Spinal manipulation and mobilisation among infants, children, and adolescents: an international Delphi survey of expert physiotherapists

Review written by Todd Hargrove info

Key Points

  1. Experts agreed that spinal manipulation should not be provided to infants for any condition, or to children for most conditions, but may be provided to adolescents in the lumbar and thoracic areas for pain and hypomobility.
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BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE

There is limited evidence addressing the question of whether spinal manipulation and mobilization for pediatric patients is safe and effective. There is good reason for concern that these treatments have greater potential for risk than benefit.

This study sought to establish a consensus among expert physiotherapists regarding the use of spinal manipulation and mobilization for infants (0-2), children (2-12), and adolescents (13-18).

There is limited evidence addressing the question of whether spinal manipulation and mobilization for pediatric patients is safe and effective.
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Spinal manipulation is not recommended as treatment to infants for any condition, or to children for most conditions.

METHODS

  • The study recruited 26 expert physiotherapists in manual therapy and pediatrics. Consensus was determined according to a three-round e-mail survey (The Delphi design) as follows: In round one, experts listed impairments and conditions where spinal mobilization and manipulation might be
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