Manipulation is a general term that includes—but is not limited to—adjustment. Other types of providers besides chiropractors also give manipulations.
According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, spinal manipulation also includes things like exercise, massage, and physical therapy. They say that it yields mild to moderate relief of low back pain and that it works as well as some conventional treatments, such as pain-relieving drugs.
Spinal manipulation can be divided into different grades of mobilizations.
- Practitioners of several disciplines may be licensed to perform grade 1 to grade 4 mobilizations, depending on their training.
- In general, only physical therapists, osteopathic physicians, and chiropractors are licensed to perform grade 5 mobilizations, a type of mobilization that is more forceful and direct than lower grades of spinal manipulation.
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