The relative effectiveness of adjustments and traction in the treatment of tension-type headaches
Donkin, Robert David
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Headaches are very common in today's society and of all presenting types of headaches, tension - type headaches are the most common. At a neurologic outpatient clinic 40% of 1152 of all patients referred had tension-type headache (Lance et al. 1965). The purpose of this study was to determine if manual traction is an effective adjunct to the chiropractic treatment (the adjustment) of tension - type headaches, and to determine if the adjustment alone or the adjustment and manual traction have an effect on tension - type headaches. It was hypothesised that the combination of manual traction and adjustments would be more effective than adjustments alone. The study was a randomised, uncontrolled clinical trial conducted at the Technikon Natal Chiropractic Day Clinic. Thirty patients, presenting with tension - type headaches, were selected for the study and randomly allocated to two groups of fifteen each. Patients in Group A received adjustmen~s and Group B r~eived adjustments and manual traction as treatment. The subjective findings of the patients were recorded by means of the Short - form McGill Pain Questionnaire, the CMCC Neck Disability Index, the Numerical Pain Rating Scale 101 and the Headache Diary. The first three questionnaire were completed by the patients \xE1t the beginning of the first, fifth, final and follow up consultations. The Headache Diary, on the other hand, was completed on a daily basis by the patients for the period of the study. Objective findings consisted of the six cervical ranges of motion obtained by means of the Cervical Range of Motion Instrument (CROM).