What alternative health

practitioners might not tell you



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“Within only a few months, two systematic reviews on the above subject were published [Schneider M, Vernon H, Ko G et al. Chiropractic management of fibromyalgia syndrome: a systematic review of the literature. J Manipulative Physiol Ther 2009; 32: 25–40, and Ernst E. Chiropractic treatment for fibromyalgia: a systematic review. Clin Rheumatol 2009; 28: 1175–78.] …The curious thing about these two articles is that their conclusions are quite different...Of course, it is as legitimate to evaluate one specific modality, e.g. spinal manipulation, as it is to assess a whole treatment package provided by chiropractors, e.g. ‘chiropractic management’. In the latter case, one would expect to see only trials included that were conducted by chiropractors in a chiropractic setting. This was the approach of my review but not of that by Schneider et al. For example, Schneider et al. included trials of acupuncture or exercise, which had nothing to do with chiropractic. Moreover, they included only some of the relevant trials while others were omitted. Their review was thus neither systematic nor was it specific to chiropractic. To publish reviews of that nature, is, in my view, misleading…In conclusion, several recent systematic reviews of ‘chiropractic management’ have drawn positive conclusions. Yet the hallmark therapy of chiropractors, spinal manipulation, is not supported by good evidence in the respective conditions. In my view, these reviews are therefore likely to mislead.”  Edzard Ernst, Focus Alternative and Complementary Therapies [FACT] (December 2009)