OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to investigate the report by mothers of their infants' condition before and after a trial of care provided by registered chiropractic clinicians in addition to ratings of satisfaction, cost of care, and reports of any adverse events or side effects. A second purpose was to report the demographic profile of infants who presented for care to 16 chiropractic clinics in the United Kingdom.
METHODS: This observational study prospectively collected reports by mothers of their infants' demographic profiles and outcomes across several domains of infant behavior and their own mental state using the United Kingdom Infant Questionnaire. Participating registered chiropractors were recruited through the Royal College of Chiropractors annual meeting in January 2016, and 15 clinics and the Anglo-European College of Chiropractic University College teaching clinic volunteered to participate.
RESULTS: In all, 2001 mothers completed intake questionnaires and 1092 completed follow-up forms. Statistically significant (P < .05) improvements were reported across all aspects of infant behavior studied, including feeding problems, sleep issues, excessive crying, problems with supine sleep position, infant pain, restricted cervical range of motion, and time performing prone positioning. Maternal ratings of depression, anxiety, and satisfaction with motherhood also demonstrated statistically significant improvement (P < .05). In total, 82% (n = 797) reported definite improvement of their infants on a global impression of change scale. As well, 95% (n = 475) reported feeling that the care was cost-effective, and 90.9% (n = 712) rated their satisfaction 8 or higher on an 11-point scale. Minor self-limiting side effects were reported (5.8%, n = 42/727) but no adverse events.
CONCLUSION: In this study, mothers reported that chiropractic care for their infants was effective, safe, and cost-effective. Although the observational design makes it impossible to determine efficacy, the study's findings indicate that, on average, the changes observed by mothers were positive and may be clinically relevant.
Author keywords: Infant, Chiropractic, Complementary Therapies
Author affiliations: JEM: Outpatient Teaching Clinic, AECC University College, Bournemouth, Dorset, UK; HAH: Private practice, Werkhoven, Utrecht, the Netherlands; MH, DSLTK, ZM, YHT: AECC University College Teaching Clinic, Bournemouth, Dorset, UK.
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