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Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
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.
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.
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.
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
Spieth Thanks His Chiropractor After Historic Masters Win
Jordan Spieth didn't just capture the hearts of golf enthusiasts worldwide with his record-setting, wire-to-wire victory at the 79th Masters Tournament.
ACA or ICA: Which Best Represents You?
Last June, I was honored to represent Texas ICA members as their representative assemblyman at the ICA Annual Meeting in Kansas City.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 2)
As we noted in our previous article, with a positive Derifield (+D), the doctor observes the reactive (shorter) leg in the prone position that becomes longer or "crosses over" in the flexed position.
Our Biggest Challenges to Compete in Wellness Care
In the first article in this four-article series [May 1 DC], I made the case that chiropractors should either embrace offering lifestyle wellness in their practices or face the possibility of losing their place in the wellness care marketplace.
Professional Credentialing and Board Certification: An Ethical Faux Pas
Because of the Affordable Care Act, health care systems are coordinating care through accountable care organizations (ACOs) in order to reduce the cost of care and improve quality of care.
Rethinking Musculoskeletal Pain – A Public Health Perspective
The American Public Health Association (APHA) is the world's oldest and largest association of its kind, founded more than 140 years ago and boasting over 25,000 members.
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.
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.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
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.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2-4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
We Get Letters & Email
A House Divided? (May 1 issue) provoked significant response from readers. Here are several of the surprisingly similar comments we received.
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.
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.
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.
November, 2007, Vol. 07, Issue 11
When a Child Wants to Move But Canít
By Tad Wanveer, LMT, CST-D; guest author for John Upledger, DO, OMM
Editor's note: Dr. Upledger has asked Tad Wanveer to contribute this month's column. Tad has been the guest author for several previous "CranioSacrally Speaking" columns.
Cerebral palsy (CP) is a group of movement and posture challenges that stem from the abnormal development of, or damage to, the motor-control areas of the brain.For more than 20 years, CranioSacral Therapy (CST) has been used to enhance brain function and help those with CP move with greater ease and balance. It can help them reach their highest potential by balancing motion, facilitating brain reorganization and elevating the body's natural self-corrective processes.
The Puzzling Causes of CP
The types of brain injuries that cause CP are not fully understood. The damage seems to primarily stem from congenital problems due to infection, toxicity, genetic disorders, trauma and complications of premature birth.
A common cause is perinatal (five months before through one month after birth) asphyxia, which is when the brain is subjected to hypoxia (deprived of adequate oxygen supply); ischemia (restriction of blood supply); and hypercarbia (abnormally high levels of carbon dioxide in the blood).
Within the brain, consequences of these conditions can include metabolic changes and edema, leading to cell gliosis (the formation of a dense, fibrous network of glial cells in the area of damage), cyst formation and/or fluid congestion.
Brain damage with CP is non-progressive, though motor problems can change. The severity of CP ranges from mild to severe, depending on the amount of brain damage. Some children might experience difficulty with movement and challenges with one or more of these issues: gait, swallowing, chewing, balance, posture, sight, hearing, speech, breathing and sensory processing. Seizure activity also is present in many children with CP.
CP Types and Classifications
There are four types of CP, all named for a type of movement disturbance: spastic, athetoid, ataxic and mixed.
Spastic CP is the most common type, affecting 70 percent to 80 percent of all cases. Characterized by hypertonia (abnormal muscle tightness, rigidity and reduced ability to stretch), it's due to injury to the pyramidal system. This is the network of motor nerves extending from the brain to various spinal cord levels, particularly the cortex and internal capsule. The injury disturbs the brain's ability to modulate motor-neuron activity, and it leads to varying degrees of continuous muscle contraction, also known as elevated deep tendon reflex.
Athetoid CP is characterized by hypotonia (abnormally low muscle tone and strength), or mixed muscle tone (muscles that are sometimes hypotonic and sometimes hypertonic), and abnormal involuntary movements. Athetoid CP often is due to a disturbance of the extrapyramidal system. This network of brain neurons modulates movement and maintains muscle tone and body stability, especially in the basal ganglia.
Ataxic CP is characterized by difficulty with movement coordination. It's often due to damage of the cerebellum, which fine-tunes and controls the timing of movement. Ataxic CP can affect any part of the motor system, including the extremities, torso and speech.
Mixed CP is characterized by a combination of the aforementioned forms. Various parts of the body are affected by CP. They are classified as: hemiplegia (affecting one side of the body); diplegia (affecting the whole body, lower extremities more than upper extremities); or quadriplegia (affecting the whole body, lower and upper extremities equally).
CST Enhances the Child's Natural Body Processes
CranioSacral Therapy can assist the CP client in numerous ways. It can decrease brain congestion, hypertonicity or hypotonicity, and enhance motor-system neurological signaling.
Gentle cranial mobilization techniques can reduce brain congestion by helping membrane layers around the brain move with more efficiency and ease. The membrane motion can travel throughout the brain to enhance tissue and fluid movement, and decrease intracellular congestion, abnormal pressure on the cells and gliosis. It also can increase the availability of nutrients to the cells. All this maximizes the self-corrective potential of brain cells, creating an optimal environment for neuroplasticity - the ability of the brain to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections.
CST helps decrease hypertonicity and hypotonicity through techniques like the delicate tractioning of muscle and fascia, following and assisting body parts into positions of release, directing energy to decrease or increase tone and facilitating tissue movement in synchrony with the craniosacral rhythm. The rhythm is created by the motion of body tissue in response to the filling and emptying of cerebrospinal fluid within the craniosacral system.
All this helps muscles by increasing vascular flow, flushing toxins, increasing muscle fiber length or strength, and decreasing fascial strain. As muscle correction occurs, different sensory signals are sent from the muscles to the spinal cord and on to the brain, where they can encourage it to reorganize existing sensory areas that can stimulate improvement or help form new motor areas and pathways.
CST can enhance motor system neurological signaling through the application of the "direction of energy" technique. This helps neurons and nerve pathways use and integrate neurological information with optimal efficiency by boosting the energy available for cells to work, move and effect change.
Also, the delicate mobilization of the craniosacral system can decrease spinal cord irritation that might have occurred due to overloaded, overactive or underactive muscle reflexes by facilitating the movement of fluid and tissue around and within the spinal cord.
Through all of these processes, CranioSacral Therapy gently facilitates the self-corrective mechanisms through techniques that improve the balanced motion of cells, tissue, fluids and systems. It supports the remarkable plasticity of the nervous system and the extraordinary potential for compensation within the whole body. The result often is newfound movement, balance, expression and freedom for the child with CP.
Click here for previous articles by John Upledger, DO, OMM.
Tad Wanveer, LMT, CST-D, is a certified instructor for The Upledger Institute, where he was a staff clinician for more than five years. He earned his diploma in massage therapy in 1987 from the Swedish Institute of Massage and Allied Health Sciences in New York City. He currently runs a private practice in North Carolinaís Raleigh-Durham area specializing in CranioSacral Therapy.
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