We care for a large number of people in our San Angelo clinic, and Dr. Tim Pittman has helped many people manage a wide array of health issues. However, a frequent concern that seems to stop many people from seeking treatment is whether or not chiropractic is safe. Fortunately, according to three separate studies (out of many on the topic), the answer to this question is a resounding: "Yes! Chiropractic is safe!"
Chiropractic is Safe, According to Australian Study
The first research paper(1) was published in Spine and included 183 men and women. Each test subject reported suffering from some kind of back pain, and half of the patients received real chiropractic care whereas the other half were given two sham chiropractic treatments. Information was gathered after each real or fake adjustment to see if any unpleasant reactions occurred as a result of the real chiropractic adjustments.
Researchers reported that no one reported any serious unfavorable side effects at all after receiving one or two sessions of chiropractic. Some participants did report that they got a headache (9 percent) or muscle stiffness (about 1 out of 3) post-treatment, but the effects were not of a serious nature.
National Survey Finds that Chiropractic is Safe
The next article(2), also released in the important publication, Spine, was performed in an attempt to establish the safety of chiropractic. The test group was much larger as it involved just under 20,000 individuals. Each participant received chiropractic adjustments of the cervical spine, with over 50,000 total adjustments for all study participants.
Once again, the researchers discovered no serious adverse side effects. The authors calculated the risk of total negative effects to be about 6 out of every 10,000 consultations or every 100,000 treatment sessions. And, just as with the previous study, some individuals did report non-serious, milder, side effects such as dizziness (about 1.6%) or a headache (4%), and this caused the authors to conclude that "the risk of a serious adverse event, immediately or up to 7 days after treatment, was low to very low."
Chiropractic Care Is Safe for Children
The third research paper(3) is different from the first two pieces of research, as it concentrates on the safety of chiropractic care for kids. In this article, researchers investigated data reported by both chiropractors and parents involving 816 children who participated in 7,173 chiropractic adjustments.
Out of 5,438 chiropractic appointments made for the children, chiropractors answering the survey documented only three cases where there were adverse side effects. When parents were questioned, they indicated only two adverse side effects out of 1,735 visits. Furthermore, both chiropractors and parents reported "a high rate of improvement with respect to the children's presenting complaints."
Based on studies like these, chiropractic has been found to be safe and effective for everyone. To find out what chiropractic care can do for you, call our San Angelo office and schedule an appointment today at (325) 223-9355.
- Walker BF, Hebert JJ, Stomski NJ, Clarke BR, Bowden RS, Losco B, French SD. Outcomes of usual chiropractic. The OUCH randomized controlled trial of adverse events. Spine 2013;38(20):1723-9.
- Thiel HW1, Bolton JE, Docherty S, Portlock JC. Safety of chiropractic manipulation of the cervical spine: a prospective national survey. Spine 2007;32(21):2375-8.
- Alcantara J, Ohm J, Kunz D. The safety and effectiveness of pediatric chiropractic: a survey of chiropractors and parents in a practice-based research network. Explore NY 2009;5(5): 290-5.