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How the Elderly Utilize Chiropractic in the United States

From the Australian scientific journal, Chiropractic & Osteopathy, comes a study dated September 6, 2007 that chronicles how elderly adults in the United States utilize chiropractic treatment. The researchers interviewed over 4,000 seniors over 70 years old, then correlated those interviews to Medicare records. The final results from the study were then extrapolated to give a picture of the overall population.

The study, headed by Dr. Fredric D Wolinsky, and Dr. Gary E Rosenthal of the Center for Research in the Implementation of Innovative Strategies in Practice (CRIISP) in the Iowa City VA Medical Center reported that on an annual basis about 4.6% of seniors 70 or older visit a chiropractor. These seniors are more inclined to be in pain and have a method of self transportation to go to the chiropractor's office. The report also noted that predominantly, there was unexplainable racial discrepancies noting that, "African Americans and Hispanics are merely a lot less likely to visit chiropractors than Whites in the United States". Researchers also reported that people who used chiropractic were more likely to possess arthritis and/or consume alcohol.

The report demonstrated that over the 4 year study about 30% of those seniors who did have chiropractic visits continued to visit a chiropractor over at least three of the 4 years studied. Researchers figured that these seniors made chiropractic a regular part of their healthcare regime. Conversely, about 48 percent of those that visited a chiropractor didn't have any visits in more than one of the 4 years in the study. In addition they discovered that, "among those who had seen a chiropractor, the amount of chiropractic visits was lower for individuals who lived alone, had lower incomes, and not as good cognitive abilities, while it was greater for the overweight and those with lower body limitations."

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