Development of a Clinical Prediction Rule for Guiding Treatment of a Subgroup of Patients With Neck Pain: Use of Thoracic Spine Manipulation, Exercise, and Patient Education

Joshua A Cleland, John D Childs, Julie M Fritz, Julie M Whitman and Sarah L Eberhart

The purpose of this study was to develop a clinical prediction rule (CPR) to identify patients with neck pain who are likely to experience early success from thoracic spine thrust manipulation.  Subjects underwent a standardized examination and then a series of thoracic spine thrust manipulation techniques. They were classified as having experienced a successful outcome at the second and third sessions based on their perceived recovery. Potential predictor variables were entered into a stepwise logistic regression model to determine the most accurate set of variables for prediction of treatment success. The authors conclude that the CPR provides the ability to a priori identify patients with neck pain who are likely to experience early success with thoracic spine thrust manipulation. However, future studies are necessary to validate the rule. 

Physical Therapy, Vol. 87, No. 1, January 2007, pp. 9-23

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