(HealthDay News) – Military personnel with acute lower back pain (LBP) who receive chiropractic manipulative therapy (CMT) in addition to standard medical care (SMC) show significantly improved scores for pain relief and physical functioning, compared to those receiving only SMC, according to a study published in the April 15 issue of Spine.

Christine M. Goertz, DC, PhD, of the Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research in Davenport, IA, and associates conducted a randomized controlled trial to assess changes in pain levels and physical functioning among 91 active-duty soldiers (86% male; 63% white) treated for LBP with SMC or with SMC plus CMT from February 2008–June 2009.

The researchers found that the adjusted mean scores for back-related pain relief on the Roland-Morris Disability Questionnaire and scores on a the back pain functional scale were significantly better in the SMC plus CMT group (46 soldiers) at both weeks two and four of the study, compared to the SMC group (45 soldiers).

“The results of this trial suggest that CMT in conjunction with SMC offers a significant advantage for decreasing pain and improving physical functioning when compared with only standard care, for men and women between 18 and 35 years of age with acute LBP,” the authors write.

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