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Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (DARE): Quality-assessed Reviews [Internet]. York (UK): Centre for Reviews and Dissemination (UK); 1995-.

Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (DARE): Quality-assessed Reviews.

The Alexander technique: a systematic review of controlled clinical trials

Review published: 2003.

Bibliographic details: Ernst E, Canter P H.  The Alexander technique: a systematic review of controlled clinical trials. Forschende Komplementarmedizin und Klassische Naturheilkunde 2003; 10(6): 325-329. [PubMed: 14707481]


AIM: Alexander technique (AT), a process of psychophysical re-education, is being promoted for a range of medical conditions. This systematic review is aimed at critically evaluating the evidence for or against the effectiveness of AT.

METHODS: Computerized literature searches were performed in five databases to locate all controlled clinical trials of AT in any human condition. Data were extracted independently by two reviewers according to pre-defined criteria. The information was summarized in tabular and narrative form. The methodological quality of the primary studies was assessed using the Jadad score.

RESULTS: Four clinical trials met our inclusion/exclusion criteria. Only two of these trials were methodologically sound and clinically relevant. Their results are promising and imply that AT is effective in reducing the disability of patients suffering from Parkinson's disease and in improving pain behaviour and disability in patients with back pain.

CONCLUSION: The few controlled clinical trials of AT yield encouraging albeit not convincing evidence. AT deserves to be studied in more detail.

Copyright 2003 S. Karger GmbH, Freiburg

CRD has determined that this article meets the DARE scientific quality criteria for a systematic review.

Copyright © 2014 University of York.

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