August 2008



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Chiropractic at 2008 Beijing Olympics

Several news stories reported on chiropractors going to the Beijing Olympics to work with the athletes.  One such story appearing in the  August 06, 2008 Business Wire, noted that four Doctors of Chiropractic have joined the 62-member U.S. Olympic healthcare team in Beijing, China. The article notes that since the 1980 Winter Olympic Games in Lake Placid, New York, chiropractors have provided chiropractic care to the Olympic athletes. 

This year chiropractors will assume an even greater role in the integrated healthcare team, which includes medical doctors, massage therapists, and certified athletic trainers. One of the Chiropractors going to Beijing, Dr. Ted Forcum commented, "Chiropractic fulfills a niche need, not only by treating injuries but also by aiding in recovery and positively impacting athletic performance."

 “Chiropractic takes a non-invasive, drug-free approach to healthcare, a position that is now highly regarded among Olympic athletes and their trainers who must meet strict eligibility requirements to qualify for the Olympic Games,” adds Dr. Forcum. “Chiropractic care is particularly valuable for pain management, and offers athletes highly effective solutions for achieving optimal performance without the use of prescription drugs.”

Anther story on August 10, 2008 in Chad.co.uk, out of the United Kingdom, reports that Dr. Thomas Jeppesen from Mansfield England is also helping the athletes of Britain.  Just prior to his departure, Dr. Jeppesen commented, "It's something new and it's a really exciting opportunity. To be able to work with top athletes will be a great experience and it will be good to see the effects our work has on them. We are aiming to be there supporting and helping the athletes and getting the best out of their bodies during the game." In addition, a July 24, 2008 Market Watch article reported that Dr. Camille Reagan is the chiropractor with the Columbian Olympic team.

The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress noted that the nations of Sweden, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Canada, Brazil, China, and others will have chiropractors with their staffs to help their respective athletes.



Prices for Some Drugs Skyrocket

The above headline comes from the August 2, 2008 front page of USA Today.  The story reports that a small group of drugs has increased in price as much as 1000% over just 2 years.  The increases are drawing criticisms from lawmakers. An additional Associated Press story in Business Week on August 8, 2008 noted that drug prices usually outpace increases in other consumer goods with most prices rising 7.4%. 

The study conducted at the University of Minnesota noted that in 2004 only 22 drugs doubled in price.  The report predicts that over 60 drugs will double in price this year.  The stories note that most of the drugs that are showing huge increases in price are to treat rare ailments.

Examples of this include a drug called Cosmegen used to treat children's cancer.  The research shows that the price for this drug rose from $16.79 in 2004 to $593.75 in 2006.  Other drugs that have drastically increased include Acthar, which treats spasms in babies, and has increased from about $1,650 a vial to more than $23,000.

Alan Goldbloom, president of Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota commented on the increases by saying, "This does drive up the price of health care. Hospitals are either eating the cost or passing it along to insurers, so you and I are paying it in increased premiums."

 Professor Stephen Schondelmeyer, a researcher at the University of Minnesota's PRIME Institute offered an explanation for some of the increases by saying, "When you get past the top 500 drugs or so, most employers and payers just don't have time to monitor this information, and that creates an opportunity for extraordinary price increases." He added, "Some companies seem to figure no one is watching so they can get away with it."



Resolution of Infertility with Chiropractic, a Case Study

A case study appearing in the August 6, 2008 issue of the scientific periodical, the Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research, documented the case of a 23 year old woman with a history of infertility, who was helped with chiropractic.  In this case the young woman, who had been on birth control for six years, was also suffering from absence of a menstrual period, low back pain and progressively worsening numbness in both of her legs.

When presenting for chiropractic care, this patient had been trying to get pregnant for over a year. Her history revealed that as a young girl she had never had a period.  In response her medical doctor placed her on birth control which she remained on for 6 years.  She saw her gynecologist one month prior to the initiation of chiropractic care. Her pelvic ultrasound was normal as was all the patient's blood work.

Examination determined the presence of subluxations.  Chiropractic care was initiated at a rate of 3 visits per week. After 2 weeks of care the patient reported that her back pain had been alleviated.  However, at that time she was still suffering from numbness and tingling in her legs, feet, and hips.  Further medical tests revealed nothing.

After 3 and a half months of chiropractic care, the patient started having her period. When this happened she also experienced relief from her leg and feet issues. After 4 and a half months of care, she reported that she had 3 positive over-the-counter pregnancy tests and was going for a urine analysis and ultrasound for confirmation. The results of the urine test was positive for pregnancy and the ultrasound performed by her midwife confirmed the implantation site in her uterus. As a result, the patient cancelled her appointment with a fertility specialist.

In this case the patient did not receive any other type of care while receiving chiropractic.



Breastfed Babies Have Lower Cholesterol as Adults

A study published in the August 2008 The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and reported on by the Press Association and Web MD on August 7 and 8 respectively, suggests that babies who are breastfed will have lower cholesterol levels as adults.

The study looked at over 17,000 participants of which 12,890 were breastfed, and 4,608 were formula fed. The results of the study showed that there was a small but significant decrease in cholesterol in those adults who were breastfed as babies. The articles noted that although the decrease in cholesterol was not large, if calculated across the whole population, there would be a 5 per cent reduction in cases of coronary artery disease.

Dr. Chris Owen, Epidemiologist at St. George's, University of London, and study author commented, "Because there is substantial evidence that breast milk provides long-term, protective health benefits, breastfeeding should be advocated when possible" He continued, "This study provides further evidence that breast feeding has long-term health benefits. Apart from all its other effects, it appears to lower blood cholesterol in later life."

The researchers hypothesize that ingestion of high cholesterol content of human breast milk by babies may set up physiologic changes that influence cholesterol synthesis thus causing lower cholesterol later in life. Dr. Owen explains, "This finding led us to hypothesize that early exposure to the high cholesterol content of breast milk could affect long-term cholesterol metabolism."

The conclusion of the study stated, "Initial breastfeeding (particularly when exclusive) may be associated with lower blood cholesterol concentrations in later life. Moves to reduce the cholesterol content of formula feeds below those of breast milk should be treated with caution."



Chiropractic Included in Veteran's Health Administration , US's Largest Healthcare System

The above headline comes from a July 28, 2008 release from the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress (F4CP) and published on MarketWatch.com. The release starts off by noting that the US Veteran's Health Administration (VHA) has taken steps to incorporate and expand chiropractic into its healthcare system.  One such step was the naming of a chiropractor, Dr. Anthony J. Lisi as the National Director of Chiropractic Services.

Dr. Gerard W. Clum, president of Life Chiropractic College West, Hayward, California and spokesperson for the Foundation, "The chiropractic program was established in late 2004 in response to legislation that required at least one chiropractor in each of the 21 VHA geographic regions. Currently, there are now 38 chiropractors working in 32 VHA sites, and the number is growing, a trend that represents the biggest large-scale implementation in the VHA to date."

Dr. Lisi, Chief of Chiropractic at the VA Connecticut Healthcare System, and Associate Professor of Clinical Sciences at the University of Bridgeport, Connecticut, stated, "The patient referral policy may seem an undesirable arrangement to many private practitioners, but in the VHA it works exceptionally well. The evidence of collaboration between chiropractors, medical physicians and other providers speaks volumes. In the VHA environment, collaboration replaces competition and leads to better healthcare for our patients."

The release noted that 12 VHA facilities will have an academic affiliation with a total of nine different chiropractic schools. Under the supervision of staff chiropractors, students will complete rotations in the VHA facility. To date more than 300 chiropractic students have undergone training in a VHA facility. In the future they report that medical students or medical residents may also rotate through a VHA chiropractic clinic to facilitate collaboration.



HPV Vaccine Safety Questioned

Several news stories are questioning the safety of the new HPV vaccines under the names of Gardasil and Cervarix.  One article on August 08, 2008 from Therapeutics Daily, starts with the headline. "20 deaths in U.S. spark fears over safety of vaccine". This article reports on a grass roots movement in Ireland to lobby the Irish Health Minister to change the position on the HPV vaccine.

The story noted that the "U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) confirmed that concerns had been raised after the cases of the 20 girls who had received Gardasil and who had later died were reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System."

Another article on OneNewsNow.com, on July, 15, 2008 reported that Gardasil has been named in 78,000 complaints to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) because of side effects.  In that article Wendy Wright head of the group, Concerned Women for America (CWFA), commented, "We all know any drug, any vaccine can cause complications -- and before you require that an entire general population receive it, people should at least be aware of what kinds of complications could come from it."

In referring to the 20 deaths in the US of young women after getting the vaccine, Ms. Wright added, "There needs to be research to see if there is a connection, but with that number of complaints and with so many of them being serious complaints, this ought to give pause to any legislator before he even considers mandating that every little girl get a shot of this vaccine."

One tragic story was reported on July 21st, 2008 on NEWSInferno.com.  In that story Katherine, a 20-year-old woman suffered a stroke after receiving a second Gardasil injection.  She told her story by saying, "Before the shot I was fine, and there is no reason I should have had a stroke. This story also reported on a 13-year-old girl named Jenny who was healthy prior to receiving her third Gardasil shot and then began showing signs of having been stricken with a degenerative muscle disease, and is now almost completely paralyzed.

CWFA leader Wendy Wright summed up the concerns by saying, "There's been concern that the HP vaccine will cause complications because it's only been selectively tested during the trial phase. That's frankly what happens with nearly every drug or vaccine. That's why the efforts to mandate that this vaccine be given to every student, every girl in sixth-grade in order for her to attend school, was so outrageous."



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