The Nervous System
Chiropractic care tends to the nervous system. The nervous system consists of your brain, spinal cord and thousands of miles of nerves throughout your body. As the most important system in your body, it controls, communicates with and regulates all other systems, cells, glands and tissues.
Ninety-five percent of your nerves provide control and co-ordinate function. However, only five percent go to pain. The nervous system sends messages at 435 km/h! Anything compromising this speed reduces the expression of health in your body.
Chiropractic reduces stress on the human body. Postural, physical, traumatic, emotional and chemical stressors constantly surround you and have the potential to affect your body. It is the manner in which your body interacts, adapts and responds to stressful events that is important. If your body cannot process a stress fully, it stores this energy and creates patterns of potential energy, which is stored energy and does not serve the body. Exposing the body to stress over time that it cannot fully integrate results in Subluxation. However, everybody has a different subluxation pattern, as every body is different.
A subluxated system is not as efficient at adapting to your environment and future stresses. Patterns of stress can manifest in different people as different symptoms such as headaches, migraines, low back pain, breathing problems, low energy, sickness, depression and digestive concerns to anything that represents a lowered expression of health.
Chiropractic is distinct from other medical practices
In the presence of subluxation
You are always less than 100 percent connected.
When you are less than 100 percent connected you can never reach your full potential in any area.
There is no alternative to chiropractic. It is the only profession that deals with the detection and correction of nerve interference.
Chiropractic can never be about the treatment of disease but it is always about taking care of dis-ease.
The innate intelligence of the body is always greater than the finite intelligence of our conscious minds.
Doctors of Chiropractic are the only health care professionals who are thoroughly trained in the detection, location and correction of vertebral subluxations. It requires years of training and clinical practice for a chiropractor to master the analysis and procedures needed to understand and correct subluxations.
The information presented on these pages is only a small preview into the scientific and clinical understanding of subluxation. We present these pages just to offer an initial orientation into the complexity effects of subluxations. However, if you have additional questions, please ask us.
In simplest terms, a subluxation (a.k.a. Vertebral Subluxation) is when one or more of the bones of your spine (vertebrae) move out of position and create pressure on, or irritate spinal nerves. Spinal nerves are the nerves that come out from between each of the bones in your spine. This pressure or irritation on the nerves then causes those nerves to malfunction and interfere with the signals traveling over those nerves.
How does this affect you? Your nervous system controls and coordinates all the functions of your body. If you interfere with the signals traveling over nerves, parts of your body will not get the proper nerve messages and will not be able to function at 100% of their innate abilities. In other words, some part of your body will not be working properly.
It is the responsibility of the Doctor of Chiropractic to locate subluxations, and reduce or correct them. A series of chiropractic adjustments are designed specifically to correct the vertebral subluxations in your spine. Chiropractors are the only professionals who undergo years of training to be the experts at correcting subluxations.
Now the detailed explanation
Subluxations are really a combination of changes going on at the same time. These changes occur both in your spine and throughout your body. For this reason, chiropractors often refer to vertebral subluxations as the “Vertebral Subluxation Complex”, or “VSC” for short.
In the VSC, various things are happening inside your body simultaneously. These various changes, known as “components,” are all part of the vertebral subluxation complex. Chiropractors commonly recognize five categories of components present in the VSC.
The Osseous Component
First, the osseous (bone) component (sometimes known as kinesiopathology) is where the vertebrae are either out of position, not moving properly, or are undergoing physical changes such as degeneration.
The Nerve Component
Next is the nerve component, or the malfunctioning of the nerve. Research has shown that only a small amount of pressure on spinal nerves can have a profound impact on the function of the nerves. This component is scientifically known as neuropathology.
The Muscle Component
Since the muscles help hold the vertebrae in place, and since nerves control the muscles themselves, muscles are an integral part of any VSC. In fact, muscles both affect, and are affected by the VSC. This component is known as myopathology.
The Soft Tissue Component
The soft tissue component is when you have misaligned vertebrae and pressure on nerves resulting in changes in the surrounding soft tissues. This means the tendons, ligaments, blood supply, and other tissues undergo changes. Known as histopathology, these changes can occur at the point of the VSC or far away at some end point of the affected nerves.
The Chemical Component
The chemical component often known as biochemical abnormalities, is when all these components of the VSC are acting on your body, and therefore causing some degree of chemical changes. These chemical changes can be slight or massive.
Chiropractors have known about the dangers of subluxations for over one hundred years. However, more scientific evidence today is showing the dangers of subluxations and the health benefits of correcting them. To be truly healthy, it is vital that your nervous system be functioning free of interference from subluxations. Overall, our goal is to allow your body to return itself to the highest level of health possible by correcting VSC. Chiropractors are the ONLY health professionals trained to detect, locate, and, lastly, correct the VSC.
Evidence-Based Healthcare has three (3) major components; first, the Doctors clinical experience and expertise, then the patient’s value and expectation for care and finally, the best external evidence available.
There is an extensive amount of scientific papers on the subject of chiropractic and closely related topics which can be found at any large university health library, such as those found at the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College in Toronto.
Below is an example list of the various types of studies on a wide assortment of topics. The design types include Meta-Analysis, Systematic Reviews, Randomized Control Trials (RCT), Cohort Studies, Cross-sectionals, Case Reports as well as editorials, opinions and philosophical ideas.
Pediatric Chiropractic Care
Chiropractors have been providing safe, effective care for infants and children for over 100 years. Pediatrics is not only standard curriculum within all chiropractic colleges, but there is also post-graduate level training programs for doctors who decide to pursue the field at a ‘mastery’ and advanced level. The World Health Organizations (WHO) has also set out a strictly followed curriculum of standards for all chiropractic colleges, which includes pediatric care.
There are published pediatric chiropractic textbooks, clinical practice guidelines addressing best practices for chiropractic care of young children in addition to many peer-reviewed research journals on the subject of pediatric chiropractic care.
Alderson, R. Scott, DC, and George J. Muhs, DC, DABCN, CCN. “The Effects of Mild Compression on Spinal Nerve Roots with Implications for Models of Vertebral Subluxation and Clinical Effects of Chiropractic Adjustment.” J. Vertebral Subluxation Res. 4.2 (2001): n.pag. Print.
Budgell, Brian S. “Reflex Effects of Subluxation: The Autonomic Nervous System.”Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 23.2 (2000): 104-06. Print.
Carrick, Frederick R., DC, PhD. “Changes in Brain Function after Manipulation of the Cervical Spine.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther 20.8 (1997): 529-45. Print.
Dishman, J. Donald, Douglas S. Greco, and Jeanmarie R. Burke. “Motor-Evoked Potentials Recorded from Lumbar Erector Spinae Muscles: A Study of Corticospinal Excitability Changes Associated with Spinal Manipulation.” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 31.4 (2008): 258-70. Print.
Eingorn, Alex M., and George J. Muhs. “Rationale for Assessing the Effects of Manipulative Therapy on Autonomic Tone by Analysis of Heart Rate Variability.” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 22.3 (1999): 161-65. Print.
Haavik-Taylor, Heidi, and Bernadette Murphy. “Cervical Spine Manipulation Alters Sensorimotor Integration: A Somatosensory Evoked Potential Study.” Clinical Neurophysiology 118.2 (2007): 391-402. Print.
Taylor, Heidi Haavik, and Bernadette Murphy. “Altered Sensorimotor Integration With Cervical Spine Manipulation.” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 31.2 (2008): 115-26. Print.
Taylor, Heidi Haavik, and Bernadette Murphy. “The Effects of Spinal Manipulation on Central Integration of Dual Somatosensory Input Observed After Motor Training: A Crossover Study.” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics33.4 (2010): 261-72. Print.
Kent, Christopher, DC. “Models of Vertebral Subluxation: A Review.” J Vertebral Sub Res 1.1 (1996): 11-17. Print.
Rome, Peter L., DC, MACC. “Neurovertebral Influence on Visceral and ANS Function: Some of the Evidence To Date – Part II: Somatovisceral.” Chiropr J
Aust 40 (2010): 9-33. Print.
Sato, Akio, MD, PhD. “The Reflex Effects of Spinal Somatic Nerve Stimulation on Visceral Function.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther 15.1 (1992):
Scheer, Justin K., Jessica A. Tang, Justin S. Smith, Frank L. Acosta, Themistocles S. Protopsaltis, Benjamin Blondel, Shay Bess, Christopher I. Shaffrey, Vedat Deviren, Virginie Lafage, Frank Schwab, and Christopher P. Ames. “Cervical Spine Alignment, Sagittal Deformity, and Clinical Implications.” Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine 19.2 (2013): 141-59. Print.
Schey, William L. “Vertebral Malformations and Associated Somatovisceral Abnormalities.” Clin. Radiol. 27 (1976): 341-53. Print.
Harrison, Donald, Tad. J. Janik, S. J. Troyanovich, D. Harrison and Chris Colloca. “Evaluation of the Assumptions Used to Derive an Ideal Normal Cervical Spine Model”. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics. (1997): 246.
S. J., D. Harrison and D. D. Harrison. “Structural Rehabilitation of the Spine and Posture: Rational for Treatment Beyond the Resolution of Symptoms”. Jornal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics. (1998): 37.
Seaman, David R., DC, and James F. Winterstein, DC. “Dysafferentation: A Novel Term to Describe the Neuropathophysiological Effects of Joint Complex Dysfunction. A Look at Likely Mechanisms of Symptom Generation.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther 21 (1998): 267-80. Print.
Slosberg, Malik, DC. “Effects of Altered Afferent Articular Input on Sensation, Proprioception, Muscle Tone and Sympathetic Reflex Responses.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther11 (1988): 400-08. Print.
Welch, Arlene, and Ralph Boone. “Sympathetic and Parasympathetic Responses to Specific Diversified Adjustments to Chiropractic Vertebral Subluxations of the Cervical and Thoracic Spine.” Journal of Chiropractic Medicine 7.3 (2008): 86-93. Print.
Troyanovich, S. J., Deed Harrison, D. D. Harrison. “Structural Rehabilitation of the Spine and Posture: Rational For Treatment Beyond The Resolution of Symptoms”. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapy.(1998): 037-047.
- Graham, Robert L., DC, and Richard A. Pistolese, BS. “An Impairment Rating Analysis Of Asthmatic Children Under Chiropractic Care.” J Vertebral Sub Res 1.4 (1997): 1-8. Print.
- Glaberzon, Brian J., DC, MHSc, Jenna Arts, BA (Hons), and Emily McManus, BScK (Hons), MHA. “The Use of Spinal Manipulative Therapy for Pediatric Health Conditions: A Systematic Review of the Literature.” J Can Chiropr Assoc. 56.2 (2012): 128-41. Print.
- Bronfort, Gert, Roni L. Evans, Paul Kubic, and Patty Filkinb. “Chronic Pediatric Asthma and Chiropractic Spinal Manipulation: A Prospective Clinical Series and Randomized Clinical Pilot Study.” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 24.6 (2001): 369-77. Print.
- Alcantara, Joel, and James Davis. “The Chiropractic Care of Children With Attention- Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: A Retrospective Case Series.” EXPLORE: The Journal of Science and Healing 6.3 (2010): 173-82.
- Reed, W. R., DC, S. Beavers, DC, S. K. Reddy, DC, and G. Kern, DC. “Chiropractic Management of Primary Nocturnal Enuresis.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther 17.9 (194): 596-600. Print.
- Bastecki, V, Harrison, D. and J. W. Hass. “Cervical Kyphosis Is A Possible Link To Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.” J. Maniulative Physiological Therapy. 2004: 27 e14.
Khorshid, Khaled A., Roy Sweat, D. Zemba and Brett Zemba. “Clinical Efficacy of Upper Cervical Versus Full Spine Chiropractic Care on Children with Autism: A Randomized Clinical Trial”. Journal of Vertebral Subluxation
JVSR. (2006): 1-7.
Slak, Linda, DC, CACCP, CABCDD, and Katherine A. Wilson, DC. “Resolution of Breastfeeding Difficulty Following Subluxation Based Chiropractic Care.” J. Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health Jan.17 (2013): 7-10. Print.
- Wiberg, Jesper M.m., Jan Nordsteen, and Niels Nilsson. “The Short-term Effect of Spinal Manipulation in the Treatment of Infantile Colic: A Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial with a Blinded Observer.” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 22.8 (1999): 517-22. Print. Eister, E. “Infants with Acid Reflux and Colic Undergoing Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care to Correct Vertebral Subluxations: A Retrospective Analysis of Outcome”. Journal of Pediatric, Maternal and Family Health. (2009): 1-7.
- Olafsdottir E, Forshei S, Fluge G, T. Marestad. “Randomized controlled trial of Infantile Colic treated with Chiropractic Spinal Manipulation” Arch Dis-Child 2001; 84: 138-141.
- Miller J, Newell D and J. Bolton. “Efficacy of Chiropractic Manual Therapy on Infant Colic: A Pragmatic Single-Blind, Randomized Controlled Trial” Journal of Manipulative And Physiological Therapeutics June 30: 2012.
- Eulitt, H. Kala, DC, and Vivian Giannakakis, DC. “Resolution of Chronic Constipation, Fecal Incontinence, and Abdominal Pain in an 8 Year Old Child Following Chiropractic Care: A Case Study & Selective Review of the Literature.” A. Vertebral Subluxation Res Jan.20 (2014): n. pag. Print.
- Manabe, Noriaki, Toshiaki Tanaka, Jiro Hata, Hiroaki Kusunoki, and Ken Haruma. “Pathophysiology Underlying Irritable Bowel Syndrome -From the Viewpoint of Dysfunction of Autonomic Nervous System Activity-.” Journal of Smooth Muscle Research 45.1 (2009): 15-23. Print.
- Bogduk, Nikolai, and Narayan Yoganandan. “Biomechanics of the Cervical Spine Part 3: Minor Injuries.” Clinical Biomechanics 16.4 (2001): 267-75.
- Curatolo, Michele, Steen Petersen-Felix, Lars Arendt-Nielsen, Carmela Giani, Alex M. Zbinden, and Bogdan P. Radanov. “Central Hypersensitivity in Chronic Pain After Whiplash Injury.” The Clinical Journal of Pain 17.4 (2001): 306-15. Print.
- Hawk, Cheryl, Raheleh Khorsan, Anthony J. Lisi, Randy J. Ferrance, and Marion Willard Evans. “Chiropractic Care for Nonmusculoskeletal Conditions: A Systematic Review with Implications for Whole Systems Research.” The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 13.5 (2007): 491-512. Print.
- Schoenen, J. “Exteroceptive Suppression of Temporalis Muscle Activity in Patients with Chronic Headache and in Normal Volunteers: Methodology, Clinical and Pathophysiological Relevance.” Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain33.1 (1993): 3-17. Print.
- Bryans, Roland, Martin Descarreaux, Mireille Duranleau, Henri Marcoux, Brock Potter, Rick Ruegg, Lynn Shaw, Robert Watkin, and Eleanor White. “Evidence-Based Guidelines for the Chiropractic Treatment of Adults With Headache.” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 34.5 (2011): 274-89. Print.
- Alcantara, Joel, and Martine Cossette. “Intractable Migraine Headaches during Pregnancy under Chiropractic Care.” Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice 15.4 (2009): 192-97. Print.
- Biondi, David M. “Noninvasive Treatments for Headache.” Expert Review of Neurotherapeutics 5.3 (2005): 355-62. Print.
Bakris, G., M. Dickholtz, P. M. Meyer, G. Kravitz, E. Avery, M. Miller, J. Brown, C. Woodfield, and B. Bell. “Atlas Vertebra Realignment and Achievement of Arterial Pressure Goal in Hypertensive Patients: A Pilot Study.” Journal of Human Hypertension (2007): n. pag. Print.
- Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 2013 “Suboccipital decompression heart rate variability changes”
- Rehabilitation Research and Practice; May 29, 2014 Effects of Posteroanterior Thoracic Mobilization on Heart Rate Variability and Pain in Women with Fibromyalgia
- The Journal of Neuroscience Aug 1, 2007 “The Neurochemically Diverse Intermedius Nucleus of the Medulla as a Source of Excitatory and Inhibitory Synaptic Input to the NTS”
- Journal of Chemical Neuroanatomy November 2009 “The intermedius nucleus of the medulla: A potential site for the integration of cervical information and the generation of autonomic responses.”
Alcantara, Joel, DC, Gregg Stern, DC, and Rosemary E. Oman, DC, MSc, FASBE. “Female Infertility, Subluxation & Chiropractic Care: A Case Series and Selective Review of the Literature.” J. Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health(2009): n. pag. Print.
- Heymann, Wolfgang J. Von, Patrick Schloemer, Juergen Timm, and Bernd Muehlbauer. “Spinal High-Velocity Low Amplitude Manipulation in Acute Nonspecific Low Back Pain.” Spine 38.7 (2013): 540-48. Print.
- Hurwitz, Eric L., Hal Morgenstern, Gerald F. Kominski, Fei Yu, and Lu-May Chiang. “A Randomized Trial of Chiropractic and Medical Care for
Patients With Low Back Pain.” Spine 31.6 (2006): 611-21. Print.
- Efficacy of spinal manipulation and mobilization for low back pain and neck pain: a systematic review and best evidence synthesis.
- Reed, W. R., DC, S. Beavers, DC, S. K. Reddy, DC, and G. Kern, DC. “Chiropractic Management of Primary Nocturnal Enuresis.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther 17.9 (194): 596-600. Print.
- Poecke, Ailsa J. Van, and Christina Cunliffe. “Chiropractic Treatment for Primary Nocturnal Enuresis: A Case Series of 33 Consecutive Patients.” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 32.8 (2009): 675-81.
- Fallon, Joan M., DC, FICCP. “Role of the Chiropractic Adjustment in the Care of 332 Children with Otitis Media.” J Clinical Chiro Ped 2.2 (1997): 174-83. Print.
- Stone-McCoy, Pamela, DC, CACCP, and Chantelle Korn, DC. “Resolution of Otitis Media & Avoidance of Tympanostomy Tubes in a 16-Month Old with Birth Trauma Following Subluxation Based Care: A Case Study and Selective Review of Literature.” J. Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health May.28 (2013): 39-46. Print.
- Ohm, Jeanne, DC, and Joel Alcantara, DC. “The Webster Technique: Definition, Application and Implications.” J. Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health May.10 (2012): 49-53. Print.
- Sadr, Shabnam, Neda Pourkiani-Allah-Abad, and Kent Stuber. “The Treatment Experience of Patients with Low Back Pain during Pregnancy and Their Chiropractors: A Qualitative Study.”
- Chiropractic & Manual Therapies 20.1 (2012): 32. Print.
- Alcantara, Joel, Jeanne Ohm, and Derek Kunz. “The Safety and Effectiveness of Pediatric Chiropractic: A Survey of Chiropractors and Parents in a Practice-Based Research Network.” EXPLORE: The Journal of Science and Healing 5.5 (2009): 290-95.
- Alcantara, Joel. “A Critical Appraisal of the Systematic Review on Adverse Events Associated With Pediatric Spinal Manipulative Therapy. A Chiropractic Perspective”. Journal of Pediatric, Maternal and Family Health. March 9, 2010.
- Thiel, Hw, Je Bolton, S. Docherty, and Jc Portlock. “Safety of Chiropractic Manipulation of the Cervical Spine: A Prospective National Survey.” Focus on Alternative and Complementary Therapies 11 (2006): 47. Print.
- Oliphant, Drew. “Safety of Spinal Manipulation in the Treatment of Lumbar Disk Herniations: A Systematic Review and Risk Assessment.” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 27.3 (2004): 197-210. Print.
- Klougart, N., DC, C. Leboeuf-Yde, DC, and L. R. Rasmussen, DC. “Safety in Chiropractic Practice, Part I; The Occurrence of Cerebrovascular Accidents after Manipulation to the Neck in Denmark from 1978-1988.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther 19.6 (1996): 371-77. Print.
- Alcantara, Joal, Ohm, Jeanne and Kunz, K. “A practice-ased prospective study on the incidence and prevalence of adverse events associated with pediatric chiropractic spinal manipulative therapy”. International Pediatric Chiropractic Association. Print.
- Joyce, E. Miller, Benfield, K. “Adverse Effects of Spinal Manipulative Therapy in Children Younger Than 3 Years: A Retrospective Study in a Chiropractic Teaching Clinic”. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics. July 2008 V.31 Issue 6. Pg: 419-423.
- Joel Alcantara “A critical appraisal of the systematic review on adverse events associated with pediatric spinal manipulative therapy: A chiropractic perspective”. Pediatric, Maternal and Family Health March 9; 2010. (a critical look into the Vohra et al study of 2007).
- Klougart, N., DC, C. Leboeuf-Yde, DC, and L. R. Rasmussen, DC. “Safety in Chiropractic Practice. Part II: Treatment to the Upper Neck and the Rate of Cerebrovascular Incidents.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther 19.9 (1996): 563-69. Print.
- Cassidy, J.D., E. Boyle, Pierre Cote, Yaohua He, Sheilah Hogg-Johnson,Frank Silver and Susan Bondy. “Risk of Vertebrobasilar Stroke and Chiropractic Care”. SPINE (2008) 45: S176-S193
- Dabbs, V., DC, and W. J. Lauretti, DC. “A Risk Assessment of Cervical Manipulation vs. NSAIDs for the Treatment of Neck Pain.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther 18.8 (1995): 530-36.Print.
- Hayes, N, Bezilla, T. “Incidence of iatrogenesis Associated with Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment of Pediatric Patients”. Journal of the American Osteopath Association. 2006,106: 605-608
- Todd, AJ, Carroll, MT, Mitchell, EK. “Forces of Commonly Used Chiropractic Techniques for Children: A review of the literature”. J. Manipulative Physiology Therapeutic. 2016 July -Aug 39(6) 401-10.
Biedermann, Heiner, MD. “Manual Medicine of Functional Disorders in Children.”Medical Veritas 3 (2006): 803-14. Print.
- Alcantara J, Plaugher G, Klemp DD, Salem C. “Chiropractic care of a patient with temporomandibular disorder and atlas subluxation.” J. Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2002 Jan; 25(1): 63-70.
- Cherian K, Cherian J, Cook C, Kaltenbach JA. “Improving tinnitus with mechanical treatment of the cervical spine and jaw.” J Am Acad Audio. 2013 Jul-Aug; 24(7): 544-55.
- Emary, P. “Chiropractic management of a 40-year-old female patient with Meniere Disease” Journal of Chiropractic Medicine. 2010 Mar; 9(1): 22-27