Chiropractic is concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system and the effects of these disorders on the function of the nervous system and general health.  There is an emphasis on manual treatments including spinal manipulation or adjustment (World Federation of Chiropractic, 1999).

Chiropractors take an integrated and holistic approach to the health needs of their patients, considering physical, psychological and social factors.  They provide care and support by reducing pain and disability and by restoring normal function to people with neuro-musculoskeletal disorders.

A Medical Research Council clinical trial and its follow-up, reported in the British Medical Journal in 1990 and 1995, found that chiropractic treatment of back pain was more effective than hospital outpatient treatment.  The European Commission Acute Low Back Pain Guidelines includes manipulation as an effective treatment for low back pain.


Back pain is not always due to a serious cause with the level of pain a poor indicator of the severity. However, please be aware that if you have any of the following symptoms, you should contact your chiropractor or GP immediately:


  • You feel generally unwell, such as if you have a fever/night sweats as well as severe pain
  • You lose control of your bowel or bladder
  • You feel numb or have pins and needles in the saddle region (genitals/back passage)
  • Both legs feel weak
  • You feel unsteady on your feet

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