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Old 18th June 2007, 10:43 AM   #11
Mostly harmless
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Nor Flanden
Posts: 33,391
Originally Posted by Blue Wode View Post
It’s also worth remembering that packets of NSAIDs contain patient information leaflets detailing risks. Not all chiropractors warn patients about the risks associated with manipulative treatment

There's also the issue of the reporting (or lack of reporting) of adverse events. Edzard Ernst's team studied Neurological complications of cervical spine manipulation. According to a talk he gave to the Medico-Legal Society (published in the Medico-Legal Journal Vol. 74 p. 56),
We have conducted a survey with all British neurologists. We had a very good response rate. Most of them participated, and we asked them whether they had seen any neurological complications after upper spinal manipulation within a year's time, and this discovered 35 cases, including 9 strokes and other serious complications after chiropractic. Now 35 cases is not a lot, chiropractors would say, and I hope there is a chiropractor here, because I like discussions, and particularly heated ones. I would disagree, because we then looked these cases up and traced them down and found that none of these 35 cases had previously appeared anywhere; nobody knew about these cases; in other words, under-reporting in this series was precisely 100%. Now, if under-reporting is 100%, any estimation of incidence figures is nonsensical and the true incidence of these complications is anybody's guess. Chiropractors say complications are extremely rare. I hope they are extremely rare, but unless we have proper data we don't know and, as I said, with under-reporting of 100% estimates are nonsensical.
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