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Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2019 Jul 15;2019:2878352. doi: 10.1155/2019/2878352. eCollection 2019.

Role for Endocannabinoids in Spinal Manipulative Therapy Analgesia?

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Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research, Palmer College of Chiropractic, 741 Brady Street, Davenport, IA 52803-5214, USA.


Chronic pain is quite prevalent and causes significant disabilities and socioeconomic burdens. Spinal manipulative therapy and other manipulative therapies are used to manage chronic pain. There is a critical knowledge gap about mechanisms and sites of action in spinal manipulative therapy pain relief, especially the short-term analgesia that occurs following a treatment. Endocannabinoids are an activity-dependent neurotransmitter system that acts as a short-term synaptic circuit breaker. This review describes both clinical research and basic research evidence suggesting that endocannabinoids contribute to short-term manipulative therapy analgesia. Determining endocannabinoids involvement in spinal manipulative therapy will improve its clinical efficacy when results from basic science and clinical research are translated.

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