February 2007


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Chiropractic Care May Help Children With Learning Disorders And Dyslexia

The above is a headline from a January 20, 2007 article published in the online Medical News Today.  The story, and a similar one dated January 18th published by United Press International, is based on research that came out January 15, 2007 in the scientific periodical The Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research (JVSR).  The study suggests that chiropractic care may offer significant benefits to children suffering from learning disabilities and dyslexia.

The author of the JVSR study was a Swiss chiropractor  Dr. Yannick Pauli, who is the president of the Swiss Chiropractic Pediatric Association, and who specializes in the care of children suffering from learning and behavioral disorders.  Dr. Pauli explained, "This review critically assessed eight previously published studies involving a total of 160 children.  He continued, "Although the results remain preliminary and more research is needed, the evidence strongly suggests that chiropractic care may help various cognitive abilities that are essential to learning."

The study notes that between 3-10% of the school-age population in the United States is considered learning disabled.  Some experts claim that the figure is closer to 20% of school age children. According to Dr. Pauli, "The main aim of this literature review was to investigate the clinical evidence for the effect of chiropractic care in people suffering from learning disorders and dyslexia."

Dr. Pauli explained,  "What appears from our review is that the chiropractor is not so much interested in the cure of the disorder itself, but rather in the correction of an underlying Central Nervous System dysfunction assumed to underlie the disorder(s) affecting the patient" He explained the connection of chiropractic care to learning disabilities by saying, "The only source of constant stimulation to the brain comes from the spine and the postural muscles constantly adjusting to the force of gravity. If the daily physical stresses of life cause misalignments in the spine -- called vertebral subluxations by chiropractors -- the brain is not adequately stimulated. This can cause problems throughout the body."

Dr. Matthew McCoy, a chiropractor and editor of JVSR, remarked, "This study is an exciting first step. It shows the beneficial effect of chiropractic care and may offer hope for thousands of suffering children."



Autism on the Rise

Several stories appeared in the general press on a report released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) showing that the rate of Autism is much higher than previously thought. The CDC report shows that the rate of Autism is now as high as 1 in 150 children.  This is quite a rise when you consider that just two decades ago, the U.S. government estimated no more than one in 10,000 children had autism.  One story appearing in the February 9, 2007 issue of USA Today, noted that this was the most complete study on this subject to date.

The CDC study looked at information from multiple states on 8 year old children who were diagnosed as having an autism spectrum disorder (ASD).  This category of disorders includes several conditions including the diagnosis of "autism" itself.  The USA Today article also brought up the controversy that suggests that thimerosal, a mercury-based preservative that was used in infant vaccines up until six years ago may be a major factor with this problem.  The debate on the issue continues as some medical authorities still claim there is no connection between the rise in Autism and vaccinations.

Ann Brasher, vice president of the National Autism Association (NAA) noted in a February 10, 2007 interview in Medical News Today, that there has not been enough research on the cause of Autism. She commented, "This latest study underscores the need for this type of research to take top priority. Perhaps this time, the CDC's own numbers will finally drive the point home that this is an emergency and should be treated as such." Brasher continued, "The one in 150 children they counted need research that can help them recover and reach their full potential in life. Time is of the essence."

NAA board chair Claire Bothwell also commented, "This agency has yet to answer the question, 'Why are so many children sick?' If this were an epidemic of practically any other disease among the children of this country, they would have long since investigated how it could have happened and made earnest attempts to find treatments."  She also noted, "After this latest study, the CDC cannot continue to sweep unpopular factors in this epidemic under the rug, including vaccines and thimerosal. The future of a sizeable portion of an entire generation of children is at risk. Without effective treatments, taxpayers will soon bear the burden of care, estimated at over $3 million per individual."



Chronic Childhood Constipation Helped With Chiropractic - A Case Study

The January, 2007 issue of the scientific periodical, the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics (JMPT) published a case study showing the beneficial effects of chiropractic care on an 8 year old boy suffering from chronic constipation. In this case the boy had been suffering with the condition since birth and was treated medically with laxatives, high fluid intake, and high fiber intake, all of which had no effect on his condition.

In this case the young boy's condition was such that he only had a bowel movement at 7 to 10 day intervals and at times approaching every 2 weeks and were quite painful.  He was apparently born healthy and was breast fed until 6 months of age. No other underlying diseases were identified by his medical physicians.

The child's mother brought him to a chiropractor who examined him and determined the presence of a sacral subluxation. Care was initiated and adjustments were given to correct the subluxation.  In this case the patient reported an immediate dramatic improvement in bowel function after just the first visit. His mother was very excited and reported that he had a bowel movement on the day of his first visit and 2 days later. She reported that this was extraordinary because her son had never in his life had 3 bowel movements in 4 days.

Care was continued for four weeks and he continued to report improving bowel function. After one month it was reported by both the patient and his mother that he was experiencing consistent normal bowel function.  Months later follow up reports continued to show that the boy was experiencing normal bowel function. In this case there was also a follow up phone call conducted 13 years later, and the patient still reported normal bowel function and stated that his bowel function was nearly “clock-like” with daily bowel movements.

The study points out that chronic childhood constipation accounts for 3% of visits to general pediatricians and nearly 30% of visits to pediatric gastroenterologists.  They note that medical treatment usually includes dietary management, biofeedback, and laxatives.  However, statistically 30% to 50% of children do not respond to these treatments and continue to have long-term problems.



Drug Company Lobbying to Mandate Vaccine Against Sexually Transmitted Disease

A February 11, 2007 story appearing in the Washington Post and no less than 72 different news publications has exposed the fact that a major drug company, Merck & Co. is behind the large lobbying effort to have 18 states pass laws making their vaccine required for 6th grade girls. If these laws pass, Merck, which last year showed revenues of $22.6 billion, stands to earn hundreds of millions of dollars.

The new vaccine GARDASIL is for the HPV virus which is a sexually transmitted virus and has been linked to cervical cancer.  According to the Post article, at least half of all sexually active men and women carry the virus which will go away in most cases. The article then explains that in some cases, the virus lingers, causing cell changes that lead to cancer.  It is based on this stretch of logic and science that the laws forcing 6th grade girls to receive these vaccinations is based.

The article notes that Merck has initiated a national TV advertising campaign, as well as spreading efforts across the country to achieve two goals in the various states.  The first goal is mandated vaccines for all 6th grade girls, and the second is getting the state legislatures to pay for this effort by spending millions of dollars of state tax money to purchase the very vaccines they produce.

In Texas, Governor Rick Perry signed an executive order forcing the HPV vaccine on young girls. The Washington Post article points out that the Governor's former chief of staff, Mike Toomey, is now a lobbyist for Merck. Records also show Gov. Perry received $6,000 from Merck's political action committee during his reelection campaign.

Opposition to making this new vaccine mandatory is coming from several sources. James Conway, chair of the infectious diseases committee of the Wisconsin Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatricians, stated that he felt it was not appropriate to mandate a vaccine so early in the game. 

The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), the nation's leading vaccine safety and informed consent advocacy organization, issued a release on this issue questioning the safety issue. "In an analysis of reports made to the federal Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) since the CDC's July 2006 universal use recommendation for all young girls, NVIC found reports of loss of consciousness, seizures, joint pain and Guillain-Barre Syndrome.

"The most frequent serious health events after GARDASIL shots are neurological symptoms," said NVIC Health Policy Analyst Vicky Debold, RN, Ph.D. "These young girls are experiencing severe headaches, dizziness, temporary loss of vision, slurred speech, fainting, involuntary contraction of limbs (seizures), muscle weakness, tingling and numbness in the hands and feet and joint pain. Some of the girls have lost consciousness during what appears to be seizures."



New Mattress Can Reduce Back Pain and Stiffness

A study published out of Canada in the winter 2006 issue of the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine shows that sleeping on a new mattress can significantly reduce stiffness and back pain.  The study was conducted at Oklahoma State University and is the first of it's kind.

The published report notes that sleep deficiency interferes with daytime activity, social interactions, mood, and even loss of work production resulting in 48 million lost hours of productivity every week due to poor sleep.

In this study researchers looked at a control group of 59 healthy participants (30 women and 29 men) who slept on their own five-plus year-old mattresses for four weeks and then slept on a new bedding system for the same time period.  They then analyzed the difference in lower back discomfort, spine stiffness, sleep quality, comfort and efficiency.

The results showed that the volunteers reported immediate and sustained benefits in all areas of measurement after sleeping on a new mattress, regardless of their age or weight. This was especially true of participants who entered the study with high back pain complaints, as they reported a 63 per cent improvement in back discomfort with a new mattress.

Dr. Stacy Irvine, chiropractor and fitness expert, stated on behalf of the Better Sleep Council Canada, "There are many ways to treat back pain, but people may not realize that an answer might be right under their noses,
literally, in the age and state of their mattress."  Dr. Irvine continued, "This research shows that a new mattress could hold a key to unlocking some of that pain and discomfort."

Gary Baskerville of the Better Sleep Council Canada added, "On average, Canadians spend more than 2,000 hours each year sleeping. The mattress is one of the hardest working pieces of furniture in our home. And now we have further proof of its very real contribution to our personal health and comfort."



Antibiotics Linked to Bacteria Resistance

A new study published in the February 10, 2007 issue of the prestigious British scientific journal The Lancet, shows a direct and definitive link between antibiotic usage and increased resistance of bacteria to antibiotics. Previous studies have shown a relationship, but this new study has shown a direct cause and effect between the usage of antibiotics and an increase in bacteria's ability to resist these drugs.

In a Health Day News article, Dr. Herman Goossens, lead author of the report in The Lancet, commented, "A lot of studies have shown an association between antibiotic use and resistance, but all those studies are based on indirect evidence. There have been no randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind studies. Ours is the first study to show directly that antibiotic use leads to resistance."  The study was performed at University Hospital Antwerp in Belgium.

The study was performed on more than 200 healthy volunteers and compared two types of antibiotics against a placebo pill.  Researchers took several samples of bacteria from the volunteers both before as well as up to six months after giving them antibiotics to see if they had developed any resistance to the drugs.

The results showed that both groups taking real antibiotics showed a bacterial resistance increase from 50 to 53 percent within 4 to 8 days. This was compared to the placebo group that showed no increase in bacterial resistance to antibiotics in the same timeframe.

Dr. Stephanie Dancer, a consultant microbiologist at Southern General Hospital in Glasgow, Scotland, noted her concern that was verified by this study, "I do feel very, very strongly, as my colleagues do, that we are running out of [effective] antibiotics," Dancer said. "This study is so nice, because it gives concrete evidence underpinning everything we have suspected."

The authors of the Lancet study concluded, "Physicians prescribing antibiotics should take into account the striking ecological side-effects of such antibiotics."


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