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1.  A biopsychosocial approach to primary hypothyroidism: treatment and harms data from a randomized controlled trial 
Hypothyroidism is a common endocrine condition. There is evidence to suggest that, for a proportion of sufferers, the standard medical treatment does not completely reverse the constitutional and neuropsychiatric symptoms brought about by this condition. The management of hypothyroidism follows a biomedical model with little consideration given to alternative management approaches. There exists anecdotal evidence and case reports supporting the use of a biopsychosocial-based intervention called Neuro-Emotional Technique (NET) for this population. The aim of this study was to explore the potential short-medium term clinical efficacy and safety of NET for individuals with primary hypothyroidism.DesignPlacebo-controlled, blinded, parallel groups, randomized trial.
Ninety adults with a diagnosis of primary hypothyroidism were recruited from Sydney, Australia. Blinded participants were randomized to either the NET or placebo group and received ten intervention sessions over a six week period. The primary outcome involved the measurement of states of depression using the DASS-42 questionnaire. Secondary outcomes included thyroid function, thyroid autoimmunity testing, SF-36v2 questionnaire, resting heart rate and temperature measurement. Outcomes were obtained at baseline, seven weeks and six months. Questionnaires were completed at the private clinics, and serum measures were obtained and analysed at commercial pathology company locations. Heart rate and temperature were also measured daily by participants. Linear mixed-effects models were used to analyse the continuous outcomes. Unadjusted odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals were calculated for the binary outcomes.
Participants were randomly allocated to the NET (n=44) and placebo (n=46) groups. A proportion of the sample displayed neuropsychiatric disturbances and alterations in quality of life measures at baseline. There were no statistically significant or clinically relevant changes in the primary or secondary outcomes between the NET and placebo groups at time seven weeks or six months. There were a few short-lived minor adverse events reported in both the NET and placebo groups that coincided with the application of the intervention.
The application of the NET intervention appears to be safe, but did not confer any clinical benefit to the participants in this study and is unlikely to be of therapeutic use in a hypothyroid population.
Clinical trials registration number
Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry Number: 12607000040460.
PMCID: PMC4545871  PMID: 26301086
Chiropractic; Hypothyroidism; Randomized controlled trial; Therapeutics; Neuro-emotional technique
2.  Intra-oral myofascial therapy versus education and self-care in the treatment of chronic, myogenous temporomandibular disorder: a randomised, clinical trial 
Myogenous temporomandibular disorders (TMD) are considered to be a common musculoskeletal condition. No studies exist comparing intra-oral myofascial therapies to education, self-care and exercise (ESC) for TMD. This study evaluated short-term differences in pain and mouth opening range between intra-oral myofascial therapy (IMT) and an ESC program.
Forty-six participants with chronic myogenous TMD (as assessed according to the Research Diagnostic Criteria Axis 1 procedure) were consecutively block randomised into either an IMT group or an ESC group. Each group received two sessions per week (for five weeks) of either IMT or short talks on the anatomy, physiology and biomechanics of the jaw plus instruction and supervision of self-care exercises. The sessions were conducted at the first author’s jaw pain and chiropractic clinic in Sydney, Australia. Primary outcome measures included pain at rest, upon opening and clenching, using an eleven point ordinal self reported pain scale. A secondary outcome measure consisted of maximum voluntary opening range in millimetres. Data were analysed using linear models for means and logistic regression for responder analysis.
After adjusting for baseline, the IMT group had significantly lower average pain for all primary outcomes at 6 weeks compared to the ESC group (p < 0.001). These differences were not clinically significant but the IMT group had significantly higher odds of a clinically significant change (p < 0.045). There was no significant difference in opening range between the IMT and ESC groups. Both groups achieved statistically significant decreases in all three pain measures at six weeks (p ≤ 0.05), but only the IMT group achieved clinically significant changes of 2 or more points.
This study showed evidence of superiority of IMT compared to ESC over the short-term but not at clinically significant levels. Positive changes over time for both IMT and ESC protocols were noted. A longer term, multi-centre study is warranted.
Trial registration
Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12610000508077.
PMCID: PMC3706243  PMID: 23738586
Myofascial pain syndrome; Trigger points; Craniomandibular disorders; Temporomandibular joint dysfunction syndrome; Musculoskeletal manipulations; Exercise; Education; Self-care; Clinical trial
3.  A randomized controlled trial of chiropractic management of the lower limb kinetic chain for the treatment of hip osteoarthritis: a study protocol 
Our objective is to document the methodology of a randomized controlled clinical trial that demonstrates sound research methodology. The chiropractic treatment performed may be useful to allow practitioners to adopt a similar approach when treating hip osteoarthritis.
This study is a registered, ethics-approved, single-blinded, randomized controlled clinical trial. Recruitment included a controlled media release, phone screening, and physical assessment to rule out nonosteoarthritic hip pain. Primary outcome measures were the McMaster Overall Therapy Effectiveness Tool and the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index, which were assessed at baseline and after 1, 3, 6, and 9 months. Participants were randomly allocated to 1 of 2 intervention groups: protocol A or B. Protocol A received preadjustive stretches of hip musculature, followed by hip manipulation. Protocol B received the above intervention, followed by an additional assessment and chiropractic treatment of the lower limb kinetic chain. Participants received 9 treatments and then after 3 months were offered an additional 6 treatments. Statistics will be performed by an independent biostatistician.
This article provides a valid and reliable protocol for a randomized controlled trial for the treatment of hip osteoarthritis with chiropractic care. Data should be analyzed for statistical significance to provide evidence for the efficacy of the interventions.
This study is an example of sound research methodology, which was scored as excellent on the Physiotherapy Evidence Database scale. Findings may be important in the scope of treatment, providing evidence for conservative management options for hip osteoarthritis.
PMCID: PMC3110413  PMID: 22014862
Hip; Osteoarthritis; Chiropractic; Musculoskeletal manipulations; Kinematics
4.  Retraction: a descriptive study of a manual therapy intervention within a randomised controlled trial for hamstring and lower limb injury prevention 
The journal has been informed by its publisher BioMed Central that contrary to the statement in this article [Wayne Hoskins, Henry Pollard, Chiropractic & Osteopathy 2010, 18:23], they have been advised by the authors' institution Macquarie University, that its Human Research Ethics Committee did not approve this study. Because the study was conducted without institutional ethics committee approval it has been retracted.
PMCID: PMC3204266  PMID: 21967753
6.  Intra-oral myofascial therapy for chronic myogenous temporomandibular disorders: a randomized, controlled pilot study 
Studies investigating the efficacy of intra-oral myofascial therapies (IMT) for chronic temporomandibular disorder (TMD) are rare. The objective of this randomized, controlled pilot study was to compare the effects of IMT and the addition of self-care and education over 6 months on four common TMD outcome measures: inter-incisal opening range, jaw pain at rest, jaw pain upon opening, and jaw pain upon clenching.
Thirty myogenous TMD participants between the ages of 18 and 50 years, experiencing chronic jaw pain of longer than 3-month duration, were recruited for the present study.
Included patients were randomized into one of three groups: (1) IMT consisting of two treatment interventions per week for 5 weeks; (2) IMT plus ‘self-care’ involving education and exercises; and (3) wait list control.
Main outcome measures
Range of motion findings were measured in millimetres by vernier callipers and pain scores were quantified using an 11-point self-reported graded chronic pain scale. Measurements were taken at baseline, 6 weeks post-treatment, and 6 months post-treatment.
The results showed statistically significant differences in resting, opening, and clenching pain and opening range scores (P<0.05) in both treatment groups compared to control at 6 months. No significant differences were observed between the two treatment groups during the course of the trial.
This study suggests that IMT alone or with the addition of self-care may be of some benefit in the management of chronic TMD over the short-medium term. A larger scale study over a longer term (1–2 years) may be of further value.
PMCID: PMC3109684  PMID: 21886424
Biopsychosocial; Manual therapy; Myofascial; Randomized controlled trial; Temporomandibular disorder
9.  The influence of a biopsychosocial-based treatment approach to primary overt hypothyroidism: a protocol for a pilot study 
Trials  2010;11:106.
Hypothyroidism is a prevalent endocrine condition. Individuals with this disease are commonly managed through supplementation with synthetic thyroid hormone, with the aim of alleviating symptoms and restoring normal thyroid stimulating hormone levels. Generally this management strategy is effective and well tolerated. However, there is research to suggest that a significant proportion of hypothyroid sufferers are being inadequately managed. Furthermore, hypothyroid patients are more likely to have a decreased sense of well-being and more commonly experience constitutional and neuropsychiatric complaints, even with pharmacological intervention.
The current management of hypothyroidism follows a biomedical model. Little consideration has been given to a biopsychosocial approach to this condition. Within the chiropractic profession there is growing support for the use of a biopsychosocial-based intervention called Neuro-Emotional Technique (NET) for this population.
A placebo-controlled, single-blinded, randomised clinical pilot-trial has been designed to assess the influence of Neuro-Emotional Technique on a population with primary overt hypothyroidism. A sample of 102 adults (≥18 years) who meet the inclusion criteria will be randomised to either a treatment group or a placebo group. Each group will receive ten treatments (NET or placebo) over a six week period, and will be monitored for six months. The primary outcome will involve the measurement of depression using the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale (DASS). The secondary outcome measures to be used are; serum thyroid stimulating hormone, serum free-thyroxine, serum free-triiodothyronine, serum thyroid peroxidase auto-antibodies, serum thyroglobulin auto-antibodies as well as the measurement of functional health and well-being using the Short-Form-36 Version 2. The emotional states of anxiety and stress will be measured using the DASS. Self-measurement of basal heart rate and basal temperature will also be included among the secondary outcome measures. The primary and secondary measures will be obtained at commencement, six weeks and six months. Measures of basal heart rate and basal temperature will be obtained daily for the six month trial period, with recording to commence one week prior to the intervention.
The study will provide information on the influence of NET when added to existing management regimens in individuals with primary overt hypothyroidism.
Trial Registration
ANZCTR Number: 12607000040460
PMCID: PMC2992059  PMID: 21073760
10.  Low back pain in junior Australian Rules football: a cross-sectional survey of elite juniors, non-elite juniors and non-football playing controls 
Low back pain in junior Australian Rules footballers has not been investigated despite findings that back pain is more prevalent, severe and frequent in senior footballers than non-athletic controls and findings that adolescent back pain is a strong predictor for adult back pain. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence, intensity, quality and frequency of low back pain in junior Australian Rules footballers and a control group and to compare this data between groups.
A cross-sectional survey of male non-elite junior (n = 60) and elite junior players (n = 102) was conducted along with a convenience sample of non-footballers (school children) (n = 100). Subjects completed a self-reported questionnaire on low back pain incorporating the Quadruple Visual Analogue Scale and McGill Pain Questionnaire (short form), along with additional questions adapted from an Australian epidemiological study. Linear Mixed Model (Residual Maximum Likelihood) methods were used to compare differences between groups. Log-linear models were used in the analysis of contingency tables.
For current, average and best low back pain levels, elite junior players had higher pain levels (p < 0.001), with no difference noted between non-elite juniors and controls for average and best low back pain. For low back pain at worst, there were significant differences in the mean pain scores. The difference between elite juniors and non-elite juniors (p = 0.040) and between elite juniors and controls (p < 0.001) was significant, but not between non-elite juniors and controls. The chance of suffering low back pain increases from 45% for controls, through 55% for non-elite juniors to 66.7% for elite juniors. The chance that a pain sufferer experiences chronic pain is 16% for controls and 41% for non-elite junior and elite junior players. Elite junior players experienced low back pain more frequently (p = 0.002), with no difference in frequency noted between non-elite juniors and controls. Over 25% of elite junior and non-elite junior players reported that back pain impacted their performance some of the time or greater.
This study demonstrated that when compared with non-elite junior players and non-footballers of a similar age, elite junior players experience back pain more severely and frequently and have higher prevalence and chronicity rates.
PMCID: PMC2967511  PMID: 20958973
11.  A descriptive study of a manual therapy intervention within a randomised controlled trial for hamstring and lower limb injury prevention 
There is little literature describing the use of manual therapy performed on athletes. It was our purpose to document the usage of a sports chiropractic manual therapy intervention within a RCT by identifying the type, amount, frequency, location and reason for treatment provided. This information is useful for the uptake of the intervention into clinical settings and to allow clinicians to better understand a role that sports chiropractors offer.
All treatment rendered to 29 semi-elite Australian Rules footballers in the sports chiropractic intervention group of an 8 month RCT investigating hamstring and lower-limb injury prevention was recorded. Treatment was pragmatically and individually determined and could consist of high-velocity, low-amplitude (HVLA) manipulation, mobilization and/or supporting soft tissue therapies. Descriptive statistics recorded the treatment rendered for symptomatic or asymptomatic benefit, delivered to joint or soft tissue structures and categorized into body regions. For the joint therapy, it was recorded whether treatment consisted of HVLA manipulation, HVLA manipulation and mobilization, or mobilization only. Breakdown of the HVLA technique was performed.
A total of 487 treatments were provided (mean 16.8 consultations/player) with 64% of treatment for asymptomatic benefit (73% joint therapies, 57% soft tissue therapies). Treatment was delivered to approximately 4 soft tissue and 4 joint regions each consultation. The most common asymptomatic regions treated with joint therapies were thoracic (22%), knee (20%), hip (19%), sacroiliac joint (13%) and lumbar (11%). For soft tissue therapies it was gluteal (22%), hip flexor (14%), knee (12%) and lumbar (11%). The most common symptomatic regions treated with joint therapies were lumbar (25%), thoracic (15%) and hip (14%). For soft tissue therapies it was gluteal (22%), lumbar (15%) and posterior thigh (8%). Of the joint therapy, 56% was HVLA manipulation only, 36% high-HVLA and mobilization and 9% mobilization only. Of the HVLA manipulation, 63% was manually performed and 37% mechanically assisted.
The intervention applied was multimodal and multi-regional. Most treatment was for asymptomatic benefit, particularly for joint based therapies, which consisted largely of HVLA manipulation techniques. Most treatment was applied to non-local hamstring structures, in particular the knee, hip, pelvis and spine.
PMCID: PMC2927600  PMID: 20696040
12.  Incidence, severity, aetiology and type of neck injury in men's amateur rugby union: a prospective cohort study 
There is a paucity of epidemiological data on neck injury in amateur rugby union populations. The objective of this study was to determine the incidence, severity, aetiology and type of neck injury in Australian men's amateur rugby union.
Data was collected from a cohort of 262 participants from two Australian amateur men's rugby union clubs via a prospective cohort study design. A modified version of the Rugby Union Injury Report Form for Games and Training was used by the clubs physiotherapist or chiropractor in data collection.
The participants sustained 90 (eight recurrent) neck injuries. Exposure time was calculated at 31143.8 hours of play (12863.8 hours of match time and 18280 hours of training). Incidence of neck injury was 2.9 injuries/1000 player-hours (95%CI: 2.3, 3.6). As a consequence 69.3% neck injuries were minor, 17% mild, 6.8% moderate and 6.8% severe. Neck compression was the most frequent aetiology and was weakly associated with severity. Cervical facet injury was the most frequent neck injury type.
This is the first prospective cohort study in an amateur men's rugby union population since the inception of professionalism that presents injury rate, severity, aetiology and injury type data for neck injury. Current epidemiological data should be sought when evaluating the risks associated with rugby union football.
PMCID: PMC2907385  PMID: 20594296
13.  Chiropractic care for paediatric and adolescent Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: A systematic review 
Psychostimulants are first line of therapy for paediatric and adolescent AD/HD. The evidence suggests that up to 30% of those prescribed stimulant medications do not show clinically significant outcomes. In addition, many children and adolescents experience side-effects from these medications. As a result, parents are seeking alternate interventions for their children. Complementary and alternative medicine therapies for behavioural disorders such as AD/HD are increasing with as many as 68% of parents having sought help from alternative practitioners, including chiropractors.
The review seeks to answer the question of whether chiropractic care can reduce symptoms of inattention, impulsivity and hyperactivity for paediatric and adolescent AD/HD.
Electronic databases (Cochrane CENTRAL register of Controlled Trials, Cochrane Database of Systematic reviews, MEDLINE, PsycINFO, CINAHL, Scopus, ISI Web of Science, Index to Chiropractic Literature) were searched from inception until July 2009 for English language studies for chiropractic care and AD/HD. Inclusion and exclusion criteria were applied to select studies. All randomised controlled trials were evaluated using the Jadad score and a checklist developed from the CONSORT (Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials) guidelines.
The search yielded 58 citations of which 22 were intervention studies. Of these, only three studies were identified for paediatric and adolescent AD/HD cohorts. The methodological quality was poor and none of the studies qualified using inclusion criteria.
To date there is insufficient evidence to evaluate the efficacy of chiropractic care for paediatric and adolescent AD/HD. The claim that chiropractic care improves paediatric and adolescent AD/HD, is only supported by low levels of scientific evidence. In the interest of paediatric and adolescent health, if chiropractic care for AD/HD is to continue, more rigorous scientific research needs to be undertaken to examine the efficacy and effectiveness of chiropractic treatment. Adequately-sized RCTs using clinically relevant outcomes and standardised measures to examine the effectiveness of chiropractic care verses no-treatment/placebo control or standard care (pharmacological and psychosocial care) are needed to determine whether chiropractic care is an effective alternative intervention for paediatric and adolescent AD/HD.
PMCID: PMC2891800  PMID: 20525195
14.  The effect of a sports chiropractic manual therapy intervention on the prevention of back pain, hamstring and lower limb injuries in semi-elite Australian Rules footballers: a randomized controlled trial 
Hamstring injuries are the most common injury in Australian Rules football. It was the aims to investigate whether a sports chiropractic manual therapy intervention protocol provided in addition to the current best practice management could prevent the occurrence of and weeks missed due to hamstring and other lower-limb injuries at the semi-elite level of Australian football.
Sixty male subjects were assessed for eligibility with 59 meeting entry requirements and randomly allocated to an intervention (n = 29) or control group (n = 30), being matched for age and hamstring injury history. Twenty-eight intervention and 29 control group participants completed the trial. Both groups received the current best practice medical and sports science management, which acted as the control. Additionally, the intervention group received a sports chiropractic intervention. Treatment for the intervention group was individually determined and could involve manipulation/mobilization and/or soft tissue therapies to the spine and extremity. Minimum scheduling was: 1 treatment per week for 6 weeks, 1 treatment per fortnight for 3 months, 1 treatment per month for the remainder of the season (3 months). The main outcome measure was an injury surveillance with a missed match injury definition.
After 24 matches there was no statistical significant difference between the groups for the incidence of hamstring injury (OR:0.116, 95% CI:0.013-1.019, p = 0.051) and primary non-contact knee injury (OR:0.116, 95% CI:0.013-1.019, p = 0.051). The difference for primary lower-limb muscle strains was significant (OR:0.097, 95%CI:0.011-0.839, p = 0.025). There was no significant difference for weeks missed due to hamstring injury (4 v14, χ2:1.12, p = 0.29) and lower-limb muscle strains (4 v 21, χ2:2.66, p = 0.10). A significant difference in weeks missed due to non-contact knee injury was noted (1 v 24, χ2:6.70, p = 0.01).
This study demonstrated a trend towards lower limb injury prevention with a significant reduction in primary lower limb muscle strains and weeks missed due to non-contact knee injuries through the addition of a sports chiropractic intervention to the current best practice management.
Trial registration
The study was registered with the Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN12608000533392).
PMCID: PMC2858097  PMID: 20374662
15.  A descriptive report of management strategies used by chiropractors, as reviewed by a single independent chiropractic consultant in the Australian workers compensation system 
In New South Wales, Australia, an injured worker enters the workers compensation system with the case often managed by a pre-determined insurer. The goal of the treating practitioner is to facilitate the claimant to return to suitable duties and progress to their pre-injury status, job and quality of life. Currently, there is very little documentation on the management of injured workers by chiropractors in the Australian healthcare setting. This study aims to examine treatment protocols and recommendations given to chiropractic practitioners by one independent chiropractic reviewer in the state of New South Wales, and to discuss management strategies recommended for the injured worker.
A total of 146 consecutive Independent Chiropractic Consultant reports were collated into a database. Pain information and management recommendations made by the Independent Chiropractic Consultant were tabulated and analysed for trends. The data formulated from the reports is purely descriptive in nature.
The Independent Chiropractic Consultant determined the current treatment plan to be "reasonable" (80.1%) or "unreasonable" (23.6%). The consultant recommended to "phase out" treatment in 74.6% of cases, with an average of six remaining treatments. In eight cases treatment was unreasonable with no further treatment; in five cases treatment was reasonable with no further treatment. In 78.6% of cases, injured workers were to be discharged from treatment and 21.4% were to be reassessed for the need of a further treatment plan. Additional recommendations for treatment included an active care program (95.2%), general fitness program (77.4%), flexibility/range of movement exercises (54.1%), referral to a chronic pain specialist (50.7%) and work hardening program (22.6%).
It is essential chiropractic practitioners perform 'reasonably necessary treatment' to reduce dependency on passive treatment, increase compliance to active care programs and reduce the progression to chronic pain states. It is recommended that common findings be integrated in further research, to improve the management of treatment for patients with an occupational injury.
PMCID: PMC2785816  PMID: 19922667
16.  Separation anxiety disorder in a 13-year–old boy managed by the Neuro Emotional Technique as a biopsychosocial intervention☆ 
Journal of Chiropractic Medicine  2008;7(3):101-106.
To describe a case of an adolescent with separation anxiety disorder (SAD) presenting to a chiropractor for treatment.
Clinical features
The patient was a 13-year–old boy who had consulted with a clinical psychologist and had been diagnosed with SAD using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition criteria. The patient was unable to attend school camps or sleep at friends' homes because of anxiety.
The patient underwent 8 sessions with a chiropractor certified in the Neuro Emotional Technique (NET). Two days after his last NET treatment, he attended his first school camp without incident. He also slept away from home at a friend's home for the first time without incident. Six months postintervention, he returned to his clinical psychologist, where she independently reevaluated him stating that he no longer met the criteria for SAD according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition.
This single case report cannot provide a causal relationship between the clinical outcome and NET without further investigations. Neuro Emotional Technique is a unique therapy that does not take the place of psychotherapy; however, it may be used as an adjunct to it. It is possible that, with valid and reliable follow-up research, the biopsychosocial principles that NET addresses may be of value to children and adolescents with SAD.
PMCID: PMC2686398  PMID: 19646371
Chiropractic; Separation anxiety disorder; Cognitive behavior therapy; Emotions; Case reports
17.  Low back pain status in elite and semi-elite Australian football codes: a cross-sectional survey of football (soccer), Australian rules, rugby league, rugby union and non-athletic controls 
Our understanding of the effects of football code participation on low back pain (LBP) is limited. It is unclear whether LBP is more prevalent in athletic populations or differs between levels of competition. Thus it was the aim of this study to document and compare the prevalence, intensity, quality and frequency of LBP between elite and semi-elite male Australian football code participants and a non-athletic group.
A cross-sectional survey of elite and semi-elite male Australian football code participants and a non-athletic group was performed. Participants completed a self-reported questionnaire incorporating the Quadruple Visual Analogue Scale (QVAS) and McGill Pain Questionnaire (short form) (MPQ-SF), along with additional questions adapted from an Australian epidemiological study. Respondents were 271 elite players (mean age 23.3, range 17–39), 360 semi-elite players (mean age 23.8, range 16–46) and 148 non-athletic controls (mean age 23.9, range 18–39).
Groups were matched for age (p = 0.42) and experienced the same age of first onset LBP (p = 0.40). A significant linear increase in LBP from the non-athletic group, to the semi-elite and elite groups for the QVAS and the MPQ-SF was evident (p < 0.001). Elite subjects were more likely to experience more frequent (daily or weekly OR 1.77, 95% CI 1.29–2.42) and severe LBP (discomforting and greater OR 1.75, 95% CI 1.29–2.38).
Foolers in Australia have significantly more severe and frequent LBP than a non-athletic group and this escalates with level of competition.
PMCID: PMC2674424  PMID: 19371446
18.  How to select a chiropractor for the management of athletic conditions 
Chiropractors are an integral part of the management of musculoskeletal injuries. A considerable communication gap between the chiropractic and medical professions exists. Subsequently referring allopathic practitioners lack confidence in picking a chiropractic practitioner with appropriate management strategies to adequately resolve sporting injuries. Subsequently, the question is often raised: "how do you find a good chiropractor?".
Best practice guidelines are increasingly suggesting that musculoskeletal injuries should be managed with multimodal active and passive care strategies. Broadly speaking chiropractors may be subdivided into "modern multimodal" or "classical" (unimodal) in nature. The modern multimodal practitioner is better suited to managing sporting injuries by incorporating passive and active care management strategies to address three important phases of care in the continuum of injury from the acute inflammation/pain phase to the chronic/rehabilitation phase to the injury prevention phase. In contrast, the unimodal, manipulation only and typically spine only approach of the classical practitioner seems less suited to the challenges of the injured athlete. Identifying what part of the philosophical management spectrum a chiropractor falls is important as it is clearly not easily evident in most published material such as Yellow Pages advertisements.
Identifying a chiropractic practitioner who uses multimodal treatment of adequate duration, who incorporates active and passive components of therapy including exercise prescription whilst using medical terminology and diagnosis without mandatory x-rays or predetermined treatment schedules or prepaid contracts of care will likely result in selection of a chiropractor with the approach and philosophy suited to appropriately managing athletic conditions. Sporting organizations and associations should consider using similar criteria as a minimum standard to allow participation in health care team selections.
PMCID: PMC2660354  PMID: 19284539
19.  Functional neuroimaging: a brief overview and feasibility for use in chiropractic research 
There is a need to further our understanding of the neurophysiological effects of chiropractic spinal manipulation on brain activity as it pertains to both musculoskeletal and non-musculoskeletal complaints. This paper aims to provide a basic overview of the most commonly utilised techniques in the neurosciences for functional imaging the brain (positron emission tomography, single-photon emission computerised tomography, functional magnetic resonance imaging, electroencephalography, and magnetoencephalography), and discuss their applicability in future chiropractic research. Functional neuroimaging modalities are used in a wide range of different research and clinical settings, and are powerful tools in the investigation of neuronal activity in the human brain. There are many potential applications for functional neuroimaging in future chiropractic research, but there are some feasibility issues, mainly pertaining to access and funding. We strongly encourage the use of functional neuroimaging in future investigations of the effects of chiropractic spinal manipulation on brain function.
PMCID: PMC2652631  PMID: 19421353
imaging; neuroimaging; brain; chiropractic
20.  A randomised controlled trial of the Neuro Emotional Technique (NET) for childhood Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): a protocol 
Trials  2009;10:6.
An abundance of literature is dedicated to research for the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Most, is in the area of pharmacological therapies with less emphasis in psychotherapy and psychosocial interventions and even less in the area of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).
The use of CAM has increased over the years, especially for developmental and behavioral disorders, such as ADHD. 60–65% of parents with children with ADHD have used CAM. Medical evidence supports a multidisciplinary approach (i.e. pharmacological and psychosocial) for the best clinical outcomes. The Neuro Emotional Technique (NET), a branch of Chiropractic, was designed to address the biopsychosocial aspects of acute and chronic conditions including non-musculoskeletal conditions. Anecdotally, it has been suggested that ADHD may be managed effectively by NET.
A placebo controlled, double blind randomised clinical trial was designed to assess the effectiveness of NET on a cohort of children with medically diagnosed ADHD.
Children aged 5–12 years who met the inclusion criteria were randomised to one of three groups. The control group continued on their existing medical regimen and the intervention and placebo groups had the addition of the NET and sham NET protocols added to their regimen respectively. These two groups attended a clinical facility twice a week for the first month and then once a month for six months.
The Conners' Parent and Teacher Rating Scales (CRS) were used at the start of the study to establish baseline data and then in one month and in seven months time, at the conclusion of the study. The primary outcome measures chosen were the Conners' ADHD Index and Conners' Global Index. The secondary outcome measures chosen were the DSM-IV: Inattentive, the DSM-IV:Hyperactive-Impulsive, and the DSM-IV:Total subscales from the Conners' Rating Scales, monitoring changes in inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity.
Calculations for the sample size were set with a significance level of 0.05 and the power of 80%, yielding a sample size of 93.
The present study should provide information as to whether the addition of NET to an existing medical regimen can improve outcomes for children with ADHD.
Trial registration
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trial Registration Number: ANZCTRN 012606000332527
PMCID: PMC2646715  PMID: 19173743
21.  Golf-related lower back injuries: an epidemiological survey 
This study describes the playing characteristics of golfers who had an injury to their lower back in the course of play or practice in the previous year (12 months).
A retrospective survey was mailed to members of randomly selected golf clubs across Australia. Statistical methods used included 2-sample t test to compare means of 2 independent populations and the χ2 test to examine the association between categorical variables/factors in the study.
Of 1634 Australian amateur golfers surveyed, 17.6% of golfers sustained at least 1 injury in the previous year. The lower back accounted for 25% of all golf-related injuries in the previous year, making the lower back the most common site of injury. The golfer with a golf-related lower back injury was likely to have a previous history of lower back injury, while the injury had a progressive onset compared with an acute single onset. The follow-through phase of the golf swing was reported to be associated with the greatest likelihood of injury compared with other phases of the swing. Most of the injured golfers received treatment of their injury with a general practitioner (69%), a physiotherapist (49%), or a chiropractor (40%).
Practitioners treating golfers with a history of lower back injury should evaluate the golf swing follow-through to identify potential causes of aggravation to the lower back. Targeted measures such as spinal manipulative therapy, soft tissue and back exercise, and conditioning programs to assist the strength and mobility of the golfer could then be implemented.
PMCID: PMC2647075  PMID: 19674690
22.  The effect of a manual therapy knee protocol on osteoarthritic knee pain: a randomised controlled trial 
Knee osteoarthritis is a highly prevalent condition with a significant socioeconomic burden to society. It is known to effect sufferers through pain, loss of function and changes in health related quality of life. Management typically involves pharmacologic and/or exercise based therapy approaches to reduce pain. Previous studies have shown multimodal treatment approaches incorporating manual therapy to be efficacious. The aim of this study is to determine if a manual therapy technique knee protocol can alter the self reported pain experienced by a group of chronic knee osteoarthritis sufferers in a randomised controlled trial.
43 participants with a chronic, non-progressive history of osteoarthritic knee pain, aged between 47 and 70 years were randomly allocated following a screening procedure to an intervention group (n=26; 18 men and 8 women, mean age 56.5 years) or a control group (n=17; 11 men and 6 women, mean age 54.6 years). Participants were matched for present knee pain intensity measured on a visual analogue scale. The intervention consisted of the Macquarie Injury Management Group Knee Protocol whilst the control involved a non-forceful manual contact to the knee followed by interferential therapy set at zero. Participants received three treatments per week for two consecutive weeks with a follow up immediately after the final treatment. Post-treatment Participants completed 11 questions including present knee pain intensity and feedback regarding their response to treatment utilizing a visual analogue scale. Results were analysed using descriptive statistics.
Prior to the intervention, there was no significant differences in age or present knee pain intensity. Following treatment, the intervention group reported a significant decrease in the present pain severity (mean 1.9) when compared to the control group (mean 3.1). Response to treatment questions indicated that compared to the control group, the intervention group felt the intervention had helped them (intervention mean 7.0; control mean 3.4), felt it decreased their knee symptoms such as crepitus (intervention mean 6.0; control mean 3.4) and improved their knee mobility (intervention mean 6.4; control mean 3.4) and their ability to perform general activities (intervention mean 6.5; control mean 3.8). Importantly the MIMG Knee Protocol intervention group reported no adverse reactions during treatment.
A short-term manual therapy knee protocol significantly reduced pain suffered by participants with osteoarthritic knee pain and resulted in improvements in self-reported knee function immediately after the end of the 2 week treatment period.
PMCID: PMC2597887  PMID: 19066697
chiropractic; musculoskeletal manipulation; manual therapy; knee; pain; osteoarthritis; clinical trial
23.  Neuro Emotional Technique for the treatment of trigger point sensitivity in chronic neck pain sufferers: A controlled clinical trial 
Trigger points have been shown to be active in many myofascial pain syndromes. Treatment of trigger point pain and dysfunction may be explained through the mechanisms of central and peripheral paradigms. This study aimed to investigate whether the mind/body treatment of Neuro Emotional Technique (NET) could significantly relieve pain sensitivity of trigger points presenting in a cohort of chronic neck pain sufferers.
Sixty participants presenting to a private chiropractic clinic with chronic cervical pain as their primary complaint were sequentially allocated into treatment and control groups. Participants in the treatment group received a short course of Neuro Emotional Technique that consists of muscle testing, general semantics and Traditional Chinese Medicine. The control group received a sham NET protocol. Outcome measurements included pain assessment utilizing a visual analog scale and a pressure gauge algometer. Pain sensitivity was measured at four trigger point locations: suboccipital region (S); levator scapulae region (LS); sternocleidomastoid region (SCM) and temporomandibular region (TMJ). For each outcome measurement and each trigger point, we calculated the change in measurement between pre- and post- treatment. We then examined the relationships between these measurement changes and six independent variables (i.e. treatment group and the above five additional participant variables) using forward stepwise General Linear Model.
The visual analog scale (0 to 10) had an improvement of 7.6 at S, 7.2 at LS, 7.5 at SCM and 7.1 at the TMJ in the treatment group compared with no improvement of at S, and an improvement of 0.04 at LS, 0.1 at SCM and 0.1 at the TMJ point in the control group, (P < 0.001).
After a short course of NET treatment, measurements of visual analog scale and pressure algometer recordings of four trigger point locations in a cohort of chronic neck pain sufferers were significantly improved when compared to a control group which received a sham protocol of NET. Chronic neck pain sufferers may benefit from NET treatment in the relief of trigger point sensitivity. Further research including long-term randomised controlled trials for the effect of NET on chronic neck pain, and other chronic pain syndromes are recommended.
Trial Registration
This trial has been registered and allocated the Australian Clinical Trials Registry (ACTR) number ACTRN012607000358448. The ACTR has met the requirements of the ICMJE's trials registration policy and is an ICMJE acceptable registry.
PMCID: PMC2427032  PMID: 18495042
24.  Australian chiropractic sports medicine: half way there or living on a prayer? 
Sports chiropractic within Australia has a chequered historical background of unorthodox individualistic displays of egocentric treatment approaches that emphasise specific technique preference and individual prowess rather than standardised evidence based management. This situation has changed in recent years with the acceptance of many within sports chiropractic to operate under an evidence informed banner and to embrace a research culture. Despite recent developments within the sports chiropractic movement, the profession is still plagued by a minority of practitioners continuing to espouse certain marginal and outlandish technique systems that beleaguer the mainstream core of sports chiropractic as a cohesive and homogeneous group. Modern chiropractic management is frequently multimodal in nature and incorporates components of passive and active care. Such management typically incorporates spinal and peripheral manipulation, mobilisation, soft tissue techniques, rehabilitation and therapeutic exercises. Externally, sports chiropractic has faced hurdles too, with a lack of recognition and acceptance by organized and orthodox sports medical groups. Whilst some arguments against the inclusion of chiropractic may be legitimate due to its historical baggage, much of the argument appears to be anti-competitive, insecure and driven by a closed-shop mentality.sequently, chiropractic as a profession still remains a pariah to the organised sports medicine world. Add to this an uncertain continuing education system, a lack of protection for the title 'sports chiropractor', a lack of a recognized specialist status and a lack of support from traditional chiropractic, the challenges for the growth and acceptance of the sports chiropractor are considerable. This article outlines the historical and current challenges, both internal and external, faced by sports chiropractic within Australia and proposes positive changes that will assist in recognition and inclusion of sports chiropractic in both chiropractic and multi-disciplinary sports medicine alike.
PMCID: PMC2042981  PMID: 17880724
25.  The effectiveness of ENAR® for the treatment of chronic neck pain in Australian adults: a preliminary single-blind, randomised controlled trial 
Current evidence on electrotherapies for the management of chronic neck pain is either lacking or conflicting. New therapeutic devices being introduced to the market should be investigated for their effectiveness and efficacy. The ENAR® (Electro Neuro Adaptive Regulator) therapy device combines Western biofeedback with Eastern energy medicine.
A small, preliminary randomised and controlled single-blinded trial was conducted on 24 participants (ten males, 14 females) between the ages of 18 to 50 years (median age of 40.5) Consent was obtained and participants were randomly allocated to one of three groups – ENAR, Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS), or control therapy – to test the hypothesis that ENAR therapy would result in superior pain reduction/disability and improvements in neck function compared with TENS or control intervention. The treatment regimen included twelve 15-minute treatment sessions over a six week period, followed by two assessment periods. Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) pain scores, Neck Disability Index (NDI) scores, Patient Specific Functional Scale (PSFS) scores and Short Form 36v1 (SF-36) quality of life scores reported by participants were collected at each of the assessments points throughout the trial (0, 6, 12, 18 and 24 weeks).
Eligible participants (n = 30) were recruited and attended clinic visits for 6 months from the time of randomisation. Final trial sample (n = 24) comprised 9 within the ENAR group, 7 within the TENS group and 8 within the control group. With an overall study power of 0.92, the ENAR group showed a decrease in mean pain score from measurement at time zero (5.0 ± 0.79 95%CI) to the first follow-up measurement at six weeks (1.4 ± 0.83 95%CI). Improvement was maintained until week 24 (1.75 ± 0.9 95%CI). The TENS and control groups showed consistent pain levels throughout the trial (3.4 ± 0.96 95%CI and 4.1 ± 0.9 95%CI respectively). Wald analysis for pain intensity was significant for the ENAR group (p = 0.01). Six month NDI scores showed the disability level of the ENAR group (11.3 ± 4.5 95%CI) was approximately half that of either the TENS (22.9 ± 4.8 95%CI) or the control (29.4 ± 4.5 95%CI) groups. NDI analysis using the Wald method, indicated significant reductions in disability only for the ENAR group (p = 0.022). PSFS results also demonstrated significantly better performance of ENAR (p = 0.001) compared to both alternative interventions. Differential means analysis of the SF-36 results favoured ENAR for all of the subscales. Six of the initial 30 participants discontinued the trial protocol.
ENAR therapy participants reported a significant reduction in the intensity of neck pain (VAS) and disability (NDI), as well as a significant increased function (PSFS) and overall quality of life (SF-36) than TENS or control intervention participants. Due to the modest sample size and restricted cohort characteristics, future larger and more comprehensive trials are required to better evaluate the potential efficacy of the ENAR device in a more widely distributed sample population.
Trial Registration
This study has been registered with the Australian Clinical Trials Registry (ACTR): ACTRN012606000438550.
PMCID: PMC1963325  PMID: 17617926

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