Brachioradial pruritus and cervical spine manipulation

C P Tait, E Grigg, C J Quirk
Australasian Journal of Dermatology 1998, 39 (3): 168-70
Brachioradial pruritus (BRP) causes significant morbidity in the majority of patients for whom no effective treatment is found. Chronic ultraviolet radiation exposure has usually been cited as the cause, but nerve damage from cervical spine disease has also been implicated. We report on a small retrospective exploratory study, conducted by questionnaire, of a group of patients who were treated with a specific cervical spine manipulation. Ten of 14 patients reported resolution of symptoms following manipulative treatment. All six patients who had had previous cervical spine disease responded to manipulation, as did half the remaining eight patients who had no previous history of neck symptoms. Although patients with BRP, by definition, share similar symptoms, the aetiology is almost certainly multifactorial. Prospective studies looking for cervical spine disease, as well as assessment of this particular method of cervical spine manipulation as a treatment modality for BRP, should be considered.

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