Several recent studies have added to our knowledge of the biological benefits of chiropractic treatments. In 2010, researchers determined that chiropractic treatments can improve the body’s response to pain and inflammation.
The study involved 10 healthy participants and 10 who had lower back pain lasting at least 3 months. At the start and end of the study, researchers took blood samples to analyze changes in cytokines, which are the protein molecules that trigger an immune response. High levels of two types of cytokines, known as CRP and IL-6, indicate an active inflammatory response to pain or injury. As the body heals, levels of these cytokines become lower.
Following a series of 9 chiropractic sessions, patients with low-back pain had significantly lower levels of CRP and IL-6. The researchers concluded that the data suggests a correlation between chiropractic care and improved inflammatory response.
More research is needed in order to fully understand the biological effects of chiropractic treatments. However, this small study shows exciting results for patients with lower back pain.
Roy, Richard Al, Jean Boucher, Alain Comtois. Inflammatory response following a short-term course of chiropractic treatment in subjects with and without chronic low back pain. Journal of Chiropractic Medicine 2010, September; 9(3): 107-114.
Ogura, Takeshi and Manabu Tashiro, Mehedi,Shoichi Watanuki, Katsuhiko Shibuya, Keiichiro Yamaguchi, Masatoshi Itoh, Hiroshi Fukuda, Kazuhiko Yanai. Cerebral Metabolic Changes in Men After Chiropractic Spinal Manipulation for Neck Pain. Alternative Therapies. 2011, November/December; 17 (6): 12-17.