For chronic neck pain, Chuna Manual therapy yields better results than usual care: JAMA
Chuna manual therapy yields better results than usual care for patients with chronic non-specific neck pain, suggests a study published in the JAMA Netw Open.
New cases of neck pain are emerging rapidly worldwide, and this disorder is also associated with a high social burden. Manual therapy has been widely applied in the treatment of neck pain, but a high-quality, pragmatic randomized clinical trial for this treatment has not been conducted to date.
A study was conducted by a group of researchers from Korea to compare the effectiveness of Chuna manual therapy with that of usual care for patients with chronic neck pain.
They conducted a multicenter, assessor-blinded, pragmatic, randomized clinical trial between October 18, 2017, and June 28, 2019. This intention-to-treat analysis included 108 patients with chronic neck pain persisting for at least 3 months; patients were recruited from 5 hospitals in Korea. Out of which 54 patients were allocated to the Chuna therapy group, and 54 received usual care.
The primary outcome was the difference in visual analog scale (VAS) score for chronic neck pain between baseline and 5 weeks after randomization.
The results of the study are as follows:
- At 5 weeks after randomization, manual therapy showed statistically superior results compared with usual care in terms of pain, function, and quality of life (difference in the European Quality of Life–5 Dimension 5 Levels (EQ-5D-5L) scores, −0.07 points; 95% CI, −0.11 to −0.02 points).
- Regarding the 1-year cumulative values measured using the area under the curve analyses, superior outcomes were attained in the manual therapy group in terms of the numerical rating scale for chronic neck pain, Neck Disability Index, Neck Pain Questionnaire, and EQ-5D-5L scores.
The researchers concluded that for patients with chronic neck pain, Chuna manual therapy was more effective than usual care in terms of pain and functional recovery at 5 weeks and 1 year after randomization. These results support the need to consider recommending manual therapies as primary care treatments for chronic neck pain.
Chuna Manual Therapy vs Usual Care for Patients With Nonspecific Chronic Neck Pain: A Randomized Clinical Trial by Jinho Lee published in the JAMA Netw Open.