May 2006


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Chiropractic Adjustments Improve Movement Time

A study published in the May 2006 issue of the scientific periodical, The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, looked at how chiropractic adjustments would affect relative times to perform movements in a controlled test. 

Ten patients from a private chiropractic practice participated in this prospective, randomized, and controlled trial. These ten patients received chiropractic adjustments to areas determined to have vertebral subluxations. A separate group of individuals who did not receive chiropractic care were also tested to have a baseline for comparison with those receiving the chiropractic adjustments.

Movement time was measured on a computer screen where subjects were asked to move a cursor onto a target.

The results showed that all those in the study who received chiropractic adjustments for subluxation correction had significantly improved movement times.  This was in stark contrast to the control group that did not receive chiropractic care where only one participant showed improvement in their movement times.

The average improvement in movement time for the group that received chiropractic care was 183 ms (mille-seconds), which represents a 9.2% improvement.  This can be compared to the control group that showed only a 29 ms, or 1.7% improvement.  The study researchers reported, "The difference (improvement) scores after the intervention were significantly greater for the chiropractic group compared with the control group."

The authors showed the importance of the results of this study in their conclusion, "The results of this study demonstrated a significant improvement in movement time with chiropractic care. These results suggest that spinal adjustments may influence motor behavior."  The ramifications are large for those involved in sports, as these results suggest improved performance is possible with chiropractic care.



Patients With Acute Neck Pain Helped by Chiropractic - Study Shows

Published in the May 2006 issue of the peer reviewed scientific journal, The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, is a study that looked at patients with acute neck pain and their results under chiropractic care.

Researchers listed the "aim" of this study as, "to determine the extent to which a group of patients with acute neck pain managed with chiropractic manipulative therapy (chiropractic adjustments) benefited from chiropractic care and the degree to which they were subsequently satisfied."

For this study 115 chiropractic patients were contacted, of whom 94 became study participants.  The breakdown was 60 women (64%) and 34 men with the mean age being 39.6 years old. The average number of visits that patients in this study received was 24.5.

Participants in this study responded to a telephone survey to measure pre and post treatment pain levels and their level of satisfaction with the care they received.  The patients used a 0 to 10 scale to rate pain, with 0 meaning that there was no pain and 10 was the worst pain imaginable.

The results with this group was impressive with patient pain levels improving significantly from a mean of 7.6 (median, 8.0) before chiropractic adjustments to 1.9 (median, 2.0) after care.  The participants were obviously very pleased with their results and researchers were able to rate the overall patient satisfaction level at 94%.

The researchers concluded, "Patients with acute neck pain involved in this study seemed to be satisfied with chiropractic treatment and reported reductions in associated pain levels and activity restrictions."



Polio and Chiropractic, a Case Study

A case study appeared in the June 2006 issue of Clinical Chiropractic and reported on a 69-year-old retired woman and civil servant who is a post-polio sufferer.  In this case the woman presented with left hand pain of over 40 years duration with limited flexion of the fingers of her left hand.  She reported that the pain had increased considerably over the past year.

The polio left the woman disabled, with the muscles of her right arm being severely wasted and affected so badly that it was now practically useless.  She also suffered from additional health issues, some of which were related to her history of polio. She also reported an itching in her left hand.  Her problems were severe enough that her surgeon recommended surgery for her multiple problems with her left hand.

In this case the patient began a course of chiropractic care and received care for 13 visits that were recorded for this case study.  Over this period a number of improvements were noted.  Following just her first visit, the patient noticed improvement with the feel and look of her left hand. She reported that it noticeably changed color from white to a more normal pink.  Over the next few days she continued to notice hand improvement as well as a discontinuation of her hand itching.

After her sixth visit the patient's hand strength was measured and monitored. Over the next seven visits it improved going from a measured strength of 11.5 kg to 16kg. The case study also documented a noticeable improvement in her posture, with a significant visual decrease in her scoliosis and an improvement in her gait. 

The case study noted that the woman returned to her surgeon after the study.  They noted that the surgeon was very pleased with the patient's improvement in her appearance and functionality in her left hand and stated that he believed there was no longer a need for surgery or for any further visits. 

In the discussion of this case the authors reported on a previous survey of 500 members of post-polio self-help groups in Australia, and their ratings of their responses to various forms of care including chiropractic.  The results of this survey showed that Chiropractors received the highest patient satisfaction ratings for being “very helpful” at 45%, and General Practitioners received the lowest percentage at 22%. Additionally, that survey showed that chiropractors were judged as providing significantly more help than the other major health practitioner groups.



Wrong Site Surgery on the Rise

The above headline appeared in USA Today from the April 17, 2006, issue. The story by Robert Davis, starts off by noting that although there have been years of patient-safety efforts, "an increasing number of health care facilities have reported mistakenly removing the wrong limbs or organs, slicing into the wrong side of bodies and performing surgery on the wrong patients."

The original study on this reviewed 2.8 million operations over a 20-year period and was published in the April 2006 issue of Archives of Surgery.  This study recorded all wrong-site surgery cases reported to a large malpractice insurance company between 1985 and 2004.  This study uncovered 25 wrong-site operations that were identified.

The Joint Commission on Accreditation, a non-profit organization that sets patient safety requirements and guidelines, and inspects more than 15,000 hospitals and surgical centers nationwide received reports from health care facilities last year of 84 operations that involved the wrong body part or the wrong patient. 

Dennis O'Leary, who heads the non-profit Joint Commission stated, "It's getting worse. I can assure you that this is just the tip of the iceberg," O'Leary says. "Some hospitals are reporting everything and some hospitals don't report anything at all."

Dr. Donald Palmisano, a New Orleans surgeon on the non-profit National Patient Safety Foundation's board of directors commented, "We're trying to get the number down to zero." He continues, "It is such a catastrophe when this happens."

The article reports that since 2004 the joint commission has required doctors to mark the spot they plan to cut while consulting with their patient before surgery. Additionally, the commission is encouraging patients to insist on such a mark prior to their surgery.

However, the article notes that many surgeons do not follow the guidelines. Dr. Glenn Rothman, chairman of surgery at Banner Desert Medical Center in Mesa, Arizona, commented, "They think this is useless. Doctors fight it because they are the captains of the ship. There is a lot of resistance to standardized conduct."



Veterinarian Adds Chiropractic to His Medical Kit

The above headline appeared in the May 8th 2006 issue of the agricultural publication, the Capital Press. The ensuing article by Jodi Kerr, starts off by saying, "Humans have been counting on chiropractors to relieve pain and stress for years, but our four-legged friends are seeing the benefits as well." 

The article chronicles a veterinarian, Dr. Donald Howard,  who after practicing  traditional veterinary medicine for 30 years, turned his practice toward chiropractic.  Dr. Howard decided to take extensive training to be certified from the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society (IVAS) and the American Veterinary Chiropractor Association (AVCA).

Dr. Howard noted his reasons, "I have been benefiting from chiropractic work on myself for years. It just made sense: I am feeling so much better from treatments, why wouldn’t my four-legged patients?”  The story notes that as with many chiropractors who care for animals, performance horses are the main recipients.

“Most of my patients are performance horses. When people need their horse to compete at their best, they begin to think of alternative ways to get results.”  Dr. Howard then continued, “All horses can benefit, and it’s important for recreation horses that get ridden a lot. The better a horse feels, the better horse you have.”

Even a medical doctor, Dr. Holly Jo Hodges, a jackpot barrel racer, explained the benefits she had seen on her horses.  “My open barrel horse has been having terrible problems,” Dr. Hodges said. “At the top of his buttocks he was completely out of alignment, you could push on his joints and bring him to the ground.”  She continued, "My backup horse had been on-and-off-again lame for years. Since the chiropractic work, he has been the soundest horse ever. I had the best season and had a horse I could count on.”

In the article, Dr. Howard explained how this helps by stating that chiropractic adjustments are a natural way to let the horse’s body heal itself.  He noted, “This type of treatment concentrates on proper nerve conduction through and from the brain to the spinal cord. Subluxation interferes with proper supply of nerve impulses.”



Rodeo Cowboys Helped by Chiropractic

From the May 8th, 2006, issue of the Ventura County Star comes an interesting article on rodeo cowboys and chiropractic. The article starts off by reviewing the harsh incidents rodeo cowboys endure. The article describes how they get tossed around on the back of an angry 1,800-pound bull, they leap off a galloping horse, many times into the spiky horns of a charging steer.  Often they get hurt and then pick themselves up, dust themselves off and endure the pain.

The article continues and notes that even the roughest, toughest cowboys need help.  That's when they mosey over to the Pro-Sport Chiropractic tent to get some TLC and Chiropractic care.  At the the Conejo Valley Days rodeo, the cowboys would slip just beyond the spectators site into a tent where they would get adjusted.

A local chiropractor who cares for the cowboys, Dr. Terry Weyman said, "I've seen guys with noses splayed open, and they still talk to you like nothing is wrong. It's the world's roughest sport, bull riding. If you can handle these guys, you can handle anybody."

The article goes onto say that every time ProSport Chiropractic sets up a tent at professional rodeos around the country, the cowboys come to get care.  One rodeo cowboy, bull wrestler Kevin McKinney noted in the article that his pain was a "nine" on a scale of one to ten.  "I'm hurting," was his comment as he came into the tent for care. 

McKinney's wife, Tammy, who was wearing a T-shirt that read, "Every girl loves a dirty cowboy," agreed that he must be hurting if he says anything.  She added, "He'll ride if he's hurt. That's how much he loves it."  After getting evaluated and receiving chiropractic care, McKinney walked away. Then, referring to his aches and pain, he commented, "It's always worth it."



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