Chiropractic Online Continuing Education: Choosing the Right Outcome Assessments for Back Pain Posted on Sep 06, 2023


The field of chiropractic constantly evolves, guided by emerging research and clinical experience. For chiropractic professionals looking to advance their knowledge and fulfill continuing education requirements, CCEDseminars offers a rich variety of online courses that integrate best practice recommendations, including those for selecting outcome assessments in the treatment of back pain.

What Does Health Mean in Chiropractic Practice?

The World Health Organization defines health as a "state of physical, mental, and social well-being not merely the absence of disease or infirmity." In chiropractic care, the overarching goal is to improve the patient's health. However, 'health' is a broad term that includes various dimensions such as physical, psychological, and social well-being. Therefore, a key part of chiropractic care is identifying the specific health goals of each patient.

The Importance of Shared Decision-Making

A cornerstone of effective chiropractic practice is shared decision-making. This involves the chiropractor and the patient collaboratively setting treatment goals and determining the best course of action to achieve them. To track progress towards these goals, outcome assessments are crucial.

Choosing the Right Outcome Assessments

Selecting the right outcome assessments can be challenging, given the diverse needs and goals of patients. Factors to consider include:

  • Cost and Accessibility: Are the assessments affordable and available in the patient's language?
  • Reliability, Validity, and Responsiveness: Does research support the assessment’s effectiveness?
  • Applicability: Does the assessment align with the patient's specific symptoms and treatment goals?

Core Outcome Set (COS) for Low Back Pain

Chiarotto et al. proposed a Core Outcome Set (COS) specifically for low back pain, which includes domains like physical functioning, pain intensity, and health-related quality of life. Utilizing this COS can provide a more comprehensive understanding of a patient's health progress.

The Role of PROMIS in Chiropractic Care

The Patient Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) is another valuable tool that can be used to measure multiple health domains. PROMIS offers computerized adaptive testing (CAT), tailoring questions based on patient responses, thereby adding a level of patient-centeredness to the assessment process.

Clinical Application

Incorporating these advanced outcome assessment tools can significantly impact clinical outcomes. Practitioners can:

  • Use PROMIS to tailor assessments more closely to patient needs.
  • Employ the COS for patients suffering from low back pain.
  • Continually track patient progress to modify treatment plans effectively.


The right outcome assessments can make a significant difference in patient care and the attainment of treatment goals. As part of your chiropractic online continuing education, CCEDseminars provides a comprehensive platform to understand and implement these advanced assessment tools, facilitating better patient outcomes and evidence-based practice.

For more information on these topics and to earn your Continuing Education credits online, consider our course offerings at CCEDseminars. Click HERE for link.


  1. Preamble to the Constitution of WHO as adopted by the International Health Conference, New York, 19 June – 22 July 1946; Official Records of WHO, no. 2, p. 100
  2. Chiarotto A, Terwee CB, Ostelo RW. Choosing the right outcome measurement instruments for patients with low back pain. Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2016 Dec 1;30(6):1003–20.
  3. Intro to PROMIS [Internet]. Available from:

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