CTE & Chiropractic

CTE and the NFL – Can Chiropractic Help?

NFLIf you have followed the NFL recently, you may know that concussions have been a huge area of concern.  The possible progression to CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy) has been a hot topic of debate and was recently depicted in the Hollywood film Concussion.  The effects of CTE on former football players appears substantial.  Many suffer from dementia, headaches, depression and much more.  Recently, ESPN featured ex NFL quarterback Jim McMahon in a documentary that described his struggles with CTE.  Featured in the story was a therapy he underwent that provided him relief.  The therapy was a form of chiropractic that focuses on Atlas Displacement Complex using very advanced technology.  The Chicago Tribune even published an article about it.

I have blogged previously about the potential mechanisms involved in similar conditions and discussed it in this article on misalignment of the cranio-cervical junction.  I also have a pending research review article that goes more in depth on the topic.  However, a lot of what I know is from a pioneer in the field, Scott Rosa.  Dr. Rosa is the chiropractor who helped Jim McMahon in the Chicago Tribute article referenced above.  He utilizes standing MRI to show pre and post adjustment changes in the hydrodynamics of the head and neck.  It is very cool stuff and can even be seen on youtube!

Keep in mind, chiropractic focusing on Structural Correction is not a treatment for neurodegenerative diseases like CTE, and there is most certainly numerous factors that contribute to the pathology.  At Precision Chiropractic, our focus is to guide the spine back to what is considered normal.  In doing so, many of the conditions secondary to Structural Shifts of the spine will be relieved.  Could this help people like Jim McMahon?  It is certainly possible based on recent evidence that misalignments in the cranio-cervical junction can alter cerebrospinal fluid hydrodynamics.  However, a lot more research needs to be done before anything can be said for certain.  The story about McMahon is a good start though, and it may start a discussion that could benefit all healthcare professionals.

-Image provided by www.drjockers.com

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