The current role of the chiropractor in the patient-centered approach to stress management
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Objectives: The aim of this study was to determine the current role of the Chiropractor in the Patient-Centred Approach to Stress Management. Methods: Chiropractors were contacted telephonically in order to discuss a convenient time in which they are free to receive the questionnaire at their practice. The questionnaire was developed specifically for this particular research project and verified through the use of a focus group and pilot testing. The researcher waited outside the room whilst the Chiropractor completed the questionnaire. The questionnaire was then collected after completion prior the researcher leaving the practice, in order to improve the return of the questionnaires. Results: Seventy-five percent of chiropractors, in the study indicated that they took a psychosocial history which may indicate that they utilised the fundamental biopsychosocial theme of ‘patient-centeredness’. 68.9% of chiropractors who took a psychosocial history indicated that they are equipped with the necessary skills to evaluate psychosocial stressors in patients and 55.6% indicated that their patients responded ‘Very Positively’ to their stress management protocols. All the Chiropractors in the study indicated that they had consulted patients who had associated their main complaint with stress related issues. 38.3% of Chiropractors felt that their patients ‘Often’ associated their main complaint with stress-related issues whilst 35% felt that their patients ‘Very Often’ relate their main complaint with stress-related issues. Muscle spasm (85%) was the most common symptom or sign found or elicited in a patient suffering with chronic stress. Referral was the most common primary method of treatment with 36% of Chiropractors utilising this method in the clinical setting when dealing with a stressed patient. iii Conclusion: Chiropractors in the study indicated that they took a psychosocial history therefore they utilised the fundamental biopsychosocial theme of ‘patientcenteredness’ and that the majority indicated that they are equipped with the necessary skills to evaluate psychosocial stressors in patients and that patients responded positively to their stress management protocols.