Newsletter Archives > ChiroPlanet.com Monthly Health Newsletter: December 2010 Health Newsletter

December 2010 Health Newsletter


Current Articles

» Perceived Benefit of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) for Back Pain:
» Survival Tips for Standing in Line This Holiday Season
» Study: Starting with Chiropractic Saves 40% on Low Back Pain Care
» Low Dose Aspirin Reduces Cancer Risk
» Medical Errors Kill 15,000 Patients Per Month

Perceived Benefit of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) for Back Pain:

 

Back Pain Sufferers Benefit from Chiropractic Care


 

A study published in the June 2010 issue of The Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, showed that people who used what the study called "Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM)" received a "great deal" of benefit. Chiropractic was included in what this medical study defined as CAM care. 

The study received attention in a number of news stories including an article in the July 4, 2010 Medical News Today, and in a June 30, 2010 Business Wire release by the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress. The study surveyed people who had suffered from back pain and had used at least one CAM therapy in the last 12 months. Of these participants the results showed that over 60% found remarkable relief using the top six CAM treatments. Those treatments were chiropractic care, massage, yoga/tai chi/qi Cong, acupuncture, herbal therapies, and relaxation techniques - with chiropractic care being the most popular choice. 

The Medical News Today story reported that back pain is the second leading reason people walk into a doctor's office in the U.S. The survey looked at a total of 17 CAM therapies choices. Of those, Chiropractic care was the most popular approach at 74 percent, with massage a distant second at 22 percent. 

Dr. Gerard Clum, Foundation for Chiropractic Progress spokesperson and president of Life Chiropractic College West noted, "What we are seeing with these studies is compelling evidence that there is a light at the end of the tunnel for back pain sufferers more and more, that light is chiropractic care and other CAM approaches." 

One of the interesting findings of the study was that an overwhelming number of the people in the survey did not go to a CAM practitioner because of a referral from a medical doctor. In fact only 24 percent of respondents with back pain who received CAM stated that care came at the suggestion of their conventional medical practitioner. 

In their study conclusion, the authors of the study stated, "CAM is used by 40% to 60% of the population yearly, and back pain is the most common medical condition for which people use CAM. Using a nationally representative survey, our analyses documented that the majority of respondents who used CAM for back pain perceived great benefit and identified specific factors associated with perceived benefit." 

In the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress release on the study Dr. Clum summed up the study by stating, "Back pain sufferers should be made aware of all treatment options, especially alternatives that have been scientifically proven to provide relief. While chiropractic care has in the past been considered alternative there is now a case to be made for making it the first choice for patients and in the process making interventions like injections and surgery the alternative approach."



 

 

Author: Anup K. Kanodia, MD, MPH, Anna T. R. Legedza, ScD, Roger B. Davis, ScD, David M.
Source: The Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine
Copyright: 2010 American Board of Family Medicine 2010


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Survival Tips for Standing in Line This Holiday Season

The holiday season is here and with it comes lots of reasons for good cheer…but it can also bring added demands and stress for our bodies. Whether you're shopping for presents, waiting to pick up the perfect dessert or checking out a holiday performance, chances are you'll spend a good deal of time standing in line this season.  The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) offers the following tips to help you avoid muscle cramps, neck stiffness and back pain while waiting in line.  First, dress the part. If you're planning to spend the day shopping or strolling around town checking out the holiday displays, wear comfortable, supportive shoes—not high heels. It's also a good idea to dress in layers so that you will be comfortable going from outdoors to indoors, and vise-versa. And leave huge shoulder bags at home; bring only those items that are necessary for your day—wallet, keys, cell phone—and consider carrying a fanny pack or a backpack rather than a one-shoulder purse.  Once you're actually in line, there are several stretches that you can do to keep your legs from cramping and your back from aching. Start with your toes and work your way up:

  • Spread your toes out as wide as you can and hold for a few seconds and then bring them back to neutral.
  • Stand on one foot while you rotate the opposite ankle and then switch legs.
  • To stretch your calves, lean forward on your toes keeping your legs straight.
  • Bend your knees a little bit, just 5 to 10 degrees, and then straighten them.     
  • Tighten the muscles in your thighs and bottom and hold for 5 seconds and then release.
  • Tuck your butt underneath while sticking your bellybutton out then switch and stick your butt out. This pelvic tilt can be a very small movement, but it is great for taking the pressure off your lower back.    
  • Roll your shoulders backwards several times and then push your shoulder blades together to stretch out your chest.    
  • Open your hands as wide as you can and then gently close them.    
  • In addition to stretching, shift your weight and alter your stance every 3 to 5 minutes to give your body a postural break.

Author: American Chiropractic Association
Source: American Chiropractic Association. November 03, 2010.
Copyright: American Chiropractic Association 2010


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Study: Starting with Chiropractic Saves 40% on Low Back Pain Care

A new study finds that low back pain care initiated with a doctor of chiropractic (DC) saves 40 percent on health care costs when compared with care initiated through a medical doctor (MD), the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) announced today. The study, featuring data from 85,000 Blue Cross Blue Shield beneficiaries, concludes that insurance companies that restrict access to chiropractic care for low back pain treatment may inadvertently pay more for care than they would if they removed such restrictions. Low back pain is a significant public health problem. Up to 85 percent of Americans have back pain at some point in their lives. In addition to its negative effects on employee productivity, back pain treatment accounts for about $50 billion annually in health care costs—making it one of the top 10 most costly conditions treated in the United States. The study, “Cost of Care for Common Back Pain Conditions Initiated With Chiropractic Doctor vs. Medical Doctor/Doctor of Osteopathy as First Physician: Experience of One Tennessee-Based General Health Insurer,” which is available online and will also be published in the December 2010 issue of the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, looked at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee’s intermediate and large group fully insured population over a two-year span. The insured study population had open access to MDs and DCs through self-referral, and there were no limits applied to the number of MD/DC visits allowed and no differences in co-pays. Results show that paid costs for episodes of care initiated by a DC were almost 40 percent less than care initiated through an MD. After risk-adjusting each patient’s costs, researchers still found significant savings in the chiropractic group. They estimated that allowing DC-initiated episodes of care would have led to an annual cost savings of $2.3 million for BCBS of Tennessee. “As doctors of chiropractic, we know firsthand that our care often helps patients avoid or reduce more costly interventions such as drugs and surgery. This study supports what we see in our practices every day,” said ACA President Rick McMichael, DC. “It also demonstrates the value of chiropractic care at a critical time, when our nation is attempting to reform its health care system and contain runaway costs.”

Author: American Chiropractic Association
Source: American Chiropractic Association. November 16, 2010.
Copyright: American Chiropractic Association 2010


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Low Dose Aspirin Reduces Cancer Risk

British researchers have discovered long-term low dosage aspirin consumption appears to be successful in reducing the risk of many types of cancer. In their study reviewing more than 25,000 individuals from previous trials, cancer deaths during the trials were 21 percent lower and 25 percent lower after 5 years post trial in those taking low dosages of aspirin. The most significant cancer reduction for those taking low dose aspirin was that of gastrointestinal cancer where death rates were 54 percent lower after 5 years. Findings indicated the cancer benefits increased with duration of aspirin consumption. Although aspirin consumption has an associated risk of stomach bleeding, given these new findings researchers suggest healthy people could consume 75 mg of aspirin daily from the age of 40 to 45 through to 70 to 75 years of age. After 70 to 75, the increase risk of bleeding may become too great.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: The Lancet, Early Online Publication, 7 December 2010.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2010


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Medical Errors Kill 15,000 Patients Per Month

The U.S. government has reported an estimated 15,000 elderly U.S. patients die each month in hospitals due to medical errors and unavoidable problems such as hospital infection spreads. In addition, an estimated 13.5 percent of hospitalized Medicare beneficiaries experienced adverse events during their hospital stays. According to the report, “Hospital care associated with adverse and temporary harm events cost Medicare an estimated $324 million in October 2008.” Clearly, mistakes and adverse events are occurring at an alarming rate and are also associated with an extreme financial cost. Unfortunately, it’s very difficult for the public to know the degree of medical errors made at different hospitals and which may be safer. Best bet - Do all that you can to become and remain healthy!

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: Reuters. November 17, 2010.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2010


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