Bed rest has been recommended for many conditions, including
low back pain and rheumatoid arthritis. The idea of prescribing
bed rest for illness perhaps stemmed from a quote by the "father
of medicine," Hippocrates: "In every movement of
the body, whenever one begins to endure pain, it will be relieved
advice was proffered in the 4th century B.C., but the practice
of prescribing bed rest remains, despite little evidence of
its effectiveness. In a review published in the journal Lancet,
authors evaluated 39 different studies on bed rest prescribed
for 15 different conditions, involving a total of 5,777 patients.
Results of the analysis revealed that bed rest was not an
effective treatment recommendation. In 24 trials investigating
bed rest following a medical procedure, no patients improved
significantly and eight worsened significantly. And in 15
trials investigating bed rest as a primary treatment, no patients
improved significantly, while nine worsened significantly.
Healing involves much more than rest, a fact which this study
seems to emphasize but which many doctors seem to ignore.
Donšt settle for quick medical advice (pills, bed rest, etc.)
that may end up doing more harm than good, or no good at all.
Consult with your doctor of chiropractic for information on
active, noninvasive approaches to managing a variety of health
Allen C, Glasziou P, Del Mar C. Bed rest: a potentially harmful
treatment needing more careful evaluation. Lancet 1999:
Vol. 354, pp1229-33.