July 18, 2017

Forward Head Posture & Protracted Shoulders: How Stretching & Resistance Training Helps

Perhaps it was the birth of the smart-phone and hand-held device that triggered the onslaught of teens suffering from the effects of forward head posture and protracted shoulders. Or perhaps there were other factors at play. Either way, protracted shoulders and forward head posture are two significant postural concerns affecting the younger generations, and epidemiological studies continue to report a high prevalence of the two inter-related conditions. What do we do about it? While ergonomic advice and chiropractic care that locates, analyses and corrects the vertebral subluxation should certainly have roles in mitigating the problem, a new study has measured […]
July 18, 2017
adjustment

Study Examines Impact of Patient Position & Procedure Selection on Spine Kinematics for the Low Back

Procedure selection is an important part of every chiropractic adjustment. Knowing which procedure will stabilise or mobilise more is a significant consideration, depending on the patient’s needs. But until now, no 3-dimensional angular kinematic analysis had been done for spinal manipulation applied to HVLA for the lumbar spine – only to the cervical spine. A recent study published in JMPT in the March/April edition represents the first important step in filling that knowledge gap.  The study saw 24 participants undergo a series of 6 HVLA (High velocity low amplitude) adjustment procedures directed toward the L4 vertebra. The procedures included 2 […]
July 11, 2017
Lymphatic

The Lymphatic System – How It links To The CNS And What This Means For Chiropractic

For a long time, the science told us that there was no connection between the brain and the immune system. The brain was supposedly a privileged organ, whose cells did not need immune protection. All that changed in very recent history, due to a discovery that happened almost by accident. There was in fact a channel in the brain that had previously been compressed and then missed largely because of the way brain banks stored their specimens. It was a ground-breaking, textbook-rewriting discovery when Antoine Louveau first stumbled on this lymphatic vessel system in the brain. Previously, this vessel system […]
July 11, 2017

Parkinson’s Disease, the Gut and the Vagus Nerve

Parkinson’s Disease is one of those complex syndromes for which a definite cause has not yet been pinpointed. With the average age of diagnosis standing at 65 years, Parkinson’s Disease is a key concern for an aging population. Still, at this point in time, there is very little we know about what causes it. Theories include “genetic changes, environmental factors and oxidative stress or a combination of these [1].” A recent study published in the Journal Neurology brings us a breakthrough in the line of investigation on this debilitating condition and interestingly, it heaps more importance on gut health. The […]
July 6, 2017
Pregnancy

Stress During Pregnancy: How Too Much Stress Alters Amniotic Fluid

Many an expectant mother has battled to keep her stress levels down, all with the goal of a healthy, relaxed pregnancy. But it isn’t always possible. Still, questions remain – what are the negative effects of excessive stress on mother and baby?  A study emerging from the University of Zurich has shone a little light on the matter, revealing changes in amniotic fluid corticotropin-releasing hormones and giving us a glimpse at the effects on fetal development.  The study looked at 34 healthy women in their second trimester of pregnancy who were undergoing amniocentesis. The study examined amniotic fluid corticotropin-releasing hormone […]
July 6, 2017
chronic pain

Fear Increases Pain, But There’s Something We Can Do About It

Studies dating back more than a decade have revealed that fear of pain is a prognostic factor in chronic pain. That is, fear of pain and severity of pain are very much linked. This can create avoidance behaviour that, though helpful in the short term, can “become a maladaptive response leading to increased fear, limitation of activity, and other physical and psychological consequences that contribute to disability and persistence of pain [1].” A recent study has revealed that there is something we can do about this though, and the key lies in understanding the very thing we fear. Contemporary fear-avoidance […]
June 29, 2017

The Role Of Research In The Protection And Preservation Of Chiropractic

At the recent Dynamic Growth Congress, we asked some leading voices in chiropractic why it is important to invest in quality research into the vertebral subluxation. Listen to Dr Patrick Sim, one of the key drivers behind the Australian Chiropractic College, talk about the significant crossroads chiropractic is at, and the role of research and philosophy in this historical time. Dr Sim paints a clear picture of the wide-reaching ripple effect that stems from the actions we take at this time. “What we are really talking here when we talk about the future, is your legacy,  your business, your earning […]
June 29, 2017

The Epitranscriptome – A New Discovery In Gene Expression

Few breakthroughs in health science hold as much potential as the emerging field of epigenetics. No longer does the central dogma of genetics ring true – Our genes do not equal destiny anymore and our understanding of how to take control is growing, all thanks to a increasing understanding of gene expression. Environment and lifestyle can indeed affect if or how our genes express themselves. While our understanding of epigenetics continues to grow, a new breakthrough has come to light – the epitranscriptome and the role of the RNA.  Epitranscriptomics is a relatively new field in the world of genetics […]
June 29, 2017

Posture, Happiness And The Effect Of Chiropractic

This is the ‘bonus’ article from Spinal Research’s recent interview with Dr Michael Hall. Dr Hall, the man behind the new education program Brain DC, discussed the right to left orientation in brain development. Inside this line of discussion is a little gem – some information on posture, happiness and the effect of chiropractic, and how we can better engage the brain in both. As chiropractors, we frequently analyse posture. We also deal with patients who suffer from low mood or a variety of depressive disorders. But are the two connected? Hall argues that they are. We know that the […]
June 22, 2017

Manual Therapy and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: How Effective is it?

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is thought to affect around 3% of the adult population, and is one of the most commonly described neuropathies of the peripheral nervous system [1, 2]. Characterised by numbness, tingling, pain and weakness in the thumb, index and middle fingers, carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by compression of the median nerve in the wrist. Although the risk factors include heredity, overuse, wrist injuries and a range of autoimmune and inflammatory conditions [1], therapeutic options usually major on anti-inflammatory drugs or surgery. Physical therapy has long been used as a management technique for carpal tunnel syndrome, and this […]
June 20, 2017

Alzheimer’s Disease and Food: What’s the connection?

Why eat organic? It’s a question many people ask, and perhaps a reasonable one when presented with significant cost differences between seemingly identical food items. A recent study points to a concerning link between neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Motor Neurone Diseases, and a protein called TDP-43. What’s the catch? It’s commonly found in our food. Although there is certainly no single causal factor that leads to neurodegenerative diseases, at least not one that research has clearly identified at this time, evidence is starting to point to more possible contributors. Among the main offenders are genetics, environmental stress, and […]
June 20, 2017

Chiropractic and the Teenage Brain

Many a chiropractor deals with practice members right across the life cycle – from the tiniest of patients to octogenarians who are set on maintaining their health all the way. Across this life cycle, some significant changes take place. Many of us are acutely aware that we need to adapt to the changing needs of our practice members as they face different ages and stages. But there is one change that can be all too easily missed – the transition from child to adolescent. According to Dr Jenna Davis, if a chiropractor knows how to respond well in those tedious […]
June 15, 2017

The Communicative Power Of Research

Good research is research that impacts the practitioner and the practice. At the recent Dynamic Growth Congress, we asked some leading voices in chiropractic why it is important to invest in quality research into the vertebral subluxation. Here Dr Dorte Bladt voices a practitioner’s perspective on the type of research we need. This isn’t about cherry picking studies on particular conditions and chiropractic. This is about understanding what chiropractic is, and what it isn’t. It’s about stepping back and asking congruent questions that get the answers that are useful to us. “Research is incredibly important for us as practitioners. We […]
June 15, 2017

How To Be Nine Years Younger

We know that sedentary lifestyles aren’t good for us. We also know that exercise is good for us. Neither of these statements are new revelations. Yet research emerging from Brigham Young University is telling us exactly how much exercise impacts the aging process on a cellular level. It all comes down to tiny proteins called telomeres. If you’ve ever heard the term ‘biological clock’ thrown around – these proteins are the physical equivalent. Telomeres are the endcaps of our chromosomes. “Each time a cell replicates, we lose a tiny bit of the endcaps. Therefore, the older we get, the shorter […]
June 15, 2017

Dr Michael Hall Part 2: We Need To Change Patient Assessments

“As much as we talk about diversity, we fail to embrace it in clinical practice,” says Dr Michael Hall. “We give the same questionnaires to the male and female. It’s got to change. We need to revamp the examination.” In part one of Spinal Research’s recent interview with Dr Hall, we discussed the sexual dimorphism of the human brain and how this impacts physiology, symptomology, and fundamental needs. (Read that interview here before getting into this one.) While it is certainly helpful to be across this subject, as it affects every patient that walks through our doors, Hall is keen […]
June 9, 2017
Research

A Stirring And Detailed Look At The Mechanics Of Quality, Chiropractic-Specific Research

At the recent Dynamic Growth Congress, we asked some leading voices in chiropractic why it is important to invest in quality research into the vertebral subluxation. Here, academic and chiropractor Dr Matthew Doyle jumps into the detail of developing a chiropractic-appropriate evidence base – how do we deliver research that is congruent, impactful to practice and translatable to create better chiropractors? Are RCT’s the only evidence base we need? Or do we require a broader line of exploration. He spells out the need for better questions, and an ontological approach that is congruent with the chiropractic philosophy – and shows […]
June 9, 2017
Shoulder

Clinical Trial Shows Improvement Of Pain & Mobility For Shoulder Impingements After Cervicothoracic Manipulation

Shoulder pain is a problem remarkably common in the general population, with some experts claiming it lies second only to low back pain in terms of prevalence [1]. Risks for shoulder impingement injuries/syndromes include repetitive activities at or above the shoulder line, making this a problem particularly poignant for sportspeople or manual labourers among others. While many treatments for shoulder impingement syndrome are available, and manual therapies are included in this number, the mechanisms by which spinal manipulative therapy improves pain and mobility for this condition have not yet been established. A preliminary randomised clinical trial appearing in the Journal […]
June 9, 2017

Dr Michael Hall Part 1: Brain Diversity – How The Sexes Differ

Diversity and equality are two buzzwords often heard in conversations about pay, human rights, and more – and for good reason. In many areas, the human race has such a long way to go. But according to Dr Michael Hall, a world-leading chiropractor and functional neurologist, the healthcare industry is one where diversity has not yet been fully acknowledged or catered for. In the majority of healthcare practices, we don’t acknowledge and understand the sexual dimorphism of the human brain, or how this in turn affects stress, physiology, and symptomology. Spinal Research caught up with Dr Hall, friend of the […]