The effect of differing clinical settings on chiropractic patients suffering from mechanical low back pain
Richardson, Grant Walter
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Each healing encounter, and every treatment, has specific and non-specific treatment effects. Non - specific effects, or placebo effects, are the benefits felt by the patients because of the nature of the healing encounter. Although difficult to quantify and control, a number of authors recognize that the non-specific component of management has an additive effect on the overall clinical outcome. It has been reported that due to the physical interaction and social nature of chiropractic, there is a strong non-specific component in the management process, but to what extent it facilitates in the healing encounter is unknown. It has also been shown that spinal manipulation has a clinical effect which exceeds that of placebo; therefore it is possible for its effect to be muted or amplified, depending on the presence or absence of non-specific effects. For the above reasons this study was conducted in an attempt to map the size of the nonspecific effect in the healing encounter by manipulating the practice setting in which the patients were treated. This was achieved using a prospective, randomised, comparative clinical experiment consisting of 60 individuals with Low Back Pain (LBP), selected by convenience sampling. Individuals were then divided into 2 groups of 30. The IV first group's treatment consisted of the standard diversified method of manipulation in a Clinical Research Setting, and the second group received the same treatment except the treatment took place in a Normal Practice Setting.