Research Report: LLLT and Chiropractic
In many cases, combination therapy has been found to provide better outcomes than a single therapy alone. Research has found that to be the case when it comes to certain chiropractic treatments when combined with low-level laser therapy.
One recent randomized controlled study examined chiropractic manipulations and LLLT to treat cervical facet pain and range of motion dysfunction. Patients in the study had all experience pain and reduced range of motion for at least one month and were divided into three groups. Group 1 received chiropractic manipulation; group 2 received LLLT; and group 3 received a combination of the two treatments. All patients received six treatments over a three-week time period.
Researchers found a significant difference between groups 1 and 2 and groups 1 and 3 in terms of range of motion improvments, as well as differences between groups 2 and 3 in both pain and range of motion. Even though all three groups improved from baseline, group 3—which received the combination therapy—demonstrated the most improvement in both pain and range of motion.
From the first day of chiropractic school, prospective DCs are taught that the basis of all chiropractic care is in the correction of spinal subluxations.
When the vertebrae are shifted back into their proper positions, pressure or blockages on the nerves leading to and from the spine are released, allowing the body to heal itself. Certainly, there has been a vast trove of published research that shows evidence for the ability of joint manipulation to treat a wide variety of conditions, including pain and stiffness.
However, as chiropractic has evolved over the years, it has learned to embrace a wide number of other treatment modalities, ranging from massage therapy, to electrotherapy, to low level laser therapy. By combining each of these treatments with chiropractic, DCs are now able to treat a much wider variety of conditions than just those centered on the spine. Low level laser therapy, also sometimes called cold laser therapy, has some particularly interesting treatment possibilities. Previous research has shown that lasers may have several therapeutic benefits, including speeding up wound healing, as well as treating pain and stiffness.
This article excerpt, by Tina Beychok, originally appeared here: http://www.chiroeco.com/research-report-low-level-laser-therapy-in-chiropractic/71848/.
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