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Posts Tagged ‘spinal cord’

Brain Injury (journal)

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A recent case study published by the legendary Dr. Roy Sweat is linking head trauma, concussions and seizures together.  According to the case study there are about 500,000 brain injuries in the United States every year. Of the people hospitalized for a brain injury only 5-7% ever experience a seizure disorder from their injury. Seizures within the first week of a brain injury, in the elderly, and immediate seizures (within 24 hours of a brain injury), are more likely to lead to post concussion seizures.

Dr. Sweat’s patient had developed a number of symptoms as a result of the head injury 10 years earlier, where she slipped and fell getting out of the shower and hit the back of her head.  She immediately had a migraine and a seizure and was taken to the emergency room.  Later she was released after medical tests were normal.  She continued to have symptoms sporadically over the next 10 years finally getting progressively worse in the last part of the decade including:

  • Positional seizures (When bending forward she would experience a seizure that would leave her unable to walk or talk for several days)
  • A wide gait, left sided walking and swaying that got progressively worse
  • Extreme exhaustion
  • Restricted range of motion in her neck
  • Blurred vision
  • Blood Pressure fluctuations (Ranging from high blood pressure to low blood pressure)

After a thorough evaluation in an upper cervical chiropractic office the 76-year-old patient was found to have an Atlas Misalignment based on objective measurements.  She was then x-rayed and her misalignment was mathematically calculated to decide the type of correction that was necessary.

After her first Atlas correction she was able to look over her shoulders, her wide gait was improved. She was no longer feeling like a seizure was coming on.  After 2 months of care the patient was re-evaluated and the objective findings were much improved including neurological, muscular and postural testing. The patient had no seizures since the first correction, normal, pain-free neck rotation, normal walking pattern, increased energy, improved clarity and brightness in her vision and improved hearing. The patient has her blood pressure checked regularly with her family practitioner and no longer experiences blood pressure fluctuation.

So what about you?

Have you ever had a concussion?  Lost consciousness?  Had stitches to your head?

Has is that trauma effecting you?  Maybe you are having seizures or some other symptoms that are effecting the quality of your life.

Then an upper neck evaluation is extremely important.  There are very few doctors that have the training and experience required to properly evaluate and correct an underlying cause of a variety of different health problems called an Atlas Misalignment.

To find a doctor in your area go to www.upcspine.com or if you are in the southern california area go to www.nuccawellness.com

Dr. William R. Davis Jr., D.C. is a Vista Chiropractor and Upper Cervical Specialist. He is in private practice in Southern California in the city of Vista. He specializes in correcting problems in the upper cervical spine (upper neck). This vital area is intimately connected to the central nervous system and problems in this area have been shown to be an underlying cause of a variety of different health problems. More information can be found on his website at http://www.nuccawellness.com

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Cervical spine MRI with enhancement showing mu...

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A recent case study published in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research titled “Improvement in a Female with Multiple Sclerosis Undergoing Chiropractic Care Utilizing Toggle Recoil Technique: A Case Report” by John Taylor Thornhill, DC.  Again raises the question…

…is Multiple Sclerosis related to trauma to the head and neck?

On this blog in the past we have looked at the correlation between blood flow studies and head and neck trauma (http://wp.me/pscJU-5Q).  We have looked at the research out of Europe demonstrating how an invasive surgery to the veins that drain from the brain is showing remarkable improvement in MS patients (http://wp.me/pscJU-5L).  And now another study linking MS to the neck.

Approximately 400,000 Americans have MS and every hour someone is newly diagnosed.  Worldwide, MS affects approximately 2.1 million people.  No two people experience the symptoms of MS the same way nor do any two individuals show the same progression of the disease. The Central Nervous System dysfunction associated with MS results in a wide variety of neurological symptoms ranging from tingling, numbness, and slurred speech to visual disturbances, changes in brain function, and paralysis in severe cases.

Some chiropractors specialize in techniques focused solely on the upper cervical area of the spine (upper neck). These techniques have been shown to have a global effect on physiology with positive outcomes in patients with upper neck misalignments.  It should be noted that the objective however is not to treat the presenting symptom as much as it is to reduce the upper cervical misalignment  itself for the inherent benefit of improving the function of the nervous system.

The positive outcomes from this type of correction have been observed in all age groups from pediatric to geriatric. Upper cervical chiropractic care has been shown to be safe in spite of complicated case presentations including those with previous spinal injury due to trauma, infection, or other abnormality.

There is growing evidence linking previous trauma to the onset and diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis, implying a connection between stability of the cervical spine and the onset of the disease.  Dr. Elster has also reported on some promising work on the effects of upper cervical specific chiropractic care and the positive outcomes of MS patients further linking the progression of the disease with the position and stability of the upper cervical spine (http://www.erinelster.com/PDFabstract.aspx?PDFID=10).

With all of the evidence pointing in this direction…doesn’t it make sense to at least evaluate that area of the body to see if you could be helped with Upper Cervical Specific Chiropractic Care, such as NUCCA?

You have nothing to lose and much to gain from an evaluation!

To get a thorough Upper Cervical Spine Examination contact our office www.nuccawellness.com or if you are not in the Southern California area go to www.nucca.org or www.upcpine.com.

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United Cerebral Palsy

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Cerebral Palsy (CP) is the most prevalent lifelong developmental disability in the United States.  Recently I have seen a tremendous change in a patient with Cerebral Palsy and began investigating the impact that upper neck misalignments have on people diagnosed with CP.

Dr. William Amalu of the International Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association has published an amazing case study of a 5-year-old boy confined to a wheelchair with Cerebral Palsy, blindness, chronic ear infections, and severe seizures (30 per day).

After a thorough evaluation the patient was determined to have an upper neck misalignment and Dr. Amalu began a course of care.  After the first adjustment, the patient’s mother noted that he had his first good night sleep in weeks. After the second adjustment, the patient’s seizures reduced dramatically to only 10 per day, his vocal drone became a quiet intermittent moan, and he began to clap his hands. His mother noted that he had become more alert, continued to sleep more soundly, began sitting up and looking around, responded to sounds by looking toward the source, and continued with a decrease in seizures to only 5 per day.

During the third and fourth week of care the seizures continued to occur at 5 per day, but all grand mals had ceased. He was sleeping completely through the nights now.  For the first time in his life he said “dada”. By the end of the fourth week, his therapists suspected that his vision was suddenly improving.  A re-examination of the patient was also performed at this time. There were no signs of any: vocal drone, writhing motions, upper neck muscle spasms or tenderness, restricted neck ranges of motion, or ear fluid.  He was now capable of sitting up on his own and his mother reported that for the first time he pulled himself up and stood for over one minute. He began showing fine motor skills this week by grabbing his own pacifier and placing it in his mouth. The patient now showed avoidance to bright light, visual fixation and following, and normal direct and pupil reflexes. His mother noted that this was his first month free from ear infections in 9 months.

By the end of the fifth week of care the patient was seen by his neurologist and ophthalmologist. His ophthalmologist noted a drastic improvement with a recovery of central field vision. The patient’s neurologist reported that his CP had greatly improved and that he would be requesting further tests to evaluate his seizure condition.

The patient’s follow-up examination with his pediatrician noted that his ears were normal and that tubes would not be necessary.  During the time period between the seventh and twelfth week, the patient’s seizures steadily reduced to the point of staring episodes only.

There were no outward signs of seizures by the end of the twelfth week.  Over the next 10 months, the patient continued to improve. His neurologist slowly reduced his medication causing his staring episodes to go away. With further testing, the patient was eventually classified as non-epileptic and final withdrawal of all medication was made. He never experienced another episode of the ear infections. His vision improved to the point where he was prescribed glasses. The patient continued to learn simple words with clear pronunciation of “dada, mama, eat, and food”. His fine motor coordination improved such that he was learning to feed himself. The patient’s mother noted that he was also potty training. His gross motor coordination continually progressed to the point that he was able to walk slowly with the assistance of holding one hand.

Absolutely incredible!

Another study was published where seven patients were tested – two children and five adults. All patients in this study had improvements in many areas including decreased muscle spasms, improved sleep patterns, decreased irritability, decreased pain, and decreased incidence of respiratory and other infections. One child had four unsuccessful surgeries to correct strabismus (crossed eyes) after two adjustments, the crossed eyes were gone. The children were able to hold their heads up for longer periods and are making more attempts at crawling or standing with support. There is also improved clarity and volume of speech in patients with speech and hearing problems. With care, there is overall decrease in muscle activity at all levels and balance improved with eyes closed.

It is clear to see from this research that the connection between neurological conditions like Cerebral Palsy and the upper neck area should be investigated.  The brain stem dysfunction that is present with an upper neck misalignment is significant and a variety of different conditions can be caused or exacerbated by this type of a problem.

All Cerebral Palsy victims should be evaluated for upper neck misalignments and brain stem dysfunction as soon as possible.

If you are in Southern California go to www.nuccawellness.com if not visit www.nucca.org or www.upcspine.com

Dr. William R. Davis Jr., D.C. is a Vista Chiropractor and Upper Cervical Specialist. He is in private practice in Southern California in the city of Vista. He specializes in correcting problems in the upper cervical spine (upper neck). This vital area is intimately connected to the central nervous system and problems in this area have been shown to be an underlying cause of a variety of different health problems. More information can be found on his website at http://www.nuccawellness.com

References:

Amalu, W. Today’s Chiropractic May / June 1998.  Cortical Blindness, Cerebral Palsy, Epilepsy, and Recurring Otitis Media: A Case Study in Chiropractic Management.

Collins, KF et al. Chiropractic Pediatrics 1994; 1 (1):13-15

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Dizzy

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Vertigo, dizziness, disequilibrium and many other of these types of conditions can be directly related to old head and neck injuries that have never been properly addressed and the underlying damage to the upper neck has led to dysfunction in the ears, the balancing system of the body or both.

When the head or neck is injured the upper neck (Atlas & Axis) frequently become twisted and misaligned leading to a slight displacement of the head…sometimes by as little as 3/4 of a degree.  Once the heavy head (10-14 lbs) is tilting to the side the brain has to compensate for that change through the righting reflex to keep the eyes and ears level with the horizon at all times.

The entire structure of the body will twist and tilt in order to compensate for those upper neck misalignments and head tilt.  Eventually leading to pressure building up into the nerve system.  The area that is first impacted by these problems is the brain stem area, which is just basically a part of the brain that extends down into the spine and connects the the spinal cord.

The brain stem area is a key to the balance of our bodies.  This upper neck area has more pressure sensors the anywhere else in the body that feed information into the brain stem and the brain.  Also the brain stem send messages via the cranial nerves to the ears for balance as well.  Blood flow is also effected when the brain stem function is altered.

When someone is suffering from vertigo, dizziness, or disequilibrium, the brain stem is frequently involved.  Upper neck misalignments alter the brain stem function and lead to these types of problems.  When these old injuries are dealt with by the correction of the head position by a precise upper cervical corrective procedure such as NUCCA, the healing process can begin.

Holding the corrections is the key to healing, not having your spine manipulated 1000’s of times by a general chiropractor!

Now here is an example…Terry is in property management and is also an avid Bicyclist, riding up to 100 miles per week.  When he began to develop vertigo it was about 2 years after he had taken a pretty significant fall from his bike and had a motorcycle accident that seemed to make the dizziness and vertigo attacks much worse.  To the point that he was concerned even about going up on a ladder at one of his rentals.  Here is his story…

I have been suffering from vertigo (dizziness) for 6-7 years, getting more constant as the years progressed.  I tried everything…Every doctor that I could think of, EENT, general doc, vertigo specialist and finally my last hope, a NUCCA doctor.  Dr. Davis helped me almost instantly.  I have not been dizzy for 8 weeks!  Thanks Breath of Life for giving me my health back!!!

Now not all dizziness, vertigo and disequilibrium is related to head and neck traumas.  But if you have a history of those types of accidents then an evaluation with a qualified upper cervical specialist is very important.  If the underlying cause can be identified, what a difference it can make for your life!

If you or someone you know is suffering with Vertigo, dizziness or disequilibrium and you are in the Southern California area go to www.nuccawellness.com and schedule an evaluation today.  If you are anywhere else go to www.nucca.org to find a doctor near you.

Dr. William R. Davis Jr., D.C. is a Vista Chiropractor and Upper Cervical Specialist. He is in private practice in Southern California in the city of Vista. He specializes in correcting problems in the upper cervical spine (upper neck). This vital area is intimately connected to the central nervous system and problems in this area have been shown to be an underlying cause of a variety of different health problems. More information can be found on his website at http://www.nuccawellness.com

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human ear anatomy with detailed diagram
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Meniere’s Disease, Cochlear Hydrops, Tinnitus, hearing loss, chronic ear infections and even vertigo can frequently be related to trauma to the nerves from the upper neck (lower brain stem area) that go into the ears.  Upper neck trauma can lead to a variety of different ear problems due to the neurological connection.  Dr. Michael Burcon in Michigan has done excellent work in researching the connection between the upper neck and conditions like Meniere’s Disease, tinnitus, vertigo and others.

Burcon has established a link to these conditions with whiplash injuries that misalign the base of the skull with the top of the neck creating a lesion affecting the Eustachian tube. About half of these traumas are caused by car crashes and the other half from injuries involving head trauma. Burcon believes that the correlation was not made because it takes an average of fifteen years from the time the patient was injured until the onset of symptoms.

Patients typically get diagnosed with these conditions in middle age. Their injuries most often happened during high school or college years from a car accident, sports injury or fall on their heads. Few patients list these old injuries on their doctor’s admission paper work. In fact, they have often forgotten about them, believing they were not hurt if they were not admitted to the hospital.
It is possible to have fewer than the four classic symptoms of Meniere’s Disease (hearing loss, fullness, tinnitus, and vertigo) yet be diagnosed with Meniere’s Disease; this is sometimes said to be “atypical” Meniere’s Disease.  Some Meniere’s Disease patients experience hearing loss, fullness, and tinnitus with no vertigo at all, a condition sometimes described as “cochlear hydrops.”

That is the situation with one of our recent patients.  Will had been diagnosed with Cochlear Hydrops by his EENT and told that it would continue to get worse and there wasn’t much he could do about it.  After reading an article that I wrote about upper cervical and Meniere’s disease, he found some hope.  After his initial 6 weeks of care Will had noticed a 90% improvement in his ear symptoms and chronic neck pain!

When the cause is addressed amazing recovery can take place.  But the cause has to be identified and addressed.

Have you been diagnosed with Cochlear Hydrops, Meniere’s, vertigo or other ear related conditions?

Have you ever had your upper neck thoroughly evaluated to see if the underlying cause could be there?

In Southern California give us a call 760-945-1345 or go to www.nuccawellness.com

Anywhere else in the world go to www.nucca.org or www.upcspine.org

Correct the cause and end the suffering!
Dr. William R. Davis Jr., D.C. is a Vista Chiropractor and Upper Cervical Specialist. He is in private practice in Southern California in the city of Vista. He specializes in correcting problems in the upper cervical spine (upper neck). This vital area is intimately connected to the central nervous system and problems in this area have been shown to be an underlying cause of a variety of different health problems. More information can be found on his website at http://www.nuccawellness.com

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Cranial Nerves

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Cranial Nerve Compressive Syndromes such as Trigeminal Neuralgia, Bell’s Palsy, Hemifacial spasm or palsy and others.  Are among the most devastating of all health conditions both in pain and social impact. 

The medical approaches to these conditions are extremely invasive, including botox injections.  Botox, or Botulinum toxin as it is known in the scientific community, is a neurotoxic protein produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. 

Another possibility for patients suffering from these types of conditions is a type of brain surgery called Microvascular decompression is a neurosurgical procedure that can have serious complications including death, stroke, hearing loss and facial weakness.  The surgery itself can cost as much as $70 K and has about a 20% success rate. 

If a person has a history of head or neck trauma another question should be asked.  

Is the dysfunction of these cranial nerves related to a misalignment of the upper neck?

New research is suggesting just that.  A recent article published in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research  entitled Resolution of Hemifacial Spasm Following Specific Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care.  Dr. Lucian Henry describes a case study of a 48-year-old male who was able to find the solution to his condition without Botox, brain surgery or any of the side effects.

Here is his story…

48-year-old male presented with left hemifacial spasms of one-year duration, accompanied by neck pain and tension. He reported a tic causing the left eye to blink that sometimes forced the eye to almost close.  He described constant neck pain, centrally located, with tension and grinding on movement.  

He received a total of three chiropractic adjustments over a 13-day period of time, after which time he had a complete resolution of his symptoms. At a 3 month follow up the patient was still asymptomatic.

If you have these types of conditions get your upper neck properly evaluated by a specialist in the detection and correction of these misalignments in the upper neck.

If you are in the Southern California area go to www.nuccawellness.com for more info.  If you are located anywhere else in the country go to www.upcspine.com or www.nucca.org to find a specialist in your area.

Dr. William R. Davis Jr., D.C. is a Vista Chiropractor and Upper Cervical Specialist. He is in private practice in Southern California in the city of Vista. He specializes in correcting problems in the upper cervical spine (upper neck). This vital area is intimately connected to the central nervous system and problems in this area have been shown to be an underlying cause of a variety of different health problems. More information can be found on his website at http://www.nuccawellness.com

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