The Effect of Optimally Timed Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment on Length of Hospital Stay in Moderate and Late Preterm Infants: Results from a RCT

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2014;2014:243539. doi: 10.1155/2014/243539. Epub 2014 Nov 25.


Introduction. Little research has been conducted looking at the effects of osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT) on preterm infants. Aim of the Study. This study hypothesized that osteopathic care is effective in reducing length of hospital stay and that early OMT produces the most pronounced benefit, compared to moderately early and late OMT. A secondary outcome was to estimate hospital cost savings by the use of OMT. Methods. 110 newborns ranging from 32- to 37-week gestation were randomized to receive either OMT or usual pediatric care. Early, moderately early, and late OMT were defined as <4, <9, and <14 days from birth, respectively. Result. Hospital stay was shorter in infants receiving late OMT (-2.03; 95% CI -3.15, -0.91; P < 0.01) than controls. Subgroup analysis of infants receiving early and moderately early OMT resulted in shorter LOS (early OMT: -4.16; -6.05, -2.27; P < 0.001; moderately early OMT: -3.12; -4.36, -1.89; P < 0.001). Costs analysis showed that OMT significantly produced a net saving of €740 (-1309.54, -170.33; P = 0.01) per newborn per LOS. Conclusions. This study shows evidence that the sooner OMT is provided, the shorter their hospital stay is. There is also a positive association of OMT with overall reduction in cost of care.