Back2Health is actively involved in conducting research into the treatment of spinal pain. We recently presented several pieces of our research at the European Chiropractor’s Union convention in Dublin (May 2014). We were delighted to come away with second place for one of these research articles, the title of which was “The management of STarT back high risk groups by chiropractic care: A comparative description of outcomes stratified by risk.”
Most people with back pain have physical causes for their problem however many also have other factors which can complicate their recovery. Many of these are psychological such as worry about doing more harm or negative thinking causing them to focus more on the pain. These patients are felt to be at high risk of not recovering quickly and have been shown to benefit more from enhanced therapy from specialist clinicians. We set out to see if chiropractors were providing treatment that would help these individuals.
A standard tool widely used in identifying people who need enhanced therapy for back pain was used (the STarT Back Tool) to group a large sample of 2377 patients into this high risk or lower risk groups. Patients were then followed for three months after chiropractic treatment to determine if the outcomes for high risk patients were similar to the other risk groups.
We found that in our patients, despite the presence of psychological barriers to recovery, our high STarT back patients appear to do as well while undergoing chiropractic care as those with physical barriers to recovery. This supports previous work we have been involved with and implies that chiropractic care is appropriate for these high risk patients.
This is reassuring for us to know because it means that the treatment we are providing in clinic is effective and is having a positive outcome for our patients.
We are always delighted to have the work we do recognised, particularly on an international scale. Back2Health have won an award at each European Chiropractor’s Union convention every year for the past 3 years. This is an achievement we’re very proud of, as we are a small-scale practice-based group who conduct our research in addition to our work in the clinic.