October 2005


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Research Shows Spinal Dysfunction Affects Reaction Times and Performance

A research project published in the September 2005 issue of the peer reviewed scientific journal, The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, JMPT, showed that "Spinal Dysfunction" (more commonly known as subluxation in chiropractic) is related to slower and/or less accurate reaction times and therefore to cognitive function.

The double-blind, randomized, study was performed on thirty volunteers who had evidence of what the researchers called "cervical spinal joint dysfunction". Researchers at the  New Zealand Chiropractic College examined the volunteers to determine areas of spinal dysfunction.  It was then noted how many areas of spinal dysfunctions were found on each subject and this information was compared to the results of the reaction times testing done later.

A range of computer-based tasks were then performed by the volunteers in order to determine various types of reaction time.  The reaction times of the volunteers was then compared to their number of areas of spinal dysfunctions to see if there was any relationship.

The results showed that there was a connection between the number of areas of spinal dysfunction and certain types of reaction times.  Researchers noted that the types of reaction times affected by multiple areas of spinal dysfunction were therefore related to impaired cortical processing and significantly less accurate response selection. In fact, they found that the more areas of spinal dysfunction, the more it affected reaction times.

The researchers concluded that certain types of reactions times could be good indicators of the effects of "cervical manipulations" (adjustments) in people with spinal dysfunctions, (subluxations).  The ramifications of this study could not only affect general health, but could offer great benefits for athletes.


Chiropractic Helps Child With Seizures - A Case Study

In the Volume 6, No. 3, 2005 issue of the peer reviewed Journal of Clinical Chiropractic Pediatrics is a scientifically reported case study of an infant suffering from seizures who was helped by chiropractic.

The child in this case study was a  5 month old boy who, according to his parents, cried continuously, slept minimally, and experienced up to 8 seizures per day. Additionally, the child recently had surgery to close sutures on the left side of his head.  The mother also noted that her son had a constant head tilt to the left and could not rotate his head and neck to the right.

The chiropractic examination on the child was difficult as it was noted that the infant was in severe distress and cried during the entire procedure.  However, it was determined that there were problems (subluxations) in various areas of the neck, mid back and lower spine.

Regular chiropractic adjustments were started and continued for several weeks, followed by periodic follow ups. The outcome of the care was immediately positive as the number of seizures started decreasing after the first adjustment.  Several weeks into the care the child seemed to have a regression for one day as he experienced five seizures in that day.  However, following this episode he was seizure free for the next week.  This was the first week of his life that he was seizure free.

By the sixth week of care the child's life had been drastically changed for the better.  He was having no seizures between adjustments, he was sleeping all night and he was eating properly for a child his age.  The case study noted that these improvements represented a significant improvement to the child's quality of life.

The author of the study, Nancy Brown, D.C., notes that each year approximately 150,000 children and adolescents have a seizure. She points out that seizures are a sudden onset of abnormal electrical discharges within the brain.  She further points out that the medical approach is to medicate in order to suppress the abnormal electrical impulses. However, she points out that there is no way to suppress the abnormal impulses without suppressing the normal ones which would be needed for normal function and development.  She states, "A chiropractic approach may therefore be of more benefit as it will correct the abnormal impulses not just suppress them."


Prince Charles Supports Alternative Treatments in the UK's National Heath System

The October 07, 2005 British Times Online, reports that a study commissioned by the Prince of Wales showed that the British healthcare system would benefit if other types of non-medical care such as  osteopathy, chiropractic, acupuncture, homeopathy and herbal medicine, were included.  The study ordered by the Prince, claims that care such as chiropractic, acupuncture and osteopathy should play a greater role in the National Healthcare System (NHS).

The article notes that Prince Charles has been a longstanding advocate of complementary and alternative medicines.  The article also noted that the nine-month study focused on five popular types — osteopathy, chiropractic, acupuncture, homeopathy and herbal medicine. Britons spend a considerable amount of money each year on these types of care and they are becoming increasingly popular.

Some of the positive statistics that came out of the study showed that patients were treated with what the study called "complementary therapies", then showed a 30 per cent drop in the number of consultations with more expensive visits to general medical practitioners. Additionally, there was a 50% saving in prescription drug bills in the groups who used these forms of care.

The article closed with a quote from a spokesman from the British Department of Health who said: “Many GPs now give access to some form of complementary therapy — a recent study by Sheffield University showed that almost half of all general practices in England gave access to some form of complementary therapy.”


Chiropractic Pediatric Guidelines Published

On September 13, 2005, Medical News Today published the announcement of the creation of chiropractic guidelines for pediatric care.  The guidelines "The Child Patient: A Matrix for Chiropractic Care"  was originally released as a supplement to its peer-reviewed Journal of Clinical Chiropractic Pediatrics (JCCP) Vol. 6, No.3, 2005.

The release is noteworthy in two respects.  This is the first time guidelines such as these have been published with parameters establishing the necessity of chiropractic care for children of all ages.  But additionally, since these guidelines were published as a supplement to a scientific, peer reviewed journal, the medical news outlet "Medical News Today" picked up the release and published it in their general release available for all physicians and the general public.

Dr. Joan Fallon, Board of Directors member of the International Chiropractors Association (ICA) and past chair and current Executive Committee member of the ICA Pediatrics Council stated, "The foundation of chiropractic care is the presence of subluxation."  She continued, "For children, subluxation manifests itself differently than in adults, and also may occur as a result of multiple non- pain producing activities especially in the very young child. The Matrix closely examines the presence of subluxation in the child with respect to their anatomy, physiology and development."

Dr. Lora Tanis, Chairperson of the ICA Pediatrics Council noted the importance of these guidelines by stating, "This is an invaluable contribution to the profession and to the public at large because for the first time we have a published document that explains why infants and toddlers need chiropractic care and how the need and/or frequency of care relates to birth trauma, immune system maturity and developmental milestones along with any abnormal, congenital, traumatic or acquired injuries the child may have."


Migraines Helped By Chiropractic

A feel-good story appeared in the October 7, 2005 issue of the Edmonton Sun about a woman whose life was changed by chiropractic.  Forty seven year oldMiaen Khullar had suffered severe migraine headaches for over a decade.  She reported that she hadn't had a pain-free day since 1990, when she was in a car accident.

Her migraine symptoms have included vomiting, pain on one side of the head, difficulty breathing, sensitivities to light and sound, and seeing "auras" or vision disturbances like flashing lights or blind spots. She reported, "I don't handle pain killers well; that's why I tried a chiropractor."  Miaen continued, "You wouldn't believe I'm the same person today.  I am getting a lot better and stronger."

Dr. Kyu Seung, her Edmonton chiropractor stated, "Migraines are caused by restricted blood flow to the brain and the brain cries out." He continued, "Medication will treat the pain but you need to deal with the underlying causes."  The article reports that Dr. Seung, noted that  90% of migraine sufferers report a stiff and sore neck, due to spinal misalignment and resulting pressure on nerves, commonly known as subluxations.

The article also noted that according to a study in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics in 2000, one in five migraine sufferers given chiropractic adjustments reported a 90% reduction in migraines and half said they'd experienced a significant improvement in the severity of their migraines.


US Government Awards $6.2 Million for Prescription Drug Abuse Monitoring

Press Release letterheadA PRWEB news release dated September 30, 2005 announced that the U.S. Department of Justice released awards totaling $6.2 million to help states fight prescription drug abuse.  The article noted that prescription drug abuse has rapidly grown into a national epidemic and is now one of America’s fastest rising categories of substance abuse.

Studies show that states with prescription monitoring programs have lower incidences of inappropriate prescriptions.  They note that prescription drug monitoring programs help prevent drug-seeking patients from “doctor shopping,” which is going from doctor to doctor in order to obtain several prescriptions.

Gary W. Smith, Executive Director of Narconon Arrowhead, one of the nation’s largest and most successful drug rehabilitation programs, stated, "What many people forget is that prescription drugs have the potential to be just as harmful as street drugs, and that most of today’s illegal drugs were once marketed and sold as pharmaceuticals."

According to the US Office of National Drug Control Policy, “Programs and efforts that do not reduce drug use must be restructured or eliminated, an effort to use taxpayer money wisely that this Administration takes seriously.”

Regina B. Schofield, Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Justice Programs stated,  "These awards will fund monitoring programs, which are efficient tools for early detection and reduction of prescription drug abuse while offering quick access to information about drugs most likely to be abused."


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