Downtown Chiropractic Newsletter
Chiropractic and Children: Shown to be Safe
A recent article recently published in the January 1, 2007 issue of the
journal Pediatrics (a journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics) addressed the
issue of pediatric safety as they pertain to spinal manipulative therapy. The
study by Vohra et. al. entitled, "Adverse Event Associated with Pediatric
Spinal Manipulation" has incited questions and undue concern from the general
public from news headlines that have misinterpreted this article. Our Research
Director, Dr Joel Alcantara, has critically appraised the study by Vohra et. al.
and the immediately retrievable supporting articles. His findings thus far are
very revealing about the true nature of this publication, which he will
address in a Letter to the Editor to the journal Pediatrics and in articles to be
published within our own profession. We will keep you updated.
As the largest pediatric chiropractic organization in the world, the ICPA is
making these comments immediately to the profession (particularly to
practicing chiropractors) to assure them that the chiropractic care of children is
safe. The ICPA is making these comments:
"In a review of the scientific literature spanning a period of 104 years,
Vohra et. al. ultimately could only identify 14 cases involving adverse events
associated with spinal manipulation. Of these, 10 were associated with
chiropractic care. Of the 10 cases, 5 patients experienced only minor adverse events
(i.e., sore and stiff neck, sore back) that were self-limiting, did not require
medical attention and cared for successfully by the treating chiropractor.
Incidentally, 2 of the 5 cases were incorrectly sub-typed by Vohra et. al. Of the
articles documenting the 5 cases associated with severe adverse events (i.e.,
required medical care) from chiropractic care, 4 were immediately
retrievable. What does the data really show?
What becomes apparent after reading these articles are the following. The
patients had a pre-existing condition that are associated with the patient's
adverse events and/or had a history of significant trauma (i.e., gymnastic
somersaults and falling on their head and neck) prior to presenting to the
chiropractor. To make cause and effect inferences (i.e., chiropractic care directly
caused the adverse events) from these case reports are inappropriate. Furthermore,
Vohra et.al's cited cases involving delayed diagnosis and/or inappropriate
provision of chiropractic care was based on testimonials and anecdotal evidence.
Vohra et. al.'s conclusion that "serious events may be associated with
pediatric spinal manipulation" are unsubstantiated by the scientific literature and
reflect a suspicious agenda against chiropractic by those who interpret it
Newsletter and article archive: