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Table 3 External personal sources used to select treatment types/service providers

From: The role of information search in seeking alternative treatment for back pain: a qualitative analysis

Interviewee External source 1stever treatment 2ndtreatment 3rdtreatment Treatment outcome
1 WOM – family   Pain subsided from chiropractor   Positive
1 WOM - friend    Pain subsided from physiotherapy Positive
2 WOM - colleague   Pain subsided from masseuse   Positive
3 WOM – teacher   Paid subsided from chiropractor   Positive
4 GP - referral Pain relief but problem progressively worsened with physiotherapy    Negative
4 GP - referral   Some pain relief but got problem got progressively worse with physiotherapy   Negative
4 GP - referral    Some pain relief but got problem got progressively worse with physiotherapy Negative
5 WOM – friends Inadequate length of pain relief from chiropractor    Negative
5 WOM – family   No pain relief with colour therapy   Negative
5 WOM – family    Inadequate length of pain relief Negative
6 WOM - colleague Unhappy with chiropractor’s behaviour    Negative
6 WOM – friends   Inadequate length of pain relief from acupuncture   Somewhat positive
6 WOM – friends    Inadequate length of pain relief from acupuncture Somewhat positive
7 GP and WOM – friends Not totally pain free with physiotherapy    Somewhat positive
7 WOM – friends   In adequate relief of symptoms with chiropractor   Negative
7 WOM - friend    No pain relief from acupuncture Negative
8 WOM - mum Adequate pain relief with chiropractor    Positive
8 WOM and marketing sources   Adequate pain relief with chiropractor   Positive
9 WOM friends/others Adequate pain relief with chiropractor    Positive
10 Chiropractor’s referral   Adequate pain relief   Positive
10 Chiropractor’s referral    Adequate pain relief Positive
11 WOM –friends Inadequate pain relief    Negative
11 GP referral   Adequate pain relief   Positive
11 WOM – friend and family    Inadequate pain relief Negative
12 WOM - friend Adequate pain relief    Positive
12 WOM - friend   Adequate pain relief   Positive
All Total treatment outcomes 26
All Total ‘somewhat positives’ outcomes* 3 (11.5%)
All Total ’positive’ outcomes 12 (46.2%)
All Total negative outcomes 11 (42.3%)
  1. *Note: somewhat positive outcomes frequency was excluded from the final calculation because of the outcomes were not satisfactory enough for the patient to remain loyal to the practitioner.