The efficacy of static magnetic therapy as an adjunct to chiropractic manipulation for the treatment of mechanical low back pain
Terry, Lynette Vanessa
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Waddell (2000) describes low back pain as a 20th century medical disaster as, despite the efforts, skills and resources available today, the management of simple backache has not reduced the rate of chronic back pain and disability. Foster (1989: 9) indicates that as many as 60-80% of the general population experience LBP during adult life, with between 12-35% suffering from it at anyone time. Waddell (2000: 301) states that while 90% of acute or recurrent attacks settle within 6 weeks, 60% of people have at least one re-occurrence within the next year. Swenson (1998: 108) estimates that mechanical disorders of the spine represent at least 98% of LBP cause. Waddell (2000: 305) believes the aim of primary management is to provide symptomatic control of pain and prevention of disability. A large number of therapeutic options may be considered to provide symptomatic relief however, there is no good, scientific evidence that these options produce lasting benefits or that they change the natural history of back pain. He believes that symptomatic measures are only valuable if they facilitate active exercise and rehabilitation. Waddell (2000: 303) states that there is considerable evidence that manipulation can provide short-term symptomatic benefit in patients with acute back pain without nerve root pain of less than 1 month's duration. Manipulation may be equally effective in dealing with recurrent attacks, however there is limited evidence for the effectiveness of manipulation in patients with chronic LBP and nerve root pain. With the rising popularity of magnetic field diagnostic techniques such as MR! (magnetic resonance imaging), magnets and electrical devices are beginning to gain mainstream medical.