Atlas Spinal Care, a chiropractic clinic in California, recently reported great results from a chiropractic case study which looked into the use of vertebra realignment as a method of reducing migraine symptoms. The study has a well thought out and convincing argument, backed by some prestigious medical experts.
The report was written by Dr. D. Gordon Hasick and Dr. H. Charles Woodfield III, who are both prominent doctors in the National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association, and the study’s findings were published in the medical journal BioMed Research International. The reports authors suggest that National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association protocol might be useful in the treatment of migraines on a wider scale.
The study explored 11 different migraine sufferers who had been officially diagnosed with the condition by a neurologist. The sufferers were also found to have Atlas misalignment. This is where the top vertebra, the C1 vertebra (which is also known as the Atlas vertebra – in a nod to the Greek myth in which Atlas is the Titan supporting the world on his neck/shoulders) is slightly out of place. This misalignment can happen right from infancy as a result of childbirth trauma, but also later in life from things such as falls and whiplash. The misalignment can cause a whole host of physical and mental disorders, but it is hard to diagnose as normal X-rays and MRIs don’t allow it to show up. Another issue is that conventional medicine does not consider Atlas misalignment to be a cause of disorders in patients, and so practitioners don’t tend to seek to find out if it is there or not.
The report detailed the course of treatment that was given to the 11 sufferers. Treatment lasted for eight weeks and sought to reposition the out of place C1 vertebra. After the eight weeks were up results showed that there had been a significant reduction in the number of the patient’s migraine days.
Dr. Tymothy L. Flory, who was also involved in the study and is a head and neck specialist, has high hopes for the treatment. “In this research study we measured significant improvement in quality of life reported by the migraine sufferers, and we are beginning to understand the physiological mechanism of what causes migraine headaches.” Dr. Flory hopes that the success of the study will encourage more doctors to specialize and practice the NUCCA protocol, thus helping many more migrainers with their pain.
However, a follow-up study is needed in order to confirm the original studies results, only this time with more controls.
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