Monday, April 7, 2008

Chiropractic Care for Multiple Sclerosis

Chiropractic care has been blasted by some as useless or harmful, and others have praised it's success for patients. I can only give a testament about how it has affected my family and others around us, but I think it may be helpful to anyone considering chiropractic care. Until seven years ago my wife had never stepped foot in a chiropractor's office. She didn't grow up in a family that went to a chiropractor and she was very nervous about the cracking and popping she had seen on TV. When she was numb from her chest down we were asked to see a chiropractor near the clinic we were being treated at. He was a typical pop and crack type chiropractor and took the time to completely examine my wife's issues and adjust her. The first time my wife's neck was adjusted, she began to cry uncontrollably. I knew that her MS seemed to have an affect on her pain tolerance, and this was no different. It hurt, and she didn't want to ever have that done again.

I had been to a chiropractor many times for low back issues, and had no problems with their adjusting techniques, but her body just couldn't handle it. So, we decided that chiropractic wasn't for us and headed home after the treatments were done at the clinic. Once we were back home my wife kept having numbness in her legs even though she could feel her legs and walk normally. It was in what she described as stripes that circled around her legs all the way down to her feet. Since it wasn't going away, we asked our doctor what to do. He recommended a different kind of chiropractor in our area that he felt could help us. That was the first time we met Dr. Darci Stotts. She is a board certified Atlas Orthogonal chiropractor that uses instruments to adjust instead of popping and cracking.

Our first visit really impressed us. Once my wife described the numbness, Dr. Stotts immediately knew what was going on. She explained how the nerves spiraled around the legs and that a damaged nerve could cause the feelings of numbness. After a thorough examination and x-rays, she showed us the problems. She then took us into a room with a special AO device that would adjust my wife's neck. It only applied 8 pounds of pressure and didn't hurt at all, so my wife was never in any pain. Dr. Stotts told us not to expect much after the first few visits because the nerve would need time to heal and it could take up to 6 weeks to start to notice a difference. What surprised us was the fact that my wife felt so much better after the first visit. She immediately had more feeling in her legs, and also felt better physically. Within a few weeks her numbness was completely gone in her legs and she was feeling great.

Since then, we have continued to use Dr. Stotts services on a regular basis and it has worked wonderfully. My wife can now tell when she is out of alignment and will immediately go see Dr. Stotts and get adjusted. If my wife is feeling an attack coming on, like numbness in an extremity etc., she immediately sees Dr. Stotts and we have found that it stops the attack as soon as she is adjusted. It may take a few adjustments to go away, but the attack will not continue to spread and cause issues. Since the first time we visited Dr. Stotts, she has started treating with a new technology. It is a machine that gives real time graphs to show your alignment and she adjusts you with a device attached to the computer. There is no pain and my wife is still getting great results from her adjustments. We know that this has helped with my wife's health and we will continue to see a AO chiropractor. We moved off once where we couldn't visit Dr. Stotts easily, and we saw what could happen when we didn't have access to a AO chiropractor. My wife would have numbness or tingling and it would continue to get worse until we made the trip to see Dr. Stotts. Chiropractic for us has been a life saver. We will never go back to a pop and crack chiropractor, but we will find a BCAO chiropractor in our area to continue to receive treatments.

12 comments:

clucero said...

I have suggested going to a chiropractor to my husband and an glad to find that you have had a great experience with it. Thanks for the reassurance!

Chiropractor said...

I hope she gets well soon...

Chiropractor

Liz said...

Hi there - I am very happy to read of your wife's improvement. I am the daughter of a "pop and crack" Chiropractor, as you describe it, and I think that's unfair language to use.

Unfortunately, the first DC you saw was not "good"... (?) He might be great for me, however, since I have no problem or fear of hearing noises when the vertebrae are moved back into their proper position.

The second was great, for your wife's particular needs. Just like many other doctors - some are bad, some are good, some are great!

Some dental hygienists are too rough on my teeth during a cleaning. I've found one I love. I go to her regularly to keep my teeth clean and I go to my favorite Chiropractors around NYC to keep my neck and spine "clean".

Thanks.

Jesse Moody said...

Doctors of chiropractic may assess patients through clinical examination, laboratory testing, diagnostic imaging and other diagnostic interventions to determine when chiropractic treatment is appropriate or when it is not appropriate. Chiropractors will readily refer patients to the appropriate health care provider when chiropractic care is not suitable for the patient’s condition, or the condition warrants co-management in conjunction with other members of the health care team.

TJ researching chiropractor care said...

I'm so happy that your wife is seeing improvement! It's too bad that the first chiropractor she went to didn't help her. I hope all is well now. Thanks for sharing your experience. People can learn from this.

usual pregnancy symptoms said...

Chiropractic care can also benefit migraines because it emphasizes healthy eating and sleep in addition to just pills.

Anonymous said...

Hi, how is your wife doing? I'm going for my first appt for this tx next week! I have numbness and stiffness in my legs, vertigo and foot drop in my left foot. Any relief of symptoms will be a blessing. If my numbness decreased like your wife, I would be ecstatic! :)

Heather Steiger said...

I Am REALLY looking forward to my AO appt this Friday now! I have MS. Dx in 2005.

Cory said...

Anonymous, thanks for the comment. My wife is doing really well. We recently hiked a mile up into the Rocky Mountain National Park and she did wonderful. It still amazes me how well she does when we are taking care of the things we know we can like diet, rest and chiropractic. Hope you get to feeling better.

Cory said...

Heather, my wife feels the same way about her chiro appts. She feels so much better after them, and we both feel like this one treatment has provided a huge increase in her quality of living. We don't panic anymore when she has an attack or issue because we know a chiropractic visit can stop and reverse the problem. Hope your appt went great!

Anonymous said...

How often is your wife going for adjustments? I also have MS and I see an AO chiropractor aswell. I have had great results but I wonder sometimes if the frequency is a bit excessive. I was going 3 times per week for the first 3 months, and now I am going 2 times per week for about 8 months. I would like to get a second opinion but shes the only AO chiro in my area. I am afraid to stop going because it has helped so much but it takes up a great deal of my time and is very expensive. Glad you guys found someone for your wife!

Cory D said...

Hi Anonymous, thanks for the comment. When we first started my wife went everyday because most of her body had been numb for over a month. We moved from everyday to a few times a week to once a week, and now try to go at least once a month unless she feels like she needs an adjustment. She has really learned to "listen" to her body and is very aware of when she needs to be adjusted. We've also used massage to keep her MS in check which isn't cheap but is a great tool for relaxation and to keep her body working well. I guess our experience has shown that you use it as you need it and let your body guide the frequency. Hope that helps. Glad to hear it is working for you!