Vertigo and Balance Disorders – The Role of Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment: A Systematic Review

Full Paper

Authors: Tramontano M. · Consorti · Morone G. · Lunghi C.
Journal: Complement Med Res 2021;28:368–377
Abstract:

Background:
Balance disorders are among the most frequent reasons for consultation and referral to specialist care. Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT) can influence the proprioceptive system by inducing alterations in the proprioceptive stimuli, hence affecting postural control. Objective: The present systematic review aimed to explore the effects of OMT in managing patients with vertigo and balance disorders.

Methods:
MEDLINE (PubMed), ScienceDirect, and Google Scholar were searched. Clinical trials and prospective observational studies were considered. Only studies that considered OMT as the main intervention, provided alone or combined with other interventions, were included. The methodological quality of the evidence was assessed with a modified version of the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale.

Results:
Five studies that enrolled a total of 114 subjects met our inclusion criteria. Overall, it has been observed that there is a positive effect on balance disorders through different outcomes in all of the included studies. Only two studies (9 subjects) mentioned low to moderate adverse events after OMT.

Conclusions:
OMT showed weak positive effects on balance function, encouraging the connection of conventional medicine and evidence-based complementary medicine for integrative clinical practice and interprofessional work. However, full-sized adequately powered randomized trials are required to determine the effectiveness of OMT for vertigo and balance disorders.

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