June 2019

Meniere’s Disease Helped by Chiropractic

The Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research published the results of a case study on May 23, 2019, documenting chiropractic helping a patient suffering with Meniere’s disease. Although Meniere’s disease is called a disease, it is actually a collection of symptoms with no medically known cause or treatment.

According the the National Institutes of Health, US National Library of Medicine, "Ménière disease is a disorder of the inner ear that affects balance and hearing. This condition is characterized by sudden episodes of extreme dizziness (vertigo), a roaring sound in the ears (tinnitus), a feeling of pressure or fullness in the ears, and fluctuations in hearing."

Although Meniere’s disease was first recognized as a condition by Prosper Meniere in 1861, it was not until 1995 that the American Academy of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) developed the criteria for diagnosing for this condition. According to the American Hearing Research Foundation, about  615,000 people in the United States suffer with Meniere’s disease with 45,000 new cases being diagnosed each year. The condition becomes more common with age, with the peak years being between 40 and 60 years of age.

In this case, a 55-year-old man, whose principle complaints were dizziness and vertigo, sought chiropractic care. In addition to his primary complaints, the study also reports that the man was suffering with constant dizziness, neck pain, low blood pressure, frequent fatigue, headache, ear ache, ear noise, low back pain and occasional deafness in his left ear. The man's medical provider had previously diagnosed him with Meniere’s disease.

Specific postural examination procedures were performed along with specialized spinal x-rays of the man's upper neck. Postural abnormalities were documented by the exam procedures. The spinal x-rays showed malpositioning of the vertebrae in the upper neck. From these findings, it was determined that subluxations were present in the man's upper neck.

A specific chiropractic adjustment was performed based upon the chiropractic analysis and x-rays. The results were instantaneous with the man reporting that he felt an immediate resolution of symptoms after his adjustment. The study reports that after one month of chiropractic care, the man's symptoms were completely resolved.

In the conclusion of the study, the author's noted that "...chiropractic care was used in the treatment and management of a 55-year-old male patient suffering from Meniere’s disease. After the first visit, the patient had relief of all of his symptoms related to Meniere’s disease. The patient remained under care for one month for maintenance. The patient’s symptoms never returned, suggesting that chiropractic care "....is a potential method of treatment and management of patients with Meniere’s disease."


Chronic Migraines and Disability Helped with Chiropractic Care

The Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research published a chiropractic case study on May 9, 2018. The study documented the care of a young man being helped by chiropractic who was suffering with multiple issues including neck pain and stiffness, pins and needles into his left shoulder, low back pain, difficulty sleeping, and migraine headaches.

The Migraine Research Foundation shares a number of statistics concerning how common migraines are in the population. According to the foundation, migraines are the 3rd most prevalent illness in the world. They report that nearly 1 in 4 U.S. households includes someone with migraines, with nearly 12% of the population, including children, suffer from this condition. This condition affects 18% of American women, 6% of men, and 10% of children, and is most common between the ages of 18 and 44.

In this case, a 35-year-old man went to the chiropractor in hopes of getting help for his multiple conditions. At that time, he was suffering with neck pain and stiffness, pins and needles into his left shoulder, low back pain and difficulty sleeping. The man was also suffering with chronic, long-term migraine headaches, which was his primary reason for seeking chiropractic.

The current episode of severe neck pain he was suffering from began after he was drying his hair. He was using heat on his neck as well as taking over the counter pain medications, but neither of those reduced his pain. His neck pain was so severe that he reported he was unable to go to the gym or get out of bed without help. He felt this was having an adverse effect on the psychosocial aspects of his life.

The man reported some past trauma to his neck in the past from playing rugby in his teenage years, and football until about a year ago. He also reported that he was a victim of a physical assault approximately five years ago. The man also reported a significant injury five years prior in which he fractured his right clavicle.

A chiropractic examination was performed which included a postural analysis, spinal palpation, a spinal range of motion analysis and several orthopedic tests. In addition, specific spinal x-rays were taken to determine vertebral positioning and overall curvatures and biomechanics of the spine. It was noted that the man had a reversal of neck curve instead of the normal forward curvature.

As a result of the examination and x-rays, specific forms of chiropractic procedures were started. The patient was given regular update evaluations to determine the changes in his spine as well as his symptomatic improvement. On his first re-evaluation four weeks into his care, it was reported that the man had symptomatically improved about 80 percent from when he started care. His self-reported disability had also greatly improved with all of his pain issues.

In follow-up examinations and x-rays, the patient showed measurable changes in the objective findings. At the three month follow-up, the man reported  a total resolution of all of his symptoms including not having any more migraine headaches.  


Chronic Chest Wall Syndrome Resolved with Chiropractic Care

On April 22, 2019, the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research published the results of a case study of a woman who was suffering with pain in his chest wall and upper back, who had resolution of all symptoms under chiropractic care.

The study starts by noting that chest wall pain is a fairly common occurrence affecting between 20% and 40% of the population over their lifetime. The study reports that "...the incidence of a new diagnosis of chest pain has been placed at 15.5 per 1000 person-years and increases with age."  Men who have previously had a diagnoses of coronary heart disease and gastroesophageal reflux disease are most at risk of having a diagnosis of chest wall pain.

In this case, a 45-year-old woman, who was suffering with right-sided chest pain for the past two months, sought out a chiropractor for a consultation and possible care. The woman described her chest pain as achy and sometimes sharp. She explained that the pain was made worse by standing up from either a seated or lying position. She said the pain was always present and ranged from between a 5 out of 10 to a 8 out of 10, with 10 being the worst.

The woman first experienced the pain 9 months earlier when she was doing housecleaning activities that involved lifting boxes weighing between 10 to 20 pounds. Three days after the pain started, she saw a medical doctor who diagnosed her with reflux esophagitis and muscles spasms. She was given several medications which the woman reported did little to help her. After several days of the medications, she discontinued them due to getting serious side effects. Over the next several months, the woman saw a number of medical physicians who gave her a variety of opinions including a recommendation that she have her gall bladder removed. Her prior medical history revealed that she had undergone mitral valve replacement surgery 2 years prior and was currently on maintenance medications. She also had a past diagnosis of scoliosis.

A chiropractic examination with spinal x-rays was performed. From the examination, the woman was given a new diagnosis from the chiropractor of  "painful rib syndrome in the context of chest wall syndrome secondary to vertebral subluxation." Based on the new findings, and with the patient's consent, chiropractic care was started at the rate of multiple visits per week.

The study reports that after the woman's first adjustment, she felt an immediate decrease in her mid-upper back tension that had been present since she had her mitral valve replacement surgery 2 years ago. By her third visit, the woman reported that she was experiencing a 75% improvement in her pain severity and frequency. After approximately three weeks of specific chiropractic care, the woman was able to report that she was completely pain-free.


Resolution of Chronic Pain and Migraines Following Chiropractic Care

The above title comes from a study published on June 10, 2019, in the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research. The study documents the case of a man who was suffering from migraine headaches as well as pain in his upper extremities who got relief from chiropractic care.

The authors of the study start by pointing out that chronic pain disorders, such as fibromyalgia, back pain, and neck pain, are more common in people who also suffer with chronic migraine headaches. Headaches are generally common. The study notes that 46% of the population will suffer with at least one headache in any given year. That number increases to 65% who will suffer headaches over their lifetime. They report that in Western Europe and North America, the rates or people suffering with migraine headaches are between 5% and 9% in men, and between 12% and 25% in women.  

The study reports that the estimates of Americans who suffer with chronic pain varies from 10% to 55%. Whatever the number, a significant number of Americans have chronic pain which results in a cost to the US economy of more than $600 billion per year.

In this case, a 52-year-old woman presented herself to a chiropractor for consultation and possible care. At that time, the woman's chief health concerns were migraine headaches and left-sided spinal pain that radiated to her arms and legs. She reported that she had been suffering with these issues for the past 20 years. Medication did offer some moderate relief at times, but there were still times when the pain was so severe that the woman would take herself to the local hospital.

During her chiropractic examination, it was noted that the woman was crying due to the extreme pain she was in. The examination consisted of inspection and spinal palpation. However, range of motion and orthopedic or neurological examinations were not possible due to the woman's condition.

The chiropractor determined that vertebral subluxations were present, and specific chiropractic adjustments were started at the rate of three times per week to address the subluxations. As care continued, the woman reported experiencing a dramatic improvement in her migraines and her pain. After five weeks, the woman moved to another city, but due to her improvement she elected to make the trip back to her chiropractor to continue care on a maintenance basis. 

In their conclusion the authors wrote, "This case report provides supporting evidence on the effectiveness of chiropractic care in the patients presenting with migraine headaches and atypically presenting spinal pain."


Headaches and Bedwetting Helped by Chiropractic

The Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published a report on May 6, 2019, reporting on the case of a young girl who was suffering with headaches as well as bedwetting being helped by chiropractic. What makes this case interesting is that the chiropractor was unaware that the girl had a issue with bedwetting until after the problem had resolved with chiropractic.

The study begins by reporting how common headaches are in the pediatric population. "Approximately 60% of children and adolescents all over the world suffer from headaches. With a prevalence of 20-25%, tension type headaches is the most common cause of primary headache followed by migraine headaches with a prevalence of 8%." They also note, "In the United States, 5.3% of children aged 6-17 years experienced frequent and severe headache."

In this case, a 7-year-old girl who was suffering with headaches was brought to the chiropractor by her parents. The girl's headaches began three months before she visited the chiropractor. Neither the girl or her parents could identify anything that could be identified as a cause for starting the headaches. The girl's headaches were more frequent during the day. This created issues in school as the girl often had to go to the school nurse for Tylenol causing her to miss classes 3 or 4 times per week. The little girl described the headaches as being in her forehead and at her temples.

The girl was taken to a pediatrician who determined that since the girl was also suffering from constipation that she was probably dehydrated. Her pediatrician's advice was to drink more water and continue with Tylenol to treat her headaches.

When a chiropractic examination was performed, it was noted that the girl had an abnormal posture with an high left shoulder relative to the right side, her head was tilted to the left and held forward, and her entire posture had a forward lean. Palpation revealed areas of malposition and sensitivity at certain levels of the girl's spine. The girl also showed an irregular and restricted range of spinal motion. A spinal thermographic (heat) study showed areas of irregular patterns.

From the findings, it was determined that the girl had vertebral subluxations. With consent from her parents, and agreement from the girl, chiropractic care was started. Initially, the girl was given specific chiropractic adjustments at the rate of two times per week.

After just the fourth visit, the girl reported a decrease in how often she was getting headaches. After 10 weeks of chiropractic care, the girl was free of any headaches. Several weeks later, a follow-up was performed in which it was noted that the girl had not gotten any additional headaches.

It was at this follow-up that the mother then told the chiropractor that since being under chiropractic care, the girl has also stopped her bedwetting. As this was not the reason that the parent brought their daughter in for care, the chiropractor was unaware that the girl even had this issue. In any event, the bedwetting had also been corrected under chiropractic care.

In their discussion, the study authors acknowledge that in addition to the girl getting relief from her headaches, there were also unknown benefits to her chiropractic care. "We want to acknowledge that many children presenting for chiropractic care may have more than one complaint and as in the case presented, their presenting complaint(s) was not only addressed successfully but patients and parents alike report “other” benefits of the care they received."


Gastroesophageal Reflux Resolved in an Infant Following Chiropractic Care

On May 13, 2019, the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published the results of a case study that documented the resolution of gastroesophageal reflux (GER) in a 6-month-old baby.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, "Gastroesophageal reflux (GER) happens when stomach contents come back up into the esophagus causing heartburn. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a more serious and long-lasting form of GER and may prevent an infant from feeding." GER is also commonly known as acid reflux, acid indigestion, or heartburn.

In this case, the mother of a 6-month-old girl brought her daughter to a chiropractor. The girl's mother's chief issue was that her baby was suffering from GER which was made worse when her daughter ingested milk, soy, or bananas. The GER was somewhat better after the girl's mother switched her food to hypoallergenic formula. Because of this ongoing issue, the infant’s mother was concerned about her baby not getting enough food and nutrients.

Upon examination, there were no abnormalities noted while inspecting the child. Palpation however, did reveal an abnormal position of the top bone in the neck called the atlas and in the mid-back. A local thermal heat reading at the upper portion of the neck showed temperature variations from one side of the baby's neck to the other. Passive range of motion of the baby's head showed restrictions in the motion of the girl's neck.

Based upon the examination, it was determined that subluxations were present. With the consent of the baby's mother, specific forms of chiropractic adjustments appropriate for a baby this age were started.

After the baby girl's 4th adjustment, her mother reported that her daughter was no longer spitting up after feeding. From that point forward, the girl had not had any issue with GER and had continued chiropractic care on a wellness basis.

In their conclusion for this study the authors wrote, "This case report provides supporting evidence that children suffering from GER may benefit from chiropractic care."