Man Suffering from Nausea, Fatigue, Gastric Reflux, Dizziness, and Migraines Helped with Chiropractic
A case study published on March 18, 2019, in the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research documented the improvement through chiropractic of a patient suffering from nausea, fatigue, gastric reflux, dizziness and migraines, who had just recently had surgery for removal of a vestibular schwannoma.
According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services – National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, “A vestibular schwannoma (also known as acoustic neuroma, acoustic neurinoma, or acoustic neurilemoma) is a benign, usually slow-growing tumor that develops from the balance and hearing nerves supplying the inner ear.”
Vestibular schwannomas effect one in 100,000 people each year. Some of the key symptoms of vestibular schwannoma include one-sided hearing loss, ringing in the ears, and a loss of equilibrium. Additional less frequent symptoms can include face numbness, headaches, visual changes, and earaches. Medical care for this condition varies depending on size and location of the tumor. Surgery is one of the typical forms of care but can result in a number of other symptoms affecting the patient’s quality of life.
In this case, a 37-year-old man presented himself for chiropractic care. The man was suffering from nausea, dizziness, and digestive system dysfunction four years following the surgical removal of a right-sided vestibular schwannoma. His initial symptoms prior to surgery included right-sided hearing loss, ear-aches, and an accumulation of pressure within the ear. After an MRI confirmed a large vestibular schwannoma, surgery was performed. Due to the location of the vestibular schwannoma, the surgeon removed the entire vestibular nerve resulting in permanent right ear hearing loss.
The surgery exacerbated many of his health issues and created several additional health issues. These previously existing and newer issues included: dizziness, headaches, migraines, TMJ issues, neck pain and stiffness, sinus problems, numbness in arms and hands, stomach disorders with irritable bowels, hip and lower back pain with numbness in legs and feet, multiple joint pains, nervousness, and gastric reflux.
The man received a thorough history and chiropractic examination, as well as a thermal instrumentation analysis, x-rays, and motion spinal x-rays known as videofluoroscopy. It was determined from these procedures that subluxations were present and specific forms of chiropractic adjustments were started.
After 9 visits, the patient was re-evaluated, and it was reported that he had improved significantly in many of his symptoms including 100% improvement in dizziness, migraines, and nausea. A Health, Wellness, and Quality of Life (HWQL) survey was also used to determine the man’s progress under chiropractic care. The results of this self-survey showed a vast improvement in all areas measures with a most significant degree of improvement in the areas of mental and emotional stress.
In the study conclusion the authors wrote, “The case presented in this study displayed how specific chiropractic care helped improve both QOL and post-surgical symptomatology.” They also commented, “Subluxation based chiropractic care has the potential to not only improve the QOL and vestibular dysfunction in VS patients, but any post-operative procedure, and therefore must be further researched.”
On April 18, 2019, the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published a case study showing chiropractic helping a pregnant woman who was suffering with pelvic pain. Pelvic pain is not uncommon in pregnant women, with many women seeking chiropractic care for help.
The study begins by noting that, as the uterus grows during pregnancy, there is a change in the biomechanics and positioning of a pregnant woman’s pelvis. In addition to this, changes in hormones along with fluid retention can contribute added stress to the pelvis resulting in pain and discomfort.
Many women avoid typical medical care for this type of problem due to fears that medication could negatively affect the developing fetus. For this reason, many pregnant women suffering with pelvic pain seek non-medical forms of care. The most common non-medical care pregnant women utilize for these issues is chiropractic.
The study reports that between 3% and 8% of women who suffer pregnancy related pelvic pain have a specific form of pain known as pubic symphysis dysfunction. Pubic symphysis dysfunction is when the front bones of the pelvis, known as the pubic symphysis, experience excessive movement with possible misalignment and creates pain. According to this study, during pregnancy, this pain can be debilitating and can result in significant physical, psychological, and socioeconomic consequences.
In this case, a 28-year-old woman in her 20th week of pregnancy presented herself for chiropractic care for the first time. This was her second pregnancy and she was now suffering from painful symphysis pubic dysfunction for the past three weeks. She characterized the pain as aching, dull, stabbing and sharp, that she reported was progressively getting worse. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the worst, the woman rated her pain at 5-7 noting that it was present about 60% of the time. Her past history showed that she had suffered a fall during her previous pregnancy which also initiated pubic symphysis pain to a much lesser degree than her current pain.
A chiropractic examination was performed and it was determined that subluxations were present. Specific chiropractic adjustments, appropriate for pregnancy, were started. The study recorded that after three chiropractic adjustments, the woman’s pain had completely resolved and she once again had full mobility. After the third chiropractic adjustment, the woman continued care and did not experience any additional symphysis pubic dysfunction during the rest of her pregnancy. She went on to deliver a healthy baby boy. After her pregnancy, the woman also reported that she had greater comfort while walking.
In their conclusion, the authors of the study stated, “This case report provides supporting evidence on the benefits of chiropractic care for the pregnant woman with pelvic bowl dysfunction.”
A research case study distributed on April 9, 2019, documented chiropractic helping a woman with anxiety, panic attacks, low back pain and neck pain. The study was originally published in the Volume 2, 2019, edition of the Journal of Contemporary Chiropractic.
The study begins by noting how common a problem lower back and neck pain are. “Low back and neck pain are a significant public health problem affecting increasing numbers of people. In 2015, low back and neck pain were the 4th leading cause of disability-adjusted life years after ischemic heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, and lower respiratory infection.”
The study also reports that, according to the Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study of 2015, mental disorders were among the highest-ranking causes of nonfatal burdens worldwide. Anxiety which they defined as the “fear or nervousness about what might happen” is the 9th leading cause of nonfatal disability.
In this case, a 38-year-old woman suffering with low back discomfort for 2 years, plus neck pain for the past 6 months and a 3-month history of anxiety and panic attacks, presented herself for a chiropractic evaluation. She stated that her back pain was constant for the past two years but got worse when she was under stress. The woman rated her neck pain as 6 out of 10, and it was made worse when sitting at a desk and leaning forward. These problems affected her ability to get a good night’s sleep.
For the prior three months, the woman had also been suffering with anxiety and panic attacks. Her general physician diagnosed her with mild anxiety, but she was not given any medication or referred out for therapy of any kind.
A chiropractic examination was performed which included a postural analysis, range of motion evaluation, spinal palpation, a surface EMG study, and a thermography heat study. In addition, a PHQ-4 instrument was used to access the woman’s anxiety and depression. The PHQ-4 instrument is a commonly used self-reported assessment short-form that accurately measures depression and anxiety. It has been shown to be reliable and accurate. The woman’s initial PHQ-4 score was indicative of mild depression and anxiety.
Based on the presence of subluxations, specific forms of chiropractic care were started. By the 6th visit the woman reported that her neck pain was only present occasionally and had gone from what she rated as a 6 out of 10 down to a 1 or 2 out of 10. She also noted that her back pain had also gone away causing her to comment that she “rarely noticed back and neck pain.”
The PHQ-4 screening instrument showed that her anxiety and depression had reduced to almost not being present at all. In addition, the woman showed improvements in her ability to manage stress, as well as her physical functioning and mental and emotional wellbeing.
The study authors summed up the finding in this case by reporting that chiropractic care “…for the assessment and correction of vertebral subluxation, was associated with resolution of subjectively reported musculoskeletal discomfort, improvement in measured mental health and physical function in a 38-year-old female.” They explained how chiropractic was able to help this patient by stating, “One approach to chiropractic care aims to optimize health and wellbeing through enhancing nervous system function by correction or reduction of vertebral subluxation, typically by manual adjustments.”
This headline comes from a March 13, 2019, article published by the Australian Spinal Research Foundation. The article reviews recent research showing that reaction times are improved for healthy individuals under chiropractic care. The article also reviewed previous research that also supports quicker reaction time with chiropractic.
The article begins by reporting on the latest research: “A 2019 study is the latest to add to the evidence in the field of chiropractic care and human performance. The study, a randomized controlled trial conducted at an Army Hospital, looked at the effect of ‘chiropractic manipulative therapy’ on reaction times in special operations forces military personnel.”
The research reported on in this article was published in the BioMed Central journal Trials, on January 3, 2019. In this research, the authors of the study describe the background of the study by saying, “Chiropractic manipulative therapy (CMT) has been shown to improve reaction time in some clinical studies. Slight changes in reaction time can be critical for military personnel, such as special operation forces (SOF). This trial was conducted to test whether CMT could lead to improved reaction and response time in combat-ready SOF-qualified personnel reporting little or no pain.”
The study was performed at Blanchfield Army Community Hospital, Fort Campbell, KY. Subjects in the research included 77 United States special operations forces (SOF) male personnel over the age of 19. These servicemen were divided into two groups. One group received four chiropractic adjustments, described in the study as CMT (chiropractic manipulative therapy), over a four-week period while the control group did not. On each visit, reaction times using three specific tests were performed before and after each adjustment for the chiropractic group. The control group had reaction times measured for each visit both initially, and then remeasured after a five-minute waiting period.
The results showed that for each of the tests, the group that received a chiropractic adjustment showed faster reaction times when compared to the control group. In their conclusion the researchers noted, “A single session of CMT was shown to have an immediate effect of reducing the time required for asymptomatic SOF qualified personnel to complete a complex whole-body motor response task.”
The implications of these findings were explained by the researchers when they stated, “United States military special operation forces (SOF) personnel are required to maintain high levels of physical fitness and the ability to perform activities requiring quick reactions to diverse situations, including those that can be life-threatening. Therefore, a high level of neurological function is one necessary component of maintaining the combat readiness of SOF personnel.”
In the study, the adjustments given would have been focused toward the correction of subluxations. Since subluxations cause interference that can affect nerve function, correction of subluxations should lead to improved nervous system function, and in this study, quicker reaction times. In the Australian Spinal Research Foundation article conclusion, the author broadens the implication of the study findings by stating, “It is exciting to see yet more research indicate that a well-tuned nervous system is one that can assess, adapt and respond to the world around it more quickly than a nervous system in which subluxations may still exist.”