We care for a large number of patients in our Arlington, WA clinic, and Dr. Ernst has helped countless people overcome a variety of health problems. In spite of this, the primary concern that seems to prevent some women and men from getting treatment is whether or not chiropractic adjustments are safe. Luckily, according to three different studies (out of quite a few on the topic), the answer to this question is a resounding: "Yes! Chiropractic is safe!"
The first research paper(1) was published in Spine and included 183 women and men. Each person was suffering from some kind of back pain, and half of the patients received real chiropractic adjustments while the other half received two fake chiropractic adjustments. Information was obtained after each real or fake adjustment to discover whether or not any undesirable side effects occurred as a result of the actual chiropractic adjustments.
The doctors found that no participants documented any significant negative side effects whatsoever after receiving one or two sessions of chiropractic. Some participants did state that they got a headache (just 9% of people) or muscle stiffness (37%) after treatment, but the effects were not of a serious nature.
A second study(2), also released in the influential publication, Spine, was done in an attempt to establish the safety of chiropractic. The study group was much larger as it involved just under 20,000 patients. Each participant received chiropractic adjustments of the neck, with over 50,000 total adjustments for all patients.
Again, the experts found no serious adverse side effects. The experts determined the risk of total side effects to be about 6 out of every 10,000 consultations or every 100,000 treatment sessions. Plus, just as with the first study, some volunteers did report non-serious, milder, unwanted effects such as dizziness (less than 2%) or a headache (4 out of every 100), and this caused the researchers to determine that "the risk of a serious adverse event, immediately or up to 7 days after treatment, was low to very low."
The third research paper(3) is different from the previous two pieces of research, as it concentrates on the safety of chiropractic care for children. In this article, the researchers analyzed data reported by both chiropractors and parents involving 816 children who participated in 7,173 chiropractic adjustments.
Out of 5,438 chiropractic appointments made for the kids, chiropractors answering the survey reported only three cases where there were adverse effects. When parents were surveyed, they indicated only two adverse side effects out of 1,735 visits. Furthermore, both chiropractors and parents reported "a high rate of improvement with respect to the children's presenting complaints."
Based on these three studies (and many more!), chiropractic care has been found to be safe and effective for everyone. To find out what chiropractic can do for you, call our Arlington, WA office and make an appointment today at (360) 659-8464.