The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA

3228.0: Monday, November 11, 2002 - 3:10 PM

Abstract #51910

Case study: Use of an upper cervical specific chiropractic technique in a subject with chronic migraines

Susan Brown, PhD, DC, private practice, 275 Carpenter Drive, Suite 104, Atlanta, GA 30328, (404) 943-0217,

Headaches represent a significant impact on American public health: 16% of the American population have frequent and/or severe headaches, 80% of headache sufferers report headache-related disability, and the annual cost of associated medical care and lost productivity is estimated at $17 billion.

A 19-year-old female subject reported a five-year history of daily headaches. Three times a year, she had severe headaches classified as migraine with aura lasting 4-6 weeks. Rand SF-36, Headache Disability Index (HDI), VAS, and self-reported headache frequency, duration and analgesic usage were compared for three weeks before and during three months of chiropractic care.

An upper cervical specific chiropractic protocol (Blair technique) was used to evaluate and manage the subject. Following a complete history and examination, precise radiographs were taken to allow for determination of listings in the cervical region, and neurological assessments including leg checks and thermographic instrumentation were subsequently used to evaluate the need for adjustment. The subject received two C1 adjustments and one C4 adjustment during the three months of care.

The subject reported daily all-day headaches during the baseline period. VAS scores ranged from 1.9 to 8.1, with a mean of 6.8 for the last baseline week. Ten days after the first C1 adjustment, she reported having her first headache-free day in five years, and reported no more headaches for the remainder of the study. The mean VAS score for the last eight weeks of care was 0.6. HDI and seven of eight SF-36 subscales also improved markedly during the study.

Learning Objectives:

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Chiropractic Professional Issues

The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA