September 2012


Chiropractic Care at 2012 Olympics Enhances Individual and Team Performance

Many of the US athletes at the London 2012 Olympics benefited from chiropractic care, according to numerous news stories. One article on August 29, 2012, in the Herald Online starts off by noting, "The presence of chiropractic care and the leadership role of Doctors of Chiropractic (D.C.s) at major national and international competitive events Ė including the Olympic and Paralympic Games -- are the result of positive outcomes in optimizing athletic performance: endurance, return-to-play and functionality."

Dr. Phil Santiago, the first chiropractor to be contracted with the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC), and secretary-general of the International Federation of Sports Chiropractic commented, "Chiropractic care is only one tool within the athletesí healthcare tool box, but its unique manual, non-drug methods make it a crucial component of healthcare delivery at Olympic Games which carry strict restrictions on drug use."

Another article in the Apex Herald on August 24, 2012, Dr. Michael Borgert, a chiropractor from North Carolina who helped athletes at the London Olympics, commented on his experience by saying, "The athletes really took it to the next level and performed better than they ever have before. We gave them adjustments before and after each event and I think it really helped. At the Olympic level, just a fraction of difference decides who wins a medal."

Dr. Gerard Clum, a chiropractor and spokesperson for the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress (F4CP), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness about the value of chiropractic care summed up the benefits of chiropractic care for Olympic athletes by saying, "The care our doctors of chiropractic provided helped our athletes prepare for the competition, perform at their best, avoid injuries and better deal with injuries when they occurred," said Dr. Clum. "It is a privilege for our doctors of chiropractic to serve our athletes as they seek to bring honor to our nation and to themselves, being a part of the process is a career highlight for the athletes and chiropractors alike."


Improvement in Quality of Life, Sleep, & Attention in a Patient with Attention Deficit Disorder

Above is the title of a documented research case study published in the August 27, 2012, issue of the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research. This case reports on the improvement through chiropractic of a young man who was suffering from Attention Deficit Disorder, sleep problems, and long term mid and lower back pain.

In this case, a 19-year-old man went to the chiropractor suffering from Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) which his father reports the young man had been suffering from his whole life. The man's primary complaint was pain in his mid and lower back that he had been suffering with for five years. The history recorded that the man had organizational and attention issues, and his overall condition was affecting daily activities, school and work.

A chiropractic examination was performed including postural analysis, and spinal  x-rays. Based upon the results of the examination, a determination was made that the man had subluxations in the uppermost part of his neck, the atlas vertebra, causing neurological malfunction. Additional assessments were performed to measure physical functioning, sleep, spontaneous and evoked brain activity, and visual responses. The additional assessments were performed before the initiation of  chiropractic care, and after care was started in order to objectively measure the patient's response to his care.

The results of the objective assessments showed improvements in attention, sleep, visual responses, and ADD scores. The improvement was apparent immediately, and showed continual improvement on subsequent tests.

The young man's mother reported that her son was doing better and was behaving better. The case study reports, "He is more cooperative and is better able to follow through and complete tasks. These include chores at home, school work, and music related activities. He began taking classes at college."

The young man himself reported that his back, neck, and head pain had resolved, his sleep improved, and he no longer felt "clumsy." He also reported that he was able to start playing his musical instrument again.


Improvement in Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis Following Chiropractic Care

The Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health (JPMFH) published a case study on August 16, 2012, documenting the case of a young girl with scoliosis who was helped with chiropractic care. An additional study published in the June 2012 issue of the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine (JCM) reports on an additional case of idiopathic scoliosis being helped with chiropractic care.

File:Scoliosis.jpgAccording to the authors of the JPMFH study, "Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS), which accounts for approximately 80 percent of the reported cases (of scoliosis), is the most common orthopedic deformity affecting children." Scoliosis is classified as AIS (affecting adolescent) when it is detected at age 10 or above. The authors note that this form affects between 3 and 5 percent of adolescents and is more common in girls.

The authors of the JPMFH study noted that there are two medical forms of treatment for AIS which include bracing or surgery.  They note that the bracing option carries self esteem problems as the child is required to wear the brace upwards of 23 hours per day. The surgical option is limited in results and often requires multiple procedures costing upward of half-a-million dollars.  They note that there are multiple separate studies of chiropractic helping AIS in various publications.

In the case in the JPMFH, an eleven-year-old girl was brought to the chiropractor because her mother was concerned with postural abnormalities she observed in her daughter. The JCM case involved a nine-year-old girl who was also suffering with AIS and was brought to a chiropractor. Both children received a variety of chiropractic examination procedures, and both had spinal x-rays. The x-rays were measured for curvature angles with both girls having a 22 degree curve at their worst point.

In both these cases Chiropractic care was initiated utilizing different forms of chiropractic care for each of the two girls. Both girls were seen by the chiropractor multiple times on regular schedules over several months. Both girls were also subsequently re-evaluated and comparative x-rays were performed.

Subsequent re-evaluations and x-rays showed that both the nine year-old and eleven year-old showed corrections of the curvatures measuring 55 percent and 13 percent respectively. The case in the JCM noted that the young girl did not show any psychological issues sometimes observed with other forms of care for scoliosis. The authors of the JPMFH article noted that, in addition to the curvature improvements in their case, this patient also experienced decreased pain, increased range of motion, and improved quality of sleep.


Trigeminal Neuralgia Resolved Following One Chiropractic Adjustment

A study appeared in the August 30, 2012, issue of the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research documenting a case of trigeminal neuralgia being helped with chiropractic. The U.S. National Library of Medicine describes trigeminal neuralgia as a nerve disorder that causes a stabbing or electric-shock-like pain in parts of the face.

The study authors note that trigeminal neuralgia is more common in adults 40-60 years of age. The youngest reported case is of a three year old girl. Trigeminal neuralgia annually occurs at a rate of 4.3 per 100,000 people and occurs slightly more often in women. Medical care for this condition is usually medications that also carry a severe list of side effects.

In this case, a 14-year-old girl was brought to the chiropractor suffering with severe right-sided facial pain that began four days earlier. One month prior, the girl had a trampoline accident where she landed on the back of her head, neck, and shoulder while attempting a back flip. Following that accident, she experienced neck pain and stiffness for a few days.

At the time she was brought to the chiropractor, the girl's pain was described as excruciating with episodes lasting approximately one minute and occurring every twenty minutes.  The pain was just below the right eye and extended down into the girl's right jaw. She had been diagnosed with trigeminal neuralgia two days earlier by her dentist who recommended pain medication, which she did not take. According to the case report, the girl's pain was triggered by things as slight as the wind blowing on her face. Nothing seemed to help prevent the attacks or reduce the pain.

A chiropractic examination was performed which included paraspinal infrared imaging, pelvic balance and leg length assessment, and cervical spine x-rays. Based on the results of the examination, the diagnosis of subluxation of the upper cervical spine was added to the previously diagnosed trigeminal neuralgia.

A specific chiropractic adjustment was delivered for correction of the subluxation. The patient returned one day after the first chiropractic adjustment and reported a complete remission of symptoms after the first adjustment.  The case report also noted that on subsequent evaluations one month and one year later, the mother of the girl reported that her daughter has not had any facial pain since her first adjustment.


Role of Chiropractic Care in Onsite Corporate Clinics

A September 4, 2012, release by the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress addresses the role of chiropractic in onsite corporate clinics.  The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress (F4CP) is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing public awareness of chiropractic care.

On September 6, 2012, the F4CP sponsored Ross M. Miller, M.D., M.P.H., Medical Executive for the Cerner Corporation, as a speaker at the 2012 Institute for HealthCare Consumerism Forum West being held on September 6-7, 2012, in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Institute for HealthCare Consumerism states on their website that they are "A Conference Series for Innovative Health and Benefits Management." The conference, which is attended by the leaders in healthcare, is designed to discuss the future of healthcare in the United States.

Dr. Miller made a presentation titled, "Onsite Health Clinics: Break the Financial and Clinical Burdens of  Musculoskeletal Conditions."  The focus of his presentation was the proposal that chiropractic should be included in services as a component of onsite corporate health clinics.

Dr. Miller commented, "As employers seek to offset rising costs and improve employee health, the latest industry trends point to providing an onsite clinic." Dr. Miller, also points out that the Cerner Corporation has recently published a paper entitled "Value of Chiropractic Services at Onsite Health Centers." This paper documents that the inclusion of chiropractic has benefits relative to healthcare utilization and improved functional status of musculoskeletal conditions. He explains, "By including services that facilitate improved musculoskeletal condition management and functional status within onsite clinics, there is potential both for reduced direct and indirect costs, including absenteeism and productivity losses."

The F4CP release also quotes their representative, Laura Carabello, touting the qualifications of Dr. Miller by saying, "Dr. Miller demonstrates upstanding credentials and experience in the onsite sector. The F4CP is privileged to have him present this research on its behalf to the highly influential group." 

The release also notes that, "Dr. Miller functions as the national medical director for Cernerís employer-sponsored onsite primary and urgent care and occupational health centers with oversight of all clinical services, wellness programs, chronic condition management, and benefit administration."


Healthcare System Wasted $750 Billion a Year

A headline from a story on September 6, 2012, in USA Today reports that three years ago the US health care industry wasted 30 cents of every dollar spent on healthcare. The article is based on a release the same day by the Institute of Medicine. The release and the USA Today article reporting on it note that $750 billion in healthcare spending was wasted in 2009.

The Institute of Medicine reports on the magnitude of the problem in their release by stating, "The costs of the system's current inefficiency underscore the urgent need for a systemwide transformation. The committee calculated that about 30 percent of health spending in 2009 -- roughly $750 billion -- was wasted on unnecessary services, excessive administrative costs, fraud, and other problems. Moreover, inefficiencies cause needless suffering. By one estimate, roughly 75,000 deaths might have been averted in 2005 if every state had delivered care at the quality level of the best performing state."

The report further stated, "Health care costs have increased at a greater rate than the economy as a whole for 31 of the past 40 years. Most payment systems emphasize volume over quality and value by reimbursing providers for individual procedures and tests rather than paying a flat rate or reimbursing based on patients' outcomes."

Report author Dr. Mark Smith, a former expert adviser to President Clinton's Task Force on National Health Care Reform and president of the Oakland-based California HealthCare Foundation, commented in the USA Today article, "I was surprised at how much waste there seems to be. Weíre spending money in ways that donít seem to improve peopleís health." Smith continued, "The threats to Americans' health and economic security are clear and compelling, and it's time to get all hands on deck. Our health care system lags in its ability to adapt, affordably meet patients' needs and consistently achieve better outcomes."

Julielynn Wong, M.D., author of the USA Today article and ABC News Medical Unit, puts the problem in perspective by saying, "The report, released today by the Institute of Medicine, suggested the money squandered on services that failed to improve Americans' health could have provided health insurance for more than 150 million workers or covered the salaries of all of the nationís first responders for more than 12 years."


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