Super Bowl LI Included Chiropractic
All 32 NFL teams include the professional services of a DC as part of their integrated health care team approach, according to a February 1, 2017, release by the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress. Both the Super Bowl participants, the Atlanta Falcons and the Champion New England Patriots had team chiropractors available to adjust their players for optimal performance and reduce the risk of injuries.
The release notes that the New England Patriots have had the same team chiropractor for 35 years. Dr. Michael Miller, who attended his ninth Super Bowl this year stated, "During the NFL season, I regularly visit the stadium on my afternoon off from my office, as well as on game days both at home and away. Chiropractic care is emphasized by the head coach, trainers and medical staff as a proactive regimen to prevent injuries, with most of the players receiving adjustments roughly 1-2 times per week."
Chiropractic has two functions when it comes to care for athletes. They seek care to maximize their performance, and to prevent and manage injuries. Dr Miller explains, "We've also earned the respect of other team physicians as a necessary protocol, and are all committed to one goal: keeping the athletes performing at their maximum potential and preventing and managing injuries as they occur." He continued, "The players are educated about the principles of chiropractic and that it is designed to eliminate the cause of their problem rather than just masking their symptoms."
The Atlanta Falcons team chiropractor, Dr. Joseph Krzemien, points out that players who receive regular chiropractic care are less prone to injury. "During the six seasons I've spent with the Atlanta Falcons, my goal has always been to prepare each player's body to better resist trauma and to speed its natural recovery time," he says. "This season, the Falcons have been successful for a lot of reasons, but I firmly believe that regular chiropractic care has played an important role in helping us stay healthy and get to Super Bowl LI – I am proud of the role I've played in their success."
The Green Bay Packers chiropractor, Dr. Michael Zoelle, added, "Ensuring that the joints are functioning properly is critical in the healing process, as well as for injury prevention and optimal performance," says Dr. Zoelle. "The players recognize that chiropractic care helps them to perform better and heal faster, ultimately leading to better team success."
Dr. Lucas Matlock, President of the Florida Chiropractic Society and chiropractor for many professional athletes, explains how important chiropractic is for the success of a professional athlete. "Chiropractic detects and removes interference to the nervous system at the spine, called subluxations. When an athlete's nervous system is free from interference, he or she can perform at a maximum level. For some athletes this could be the difference between making the team and the Hall of Fame."
Meniere's Disease Resolved with Chiropractic - A Case Study
The Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research published a case study on January 9, 2017, documenting the resolution of symptoms in a patient suffering from Meniere's Disease. The American Hearing Loss Foundation defines this condition as, "Meniere's Disease is a disorder of the inner ear that causes episodes of vertigo, ringing in the ears (tinnitus), a feeling of fullness or pressure in the ear, and fluctuating hearing loss."
Symptoms of Meinere's Disease include vertigo (dizziness), tinnitus (ringing in ears), feeling of fullness in the affected ear, loss of balance, nausea, vomiting, and sweating. Estimates are that about 0.2% of the U.S. population, or about 615,000 suffer from this condition. Meniere's is most common between the ages of 30 and 60 years. The symptoms can occur all at once or individually. Intermittent episodes can last anywhere from minutes to hours with varying intensity.
In this case, a 45-year-old man went to the chiropractor to see if he could be helped with his previously diagnosed condition of Meinere's Disease. The man reported suffering from unpredictable episodes of fullness of the ear, tinnitus, and vertigo. He was taking Valium to try to control his symptoms. He reported that he would go a few months without symptoms but then they would return. He had been in two car accidents ten to fifteen years prior which he claimed caused a "pinched nerve" in his neck.
A chiropractic examination was performed which included a combination of x-rays, postural analysis, leg length measurements, manual palpation and thermography. From the findings, it was determined that subluxation was present in his upper neck. Specific chiropractic adjustments were begun to address the subluxation.
On the 24th visit, a re-examination was performed. At that time, the patient reported that his condition had improved 85% since starting chiropractic care. The patient noted that his quality of life had dramatically improved and he stated, "My most serious issues, vertigo and hearing loss, have been eliminated or drastically reduced."
His secondary complaints of tinnitus and ear fullness had also improved, but were still minimally present and fluctuated from time to time. He remained under care to continue to improve. Follow-up x-rays confirmed an improvement in the subluxations noted on the first x-rays.
In the study's conclusion, the authors gave an overview of the results by stating, "This case report outlines the subluxation based chiropractic care of a 45-year-old male suffering from Meniere's disease following five months of care and twenty-four visits. The patient reported an 85% improvement of his condition with his primary complaints being completely eliminated or significantly reduced while his secondary complaints greatly improved."
Resolution of Infertility Following Chiropractic Care
A case study and review of literature on the results of chiropractic care on patients with infertility was published on January 19, 2017, in the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health. The study defines this condition by stating, "Infertility is a reproductive issue defined as the inability to accomplish a pregnancy within one year or more of regular sexual intercourse without the use of contraceptives."
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, the number of married women between the ages of 15 and 44 who are suffering with infertility is 1 million, or 6.1% of that age population. In that age group, 6.9 million, about 11.3%, have used fertility services.
The study reports that infertility can also have psychological effects on the woman affected by this and can lead to depression, low self-esteem, anxiety, and guilt, as well as self-loathing. Medical treatment for infertility can vary but usually carries a price tag in the thousands of dollars.
In this case, a 24-year-old woman presented herself for chiropractic care with a chief complaint of back pain. Her history also showed that she was under medical care for infertility for the past three and a half years. Additionally, it was reported that all of her menstrual cycles had to be progesterone induced and would occur infrequently every 3-5 months on average.
A chiropractic examination was performed that showed postural irregularities, tender areas along her spine, and muscle spasms. Motion muscle tests, reflexes and sensation were all within normal limits with only one orthopedic test showing a positive finding. X-rays revealed a reversal of the normal neck curve as well as malpositioning of several vertebrae in the lower back.
Based on the determination of the presence of subluxations, care was started on the woman in the form of specific chiropractic adjustments. By the third visit, the woman reported that she started menstruating. However, her cycle was not of normal duration or flow. By the ninth visit, she reported that she had finished her first normal menstrual cycle. On her tenth chiropractic visit, she stated that she had began ovulating. Two visits later, she reported that she had become pregnant. The woman went on to have a successful vaginal birth. She continued to receive chiropractic care and, as of the writing of this study, she was pregnant with her second child.
In their conclusion, the study authors explained how the woman was able to overcxome infertility and conceive by saying, "Chiropractic care has the ability to restore biomechanical function and neurological integrity by working with the nervous system through the reduction of subluxations. This restoration of the nervous system can improve the function of the body in many aspects, including whole organ systems. The altered function of a female reproductive system has the potential to be improved through the enhancement of neurological function due to the effects of reducing subluxations."
Long Term Study Shows Improvement of Scoliosis with Chiropractic
The Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published a follow-up study on February 2, 2017, showing the long-term improvement of scoliosis with chiropractic. This study was the second of two studies that tracked the long-term progress of patients who had participated in an earlier scoliosis study.
The original study looked at 36 subjects with scoliosis and followed their initial progress of correction with chiropractic care. This study reviewed those cases and looked long-term to see how the chiropractic care had an effect over a longer period of time.
The researchers noted that adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) affects 2-4% of children between the ages of 10-16 years. Idiopathic scoliosis is the largest category of scoliosis. The medical treatment for this condition is usually bracing, or in more severe cases surgery.
In prior studies, bracing was shown to be of limited benefit with several major studies showing that, over the long-term, the patient's scoliosis continued to get worse. Surgery for scoliosis is a severe risky process with results being mixed. The cases where the surgery is unsuccessful leave the patients with significant health issues. In the opinion of many, surgery should be only considered in the most extreme cases and as a last resort.
A number of chiropractic studies have shown variable degrees of correction of scoliosis from the care. In most all cases, there was minimal risk of harm with the worst case scenario being that the scoliosis continued to progress over time.
This study looked at two groups of subjects. One was a group with scoliosis and one group was less severe and categorized as sub-scoliosis. The ranges of age for the scoliosis group was 7-16 years of age, with the sub-scoliosis group ranging from 4-17 years of age.
The results showed that of the 36 subjects included in the original study, 24 continued care. Of those, only 20 had an additional spinal x-rays taken and therefore could be included in this study review. During the time between the first follow-up x-rays and the final follow-up x-rays, there was a 7.6% reduction on average for those subjects with scoliotic curves, and a further 18% decrease for those who were classified as having sub-scoliotic curves.
The initial study had shown an improvement in the curvatures of most all subjects in the original study. When 20 of those were x-rayed again sometime later, most showed additional long-term correction of their curvatures. The subjects had received care from between one and four years.
On average, the additional correction of curvature for the entire group showed a 12.9% decrease in curvature following the initial care. This change added to the initial change resulted in a 46.8% mean average decrease of the curvatures over the course of care for the entire group. When looked at individually, the researchers noted that the 10 subjects in the scoliosis group had an average correction of 31.5%, while the 10 subjects in the sub-scoliosis group had a average correction of 62.1%.
Are Statins a Waste of Time, Money?
The headline above comes from a Newsmax Health article by Lynn Allison published on January 11, 2017. The article offers information showing that one of the most profitable drugs of all time is actually based on a false theory. Statin drugs bring in over $34 billion in sales each year.
Ms. Allison begins the article by saying, "Millions are being misled about the pros and cons of statin drugs." She goes on to explain that a recently convened panel of experts are suggesting that the theory of bad cholesterol may be faulty. If this revelation is true, it would mean that the millions of statin drugs being given are unnecessary and may even be harmful.
Additionally, the side effects of taking statins may be more serious than treating cholesterol, if that cholesterol is not as harmful as once thought. Some of the side effects of statin drugs include muscle pain, liver damage, increase in blood sugar, type 2 diabetes, memory issues, and neurological effects.
Dr. John Abramson of the Harvard Medical School stated in the article that earlier research found no link between high LDL cholesterol levels and heart deaths in those over 60. In an article titled "The Great Cholesterol Con," Dr. Abramson stated, "A lack of association between LDL cholesterol and cardiovascular disease in those over 60 from our recent systemic review suggests the conventional cholesterol hypothesis is flawed."
Dr. Richard Thompson, former physician to the Queen of England, asks the questions, "For hundreds of years physicians have clung to outdated and ineffective treatments. Could statins be now the latest star to fall? Have patients been misled over them for many years?"
Dr. Jonny Bowden, Ph.D., co-author of "The Great Cholesterol Myth," also added to this article by saying, "Our book, ‘The Great Cholesterol Myth,' references dozens of studies that not only cast doubt on the cholesterol theory but in some cases totally refutes the notion that cholesterol causes heart disease. We list several peer-reviewed studies that show more than half the people admitted to hospitals for cardiovascular disease have normal cholesterol. Not only doesn't cholesterol cause heart disease, it is a lousy predictor of it!"
To drive home his point, Dr. Bowden, while appearing on the Dr. Oz show, said, "Trying to lower the risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol is like trying to lower the risk of obesity by taking the lettuce off your Big Mac."
Dr. Bowden further explained the problem with doctors over-prescribing these drugs by saying, "Doctors prescribe them randomly for anyone with a so-called elevated cholesterol level. Interestingly, the Framingham study revealed that people with the highest cholesterol levels actually lived the longest." He continued, "And the claim from drug companies that statins save lives usually does not hold up upon close examination. You may see a slight reduction in heart attacks but your will see a corresponding increase in cancer and diabetes."
New Guidelines Recommend Hands-Off Approach for Low-Risk
The January 25, 2017, issue of the MedPage Today published an article on new guidelines suggesting that less intervention in low-risk births is better. A similar articles based upon the same guidelines also appeared in a number of publications including the Huffington Post.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), which represents over 58,000 members, put out a release titled, "Approaches for Ob-gyns and Maternity Care Providers to Limit Intervention During Labor and Birth in Low-Risk Pregnancies." This release brings new guidelines that emphasis less medical interference with the birth process.
There has been much written over the past few years suggesting that the birth process has moved from a natural and normal process to a medical procedure. The discussion of how much intervention is really needed for a safe and normal birth has left many expectant mothers confused.
The ACOG has attempted to decrease the intervention at childbirth by issuing new guidelines for low-risk births. The new recommendations have also been endorsed by American College of Nurse-Midwives and the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses.
The new guidelines include the following:
In prefacing the guidelines committee opinion author, Jeffrey L. Ecker, M.D., chief of the Obstetrics & Gynecology department at Massachusetts General Hospital stated, "Practitioners always put the best interests of moms and babies at the forefront of all their medical decision-making, but in many cases those interests will be served with only limited intervention or use of technology. Dr. Ecker continued, "These new recommendations offer providers an opportunity to reexamine the necessity of obstetric practices that may have uncertain benefit among low-risk women. When appropriate, providers are encouraged to consider using low-intervention approaches that have been associated with healthy outcomes and may increase a woman's satisfaction with her birth experience."
The conclusion of the ACOG sums up the new guidelines, "Many common obstetric practices are of limited or uncertain benefit for low-risk women in spontaneous labor. In addition, some women may seek to reduce medical interventions during labor and delivery. Satisfaction with one's birth experience also is related to personal expectations, support from caregivers, quality of the patient–caregiver relationship, and the patient's involvement in decision making (57). Therefore, obstetrician–gynecologists and other obstetric care providers should be familiar with and consider using low-interventional approaches, when appropriate, for the intrapartum management of low-risk women in spontaneous labor."