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The Use of Strain-Counterstrain in the Treatment of Patients with Low Back Pain

Cynan Lewis, MScPT, MTC, MAPA Timothy W. Flynn, PT, PhD, OCS, FAAOMPT
Strain-Counterstrain (S-CS) is a manipulative technique routinely used by manual practitioners to treat somatic dysfunction. However, no peer-reviewed literature to support or refute its use has been reported. In the four clinical cases reported, S-CS was initially provided as the sole treatment for low back pain. The S-CS intervention phase for each case took approximately one week and consisted of 2 to 3 treatment sessions to resolve perceived “aberrant neuromuscular activity.” Outcome measures were derived from the McGill Pain Questionnaire and the Oswestry Low Back Pain Disability Questionnaire. All patients registered reductions in pain and disability following S-CS intervention. No experimental evidence for the effectiveness of S-CS is offered, although outcomes do suggest that a controlled study is warranted to examine the effectiveness of S-CS for the treatment of low back pain.
The Journal of Manual & Manipulative Therapy, 2001
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