Resolution of Chronic Migraines Following Atlas Orthogonal Chiropractic Care: A Case Study & Selective Review of the Literature
Patient: A 53-year-old female suffering from migraines for a twelve-year duration, visual disturbances, and neck pain. The migraines would leave her bedridden for days and unable to care for her family and attend to her personal hygiene. Multiple medications failed to help her. Physical examination and x-rays revealed upper cervical subluxation.
Intervention and Outcomes: The patient was adjusted following the Atlas Orthogonal chiropractic protocol. Precision adjustments were applied to the atlas using the Atlas Orthogonal percussion instrument. Immediately after the first adjustment the patient experienced a more normal cervical range of motion. The patient was managed for a duration of three months and reported a complete recovery from migraines.
Conclusion: Clinical findings suggest that upper cervical vectored chiropractic adjustment was beneficial in this patient with migraines, neck pain and visual disturbances. More research in this area is necessary.
Recent research reporting on a 64-year-old woman who was suffering from Meniere’s Disease reveals that chiropractic may play an important role in caring for people with this condition. The research reported in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research showed improvements in Meniere’s Disease after chiropractic adjustments to the upper part of the neck.
“Research is revealing that there is a relationship between structural abnormalities in the spine, the nervous system and brain” stated Dr. Matthew McCoy, a chiropractor, public health researcher and editor of the journal that published the study.
Research has shown not only that the brain relies on normal structural integrity and joint movement, but that complex neurological communication and pathways involved in helping humans balance and orient themselves in space are tied into spinal biomechanics and their related neurological pathways.
“It makes perfect sense when you think about it” stated Dr. McCoy. “Meniere’s disease may be related to how the entire body communicates with the brain and the most critical area for this is the spine and the most critical area of the spine is the upper part of the neck.”
The 64-year-old woman in this study had Meniere’s disease and anxiety. She had arm weakness, ear irritation, giddiness, neck and jaw clicking with pain, stiffness, and sciatica. She feels like a bad cold brought on the Meniere’s disease years ago. Each episode included symptoms of severe vertigo, dizziness, nausea, visual disturbances, hearing loss, and fullness in the ear. These episodes would last six to eight hours. She tried different therapies, journaling, and medications which only provided temporary relief.
The chiropractor examined her and found structural shifts in her upper neck. She had postural changes and tight muscles in her neck. X-rays and other testing confirmed these findings. These structural shifts can lead to obstruction of the nerves and it is this obstruction, called vertebral subluxations, that chiropractors correct.
Following upper cervical chiropractic care, her Meniere’s disease improved dramatically. She immediately felt like her head was clear after the first adjustment. She only journaled about one episode over the course of care. Her Meniere’s related symptoms improved and allowed her to do more activities, traveling to visit her grandchildren and taking a walk on the beach.
The study’s author called for additional research to investigate the clinical implications of chiropractic in patients with Meniere’s Disease. Source: Matthew McCoy DC, MPH Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research http://www.uppercervicalsubluxation.com
Recent research reported in the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research reveals that chiropractic may play an important role in improving heart rate variability (HRV) in athletes. The research includes a review of the literature supporting the role of chiropractic in addressing neurological risks related to cardiovascular health, athletes and the role of the nervous system in stress, physiologic adaptation, training load and recovery. HRV is a critical measure of neurological and cardiovascular health.
“Research is revealing that there is a relationship between abnormalities in the spine, the nervous system, stress, training, recovery and cardiovascular health” stated Dr. Matthew McCoy, a chiropractor, public health researcher and editor of the journal that published the study. “Basic science research shows that the proper development and function of the nervous system relies on proper structure and movement of the spine from an early age.” Research has shown not only that normal structural alignment and joint movement is crucial, but that complex neurochemical communication and pathways involved in helping humans to develop normally are tied into spinal biomechanics and their related neurological pathways.
“We are now seeing more and more basic science and clinical research showing the relationship between spinal function and its relationship to performance and recovery” McCoy added. When it comes to athletes, adaptation, recovery, training and cardiovascular health, the nervous system is often overlooked and that is where HRV comes into play.
“In a healthy organism, higher heart rate variability represents greater adaptability to stress from its internal and external environment. When the nervous system is free of obstructions, it can better regulate anatomic, physiologic, and biochemical alterations and adapt to stress and training as needed.”
– Dr. Matthew McCoy
The study reviews the literature on heart rate variability and its role in athletes exploring specific adaptations to imposed demand and how that principle is applied during periodized training, the role of the autonomic nervous system in the general adaptation response, contemporary views of stress and adaptation in exercise physiology and the role of heart rate variability as an objective outcome measure for chiropractic care in athletes. Despite the relatively recent interest in the central and autonomic nervous system in sports performance circles, exercise science has been investigating the relationship for several decades.
Heart rate variability (HRV) is the most accessible minimally invasive means available for evaluating an athlete’s response to training. HRV is a strong indicator of physiological changes in response to training programs, prescribing exercise intensity on an individualized basis, and has been utilized to assess overtraining which is often times predominated by sympathetic activity.
In regards to the role of chiropractic in HRV and athletes, significant structural shifts can occur in the spine. These structural shifts, more commonly known as vertebral subluxations by doctors of chiropractic, result in nerve obstructions and doctors of chiropractic correct these obstructions. Vertebral subluxations may result in altered autonomic nervous system activity. Heart rate variability is a reliable and valid tool that may be used to assess the changes in autonomic activity associated with the reduction and correction of vertebral subluxations. Controlled studies suggest that chiropractic may improve heart rate variability and that favorable changes in heart rate variability may follow reduction or correction of vertebral subluxations. The author of the paper calls for more research on the role of chiropractic care and HRV in athletes.
Get in touch with Dr. Gartzke at River Falls Spine Chiropractic and Wellness Center today to discuss how chiropractic treatments can improve your health and well being!
Resolution of Breech Presentation Confirmed by Ultrasound & Successful Vaginal Birth Following Webster Technique in a Pregnant Female
The purpose of this case study is to discuss the positive health outcomes and resolution of breech presentation in a pregnant female undergoing chiropractic care utilizing Webster Technique.
Clinical Features: A 28-year-old first time pregnant mother presented to the chiropractor at 33 weeks pregnant with breech presentation and hip pain.
Intervention and Outcomes: Over the course of one month the patient was managed utilizing Webster Technique to determine sacral subluxations. After 7 visits, her hip pain decreased and the fetus was found to be in the vertex position which was confirmed by ultrasound. The patient continued chiropractic care until the successful vaginal delivery of the baby.
Conclusions: This case discusses the result of the Webster Technique and chiropractic adjustments to relieve hip pain and sacral alignment. The patient was able to have a successful vaginal birth with no reported complications.
If you or anyone you know are pregnant and suffering from hip pain and/or a breech positioned baby, speak to your chiropractor about the possibility of utilizing chiropractic adjustments to alleviate pain and realign baby’s position for an optimum birth experience. Dr. Gartzke is experienced with the Webster Technique and would be happy to discuss how this method of manipulation could be of help to you.
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
“Research indicates that minor shifts in the structure of the spine may impact brain function, suggesting that these structural shifts may be a factor in a number of health challenges including anxiety, stress and immunity. Structural shifts may lead to nerve obstruction and could possibly result in a host of health problems related to mental health” stated Dr. Matthew McCoy, a chiropractor, public health researcher and editor of the journal that published the study. Other chiropractic researchers have reported on similar results and reviews of the scientific research reveal numerous other studies that have shown a similar connection.
Research has shown not only that the brain relies on normal structural integrity and joint movement, but that complex neurochemical communication and pathways involved in helping humans to “feel good” and heal are tied into spinal biomechanics and their related neurological pathways.
“It makes perfect sense once you understand the neurological connections between the spine, the brain, and the nervous and immune system” stated McCoy. “The seat of human emotion is the Limbic System and we know that this system extends all the way down the spinal cord. By removing obstructions there, things like anxiety, effects from stress, immunity and well-being are affected.”
For decades mental health specialists have strived to find an answer for patients suffering from a multitude of anxiety and stress related disorders. We now know many naturally occurring brain and spinal cord chemicals play a role in emotions, anxiety, stress, immunity and pain reduction, leading to an increased sense of wellbeing.
This research describes five patients with anxiety including two women and three men. In addition to anxiety, they all complained of symptoms including stress, headache, neck pain, back pain, high cholesterol, hypertension, and overall decreased immune system function. They all had hopes of reducing their stress and anxiety levels.
The chiropractor examined each of them and found structural shifts along the spine. Other testing and an anxiety assessment confirmed findings. These structural shifts can lead to obstruction of the nerves and it is this obstruction, called vertebral subluxations, that chiropractors correct.
Following chiropractic adjustments, the patients reported improvement in their symptoms. Each showed a reduction in anxiety, reported better immune function, increased energy, better mood, better sleep, and decrease in stress.
The study’s author called for additional research to investigate the clinical implications of chiropractic in this population.