Is there a correlation between high blood pressure and a misaligned spine? A recent research study seems to confirm that fact.
As reported by WebMD on March 17, 2007, "Chiropractic Cuts Blood Pressure: Study Finds Special 'Atlas Adjustment' Lowers Blood Pressure." You can read the story in detail at:
"This procedure has the effect of not one, but two blood-pressure medications given in combination, and it seems to be adverse-event free. We saw no side effects and no problems." states George Bakris, M.D., study leader. (emphasis added)
The placebo controlled study looked at 50 patients over an eight week period. "Twenty five patients with early-stage high blood pressure had significantly lower blood pressure than 25 similar patients who underwent a sham chiropractic adjustment." (1)
The NUCCA Chiropractor in the study was Dr. Marshall Dickholtz, of Chicago, IL. NUCCA protocols include pre and post adjustment x-rays. "X-rays showed that the procedure realigned the Atlas vertebra with the spine in the treated patients but not in the sham-treated patients." (1)
Compared to the placebo group, the patients that underwent the NUCCA adjustment "saw an average 14mm Hg greater drop in systolic blood pressure (the top number), and an average of 8mm Hg greater drop in diastolic blood pressure (the lower number)." (1)
Neither group of patients-- the placebo group, nor the group undergoing NUCCA adjustments-- took any medication for blood pressure during the eight week study.
Dr. Dickholtz states that the atlas vertebra (C1), is "the fuse box to the body. At the base of the brain are two centers that control all the muscles of the body. If you pinch the base of the brain-- if the Atlas gets locked in a postion as a half a millimeter out of line-- it doesn't cause any pain but it upsets these centers, Dickholtz telss WebMD." (1)
NUCCA chiropractors are few and far between. NUCCA procedures include mathematics, geometry, and physics to analyze x-rays to determine how to re-align a patient's structure. There are less than 200 NUCCA doctors worldwide, therefore it is not uncommon for patients to travel long distances for this type of care.
You can view Drs. Dickholtz and Bakris on the news program Chicago Tonight discussing this research study by using the following link:
(1) DeNoon, Daniel J. WebMD, Hypertension/High Blood Pressure Health Center: Chiropractic Cuts Blood Pressure, Study Finds Special 'Atlas Adjustment' Lowers Blood Pressure. March 17, 2007.
Bakris, G. Journal of Human Hypertension, advance online publication, March 2, 2007. Grassi, G. Journal of Human Hypertension, advance online publication, January 25, 2007.George Bakris, MD, director, hypertension center, University of Chicago. Marshall Dickholtz Sr., DC, Chiropractic Health Center, Chicago.