Friday, February 3, 2012

Highlights of 2011 Chiropractic Research: Autism, Nervous System Function, Dizziness, Preemies, Cyclic Vomiting and Tennis Elbow

At the close of each year, I have the chance to review the year's best studies in chiropractic research.  The year 2011 provided substantial research in not only the ways that traditional studies of how chiropractic adjustments help alleviate back pain, neck pain and headaches, but studies on the direct correlation between chiropractic adjustments and the reduction in health problems and specific disorders.

Chiropractic Adjustments and Autism

According to the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association in Media, PA and Life Chiropractic College West in Hayward, CA, chiropractic adjustments may help manage autism.  After reviewing eight medical databases for information on studies of chiropractic care and autism spectrum disorders (ASD), researchers found preliminary evidence indicating that chiropractic adjustments may help normalize the nervous system, which is the main system effected in an individual with ASD.  Although, the studies between ASD, chiropractic adjustments and normalizing the nervous system continue, researchers agree that "a trial of chiropractic care for sufferers of autism is prudent and warranted."  This natural approach to treating the nervous system is great news, as medication to treat ASD is often ineffective and can have harmful side effects. 

November 2011;7:384-90.

Chiropractic Adjustments and the Nervous System

Scientist have found supporting evidence that chiropractic adjustments appear to boost nervous system function.

The corticospinal tract (a collection of nerve cells that travel between the spinal cord and the cerebral cortex area of the brain) and the spinal reflux (a neural pathway involving both nervous system activity in the limbs as well as in the central nervous system--brain and spinal cord) have shown to benefit from chiropractic adjustments by increasing the rate of healing and reducing corticospinal and spinal reflux excitability.  On the other hand, "no significant change occurred after the control intervention."

Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics
October 31, 2011; Epub.

Chiropractic Adjustments and Dizziness

Researchers form Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, pooled 15 studies from four major medical databases, concluding: "There is moderate evidence to support the use of manual therapy, in particular spinal mobilization and manipulation, for cervicogenic dizziness." 

Chiropractic & Manual Therapies
September 18, 2011;19:21.

Chiropractic Adjustments and Preemies

Researchers studying common gastrointestinal issues in preemies have found that chiropractic adjustments may significantly reduce stomach symptoms.  Of 350 preemies studied in a neonatal intensive care unit, 162 received spinal manipulation.  The babies who received chiropractic treatment had a significant reduction in gastrointestinal troubles compared to the babies in the control group who did not receive spinal manipulation. 

Chiropractic & Manual Therapies
September 18, 2011;19:21.

Chiropractic Adjustments and Cyclic Vomiting

Cyclic vomiting syndrome (CVS) is a growing diagnosis among children, that can be disabling, causing frequent and severe vomiting associated with migraines.  This diagnosis is especially common for children who come from a family with a history of migraines, and can increase in children as they age. 

One study followed a seven year old girl who had been dealing with CVS and the symptoms of headaches and stomachaches for over four years.  When other treatments failed, the girl's parents brought her to a chiropractor.  According to the article, "there was improvement in her symptoms within an hour after the chiropractic manipulation.  her symptoms only returned after direct trauma to her neck.  The recurring symptoms again disappeared immediately after treatment." 

Journal of Chiropractic Medicine
December 2010;0:179-83.

Chiropractic Adjustments and Tennis Elbow

Tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylalgia (LE) afflicts not just tennis players, but athletes across the spectrum.  A study done on nine rock climbers who complained of LE, included weekly manipulation of the spine of the neck, elbow and wrist.  In addition, a technique similar to acupuncture was also administered to the climbers and applied to their muscular knots or trigger points, while athlete tape was used to restrict movement of the elbow joint.  Treatment was given once a week for three weeks.

Assessment was measured through pain-scale questionnaires given to the participants, as well clinicians monitoring pain levels in the surrounding areas of the elbow.  Assessments were given after the third visit and two months after care ended.

Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics
November 2011:34:635-42

Excellent findings, no?

Best in health, naturally,

Dr. Marc


Health Disclaimer

This information on this web site is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting Dr. Marc, your pediatrician or family doctor.

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