About Chiropractic, allergies, asthma, General, good health, Immunity, Pediatrics

Chiropractic Care of a Pediatric Patient with Asthma, Allergies, Chronic Colds & Vertebral Subluxation

Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health Chiropractic, Volume 2009

Objective: To provide supporting evidence on the effectiveness of chiropractic care in relieving asthma and allergies and overall improvement in a pediatric patient’s immune system and health.

Clinical Features: A 7-year-old male was presented by his parents for chiropractic evaluation and possible care. The suffered from chronic colds, allergies, and asthma since the age of 5 months. At the time of initial evaluation, the patient was on a 1x/day dose of prescription Alavert for allergies and Albuterol for asthma. The patient’s illness caused him to miss approximately 1–2 days a month of school due to colds and symptoms of asthma. His parents also indicated that his health problems resulted in monthly visits to his medical doctor.

Interventions and Outcomes: The patient was cared for using specific, low-force adjustments with the Activator Instrument to address areas of vertebral subluxation in the cervical, thoracic, and lumbosacral spine. Within two weeks of initiating chiropractic care, the patient was able to discontinue his allergy and asthma medications (as decided upon by his parents) and the use of his nebulizer. In the first 5 months after beginning chiropractic care, he has had only wellness checkups at the medical doctor. In the past school year, the patient has not missed any days of school due to illness.

Conclusion: This case report provides supporting evidence that chiropractic care can help balance immune system functioning and relieve asthma symptoms as well as colds and allergies. It is recommended that further research be done on this subject to support the findings of this case study.


Joel Alcantara, BSc, D.C.; Laura Van Roo, D.C. and Rosemary E. Oman, Msc, FASBE, DC

Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health – Chiropractic ~ Volume 2009 ~ Issue 3 ~ Pages 1-7. August 17, 2009

About Chiropractic, Athletes, General, Knee Injuries, Sports, Sports Injuries

Knee Injuries

How chiropractic can treat this common sports injury

Christina DeBusk February 13, 2018
3 minute read

photo and text credit: Chiropractic Economics

The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMSD) reports that knee injuries are among the most common sports injuries sustained by athletes nationwide.

In fact, they rank right up there with other common athletic injuries such as muscle sprains and strains, fractures, and dislocations.

Though knee pain is problematic for anyone that must endure it, when it strikes someone who spends a lot of time being physically active, it can make life extra miserable. And if they play within the pro sports arena, it could even take away their livelihood.

So, what can you do help your athletic patients prevent or heal their knee pain so they can stay in the game without having to suffer? There are a few different options to consider, the first of which is chiropractic.

Chiropractic for knee pain relief

Several studies have revealed that chiropractic care is an effective tool for helping with sports-related injury prevention and treatment. One of the most notable studies was published in 2010 in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders and it involved 59 Australian Rules footballers. Twenty-eight of the participants were subjected to sports chiropractic intervention and the rest served as a control.

After almost eight months of individualized treatment sessions, it was noted that, when compared to the control, there was a “significant” difference in lower-limb muscle strains for those who received chiropractic care. Researchers also found that there was a sizeable difference in the number of weeks the control subjects missed due to non-contact knee injuries as they spent more time on the bench than the individuals who engaged in chiropractic.

Another study, this one published by The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association, involved 43 subjects with chronic, non-progressive osteoarthritic knee pain. After undergoing three manual treatments per week for two consecutive weeks, “the intervention group reported a significant decrease in the present pain severity.” They also reported improved knee mobility when compared to a control.

At-home relief remedies

In addition to chiropractic, there are also many things athletes can do at home to potentially speed up the recovery process. Here are a few action items to consider.

  • The NIAMSD indicates that following the RICE method—rest, ice, compression, and elevation—can help reduce the pain, swelling, and tenderness associated with knee injuries. This involves reducing the amount of activity sustained, icing the knee area for 20 minutes at a time up to eight times per day, compressing the knee, and elevating it so it is above the heart.
  • Self-massage. Another at-home treatment method that can help with knee pain, especially if the pain is associated with osteoarthritis, is self-massage according to the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA). To perform this self-treatment, the AMTA indicates that deep gliding strokes with the heel of the hand provide the greatest benefit. Just press four of fingertips into the tissue surrounding the entire knee area, moving the tissue up and down using short strokes.
  • Knee-strengthening exercises. Strengthening your knees is beneficial from both a prevention and treatment standpoint while also improving flexibility says and the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS). This can be accomplished by regularly performing knee exercises such as straight-leg lifts, single-leg dips, wall squats, and step ups.
  • Lower body stretching exercises. The AAOS also stresses that lower body stretching exercises conducted after strength training sessions can help ease knee-related pain by increasing flexibility and reducing muscle tightness. Thus, stretching directed toward the quadriceps and hamstrings is part of a comprehensive healthy knee exercise regimen.
  • An anti-inflammatory diet. When most people hear the word “anti-inflammatory,” they think of medications. However, Medical News Today reports that an anti-inflammatory diet can also help with knee pain. This consists of adding fish that is high in omega-3 fatty acids (such as salmon, sardines, trout, and tuna), berries, avocados, watermelon, grapes, green leafy vegetables, broccoli, cabbage, olives, and olive oil to a dietary plan.
  • Taping the knee. When engaged in activities that use the knee, whether in sports or everyday activities such stair climbing and squatting down, the athlete may also find relief in using tape to better support the knee area. One study published in the International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy found that both McConnell Taping Technique and Kinesio Taping Method were effective for lowering participants’ knee pain levels.

Combining chiropractic with these at-home treatment methods can help the athlete heal his or her injury and return to the sports arena quickly and more effectively.

Give Dr. Steve a call if you have any questions or concerns about your knee pain or injury.

About Chiropractic, Athletes, Sports

Sports chiropractic’s transition to preventing accidents and injuries

Preventing accidents and injuries has become as important as treatment for athletes seeking out chiropractic

Christina DeBusk March 9, 2020 ~ 3 minute read. Photo and article credit: Chiropractic Economics. Read Article HERE.

From D.D. Palmer’s first chiropractic adjustment in 1895, chiropractic has been considered a modality that helps patients heal. Now studies, research and evidenced by virtually every professional sports team employing a chiropractor link chiropractic with enhanced recovery from sports-related injuries.

One example is a dual-case report published in Chiropractic & Manual Therapies that shares how chiropractic intervention helped two Australian Rules footballers completely resolve hamstring injuries. Another study, this one published in Chiropractic & Osteopathy, shares how chiropractic was beneficial when treating ice hockey with a variety of muscle, joint, and tendon injuries.

Now chiropractic is being used as a way for athletes to get and stay in top shape before injuries can occur, hopefully preventing them altogether.

A shift in athletes’ perception of chiropractic care

“Many decades ago, doctors and patients alike started noticing that chiropractic care not only allowed them to feel better and eliminate aches and pains, but they also noticed it could help people recover faster from their injuries,” says Tabor Smith, DC, owner of Pure Life Family Wellness in Houston, Texas. “It wasn’t long after this realization that the sports industry caught on to it as well.”

One reason injury prevention is so important to athletes is because being injured can keep them from competing for long lengths of time, costing professional athletes and teams money, says Smith. “Depending on the nature of the injury, it could even become career-ending,” he adds.

This issue is made even more complex by the fact that some of the most commonly used recovery options include surgery and drugs. While these remedies are sometimes an effective option for athletes, “the amount of improvement someone can get just from drugs and surgery is limited,” says Smith. This has caused many athletes to turn to chiropractic instead.

image credit: chiropractic economics

Chiropractic for preventing accidents and injuries

“As recent as a few decades ago, athletic organizations realized not only could utilizing chiropractic care return an athlete to the roster quicker, but implementing consistent chiropractic check-ups and adjustments could in fact prevent many injuries in the first place,” says Smith. “An athlete whose body expresses normal biomechanics, alignment, and joint function is much less likely to sustain injury compared to an athlete who is not in proper shape or alignment.”

Whether taking this approach to gain a competitive edge or reach new personal goals, “It’s important to understand no matter how good an athlete is at what they do, they’re only one injury away from a major setback,” says Smith. “Many have discovered a secret to lowing their risk of injury by utilizing regular chiropractic care.”

Helping athletes embrace preventive care

Athletes are interested in achieving optimal health in an effort to improve their bodies and master their sport of choice. How can chiropractors utilize this desire to help them also realize that chiropractic is not only an effective sports injury treatment remedy, but may be able to help prevent issues in the first place?

“To a serious athlete, preventing injury is much more valuable than recovering from one,” says Smith. “When you add in the fact that regular chiropractic care can not only help prevent injury but it also helps to maximize performance, it becomes a very compelling case.”

Chiropractic becomes even more convincing when you consider that some of the greatest athletes in the world rely on this modality as part of their healthcare regimen. Case in point: the American Chiropractic Association reports that approximately 90% of world-class athletes currently engage in chiropractic care with a goal of preventing accidents and injury and improving performance.

“There’s a reason virtually every professional sports team has a chiropractor on their staff now,” says Smith. “To a professional sports program, the health and longevity of their athletes is top priority.”

Making chiropractic part of a healthy lifestyle 

“Chiropractic will always be great for helping people recover from injuries,” says Smith, “but no matter what level of activity a person participates in, they’ll be much better off if they incorporate chiropractic in their lifestyle. It’s definitely true what they say, ‘An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’”

About Chiropractic, corona virus, flu, General, good health

How Chiropractic Helps Fight the Flu

A healthy immune system is key to combating many illnesses, including the new corona virus. This post, which is considered general knowledge among chiropractic and medical communities, covers aspects pertaining to staying healthy during a normal flu season, but can be applied at any time.

The medical community is in unanimous agreement that the secret to fighting the flu is a healthy immune system. Unfortunately you can’t buy a healthy immune system and you can’t pop a pill and get a healthy immune system. A healthy immune system comes about as a result of having a fully functioning nervous system & body. Supporting the immune system is important to wellness. The most effective method is a comprehensive approach that involves exercise, stress management, diet, nutritional supplementation, plant-based medicines, and chiropractic care.

The flu season begins in November and is at its height between December and March. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 out of every 5 Americans will get the flu this year. The flu is another name for influenza. Considered contagious, it is a viral infection of the respiratory passages, which often causes fever, severe aching and/or intestinal infection. The flu is often mistaken for symptoms of the common cold. Colds are usually due to bacterial infection that overwhelms the body, often resulting in fatigue, coughing, sneezing, mucous build-up and drainage, fever and sometimes body aches. Are you prepared for the flu season?

Dr. Gartzke adjusts a young patient

Chiropractic care may be your answer to a clean bill of health this season. Chiropractic has been shown in hundreds of research articles to improve the function of the body’s immune system. If your immune system is working at 100%, especially because you get the benefits of chiropractic care, versus people who don’t use chiropractic, you have greater ability to be healthy and not suffer from as many cold’s and/or flu as the general population does. Chiropractic can give your immune system a boost with a spinal adjustment. Chiropractic care can help raise your natural resistance to disease by removing a serious interference to your proper body function: Vertebral subluxations. Remember, an elevated temperature (fever) is one of your body’s defense mechanisms, helping you to destroy infection. Lowering a mild to moderate fever reduces this defense against this illness condition. Likewise, other symptoms of colds and flu are the body’s attempts to clear itself of bacterial and viral influences that attack the body. Here are some facts and a recent study about chiropractic and the flu: A study shown in the Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research in 1997 showed chiropractic care to be effective in treating the flu. Over 2,800 individuals received regular chiropractic care and the result was an average decrease in the incidence of colds and the flu.

According to the World Chiropractic Alliance, spinal adjustments can help your immune system function better. An adjustment by a Doctor of Chiropractic corrects what are called vertebral subluxations, which can cause interference of the nervous system. When an adjustment is performed, it releases pressure on the nerves and allows more efficient interaction between your body’s nervous system and immune system. When your immune system is healthy it is better prepared to prevent or combat the flu.

Regular chiropractic care is beneficial to the body. Preventing the flu is just one of the many positive side effects of regular chiropractic maintenance. Do you really need a flu shot? Or could great flu-fighting benefits accrue from taking a healthier and more natural approach to fighting the flu? And of course eating right, exercising, and having a healthy body are all-important issues in combating the flu as well. The mind, emotion, and stress have a huge impact on immune function. Stress depresses the activity of white blood cells, the soldiers of the immune system that directly combat infection. Stress stimulates the sympathetic nervous system that is responsible for the fight or flight response. When the sympathetic nervous system is active, the immune system is not as stimulated and deep sleep is disrupted. The immune system appears to work at its best when we are happy. If you want a happy immune system, then you need to laugh often and view life from an optimistic point of view.

If you would like to learn more about utilizing chiropractic to improve or maintain your health, please give Dr. Gartzke at River Falls Spine Chiropractic & Wellness Center a call at (715) 425-9439. We’re here to help!

About Chiropractic, corona virus, flu, General, good health

The importance of Chiropractic Care during the COVID-19 Pandemic

The role of chiropractors during this time is crucial in supporting the medical health care providers in allowing them to prioritize care and concentrate on the emergent situation, while not neglecting patients who have debilitating conditions that are not related to the COVID-19 or other illnesses.

Chiropractors and nutritionists teach patients to build their immune systems to protect from viruses. Panic increases cortisol and that lowers your immunity; missing out on sports and other activities, plus the uncertainty of the times, works against building immunity. Being able to visit your chiropractor during these times of “lockdowns” could prove to help keep your immune system strong.

The Veterans Health Administration, the American College of Physicians, and the White House over the last year have recommended that patients try conservative treatments commonly delivered by doctors of chiropractic instead of prescribed opioids. Published guidelines from the American College of Physicians now recommends non-pharmacologic treatment as the first-line approach to treating back pain, with consideration of opioids only as the last treatment option, or if other options present substantial harm to the patient.

Health care practitioners who provide alternative pain care to opioids and drugs have made dramatic impacts on the opioid epidemic over the last year. A recently-published study in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine shows that adults receiving treatment for low back pain are 55% less likely to fill a prescription for an opioid if they are receiving chiropractic care.

“Chiropractic providers treat musculoskeletal cases which would otherwise overload physician offices, urgent care facilities and hospitals even more than they will be,” said Michael Harbison, DC, speaking to riverbender.com in Illinois. “Chiropractors are one of the few places that can treat these conditions in a non-infectious environment. Most offices have followed the CDC guidelines to ensure proper sterilization of equipment and treating the environment to ensure that patient and staff exposure is reduced as much as possible. Additionally, most offices have increased their hours or spread out the treating times and reduce the number of patients in the office at one time.

This post summarizes an article in Chiropractic Economics. Image and text credits: Rick Vach. Read full article HERE.

About Chiropractic, flu, General, good health, Nutrition, supplements

Coronavirus and Chiropractic: Nutrition for Avoiding, Recovering

Rick Vach March 9, 2020
3 minute read

Eating poorly can make you ill, and eating poorly while ill can drag an illness into extra days or longer. Read on for more about coronavirus and chiropractic care, and eating right to strengthen immunity. Article from Chiropractic Economics

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is rapidly spreading across the U.S. and the world, and Americans are being advised by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) to remain vigilant and take precautions such as regular hand washing and hand sanitizing, avoiding unnecessary contact and gatherings, and for personal protection, maintaining a healthy diet and strong immune system.

Chiropractic care focuses on the central nervous system that regulates virtually every bodily function, including the immune system. The nervous system must communicate with the rest of the body, which is where coronavirus and chiropractic care cross paths as chiropractic comes in to remove nerve blockages via spinal misalignment.

Coronavirus and chiropractic

Many chiropractors also specialize in nutrition, and while you may not be able to avoid contracting the coronavirus, the flu or a cold, you can control your own immune system and strengthening it against illness.

“Sounds like the perfect opportunity to have a heart-to-heart with patients about their immune and nervous systems,” says Bill Esteb, DC. “Remember, if germs automatically caused disease, the human race wouldn’t be around to debate the issue. Many forget that Louis Pasteur, the father of the germ theory, recanted his belief. On his deathbed he observed, ‘It’s the soil, not the seed.’ In other words, without the right environment, germs can do little harm.”

Eating for immunity

Ryan Andrews, RD and principal nutritionist for Precision Nutrition, offers advice for what to eat to maximize your immune system, and what to eat and nutritional supplements if you contract the coronavirus or a flu.

Eating poorly can make you ill, and eating poorly while ill
can extend your illness.

“If your diet is lousy, you’ll get sick more often than someone who eats a healthier diet,” Andrews says. “Viruses and bacterial infections will hit you harder and keep you out for longer. Meanwhile, eating poorly while you are sick will only make you sicker. Good nutrition allows our bodies to respond to germy invaders quickly and efficiently, and in order to function well, the cells of our immune system need plenty of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and essential fatty acids.”

A healthy gut is essential to immunity, and prebiotics and probiotics in food and supplements help prevent illness.

“The best whole food sources of prebiotics are vegetables like asparagus, garlic, Jerusalem artichokes, leeks, and onions,” Andrews says. “Carbs like barley, beans, oats, quinoa, rye, wheat, potatoes, and yams; fruit such as apples, bananas, berries, citrus, kiwi; and fats such as flax seeds and chia seeds.

Probiotics — the bacteria themselves — have been shown to help us recover faster, once we get sick. The best whole-food sources of probiotics are dairy such as yogurt, cheese, and kefir with live and active cultures; fermented vegetables like pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi; fermented soy such as miso and tempeh, and soy sauce and wine.”

For supplementation of prebiotics, Andrews recommends 2-4 grams of prebiotics per day to help feed healthy gut bacteria and keep things balanced. You may actually feel worse before you feel better, he says, since bacteria release toxins.

Things to do to avoid getting sick according to Andrews include avoiding over- or under-exercising, avoiding over- or under-eating, maintaining a healthy body weight, washing your hands, getting enough sleep consistently, managing stress, eating plenty of nutrient-dense foods, and feeding your healthy bacteria.

What to eat when ill

Foods that can hasten recovery when you have a virus or infections are:

GarlicActs as an antibiotic and lessens the severity of colds and other infections.
Chicken soup — Commonly touted as a food for colds, chicken soup (made from scratch, not a can) provides fluids and electrolytes, is warm and soothing, and may also contain anti-inflammatory properties that decrease cold symptoms.
Green tea — Boosts the production of B cell antibodies, helping us rid ourselves of invading pathogens.
Honey — Has antibacterial and antimicrobial properties and is an effective cough suppressant. In one study it was as effective as a cough-suppressing drug. A few teaspoons in a cup of green tea is all you need.
Elderberries These have antiviral properties and are loaded with phytonutrients. A few small studies have found the elderberry extract reduces the duration of colds and other upper respiratory tract infections.

If you’re already sick, says Andrews, drink lots of fluids (especially water and green tea), rest as much as possible to recover, focus on immune-boosting foods, supplement with pre- and probiotics, and use immune-boosting supplements.

Coronavirus and chiropractic are a pairing that remain vital, says Esteb, to maintain health and not handicap your immune system. Don’t wait until you become ill, he says, as maintenance health care is key.

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus COVID-19, and the CDC recommends the basics such as avoiding close contact with people who are sick; avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth; staying home when you are sick; covering your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throwing the tissue in the trash; and cleaning and disinfecting frequently-touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

For more recommendations or updates from the CDC go to cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov.

About Chiropractic

About Chiropractic…

What is a Doctor of Chiropractic?

Doctors of Chiropractic (DCs) – often referred to as chiropractors or chiropractic physicians – practice a hands-on approach to health care that includes patient examination, diagnosis and treatment. Chiropractors have broad diagnostic skills and are also trained to recommend therapeutic and rehabilitative exercises, as well as to provide nutritional, dietary and lifestyle counseling. 

DCs may assess patients through clinical examination, laboratory testing, diagnostic imaging and other diagnostic interventions to determine when chiropractic treatment is appropriate or when it is not appropriate. Chiropractors will readily refer patients to the appropriate health care provider when chiropractic care is not suitable for the patient’s condition, or the condition warrants co-management in conjunction with other health care providers. 

In many cases, such as lower back pain, chiropractic care may be a patient’s primary method of treatment. When other medical conditions exist, chiropractic services may complement or support medical treatment by relieving the musculoskeletal pain associated with the condition. 

Like their medical colleagues, chiropractors are subject to the boundaries established in state practice acts and are regulated by state licensing boards. Their education in four-year doctoral graduate school programs is nationally accredited through an agency that operates under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Education. After graduation, they must pass national board exams before obtaining a license to practice, and then must maintain their license annually by earning continuing education (CE) credits through state-approved CE programs.

© 2020 American Chiropractic Association | Hands Down Better

About Chiropractic

About Chiropractic

What is Spinal Manipulation?

One of the most common and well known therapeutic procedures performed by doctors of chiropractic is spinal manipulation (sometimes referred to as a “chiropractic adjustment”). The purpose of spinal manipulation is to restore joint mobility by manually applying a controlled force into joints that have become hypomobile – or restricted in their movement – as a result of a tissue injury. Tissue injury can be caused by a single traumatic event, such as improper lifting of a heavy object, or through repetitive stresses, such as sitting in an awkward position with poor spinal posture for an extended period of time. In either case, injured tissues undergo physical and chemical changes that can cause inflammation, pain, and diminished function for an individual. Manipulation, or adjustment of the affected joint and tissues, restores mobility, thereby alleviating pain and muscle tightness, allowing tissues to heal.

Chiropractic adjustment rarely causes discomfort. However, patients may sometimes experience mild soreness or aching following treatment (as with some forms of exercise) that usually resolves within 12 to 48 hours. Compared to other common treatments for pain, such as over-the-counter and prescription pain medications, chiropractic’s conservative approach offers a safe and effective option.

© 2020 American Chiropractic Association | Hands Down Better

About Chiropractic, chronic pain

About Chiropractic…

What is Chiropractic?

Chiropractic is a health care profession that focuses on disorders of the musculoskeletal system and the nervous system, and the effects of these disorders on general health. Chiropractic services are used most often to treat common musculoskeletal complaints, including but not limited to back pain, neck pain, pain in the joints of the arms or legs, and headaches.

credit: © 2020 American Chiropractic Association | Hands Down Better

Why Choose Chiropractic?

Chiropractic is the third-largest primary health care profession, surpassed in number only by doctors of medicine and dentistry. Doctors of chiropractic (DCs) treat about 35 million Americans annually.

  • DCs are licensed to practice in all 50 states and the District of Columbia–and in many nations around the world–and undergo a rigorous education in the healing sciences at institutions accredited by the U.S. Department of Education. 
  • A growing list of research studies and reviews demonstrate that the services provided by chiropractic physicians are both safe and effective. The evidence strongly supports the natural, whole-body and cost-effective approach of chiropractic services for a variety of conditions.
  • Chiropractic services are included in most health insurance plans, including major medical plans, workers’ compensation, Medicare, some Medicaid plans, and Blue Cross Blue Shield plans for federal employees, among others. 
  • Chiropractic is used extensively by amateur and professional athletes, professional dancers and others to prevent and treat injuries as well as achieve optimal health and functioning.

credit: © 2020 American Chiropractic Association | Hands Down Better