The Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR) has partnered with Yale Center for Medical Informatics, The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy & Clinical Practice and the University of Iowa on the VERDICT study which seeks to assess the role of chiropractic care in addressing pain in veterans without the use of pharmaceuticals.
The largest chiropractic research institute nationwide, the PCCR will sponsor the $7 million study along side the venerable academic medical centers of Yale, Dartmouth and University of Iowa reports KWQC TV 6.
The VERDICT Study
A 4-year, $7 million study it is funded by the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health as well as the Office of Research on Women’s Health at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). VERDICT is actually part of a much larger $81 million federally funded NIH-DoD-VA pain management collaboration focusing on support for large-scale, pragmatic clinical trials emphasizing non-drug pain management approaches for active-duty and veteran populations reports KWQC TV 6. VERDICT is one of 11 studies falling under this umbrella.
The study sponsor plans to recruit 766 veteran patients including 20% women to answer the fundamental study questions: 1) Does the number of chiropractic visits have an impact on pain management and 2) What impact does ongoing care have on pain management.
The Challenge: Enormous Costs
Veterans experience higher rates of low-back pain, which negatively impacts quality of life and increases risk of opioid addiction. By 2017, the American College of Physicians declared that non-pharmacological therapies should be the first line defense for patients with chronic low-back pain. At least 20% of the U.S. adult population deal with low-back pain, and 23% of low-back pain patients report pain that leads to disability. Back pain costs may be as high as $200 billion per year.
The Research Sites
The study will be conducted at four Veteran Administration centers around the country including VA Connecticut Healthcare System; Iowa VA Healthcare System; Minneapolis VA Healthcare System and VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System.
Cynthia Long, PhD, dean of research, Palmer College of Chiropractic
Call to Action: Are you in back pain and a vet? Look at this study and consider participation if your physician considers appropriate.