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Providing musculoskeletal healthcare for the infant pediatric patient: A cross-sectional analysis of Norwegian chiropractors and manual therapists

Kristin Lo Nystrøm, 2017


Background: In 2015 The Norwegian Physiotherapy Association requested Norwegian health authorities to construct clinical guidelines regarding examination and treatment of infants, aged 0-6 months within private healthcare.


Objectives: To explore and analyze National Health Insurance data regarding the current practice of infant pediatric patient care amongst chiropractors and other manual-therapists in Norway.


Setting: Data pertains to chiropractic and other manual therapy practices in Norway


Subjects: Infants (0-6 months) consulting authorized chiropractors and manual therapists in Norway in 2010 and 2015.


Method: The study design chosen was a quantitative cross sectional health service analysis using retrospectively collected health insurance data. All reimbursement claims from authorized chiropractors and manual-therapists in Norway, regarding examination and treatment of infant pediatric patients (0-6months) in 2010 and 2015.


Results: 20% the infant pediatric population in Norway seeks help from private musculoskeletal health care practitioners. The infants are brought in mostly prior to their third or fourth month of life and there is a slight predominance towards male babies. They receive generally a modest amount of treatment slightly above 3 treatments in average, and most infants receive less than five treatments in total. The diagnoses used are musculoskeletal around the spine and non-musculoskeletal like infantile colic and excessive crying, and are significantly different in the two professions, indicating either heterogeneity in their patient group, or a traditional or cultural difference in diagnostic practice.

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