The Scientific Bases of Musculoskeletal Medicine

  • John K. Paterson


Many doctors are taught by their mentors to believe that the proponents of musculoskeletal medicine are a bunch of crackpots, dedicated to a variety of philosophies that do not add up in a scientific environment. In particular, many of those charged with medical education view vertebral manipulation with serious misgivings, believing it to be commonly useless and sometimes dangerous. On the other hand, those already involved in this field only too often express their views in somewhat unscientific manner. It seems to me that both approaches need to be revised, if the patient is to receive the potential benefits of these quick, safe, simple, and commonly effective therapies. The only way of achieving this is to present to both antagonists and protagonists the admittedly limited amount of evidence that currently enjoys the benefit of scientific validation. Reception of this approach by both camps will be determined by the degree to which they already “know” they are right (9). It must be recognised that “negative” research, designed to show a belief to be wrong, is perfectly justifiable if “the investigator’s bias and prejudice are put aside at the moment of interpretation” (10).


Vertebral Artery Nucleus Pulposus Odontoid Process Nerve Supply Adjacent Vertebra 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2006

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  • John K. Paterson

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