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Resolution of Severe Vertigo, Weakness & Headaches in a Patient Undergoing Chiropractic

On April 11, 2019, a case study and review was published in the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research, documenting chiropractic helping a patient with severe vertigo, headaches, and left sided weakness.

Wikipedia defines vertigo as "... a symptom where a person feels as if they or the objects around them are moving when they are not. Often it feels like a spinning or swaying movement. This may be associated with nausea, vomiting, sweating, or difficulties walking. It is typically worse when the head is moved. Vertigo is the most common type of dizziness.

This study reports that vertigo is a very common occurrence. They report that in any given year, 5% of the adult population will suffer some form of vertigo, with 1.4% having vertigo as an ongoing issue. This condition becomes more common with age with up to 30% of the elderly population being afflicted. Women are two to three times more likely to suffer from vertigo than are men. Although vertigo is rarely life-threatening, it does have a significant impact on the quality of life.

In this case study, a 41-year-old woman suffering from severe vertigo went to a chiropractor in hopes of getting help. She also was suffering from left-sided weakness and involuntary swaying from side to side. The woman reported that her problems had been occurring on and off for years, with the most recent episode happening one month before seeking chiropractic.

The vertigo was severely impacting her quality of life as she had difficulty walking without assistance and could not focus visually. Upon further questioning, the woman said that she was suffering from headaches and the entire left side of her body was weak which affected her balance. Her previous medical care from her general practitioner and three different neurologists included the use of corticosteroids, but was ultimately not successful.

A chiropractic examination was performed with great care as the woman needed assistance to prevent her from falling over. The procedures that could be performed noted the presence of subluxations. After consent from the woman, specific chiropractic adjustments were started at the frequency of three visits per week.

The results of the chiropractic care were immediate and profound. The study reported, "Immediately following the patient’s first set of chiropractic adjustment, she stopped swaying and could immediately stand up and walk normally without assistance." The researchers continued to document the progress by noting, "Furthermore, the patient did not experience vertigo. There have since been approximately 10 follow-up chiropractic treatments over about a 1-month time frame without any returning of vertigo symptoms."

In the study's discussion and conclusion the authors stated, "The impact of the chiropractic care should be examined beyond symptom resolution and from a holistic perspective, examine the impact of chiropractic care on this patient's quality of life." They continued, "This case report provides supporting evidence on the effectiveness of chiropractic care in the patients presenting with vertigo of unknown origin."

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