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Study: Chiropractic Care Improves Quality of Life and Reduces Low Back Pain More Than Usual Medical Care

The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress applauds clinical trial results highlighting an underappreciated goal of pain management

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Nov. 1, 2022 – The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress (F4CP), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to educating the public about the value of chiropractic care, applauds recent study results demonstrating the greater quality-of-life improvements U.S. military service-member patients reported after receiving chiropractic care for their low back pain compared to patients who received only usual medical care.

The study, “Health-Related Quality of Life Among United States Service Members with Low Back Pain Receiving Usual Care Plus Chiropractic Care Plus Usual Care vs Usual Care Alone: Secondary Outcomes of a Pragmatic Clinical Trial,” was published in 2022 in the peer-reviewed journal, Pain.

 The study included 750 service members and found that those who visited a doctor of chiropractic (DC), reported improved physical function, less pain interference in their daily activities, lower overall pain intensity and better physical and mental health compared to service members who did not receive chiropractic care. These outcomes were reported 12 weeks after care began.

“The results of this study are exciting because they are consistent with what we often hear anecdotally from chiropractic patients – that chiropractic care may result in overall improvements in health,” said Christine Goertz, DC, PhD, one of the study’s principal investigators.

 This is believed to be one of the first large clinical trials in the United States to use the Patient-Reported Outcome Measurement Information System (PROMIS) 29 form, which captures data on seven health domains, including physical, mental and social health, in the study of chiropractic care against other treatment options.

“Optimal pain management is not just about relieving discomfort, but rather a holistic approach that encompasses a patient’s job, lifestyle, health goals and mental wellbeing,” said Sherry McAllister, DC, president of F4CP. “That is why the results of this study are so meaningful. This study demonstrates that chiropractic care is associated with better overall improvement in physical and mental health combined compared to usual care. By helping patients achieve their other health goals -- in addition to relieving their physical pain symptoms -- DCs may be helping improve their quality of life. This should become a more-discussed outcome in designing a care plan.”

Learn More About Safe, Natural Holistic Care

To learn more about how chiropractic care reduces reliance on pharmacological therapies and offers a holistic, mind-body approach to pain management, check out F4CP’s white paper: “Guiding a Natural, Safer Care Journey: Doctors of Chiropractic Deliver Safe, Drug-Free and Effective Pain Relief That Patients Prefer.” F4CP’s podcast about chiropractic care and other safe, natural healthcare methods, “Adjusted Reality” also offers helpful, actionable information from leading experts about improving our physical and mental health and wellbeing without drugs.

 “In our evidence-based resources and the latest research available, you will find abundant testimony demonstrating that chiropractic care should be the first-line approach for management of neuromusculoskeletal pain,” said Dr. McAllister. “Not only has chiropractic care demonstrated its efficacy for the most common neuromusculoskeletal disorders, but patients have also consistently reported high satisfaction with the care, and as this recent U.S. military service-member study concludes, an improved quality of life.”

About the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress

A not-for-profit organization with nearly 32,000 members, the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress (F4CP) informs and educates the general public about the value of chiropractic care delivered by doctors of chiropractic (DC) and its role in drug-free pain management. FCA members have complimentary membership in F4CP.