September 2021

  • Forty Years of Essential Tremors and Other Symptoms Resolved with Chiropractic
  • Balance Improvement Following Chiropractic
  • Chiropractic Care Helps Patient with Muscular Dystrophy Symptoms
  • Chiropractic Care Availability Affects Medical Costs in Seniors

Forty Years of Essential Tremors and Other Symptoms Resolved with Chiropractic

A case study released on September 1, 2021, in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research documented the resolution of 40 years of essential tremors along with a variety of other health issues through chiropractic care.

John Hopkins Medicine described essential tremors by stating, "Essential tremor (ET) is a neurological disorder that causes your hands, head, trunk, voice or legs to shake rhythmically. It is often confused with Parkinson's disease. Essential tremor is the most common trembling disorder. Everyone has at least a small degree of tremor, but the movements usually cannot be seen or felt because the tremor is so small. When tremors are noticeable, the condition is classified as essential tremor."

The study begins by noting that essential tremors are the most common movement disorders with a worldwide prevalence of between 0.4% to 3.9% in the general population. This condition is 20 times more prevalent than Parkinsonís disease. It is estimated that seven million people have this condition in the U. S. alone. 

In this case, a 58-year-old woman decided to seek chiropractic care to help with the tremors she was suffering with in her upper extremities. She reported that the tremors started 40 years ago leading to her medical diagnosis of essential tremors. The woman also reported numbness, tingling, and weakness in the right arm with pain into the right wrist and hand. In addition, she described having headaches, back pain and felt like she had a 'brain fog'.

A full chiropractic examination was performed which included a postural analysis, palpation, ranges of motion, and spinal x-rays.  The findings revealed the presence of subluxations in the upper neck and specific chiropractic adjusting procedures were started.

Immediately after the first adjustment, there were objective changes in both posture and positioning. The woman also noted a change in her tremors immediately after her first adjustment. Within 24 hours of the first adjustment, the woman reported an 80% improvement in frequency and intensity of the hand tremors. After four months of chiropractic care, she reported a 95% reduction in the tremors. She also noted that most all of her other symptoms such as headache, neck pain, back pain and brain fog were either completely gone or significantly reduced.

In the conclusion the study author writes, "This case study demonstrated the upper cervical chiropractic management of a patient diagnosed with essential tremors. The patient found immediate relief of symptomatology and extended improvement in quality of life. This case highlights the need for more research on the link between upper cervical subluxation and essential tremors."

Balance Improvement Following Chiropractic

The Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health, Chiropractic published the results of a case study on August 16, 2021, documenting chiropractic care causing measurable improvement in balance of a 9-year-old who was having problems with coordination and balance due to having a congenital abnormality known as Klippel-Feil Syndrome (KFS).

According to the NIH's National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, "Klippel-Feil Syndrome is a rare disorder characterized by the congenital fusion of two or more cervical (neck) vertebrae. It is caused by a failure in the normal segmentation or division of the cervical vertebrae during the early weeks of fetal development." They continue by explaining, "The most common signs of the disorder are short neck, low hairline at the back of the head, and restricted mobility of the upper spine. The fused vertebrae can cause nerve damage and pain in the head, neck, or back."

In this case, a nine-year-old boy was brought by his parents to the chiropractor's office. The boy had been medically diagnosed with KFS at the age of four. Although the boy had met most of his developmental milestones, he was unable to hop on one leg. This inability persisted through his first visit to the chiropractor. It was also reported that the boy had problems coordinating daily activities both at home and in school. These problems had led to additional problems with self-confidence and socialization.

A chiropractic examination and x-rays were performed. The results of the examination documented the presence of subluxations in the boy's spine. With his age and special spinal structures being taken into account, specific forms of chiropractic adjustments were started to address his issues.

After several months of care, an update evaluation was performed to check on the boy's progress. At that time, the boy's parents reported observing improvement in their son's balance and co-ordination in daily activities. They also noted that this led to a positive effect on his self-confidence and social skills.

In the discussion portion of the study, the authors point out the importance of balance in children. "Balance problems are an especially important concern with children. Fall injuries are among the leading causes of death and disability in children." The author continued in the conclusion by explaining, "This single patient showed measured improvement in postural balance following chiropractic adjustments for subluxation correction, along with. limited prescribed exercise. Chiropractic adjustments of vertebral subluxation for patients with KFS and balance problems may be considered an effective management option."

Chiropractic Care Helps Patient with Muscular Dystrophy Symptoms

On August 5, 2021, the Journal of Contemporary Chiropractic published the results of a case study documenting the benefits of chiropractic on a patient suffering with muscular dystrophy and a variety of debilitating symptoms associated with that condition.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Muscular dystrophies are a group of muscle diseases caused by mutations in a personís genes. Over time, muscle weakness decreases mobility, making everyday tasks difficult. There are many kinds of muscular dystrophy, each affecting specific muscle groups, with signs and symptoms appearing at different ages, and varying in severity."

In this case, a 23-year-old man sought chiropractic care for complaints of low back pain, immobility of lower limbs and neck pain, and arm and neck numbness. The man first noticed problems when he was 13 years old as he was having trouble walking, bending, and sitting due to pain and stiffness.

By age 19, the man required medication just to perform normal activities such as tying his shoes. The man was then referred to a neurologist who diagnosed him with muscular dystrophy. He was given a variety of medications for the next 9 months, but his condition continued to worsen. Eventually he was told that his "condition was still progressing, there was no hope of engaging in physical activity and he would ultimately be wheelchair bound for the rest of his life."

Upon his first chiropractic visit, the man revealed that his pain affected every activity on his life including sleeping. He was on a number of strong medications to attempt to alleviate his suffering. On his intake form, the man indicated that he was suffering from nervousness, allergies, headaches, stiff neck, painful shoulder and elbow, arm numbness, constipation, low back pain, sciatica, leg and hip pain, numbness in legs, poor circulation, and hemorrhoids. He was forced to quit his job as a welder as he was now unable to perform the duties of his employment.

A chiropractic examination and x-rays were performed, and it was determined that multiple areas of spinal subluxation existed in the man's spine. Specific forms of chiropractic care were started to address the findings at the rate of three visits per week. At the time of the man's first re-evaluation, it is reported that the man saw an improvement in a number of his symptoms including a complete alleviation of his headaches. Additionally, the man reported improvement in other activities he was previously unable to do, including driving, concentrating, lifting, sleeping and taking care of himself. His spinal ranges of motion increased, and his pain decreased significantly.

In their conclusion, the study authors summed up this case by stating. "Our patient initially visited us with a medical diagnosis of muscular dystrophy. Despite medical intervention, a series of exacerbations led to intense back pain and loss of function and use of his limbs." After chiropractic care, the patient saw improvements in every area including a significant decrease in pain and the greater ability to move and carry-on normal life activities.

Chiropractic Care Availability Affects Medical Costs in Seniors

A study published on August 8, 2021, in the online Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics showed that when chiropractic care is less available to the senior population, the usage and cost of medical care to that population increases.

It has long been assumed that chiropractic care is far less expensive than medical care. Each time a patient receives chiropractic care for a spinal problem, rather than undergoing a medical procedure, there is a substantial savings in costs. This latest study looked to document the savings by looking at a population of seniors compared to the availability of chiropractic to that population.

In this study, Medicare claims were reviewed on 39,278 seniors who utilized chiropractic care in the years from 2010 to 2014 and who relocated during that time frame. The researchers looked to see what effect moving to an area with less chiropractors would have on the medical expenses of these seniors when chiropractic care was not as readily available.

The researchers used a database known as the National Plan and Provider Enumeration System to determine the number of chiropractors in a particular population of an area. Researchers looked to see if there was a difference in medical expenses between those who moved to an area of less chiropractic density verses those who moved to an area with no change in the number of chiropractors for the given population. 

The results showed that those who moved from an area of greater chiropractic availability to an area of lower chiropractic availability had an increase in the number of visits to primary care physicians for spine conditions.  On average, there were 32.3 more visits per 1000 seniors when there was less chiropractic care available. Additionally, there was 5.5 more spinal surgeries performed per 1000 seniors in areas where chiropractic was less available.

This increase in medical and surgical care carries a hefty price tag. The study showed that in the areas with less chiropractic, those seniors had additional costs of $114,967 per 1,000 Medicare beneficiaries for medical services. When extrapolated nationally, this means an increase of $391 million when chiropractic is less available.

This study did not look at the dangers of the medical procedures verses the relative safety of chiropractic care. Nor did it look at the additional cost of medical care related to complications of medical care itself. The researchers did note in their conclusion that "Among older adults, reduced access to chiropractic care is associated with an increase in the use of some medical services for spine conditions." This study likely only scratches the surface of the real impact and savings that chiropractic care offers to the senior population.