Welcome to the Chiropractic Australia  Journal Club.

The Journal Club has been established to allow busy clinicians convenient access to the latest research via Dropbox.

  • The Archive consists of approximately 3000 research articles taken primarily from the last 5 years along with some earlier key research sorted into 126 folders in DropBox.
  • The articles in each folder are sorted from newest to oldest (top to bottom).
  • The most recent articles will initially appear in the “Latest Research” folder. This folder will be added to every 2 weeks on the 1st and 15th of each month and with new articles replacing older articles which will be sorted into their relevant folders.
  • As we add new articles or sort them into folders it will automatically do the same to DropBox on your computer!
  • There is a “Submit an Article” folder so members can contribute new articles and fill the gaps with important past articles that are not yet part of the Archive!

Article of the Month: October 2017

October Paper of the Month

Appeal to fear in health care: appropriate or inappropriate?

PDF Document

Keith Simpson. Chiropractic & Manual Therapies. 20 September 2017. Doi: 10.1186/s12998-017-0157-8

A comments section for discussion on this month’s article can be found at the bottom of the page. Please feel free to contribute to the discussion.

The Journal Club database can be found on the following Dropbox Link

October Paper of the Month

Appeal to fear in health care: appropriate or inappropriate?

PDF Document

Keith Simpson. Chiropractic & Manual Therapies. 20 September 2017. Doi: 10.1186/s12998-017-0157-8

Abstract

Aim

This paper examines appeal to fear in general: its perceived positive aspects, its negative characteristics, its appropriate as well as its fallacious use.

Background

Appeal to fear is a commonly used marketing method that attempts to change behaviour by creating anxiety in those receiving a fearful message. It is regularly used in public health initiatives such as anti-smoking, anti-drunk driving campaigns as well as in hypertension awareness campaigns. Some chiropractors appear to use appeal to fear to promote subluxation awareness and thereby encourage the use of chiropractic treatment.

Research supporting its use is equivocal; nevertheless, when used judiciously, appeal to fear probably has sufficient strengths to warrant its continued conditional use. When used to promote care for which there is no supporting evidence, its use is fallacious.

Discussion

Appeal to fear has been used in health promotion campaigns for sixty years or more with the intent of modifying behaviours. While there is evidence to suggest that appeal to fear may motivate some individuals to modify offending behaviour or adopt recommended behaviour there is growing resistance to the use of appeal to fear on ethical and psychological grounds. Using appeal to fear as a tool of persuasion can be valid or fallacious depending on the truth of the premises within the argument.

When used to raise awareness about genuine health concerns such as smoking, drunk driving and hypertension appeal to fear is considered to be a valid approach with certain caveats. However, when appeal to fear, not based on evidence or reason, is used as motivator to get others to accept unnecessary interventions for unproven disorders, the use of appeal to fear is fallacious.

Conclusion

In spite of the evidence against its use, it seems likely that appeal to fear will continue to be used in conjunction with other public awareness initiatives to modify recognized detrimental behaviours such as smoking and drunk driving as well as silent killers such as hypertension. However, when used to promote a treatment that has no evidentiary basis such as subluxation based practice in chiropractic the appeal to fear is a fallacy and must be stopped.