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Osteopathic Evaluation on Patients With Non-specific Back Pain: An Inter-examiner Reliability Study

This study has been completed.
Information provided by:
Kirnan, Jaime Identifier:
First received: December 10, 2010
Last updated: June 9, 2011
Last verified: June 2011
The purpose of this study is to determine whether two osteopathic evaluators with less than 5 years experience will be able to determine the same location and nature of the primary lesion(s) or restriction(s)in patients with chronic non-specific back pain using a global osteopathic evaluation approach.

Condition Intervention
Inter-examiner Reliability
Location and Nature of Restriction or Lesion
Non-specific Back Pain
Other: General Osteopathic Evaluation

Study Type: Observational
Study Design: Observational Model: Case-Only
Time Perspective: Cross-Sectional
Official Title: Osteopathic Evaluation on Patients With Non-specific Back Pain: An Observational Inter-examiner Reliability Study

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Kirnan, Jaime:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Inter-examiner reliability [ Time Frame: Day 1 ]
    Inter-examiner reliability between two evaluators for nature and location of primary restriction(s), lesion(s) found during a global osteopathic evaluation

Enrollment: 20
Study Start Date: November 2010
Study Completion Date: January 2011
Primary Completion Date: January 2011 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Groups/Cohorts Assigned Interventions
Non-specific back pain Other: General Osteopathic Evaluation
2 general osteopathic evaluations of approximately 1 hour in duration done consecutively on the same day with a 15 minute break between evaluations

Detailed Description:
Back pain is one of the leading causes of consultation for rehabilitation. Establishing a diagnosis in the initial patient assessment is essential to choosing a specific treatment plan for that patient, regardless of the type of therapy the patient chooses to pursue. Evidence based medicine is the current gold standard for most manual-therapy professions, and there has been a great deal of research performed in an attempt to give credibility to the one tool that all manual therapy professions share in common: palpation. Few studies have been able to demonstrate an acceptable rate of inter-examiner reliability for palpation. This study will combine a global testing regime, consensus training for evaluators, and access to history of injury with symptomatic subjects to verify the inter-examiner reliability of an osteopathic evaluation on patients with chronic, non-specific low back pain.

Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 60 Years   (Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No
Sampling Method:   Non-Probability Sample
Study Population
Community Sample

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Men and women ages 18-60
  • Must have a history of non-specific back pain (not due to any known pathology eg. disc herniation or disc degenerative disease) that is currently not irritated and has not been, in the past 8 weeks
  • Must be available for 3 consecutive hour

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Patients with a known cause for their back pain
  • Patients who have had a flare up of symptoms within the last 8 weeks
  • Patients who are currently undergoing any rehabilitation or who have received manual treatment in the last 8 weeks.
  • Patients who are taking daily medications for pain
  • Pregnant women
  • Major medical conditions: fractures, degenerative arthritis, inflammatory disorders, ankylosing spondylitis, multiple sclerosis, cancer, paralysis stroke or recent concussion history
  • Any other conditions that would prevent the participant from completing the evaluation
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01258543

Canada, Quebec
Concordia Physio Sport
Brossard, Quebec, Canada, J4Z 1A7
Sponsors and Collaborators
Kirnan, Jaime
Study Director: René Pelletier, MSc., D.O
Study Director: Sabrina Silla, BSc., PT, DO
Principal Investigator: Jaime Kirnan, BSc., CAT(c)
  More Information

Comeaux, Z., Eland, D., Chila, A., Pheley, A., & Tate, M. (2001). Measurement challenges in physical diagnosis: refining inter-rater palpation, perception and communication. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies; 5(4): 245-253
Freyer, G., McPherson, H. C., & O'Keefe, P. (2005). The effect of training on the inter-examiner and intra-examiner reliability of the seated flexion test and assessment of pelvic anatomical landmarks with palpation. International Journal of Osteopathic Medicine; 8: 131-138.
Ghoukassian, M., Nicholls, B., & McLaughlin, P. (2001). Inter-examiner reliability of the Johnson and Friedman percussion scan of the thoracic spine. Journal of Osteopathic Medicine; 4(1): 15-20
Huijbregts, P. A. (2002). Spinal motion palpation: a review of reliability studies. Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics; 10(1): 24-39
Seffinger, M., Adams, A., Najm, W., Dickerson, V., Mishra, S. I., Reinsch, S., & Murphy, L. (2003). Spinal palpatory diagnostic procedures utilized by practitioners of spinal manipulation: annotated bibliography of content validity and reliability studies. Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association; 47(2): 93-109
Vincent-Smith, B., & Gibbons, P. (1999). Inter-examiner and intra-examiner reliability of the standing forward flexion test. Manual Therapy; 10: 256-269

Responsible Party: Jaime Kirnan, Unaffiliated Identifier: NCT01258543     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: JAK-OST-1
Study First Received: December 10, 2010
Last Updated: June 9, 2011

Keywords provided by Kirnan, Jaime:
Global osteopathic evaluation
Non-specific back pain
Inter-examiner reliability

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Back Pain
Neurologic Manifestations
Nervous System Diseases
Signs and Symptoms processed this record on March 29, 2017