Researchers from the University of North Texas Health Science Center recently found that osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT), which is the practice of palpating the joints, muscles and fascia, is more effective than surgery at treating patients struggling with chronic lower back pain. The study, which was published in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, examined 455 patients ranging in age from 21 to 69 who were diagnosed with nonspecific lower back pain. The purpose of the study to determine the effectiveness of OMT and to identify which kinds of people benefit most from OMT techniques.
In addition to finding that OMT is more effective at treating back pain than corrective surgery, it was also found that OMT was more beneficial depending on the severity of a patient’s condition. Those who experienced chronic lower back pain that was so intense that it curtailed mobility enjoyed the greatest level of benefit from OMT. While the practice of massaging different parts of the body to release tension, ease pain, and restore mobility through specifically targeted massage is relatively new in Western medicine, it has been used in Eastern medicine for centuries. Thanks to studies like the one performed by the University of Texas, more chronic back pain sufferers will benefit from noninvasive, nonsurgical treatments in the future.
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