A series of stories appearing on May 28, 2004 through PRNewswire and other news outlets reported on a study released the day before by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM). The study reveals that 36 percent of Americans are incorporating non medical types of care, what the study refers to as, "complementary and alternative medicines (CAM)", into their health care regimen.
The government's survey, the most comprehensive look yet at the use of alternative medicine in the US, found more than a third of American adults used some form of non-medical care in 2002. The study pointed out that those who went to chiropractors seem to have even less confidence in traditional medical care than others who had sought other forms of non-medical care.
Richard Nahin of the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, part of the National Institutes of Health, explained that more people are using natural products such as herbs or enzymes to treat chronic or recurring pain. He stated, "Many conditions are not easily treated with conventional medicine. It may be the public is turning to complementary and alternative medicine because it's not getting relief from conventional medicine."
The survey also showed that 19.9 percent of American adults reported having chiropractic care at some point in their lives, this represented approximately 40 million Americans in total. On a yearly basis the study showed that about 8 percent, representing about 15 million people, sought help from chiropractors during the previous 12 months.