Date of Award
Selective Evidence-Based Medicine Review
Master of Science in Health Sciences - Physician Assistant
Physician Assistant Studies
Laura Levy, DHSc, PA-C
OBJECTIVE: The objective of this selective evidence based medicine review is to determine whether or not craniosacral therapy is effective in the reduction of pain intensity in individuals with non-specific neck and/or back pain.
STUDY DESIGN: A systemic review of three peer reviewed journal articles published in 2014 and 2016.
DATA SOURCES: Three randomized controlled trials comparing craniosacral therapy to sham treatment, classic massage and/or trigger point therapy. These data sources were found using PubMed.
OUTCOMES MEASURED: Pain intensity in the neck and/or back, measured by using a 10- point numeric pain rating scale and the visual analogue scale.
RESULTS: All three studies found craniosacral therapy to be just as effective in reducing neck and/or back pain intensity compared to the control groups receiving sham treatment, classic massage or trigger point therapy. In the study by Haller et al. the group difference at week 8 was -21.0 with a statistically significant p-value of 0.001 and a 95% confidence interval of (-32.6 to - 9.4). In the study by Castro-Sánchez et al the 95% confidence interval between group difference was -1.03 (-1.94 to -0.11) with a statistically significant p-value of 0.008. The third study by Bialoszewski et al proved a change in baseline of 3.5 with a statistically significant p-value of 0.047.
CONCLUSIONS: The results of the randomized controlled trials validate that craniosacral therapy reduces pain intensity in individuals with non-specific neck and/or back pain.
Stefanosky, Melissa A., "Is Craniosacral Therapy Effective in the Reduction of Pain Intensity in Individuals with Non-specific Neck and/or Back Pain?" (2019). PCOM Physician Assistant Studies Student Scholarship. 500.