Two recent studies published by the medical profession show the benefit on chiropractic care for long term back health. Both studies talk about the value of what is called maintenance care provided by chiropractors.
The first paper comes from the Rheumatology and Rehabilitation department in the faculty of medicine at the University of Mansoura and was published in the journal ‘Spine’. Their findings across 60 patients with non-specific chronic low back pain showed the greatest improvement when they were adjusted regularly (12 times) in the first month and then following a maintenance schedule (2 times per month) for the following 9 months. This was compared with a group that was also adjusted 12 times in the first month but received no treatment during the following 9 months. In both cases low back pain was significantly reduced after 1 month. After the full 10 months the group that continued maintenance care had maintained their improvements while the group that did not receive treatment return to their original level of back pain.
The second study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine compared chiropractic maintenance care will other health professionals. After reading the first paper, the obviously question was ‘does it have to be a chiropractic treatment, could I see a physiotherapist or my family doctor instead for maintenance care?’
They used a ‘Hazard Ratio’ to quantify the likelihood of low back pain reccuring. this study found that of 896 injured workers that experienced non-specific low back pain those who saw a chiropractor (hazard ratio=1.2) for maintenance care had lower rates of recurrence than those who saw their family doctor (hazard ratio=1.6) or physiotherapist (hazard ratio=2.0).
Take home message
We’re talking about long term low back pain. Greater than 6 months. Research evidence suggests chiropractic adjustments are an effective option, among others, to help you get better. However, regardless of how you get better regular chiropractic maintenance care is an effective choice to maintain a healthy back.