resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
Optimism = Compassion = Trust
A randomized clinical trial recently published online in JAMA Oncology examined how patients viewed their doctor based upon how the practitioner presented bad news to the patient.
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
Turning a Blind Eye to History – and Reality
The American Medical Association is taking the Supreme Court's Feb. 25, 2015 decision exactly as it always does – by turning a blind eye to history, legal precedent and reality.
February, 2003, Vol. 03, Issue 02
The Ligamentum Nuchae
By Neal Cross, PhD, NCTMB
In a recent article published in Clinical Anatomy,1 Dean and Richard clarified some of the anatomical detail of the upper cervical connective tissue elements.I think their results are exciting for anyone utilizing craniosacral techniques and/or treating cervicogenic headache.
The ligamentum nuchae is that well-developed portion of the supraspinous ligament in the cervical region. It runs from the external occipital protuberance along the tips of the spinous processes of the cervical vertebrae, to the tip of the spinous process of the vertebra prominens (usually C7). The supraspinous ligament can be considered the superficial continuation of the interspinous ligament. This latter ligament runs between the adjacent vertebrae extending from the base to the tip of each spinous process. The ligamentum nuchae is formed primarily from the aponeurotic attachments of the adjacent and subjacent musculature. From superficial to deep, these muscles are the trapezius; rhomboideus minor; splenius capitis; and the serratus posterior superior.
Dean and Richard found direct fibrous attachments between the ligamentum nuchae and the spinal dura - between the occiput and C1, and between C1 and C2. They found attachments to the ligamentum flavum and the spinal dura between C2 and C3. These were not as prominent as the attachments at superior levels. They did not find any direct connections between the spinal dura and the rectus capitis posterior minor (RCPM), as had been previously reported.2 However, they did find a connective tissue band that ran from the deep surface of the RCPM to the posterior atlanto-occipital membrane. This thin membrane runs from the posterior margin of the foramen magnum to the upper border of the posterior arch of C1.
It is interesting to note that although most of the cranial dura are innervated by the trigeminal nerve (CNV), the infratentorial portion (the portion inferior to the cerebellar tent) is innervated by upper cervical nerves. It is tempting to speculate how working the suboccipital soft tissue elements might have a positive impact on relieving cervicogenic headaches. We may be able to effect this end by using several different techniques, including craniosacral, Swedish and counterstrain, among others.
Of further interest for consideration would be to review the anatomy of the transition of the dura from the cranium to the vertebral canal. The cranial dura is comprised of two layers: the outer or endosteal layer, and the inner or meningeal layer. These two layers are contiguous throughout most of the cranial cavities, except where they part to allow for the formation of the dural sinuses. The outer layer also ends at its attachment around the foramen magnum. However, at this latter point, the inner layer continues through the foramen magnum to become the spinal dura. The periosteum of the vertebral canal is the equivalent of the outer layer of cranial dura.
In summary, we see several cervical elements associated with the cranial dura mater by their connection to the spinal dura. The ligamentum nuchae directly attaches to the spinal dura, as does the ligamentum flavum, to a lesser degree. The upper cervical nerves serve the sensory innervation of both the cervical spinal dura and the cranial dura in the posterior cranial fossa. These same nerves supply the sensory elements of the muscles of the deep back and skin over the back. Although the trapezius is innervated by the accessory nerve, its sensory innervation derives from the upper cervical nerves.
A therapist could spend quite some time on the back of a client's neck, and achieve results well-worth the time spent.
Click here for previous articles by Neal Cross, PhD, NCTMB.
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