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May 31, 2015

A Study Finds Chiropractic Care Beneficial for Fibromyalgia.

Photograph of man holding neck with pain

A new study from Egypt reports that Chiropractic care can be an effective additional treatment strategy for fibromyalgia.

The study involved 120 people between the ages of 40 and 65 who suffered with severe fibromyalgia for four years or more. Each person rated their pain as a 4 or higher on a pain scale and also had limited movement in their cervical  (neck) spine, specifically in the C1-C2 (top of the neck) area.

All of the individuals participating in this study engaged in 12 weeks of therapy which included:

  • An education program to provide the participant with more information about fibromyalgia and available treatment options;
  • Cognative behavioural therapy which involved discussion regarding pain management via relaxation exercises, challenging treatment-prohibitive beliefs about fibromyalgia, and positive reinforcements about what types of actions can be taken to ease fibromyalgia symptoms; and
  • An exercise program which included relaxation techniques, as well as active and passive stretches.


One-half of the individuals were also randomly assigned to a treatment group, which meant that they also engaged in upper cervical chiropractic adjustments. This involved a high-velocity,  low-amplitude thrust (chiropractic adjustment) to C1-2 motion segment three times per week for the first month. This was then reduced to once a week sessions for the remaining eight weeks.

Each participant was asked to complete various questionnaires, at the beginning of the study, the conclusion of the study, and at one year post-study, to help the researchers determine what effect, if any, the chiropractic care had on easing the fibromyalgia symptoms and reducing its impact on their lifestyle. Specifically, questions were asked regarding physical function, work days missed due to fibromyalgia symptoms, sleep disturbances, level of pain, fatigue, depression and anxiety.

The individuals who participated in the upper cervical chiropractic care group showed more improvement and better results that the control group who had no chiropractic intervention. This was validated by questionnaire scores that improved by 15 or more percent. The researchers concluded that adding chiropractic care to you current fibromyalgia treatment regime may offer even more benefits when it comes to getting to the root of the problem.



Moustafa IM, Diab AA. The addition of upper cervical manipulation therapy in the treatment of patients with fibromyalgia: a randomised control trial. Rheumatology International 2015;35(7):1163-1174


Adapted from an article written by: Michael Melton, 26th May 2015, www.chironexus.net

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