Upper Cervical Specific Chiropractic

Upper Cervical Specific Chiropractic

Upper Cervical Specific Chiropractic is a branch of chiropractic developed by Dr. B. J. Palmer. The actual origins of upper cervical specific revolve around a single distinguishing characteristic of the atlanto-occipital joint. That particular joint floats on two toed-in spoon like surfaces and lends a potential instability to that joint. Instability of the atlanto-occipital joint predisposes people to an adaptational imbalance in the head/neck region. B.J. Palmer did not originally recognize this problem. It was another Chiropractor named Al Wernsing who had to point this out to Palmer. Once B.J. Palmer began to recognize the significance of this anatomical vulnerability, he abandoned his ties to traditional bonesetting and spinal manipulation and allowed only upper cervical technique (which he termed "Hole in one" [HIO] ) to be taught during the remainder of his tenure at Palmer College. He did later endorse full spine techniques.Fact|date=July 2008

The techniques are characterised by:

1. Main influence on the upper cervical articulations of the occiput, and the atlas and axis vertebrae

2. Focus on vector calculation based upon the theory that kinematic joint dysfunction is related to a positional disturbance.

3. Radiographic analysis of positional disturbance based on a cartesian co-ordinate system

4. Documentation of post-adjustment results with objective measures

5. Use of a specific vectored force which differs from generalised manipulative procedures

List of named upper cervical techniques

* Palmer Upper Cervical Specific
* Advanced Orthogonal Techniques & Procedures (AOTP)
* Atlas Orthogonal Chiropractic Technique
* Blair Upper Cervical
* Orthospinology
* Kale Brainstem
* Knee-Chest Specific
* Laney Technique
* Applied Upper Cervical Biomechanics
* Upper Cervical Orthogonal - Cowin
* Zimmerman (SAM)
* Toftness
* Toggle Recoil
* Sutter Specific Atlas Correction
* Life College Upper Cerivcal Technique


Textbooks such as Eriksen's "Upper Cervical Subluxation Complex" [Eriksen, K. Upper Cervical Subluxation Complex. A review of the chiropractic and medical literature. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2004. ISBN 0-7817-4198-X] argue for the technique on the basis of empirical evidence in private practice and a review of associated concepts in published literature.

A systematic literature review in 2001 [Gatterman MI, Cooperstein R, Lantz C, Perle SM, Schneider MJ. [http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11562653?ordinalpos=4&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum Rating specific chiropractic technique procedures for common low back conditions.] J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2001 Sep ; 24(7): 449-56.] found upper cervical techniques to be in the least effective group of treatments for low back pain among several chiropractic techniques reviewed.


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