled for preventive visits again. MC visits were scheduled according to the clinicians’ judgement of patient need, but at intervals of no more than three months.”

 

At the completion of the study, the authors looked at the total number of days of bothersome low back pain in all subjects. The study found:

 

The Maintenance Care group had 85.2 days of bothersome pain

The control group had 98 days of bothersome pain

The patients in Maintenance Care had a quicker reduction in overall pain

The MC patients had an average of 6.7 visits over 52 weeks; the control patients had an average of 4.8 visits over 52 weeks

The only negative side effects experience were local soreness and tiredness.

The authors conclude:

 

“In patients with recurrent and persistent LBP who responds well to an initial course of manual therapy, MC resulted in a reduction in number of days with bothersome LBP per week, compared with symptom-guided treatment. In total, the MC group had on average 12.8 fewer days with bothersome LBP over 12 months. The effect of the intervention was achieved at the cost of 1.7 additional visits to the chiropractor. For patients with recurrent and persistent LBP who are selected according to evidence-based criteria, MC should be considered.”

 

Eklund A, Jensen I, Lohela-Karlsson M, Hagberg J, Leboeuf-Yde C, Kongsted A, Bodin L, Axén I. The Nordic Maintenance Care program: Effectiveness of chiropractic maintenance care versus symptom-guided treatment for recurrent and persistent low back pain-A pragmatic randomized controlled trial. PLoS One. 2018 Sep 12;13(9):e0203029. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0203029. eCollection 2018. PubMed PMID: 30208070.

 

Written by: Michael Melton on September 23, 2018.Modified on September 27, 2018.

 

9 Risk Factors for Developing Sciatica

Posted on 16 January, 2019 at 0:10 Comments comments (0)

Author: Michael Melton No Comments Share:

Sciatica is a common pain problem that affects about 5% of adults. Sciatica is a symptom rather than a specific diagnosis: sciatic pain can have a number of different causes, and getting a proper diagnosis is key in getting relief from this condition.

 

While pinpointing the root cause of sciatica can be challenging, the medical research has established the factors that increase the risk of a person developing sciatic nerve pain.

 

Here are the nine most common risk factors for developing sciatica:

 

1. Aging

 

As we get older, we lose flexibility and it takes us longer for our body to heal from injuries. One of the most common types of pain associated with aging is lower back pain, and back pain is very closely linked to sciatica.1,2

 

2. History of Low Back Pain

 

Research shows that patients who have problems with low back pain are more likely to eventually develop sciatica. Low back pain can result in a general inflammation in the lumbar spine, and this can start to spread to the sciatic nerve.

 

3. Smoking

 

It’s no secret that smoking is bad for your health, and it’s also clear that smokers are more likely to suffer from back pain and sciatica.3

 

Smoking isn’t just bad for your lungs and cardiovascular system; it’s also associated with inflammation, poor circulation, and a weakened immune system. This makes it harder for your body to function properly and makes it more difficult for your body to heal from injuries.

 

4. Overall Poor Health

 

Wellness is about flexibility and movement, and if our general health is poor, it’s difficult to stay active and healthy. Research shows that physical fitness is a great way to prevent and treat back pain.4

 

In addition, poor cardiovascular health is closely associated with a general inflammatory response in the body, which also increases the chances of musculoskeletal pain and sciatica.5

 

5. Obesity

 

Being overweight is one of the strongest predictors of back pain and other musculoskeletal problems, including sciatica.

 

Research shows that adipose tissue actually creates inflammatory markers which can affect our whole body, including our cardiovascular and nervous system. Remember: all sciatica pain is caused by inflammation of the sciatic nerve, and sciatica is more likely if your whole body is in an inflammatory state.

 

6. Work-Related Injuries

 

Repetitive movements or being too sedentary are detrimental to your musculoskeletal health, and this holds true for sciatica, as well.

 

Studies show that work-related activities can lead to sciatic nerve pain. Here are a few of the work conditions that have been associated with sciatica in the medical literature:

 

Standing or walking for long stretches.

Driving for long periods of time.

Pulling or kneeling for more than 15 minutes at a time.

Whole-body vibration.

If your work includes any of these activities, it’s critical to take breaks frequently, rest, and stretch a bit to prevent muscle injury and pain.

 

7. Sleep Problems

 

Research shows that poor sleep quality is associated with back pain and sciatica. This is a difficult issue, as poor sleep is also associated with other health issues, such as poor general health, obesity, and chronic pain. Sleep dysfunction is also associated with generalized inflammation, which is also linked to chronic pain.

 

8. Direct Injury

 

Less frequently, sciatica can be caused by an injury to the hip or buttocks, resulting in pain. One example of this would be sitting on a bulky wallet, which puts pressure on the nerve directly.

 

9. Psychological Distress

 

Low back pain and sciatica are linked to stress, as well. Monotonous or unsatisfying work and general stress can lead to chronic musculoskeletal pain.

 

A Whole Body Approach to Recovery

 

As you can see, many different factors play a role in the development of sciatica. Typically, it’s not just a single issue that results in pain, but a combination of factors. That’s why the most effective treatment and prevention of future episodes require a whole-body approach that looks at the root cause of your pain.

 

Medical References

 

Cook CE, Taylor J, Wright A, Milosavljevic S, Goode A, Whitford M. Risk factors for first time incidence sciatica: a systematic review. Physiotherapy Research International 2014 Jun;19(2):65-78. doi: 10.1002/pri.1572. Epub 2013 Dec 11. Review. PubMed PMID: 24327326.

Parreira P, Maher CG, Steffens D, Hancock MJ, Ferreira ML. Risk factors for low back pain and sciatica: an umbrella review. Spine J. 2018 Sep;18(9):1715-1721. doi: 10.1016/j.spinee.2018.05.018. Epub 2018 May 21. Review. PubMed PMID: 29792997.

Lee J, Taneja V, Vassallo R. Cigarette smoking and inflammation: cellular and molecular mechanisms. Journal of Dental Research 2012;91(2):142-9.

Gordon R, Bloxham S. A Systematic Review of the Effects of Exercise and Physical Activity on Non-Specific Chronic Low Back Pain. Healthcare (Basel). 2016;4(2):22. Published 2016 Apr 25. doi:10.3390/healthcare4020022

da Cruz Fernandes IM, Pinto RZ, Ferreira P, Lira FS. Low back pain, obesity, and inflammatory markers: exercise as potential treatment. J Exerc Rehabil. 2018;14(2):168-174. Published 2018 Apr 26. doi:10.12965/jer.1836070.035

Summary

9 Risk Factors for Developing Sciatica PainArticle Name9 Risk Factors for Developing Sciatica Pain

Chiropractic safe for kids, study finds

Posted on 13 December, 2018 at 0:40 Comments comments (0)


Author: Marissa Luck No Comments Share:

A new survey of European chiropractors confirmed that chiropractic is safe for kids. Less than 1% of children experienced side effects from chiropractic treatments, and they were all mild. No serious side effects were reported.


The survey included 956 chiropractors from 20 different European countries who had a total of nearly 20,000 pediatric visits a month. In the survey, 57% of pediatric patients were treated for musculoskeletal conditions, 23% for neurological issues, 12% for gastrointestinal complaints, and a smaller number were treated for infections or other miscellaneous concerns. Children represented 8.1% of chiropractors’ patient base in Europe, lower than in the US average of 17%.


As more parents realize the benefits and safety of chiropractic for children, many chiropractors say they’re beginning to see more kids in their offices according to a recent story from WAFB 9 News.


See our longer article reviewing the safety of chiropractic for children.

Reference

Marchand A. Chiropractic Care of Children from Birth to Adolescence and Classification of Reported Conditions: An Internet Cross-Sectional Survey of 956 European Chiropractors. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 2012; 35 (5):372-380.


Written by: Marissa Luck on November 19, 2018.

Last revised by: Michael MeltonNovember 22, 2018.

Tags: children, chiropractic treatment, news

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9 Risk Factors for Developing Sciatica


Auto Injuries Increase Risk of Future Back Pain

Posted on 11 October, 2018 at 13:20 Comments comments (0)

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administrations reports that more than two million people are injured every year in auto-related accidents involving either a passenger vehicle, large truck, or motorcycle. Furthermore, that number appears to be climbing at an alarming rate, increasing more than five percent between 2014 and 2015 alone.

Certainly, being involved in this type of incident can have long-lasting effects. For instance, one study published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine found that “a substantial minority” of subjects questioned reported experiencing anxiety when traveling in a motor vehicle post-accident, with 10 percent developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a condition that, in some cases, plagued them for years.

Well, another recently published study has found that being in a car crash can also result in long-term physical ramifications as well. Specifically, it discovered that back pain can linger or appear long after the vehicle has been fixed and the debris has been cleaned out of the roadway.

In April of 2017, the European Spine Journal presented a study involving 789 adults, all of whom reported experiencing mild low back pain or no pain at all. Upon entering the study, each person was asked whether or not he or she had been in a motor vehicle accident resulting in low back pain, making note of whether their level of pain increased, decreased, or stayed the same six and 12 months down the road.

Approximately 74.8 percent of the participants responded at the six month mark, with 64.5 percent providing input at 12 months. Of those who did respond, researchers noticed a positive correlation between those who had previously been involved in an auto accident and the incidences of low back pain at a later date. In other words, having a car crash in your past may increase your risk of back pain in the future.

This is partially why being assessed right after a car wreck is so critical. While this is relatively standard when it comes to auto injuries that can be seen or easily felt, damage done to the musculoskeletal system isn’t quite so visible or easy to pinpoint, which also makes it easier to ignore.

Educating patients is the first step to helping them resolve any subsequent back issues. The second step is to regularly ask them whether they’ve been involved in a crash, no matter how small. If they have, addressing that issue first and foremost can keep their quality of life from being compromised months, years, or even decades later.

References

Mayou R, Tyndel S, Bryant B. Long-term outcome of motor vehicle accident injury. Psychosomatic Medicine 1997;59(6):578-84.

Nolet PS, Kristman VL, Côté P, Carroll LJ, Cassidy JD. The association between a lifetime history of low back injury in a motor vehicle collision and future low back pain: a population-based cohort study. European Spine Journal 2017;doi:10.1007/s00586-017-5090-y

Traffic Safety Facts. (August 2016). 2015 Motor Vehicle Crashes: Overview. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Written by: Michael Melton on February 15, 2018.Modified on February 14, 2018.


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