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Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of tuina for chronic neck pain: a randomized controlled trial comparing tuina with a no-intervention waiting list


Pach, Daniel; Piper, Mike; Lotz, Fabian; Reinhold, Thomas; Dombrowski, Mirja; Chang, Yinghui; Liu, Bin; Blödt, Susanne; Rotter, Gabriele; Icke, Katja; Witt, Claudia M (2018). Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of tuina for chronic neck pain: a randomized controlled trial comparing tuina with a no-intervention waiting list. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 24(3):231-237.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate whether tuina is more effective and cost-effective in reducing pain compared to no intervention in patients with chronic neck pain.
DESIGN: Single-center randomized two-armed controlled trial.
SETTING: University outpatient clinic specialized in Integrative Medicine.
SUBJECTS: Outpatients with chronic neck pain were randomly allocated to tuina or no intervention.
INTERVENTION: Six tuina treatments within 3 weeks.
OUTCOME MEASURES: The primary outcome was the mean neck pain intensity during the previous 7 days on a visual analogue scale after 4 weeks (VAS, 0-100 mm, 0 = no pain, 100 = worst imaginable pain). Secondary outcomes included Neck Pain and Disability Scale (NPDS), Neck Disability Index (NDI), health-related quality of life (12-item quality-of-life questionnaire [SF-12]), medication intake, and cost-effectiveness after 4 and 12 weeks. Statistical analysis included analysis of covariance adjusted for baseline values and a full economic analysis from a societal perspective.
RESULTS: Altogether, 92 outpatients were included (46 in both groups, 87% female, mean age 45.4 [standard deviation ±9.7], and mean VAS 57.7 ± 11.5). Tuina treatment led to a clinically meaningful reduction in neck pain intensity (group differences, 4 weeks: -22.8 mm [95% confidence interval, -31.7 to -13.8]; p < 0.001 and 12 weeks: -17.9 mm [-27.1 to -8.8], p < 0.001). No serious adverse events were observed. Total costs as well as quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) did not differ significantly between the groups. When taking group differences into account independently from their statistical significance, costs per QALY gained (incremental cost-effectiveness ratio) would range within a cost-effective area from €7,566 (for costs €10.28 per session) to €39,414 (cost €35 per session).
CONCLUSION: An additional treatment with six tuina sessions over 3 weeks was effective, safe and relatively cost-effective for patients with chronic neck pain. A future trial should compare tuina to other best care options.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate whether tuina is more effective and cost-effective in reducing pain compared to no intervention in patients with chronic neck pain.
DESIGN: Single-center randomized two-armed controlled trial.
SETTING: University outpatient clinic specialized in Integrative Medicine.
SUBJECTS: Outpatients with chronic neck pain were randomly allocated to tuina or no intervention.
INTERVENTION: Six tuina treatments within 3 weeks.
OUTCOME MEASURES: The primary outcome was the mean neck pain intensity during the previous 7 days on a visual analogue scale after 4 weeks (VAS, 0-100 mm, 0 = no pain, 100 = worst imaginable pain). Secondary outcomes included Neck Pain and Disability Scale (NPDS), Neck Disability Index (NDI), health-related quality of life (12-item quality-of-life questionnaire [SF-12]), medication intake, and cost-effectiveness after 4 and 12 weeks. Statistical analysis included analysis of covariance adjusted for baseline values and a full economic analysis from a societal perspective.
RESULTS: Altogether, 92 outpatients were included (46 in both groups, 87% female, mean age 45.4 [standard deviation ±9.7], and mean VAS 57.7 ± 11.5). Tuina treatment led to a clinically meaningful reduction in neck pain intensity (group differences, 4 weeks: -22.8 mm [95% confidence interval, -31.7 to -13.8]; p < 0.001 and 12 weeks: -17.9 mm [-27.1 to -8.8], p < 0.001). No serious adverse events were observed. Total costs as well as quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) did not differ significantly between the groups. When taking group differences into account independently from their statistical significance, costs per QALY gained (incremental cost-effectiveness ratio) would range within a cost-effective area from €7,566 (for costs €10.28 per session) to €39,414 (cost €35 per session).
CONCLUSION: An additional treatment with six tuina sessions over 3 weeks was effective, safe and relatively cost-effective for patients with chronic neck pain. A future trial should compare tuina to other best care options.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Institute of Complementary Medicine
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Uncontrolled Keywords:Complementary and alternative medicine
Language:English
Date:2018
Deposited On:06 Feb 2018 16:10
Last Modified:19 Aug 2018 13:37
Publisher:Mary Ann Liebert
ISSN:1075-5535
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1089/acm.2017.0209
PubMed ID:29072931

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