A pilot study published in the December 2005 scientific journal, Clinical Chiropractic, from the European association, The College of Chiropractors, showed that chiropractic helped subjects in the study with neck pain. The study starts off by noting how common neck pain is by pointing out that more than 70% of people in the developed world will experience neck pain at some point in their lifetimes.
In this pilot study, the 21 people who completed the study, were divided into two groups for study. One group was those who had neck pain for less than 7 weeks and the other consisted of those with chronic neck pain of more than 7 weeks duration. Outcomes were measured for values such as pain, disability, and perceptions of improvements in quality of life, as well as levels of anxiety and depression.
The 21 patients who completed the study all received a regime of chiropractic care. The number and frequency of visits were determined by the clinical decision of the individual practitioner rendering care to the study subjects. A standardized outcome measurement was made using a scientific method called the Bournemouth Questionnaire (BQ) for neck pain.
The results showed that in the acute group, those with neck pain for less than 7 weeks, all the subjects experienced a decrease in pain with 6 of the 7 reporting a significant improvement. In the group with chronic neck pain of longer than 7 weeks, all but 2 experienced improvement. Most of that group had significant improvement, while one reported no change and one was worse at the end of the study.
The acute neck pain patients were usually suffering from more severe pain than were those with chronic pain.
Researchers summed up the results by stating, "The results demonstrate a positive effect for chiropractic on symptoms of neck pain. The more chronic the presentation, the more treatments were required to achieve asymptomatic status."