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The relative effectiveness of spinal manipulation and ultrasound in mechanical pain: Pilot study


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Clinical trial


Structural and chiropractic

J Chiropr Med.2002 Autumn;1(4):184-8.


M Moodley, J W Brantingham


Objectives: To assess the efficacy of spinal manipulation versus ultrasound in the treatment of patients with neck pain. Design: Randomized clinical trial. Setting: Technikon Natal Chiropractic Clinic-Durban, South Africa Subjects: Thirty randomly allocated subjects with neck pain, (aged between 16 and 60 years), responded to advertisements from the "college" (Technikon Natal, Department of Chiropractic), in the local newspapers and from the radio. Method: Two groups of subjects were treated. Group 1 received spinal manipulation and Group 2 received ultrasound. Both groups were assessed with a CROM goniometer used for cervical range of motion assessments, algometer measurements (to assess pain thresholds), completion of the Numerical Pain Rating Scale 101 (for intensity of pain), level of disability using the CMCC Neck Disability Index, and the Short Form McGill Questionnaire to assess for the sensory dimension of pain. Results: Ultrasound increased only right rotation range of motion of the neck, whereas spinal manipulation increased left rotation, right lateral flexion (ranges of motion of the neck) and decreased disability. Conclusion: From the results it appears that both ultrasound and adjustments are useful in treating mechanical neck pain; however, it appears that adjustments were more effective in restoring overall mobility and in decreasing cervical disability than ultrasound alone.

Publication Date: 

2002 Autumn



Moodley, M., Brantingham, WJ. (2002) 'The relative effectiveness of spinal manipulation and ultrasound in mechanical pain: Pilot study', J Chiropr Med.2002 Autumn;1(4):184-8.

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