SMT for Chronic Low Back Pain IS Safer Than Drug Therapy

Initial Choice of SMT for Treatment of Chronic Low Back Pain
Leads to Reduced Long-term Risk of Adverse Drug Events
Among Older Medicare Beneficiaries

A study published in the journal Spine has found that among older Medicare beneficiaries who initiated long-term care of chronic low back pain with opioid analgesic therapy, the adjusted rate of outpatient adverse drug events was more than 42 times higher as compared with those who initially chose spinal manipulative therapy.

The study examined Medicare claims data spanning a 5-year period on fee-for-service beneficiaries aged 65 to 84 years, continuously enrolled under Medicare Parts A, B, and D for a 60-month study period, and with an episode of chronic LBP in 2013. We excluded patients with a diagnosis of cancer or use of hospice care.

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