The relative effectiveness of chiropractic manipulation in conjunction with soft tissue treatment, as compared with soft tissue treatment alone, in the management of tension-type headaches in children
De Busser, Nikki Lauren
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Episodic tension-type is a highly prevalent condition with a significant functional impact at home and school (Schwartz et al. 1998). In children as in adults, it is the most common form of headache that a chiropractor will encounter in clinical practice (Davies 2000). The purpose of this study was to investigate the relative effectiveness of chiropractic manipulation in conjunction with soft tissue treatment, as compared with soft tissue treatment alone, in the management of Episodic tension-type headache in children and adolescents. It was hypothesised that manipulation in conjunction with soft tissue treatment would provide a significant long-term benefit in comparison to soft tissue treatment alone. This study was performed as a clinical trial conducted at the Technikon Natal Chiropractic Day Clinic. Thirty children between the ages of eight to eighteen presenting with Episodic tension-type headache were selected to participate in the study and were randomly allocated into two equal groups. Patients in both groups were treated six times over a period of three weeks and were monitored with respect to their headache using a headache diary for one week prior to and one week following the course of treatment. A final assessment was performed once the patients had completed the headache diary for the second time. Both groups received a ten minute massage of the cervical and upper thoracic musculature, while patients in group A received chiropractic manipulation of the cervical and upper thoracic spine as well.