Index to Chiropractic Literature
Index to Chiropractic Literature
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ID 1996
  Title Most commonly used methods of detecting spinal subluxation and the preferred term for its description: A survey of chiropractors in Victoria, Australia
Journal J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 1997 Nov-Dec;20(9):583-589
Peer Review Yes
Publication Type Article

PURPOSE: To determine the most commonly used diagnostic methods for detecting the spinal entity that chiropractors adjust/manipulate and the preferred term for describing this entity.

DESIGN: Postal survey (self-completed questionnaire).

SETTING: Victoria, Australia.

PARTICIPANTS: All 554 chiropractors registered May 30, 1994, with the Chiropractors and Osteopaths Registration Board of Victoria.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Frequency of use and opinion with respect to reliability of 16 specific methods, measured on a 7-point, Likert-type scale [never used (1) to always used (7) and very unreliable (1) to very reliable (7), respectively]; the respondent's preferred term for describing the spinal entity that chiropractors adjust/manipulate.

RESULTS: The response rate was 85%. The most commonly used method was static palpation (mean score 6.6 +/- 1.1). Seven other methods, including pain description of the patient, orthopedic tests, motion palpation, visual posture analysis, leg length discrepancy, neurological tests and plain static X-rays had mean scores greater than 4.0. All of these methods, as well as functional X-ray views and kinesiological muscle testing, were considered reliable, with mean reliability scores greater than 4.0. Motion palpation was regarded as the most reliable method (mean reliability score 5.9 +/- 1.2). Seventy-five different terms for describing the spinal entity were named by 440 respondents. "Subluxation" was included in the preferred term of 294 respondents (67%), 46 included "dysfunction" (11%), 35 included "fixation" (8%) and 20 included "manipulable" (4.5%).

CONCLUSION: Chiropractors commonly use a variety of methods to identify the spinal entity that they manipulate. There is no consensus as to the preferred term for describing this entity.

This abstract is reproduced with the permission of the publisher. Article only available in print.


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