Objective: The purpose of this preliminary study was to determine if a course of chiropractic care would change blood pressure measurements in African American patients and to determine if a study was feasible in a chiropractic teaching clinic.
Methods: Twenty-four African American patients received chiropractic care in a chiropractic teaching clinic over a study period that spanned 23 visits for each patient. Inclusion criteria consisted of patients having a diagnosis of prehypertension (120-139/80-89) or hypertension stage 1 (140-159/90-99). The mean values of 3 baseline blood pressure readings were compared with the mean values of blood pressure readings taken on visits 21, 22, and 23.
Results: For the entire sample, reductions for both systolic and diastolic blood pressures were not statistically significant (P > .07). When 4 patients having body mass index values that were considered as outliers were excluded, a statistically significant decrease in diastolic blood pressure was observed (P = .004). By group, a statistically significant reduction occurred in the hypertension stage 1 group for systolic and diastolic blood pressures.
Conclusion: This study showed that research of this nature may be feasible in chiropractic teaching clinics. The preliminary findings of this study showed that, for a subgroup of African American patients receiving chiropractic care, blood pressure decreased for (a) hypertension stage 1 patients and (b) the sample when those with excessive body mass index were excluded.
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