What Is It?
First things first: What is Chiropractic?
Chiropractic is the science of detecting and correcting interference to the nervous system caused by spinal misalignments. It is a natural health care system based on 3 scientific principles:
- Your body is a self-healing organism under the control of the nervous system.
- Spinal misalignments cause nervous system interference.
- Interference to the nervous system can cause pain or other health problems.
What is Orthospinology?
Orthospinology is a specialty within the chiropractic field that utilizes a precise instrument adjustment for a gentle, painless correction. The correction is mathematically calculated for each patient, according to the misalignment of your spine. This specific adjustment is designed to remove interference from the spinal cord and restore body balance.
What is “body balance”, and why does it matter?
To understand body balance, you must understand what body imbalance is. Body imbalance is misalignment of the head and neck area of the spine, which in turn creates postural distortions in the head, shoulders, lower back, and hips. This imbalance also causes a functional short leg on one side and muscle spasms in the neck and back.
Body imbalance is often caused by:
- Bending and Lifting
- Birth Trauma
- Athletic or Exercise Injuries
- Poor Sleeping Habits
- Excessive Stress
How do we determine if you have body imbalance?
Body imbalance or postural distortion is determined by:
- Leg length measurement – In a lying down position, the leg lengths may differ as much as one-half inch.
- Posture Analysis – A head tilt, low shoulder, hip distortion, spinal curvature or other improper biomechanics.
- Infra-red scan – a computer generated diagnostic test to measure how the spine and nervous system is functioning based on the amount of infrared heat emitted from the body.
- Mathematical x-ray analysis – We take 3-dimensional x-rays and measure the degree of spinal misalignment.
- Scanning palpation of the spine – muscle tension and spasms in the neck can indicate spinal misalignment and imbalance.
How Does It Work?
How does an Orthospinology correction restore body balance?
The Orthospinology correction is designed to remove interference from around the brain stem, where the brain and spinal cord meet at the top of your neck. This area of the nervous system controls all of your body’s automatic functions, such as breathing, blood circulation, digestion and elimination, and posture.
If the bone structure around the brain stem is misaligned and compressing that area, it creates postural distortion (body imbalance) and can negatively affect physical, emotional, and even mental performance.
Successful Orthospinology spinal correction balances the bone structure of the head and neck, removing interference around the brain stem, thus restoring body balance, relieving pain and symptoms, and reactivating the body’s natural healing ability.
How is the Orthospinology spinal correction calculated?
If body imbalance has been determined, precise x-ray analysis is used to measure the severity of the patient’s imbalance and calculate a formula to correct the spinal misalignment. Each formula is calculated for that individual patient and is based on the degree of abnormal tilt, shifting, and rotation in the patient’s spine.
Just as each patient’s spine is unique, no two spinal corrections are exactly alike.
What exactly is an Orthospinology correction?
The Orthospinology spinal correction is a precisely calculated adjustment of the bone structure of the head and neck that is barely felt by the patient. The adjustment is made with one of 2 Orthospinology instruments, the hand-held Orthospinology instrument or the Laney Torque Specific instrument.
Both instruments utilize a very gentle force into the C1, or Atlas vertebra, which is located directly behind the ear lobe. Because of the precision of the Orthospinology correction formula, the light force from the Orthospinology instruments is able to gently correct the patient’s spinal misalignment with the patient barely feeling anything more than a light thrust.
How do we know if the correction was successful?
After the spinal correction has been made, a post X-ray analysis is used to determine the success of the correction. (The Orthospinology X-ray system is set up to minimize X-ray exposure to the patient.) After the initial spinal correction, further X-rays are often unnecessary.
What does an Orthospinology adjustment feel like?
The Orthospinology spinal correction is very gentle, almost imperceptible, and painless. Because of the precise x-ray analysis, the spinal correction can be made without any forceful cracking or twisting movements.
Many patients see results on the first correction, and notice instant relief of pain or headaches, a warm feeling in the painful area, or experience a feeling of relaxation and increased range of motion.
What can I expect after my first Orthospinology spinal correction?
After the first correction, a patient will enter a healing cycle that will last four to six weeks. During this time, most patients can expect 85% or better results and a return to normal activities.
The doctor will recommend periodic checks during this time to ensure permanent results.
Listed below are some of the reactions and changes that are possible during the stabilization and healing period, as the body is at work restoring health:
- Alleviation of symptoms
- Tired and/or relaxed feeling
- Light-headedness – possible headaches
- Cold-like symptoms, i.e. runny nose, as the body goes through a cleansing process
- Muscle stiffness in other parts of the body as it adapts to the correction
- Pain in the area of an old injury
- Tingling or heat sensation as blood and oxygen circulation continues to normalize
- Body elimination changes – diarrhea or constipation as the body adapts to changes after the correction
Symptoms may decrease immediately or pain may change and move to another area of the body … all are signs that indicate the self-healing process is working.
Is It Safe?
My orthopedic surgeon told me to never see a chiropractor. Is Orthospinology safe for patients who have already had spinal surgery?
Most orthopedic surgeons and neurosurgeons are unfamiliar with the Orthospinology procedure and generally associate all chiropractors with forceful spinal manipulation.
Since Orthospinology uses no spinal manipulation or forceful adjusting of the spine, it is one of the rare chiropractic procedures that is safe for patients who have already had spinal surgery.
The painless Orthospinology correction is made at the C1 (Atlas) level of the spine, therefore it is not necessary to directly adjust the common surgical areas of C4 through C7 in the neck and L3 through L5 in the lower back.
What type of results does Orthospinology achieve on post-surgical patients?
Orthospinology patient outcomes will vary for post-surgical patients, depending on the amount of spinal surgeries the patient has had, and the type of surgeries.
While our doctors aim for 100% improvement with each and every new patient we accept, we realize that many post-surgical patients have life-long histories of back injuries and may be limited in their degree of recovery.
As a general rule of thumb, patients who have had either laminectomies or fusions without hardware will respond quicker than patients who have had fusion with hardware.
What Conditions Respond?
What conditions may respond to Orthospinology?
An imbalance in the first vertebra, the atlas, can cause other bones to shift throughout the spine.
According to Dr. B.J. Palmer, the developer of chiropractic, most health problems stem from the first two vertebrae in the neck. By precisely moving these vertebrae to their correct position, an Orthospinology correction can cause other vertebrae to shift to their proper position, thus relieving pressure on all parts of the spine and restoring the entire body to a balanced position.
If you do not respond to the Orthospinology procedure within 2-3 weeks, we will use other methods or refer you to the proper specialist.
While many other symptoms have been shown to respond to the Orthospinology procedure, these are the 10 most commonly seen conditions in our clinic:
- Lower back pain
- Neck pain
- Herniated discs – cervical or lumbar
- Migraines or other headaches
- Radiating pain in the shoulder/arm/hand
- Hip pain
- Numbness in the arms or legs
- Childhood ear infections
Why Haven't I Heard?
Why haven’t you heard of Upper Cervical Orthospinology before?
This is the question of many people when they first hear about the HP Spine Center. Like our method, it relates to numbers. Of the thousands of chiropractors in the United States, only 1.8% are certified to practice this specialized kind of treatment.
Why are there so few Orthospinologists?
Becoming a Chiropractic Orthospinologist requires many hours of extra study and training, and a special certification after chiropractic school.
Additionally, the practice of Orthospinology requires more time and analysis for each initial patient visit, and more time and focus in general with calculations and case work after we leave the room with you.
Typically we are able to make the required adjustment to your spine relatively quickly. However, even with our skill and experience, a complex misalignment may require more time, multiple x-rays, and focused professional care to correct.
The results we are able to achieve with our clinical method and mission are very rewarding. But the simple fact is, Orthospinology is also very challenging and requires a certain kind of chiropractic clinic to deliver.