Month: November 2006

California Chiropractic College Has New President

Palmer University News

Contact: Lori Leipold, Media Relations; Palmer College of Chiropractic

William Meeker, D.C., M.P.H., long-time Palmer administrator, researcher and faculty member, has been named president of Palmer College of Chiropractic’s West Campus in San Jose, California, effective January 3, 2007.

With Dr. Meeker’s appointment, Peter Martin, D.C., will now serve exclusively as president of Palmer’s Florida Campus in Port Orange, Florida. Dr. Martin was named interim president of the West Campus in 2004, and then president of both the West and Florida campuses in 2005.

“Dr. Meeker is both a colleague and a very good friend,” said Dr. Martin. “I’m honored to be able to hand over the reins to him as he leads the West Campus forward. I think it’s a mark of maturity that one of the West Campus’ own will now serve as its president.”

“Dr. Martin’s efforts over the past few years have positioned the West Campus for a strong and sustainable future,” said Palmer College Chief Executive Officer Larry Patten. “He deserves many thanks for his tireless effort and outstanding commitment to not only the West and Florida Campuses, but Palmer College as a whole.”

Mr. Patten added, “As a proven leader within the chiropractic profession, Dr. Meeker will use his experience and skills to further ensure the quality of Palmer graduates. This is a significant day in the history of Palmer College. With Dr. Donald Kern on the Davenport Campus, Dr. Martin in Florida and Dr. Meeker on our West Campus, we now have a complete presidential leadership team to effectively support our structure of one college with three campuses.”

“I’m truly humbled by the opportunity to serve Palmer College in this role, but I’m especially honored to be able to contribute to the ongoing success of the West Campus, where I received my education,” said Dr. Meeker. “These are exciting times for Palmer College and chiropractic education as a whole, and I’m looking forward to making great things happen.”

After graduating from Palmer’s West Campus in 1982, Dr. Meeker maintained a private practice in San Jose and served as assistant professor in the Division of Research with the West Campus from 1983 until 1986. He was named associate dean of research in 1986. In 1988, he earned his Masters degree in Public Health from San Jose State University. Dr. Meeker became dean of research at the West Campus in 1989 and served in that role until 1995. At that time, he was named director of the Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR) on Palmer’s Davenport Campus. Since 2001, he has served as Palmer College’s vice president for research.

With Dr. Meeker assuming his role on the West Campus, Christine Goertz Choate, D.C., Ph.D., has been hired to succeed Dr. Meeker as executive director for the Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research. Beginning January 3, 2007, she will oversee the College’s research efforts from Palmer’s office in Washington, D.C. Through this office, Dr. Goertz Choate will also monitor and coordinate government relations activities pertaining to the chiropractic profession.

Dr. Goertz Choate comes to Palmer College from the Samueli Institute for Information Biology in Alexandria, Virginia, where she served as director of clinical research from 2003 to 2005, until being named deputy director in 2005. Prior to joining the Samueli Institute, Dr. Goertz Choate was the first chiropractor hired by the National Institutes of Health as a health sciences administrator at the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine in Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Goertz Choate earned her Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health in 1999. In 1991, she earned her Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Northwestern College of Chiropractic in Bloomington, Minnesota.

Among her many honors and accomplishments, Dr. Goertz Choate was named George McClelland Researcher of the Year in 2006 by the American Chiropractic Association.

College web site at: @ 7:16 am | Article ID: 1164910614

Back pain and your posture at work

By Michael Dorausch, D.C. staff writer

Researchers are using a new form of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to show that sitting in an upright position places unnecessary strain on one’s back, leading to potentially chronic back pain problems if one spends long hours sitting. The study was conducted at Woodend Hospital in Aberdeen, Scotland, and was presented earlier this week at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA).

Researchers looked at three postural positions; sitting upright (at 90 degrees), slouching forward, and reclining back (at a 135 degree angle). In the group studied, researchers found the reclining position to be the best of the three.

The research involved 22 healthy volunteers that had no history of back pain or surgery. In the study, a positional MRI unit was used, rather than the common nonweight bearing type of MRI equipment typically found in hospitals and imaging centers.

patient pointing to lumbar vertebrae - chiropracticOne of the problems found when using non weight bearing MRI techniques is the absence of the effects of gravity. For example, if one felt back pain while sitting but not while lying down, it would be more beneficial to get an MRI scan in the seated posture.

Currently, there’s only one educational institution in the United States that offers such services. Life Chiropractic College West, located in Hayward, California uses positional MRI technology to allow patients to be scanned in weight bearing positions as well as in lateral flexion studies, rotational studies, and flexion extension studies.

While this was a small study, involving only 22 individuals, I expect we will begin to see quite a few more in the near future, as the still new MRI technology becomes more popular. In the meantime, it is important to recognize that this was a study involving a small group of people, all with no history of back discomfort or surgery. Many people reading news related articles on the study may assume that these same postures would be beneficial to them.

Of the three postural positions, there is little argument that the slouching position is the worst. Most chiropractors, along with other health care professionals, massage therapists, pilates instructors, music teachers, yoga guru’s, or anyone else that recommends postural techniques and positions will typically suggest that a person avoid a slouched or slumped over posture, when sitting and/or when standing.

While the recent research involving these 22 individuals suggests that the reclining position produces less weight-bearing strain than the 90 degrees upright position, there are still many factors to be considered, especially when addressing the posture of a the individual that does have a history of back pain or discomfort.

Conditions like herniated or sequestered discs, vertebral subluxation, osteoarthritis, degenerative joint disease, osteoporosis, hemivertebrae, scoliosis, spinal fusions, laminectomies, sacralization (of the 5th lumbar vertebra), lumbarization (of the sacrum), and many others will need to be factored into the decision-making process on selecting postures that are best for the individual seeking greater comfort and improved function.

Besides the above mentioned conditions we have things to consider such as the individuals age, sex, body weight, muscle definition, muscle balance or imbalance, head carriage, atlas-axis positioning, cervical and thoracic spine health, pregnancy, and numerous other factors that I’ll be reminded about in e-mail responses to this article.

So while it’s nice to see studies being done utilizing positional MRI techniques rather than the old non-weight bearing methods, it’s still best to have one’s posture assessed by a professional that specializes in postural and/or biomechanical correction.

Whether you live in Atlanta Georgia or Westchester California, your Local Chiropractors office, one that utilizes postural improving techniques, would be a great place to begin. For those in Hayward California, you can contact the Life West Health Center for more information about their postural and weight-bearing MRI unit. The health centers number is (510) 780 4567, extensions 4380 or 4020.

Article published earlier today related to this topic…
Back Pain: researchers say don’t sit up straight @ 7:25 pm | Article ID: 1164781527

Back Pain: researchers say don’t sit up straight

By Michael Dorausch, D.C. staff writer

Using some new magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques, Scottish and Canadian researchers have found that sitting in an upright position places unnecessary strains on one’s back. According to researchers, sitting in an upright posture for long periods of time (hours) can lead to chronic back pain.

Lumbar Spine X-Ray APAccording to the research, conducted at the Woodend Hospital in Aberdeen, Scotland, the best position in which to sit at your desk is leaning back slightly, in about a 135 degree position.

Research involved the use of a positional MRI machine, which was used to scan the lower vertebral regions of 22 volunteers as they moved around in different sitting postures. Most MRI studies done in the past involved patients lying down flat on their back, rather than standing or sitting up.

According to the study, researchers found that the 135 degree body to thigh position was better than the 90 degree position, which many people consider normal upright sitting posture. Researchers pointed out that humans were not created to sit down for long periods of time, but that modern life requires the vast majority of the world population to do so. Finding the best possible postures when doing one’s work would be beneficial to many.

In the research, individuals involved were asked to adopt three different sitting positions; slouched, upright, and relaxed. In a slouched position, one sits with the body hunched forward (like you would typically see a kid do while playing a video game). In an upright position, one sits at a 90 degree back to thigh posture. In the relaxed position, the individual reclined backwards at 135 degrees, with the feet remaining on the floor.

Researchers watched for spinal disc movement, which occurs when weight-bearing strain is placed upon the spine, causing internal disk material (nucleus pulposus) to misalign. According to the research, disc movement was most pronounced in the 90 degrees position and was the least pronounced in the 135 degrees position.

While not intended to cure back pain, the researchers feel that adopting a relaxed posture may lessen the likelihood of one experiencing back pain in the workplace. @ 8:10 am | Article ID: 1164741038

Millions Visit Chiropractic Offices Days Before Black Friday

By Michael Dorausch, D.C. staff writer

An estimated 18 million consumers visited chiropractic offices across the United States during the past few days, making it one of the busiest times of year for chiropractors nationwide.

Planes, trains, automobiles, traffic, long lines, and four days sleeping on a fold away bed at the in-laws are among some of the many reasons millions of Americans visited their local chiropractor this week. While most retailers have their eyes set on “Black Friday,” the single biggest retail sales day of the year, chiropractors nationwide are now preparing for Thanksgiving, after having already served millions this week.

Drive SafelyThe great majority of people in for a chiropractic adjustment this past week were going out of town and were intending to be in quite a bit of traffic. “I guess you could call it a massive prevention plan” stated Dr. Luke Cohen, a chiropractor in Pacific Palisades, California. “We had so many people come in for adjustments telling us they wanted to be ‘clear’ before traveling to visit loved ones. It’s been a three day whirlwind, and I’m thankful we could help so many.” That’s been pretty much the consensus across the United States, with chiropractors calling and emailing us from New York, New Jersey, Florida, Michigan, and several other states.

“It’s just amazing” said Dr. Fred Schofield of Glendale Arizona, “In my 23 years of chiropractic practice I’ve never seen so many people coming in for care along with their family members. We love our patients and want their Thanksgiving to be the best possible, and it’s always better with a chiropractic adjustment.”

While consumers have been talking about traffic, travel, football, eating, shopping, and all kinds of related physical activities for reasons to get adjusted this week, some think the reasons lean more towards the emotional. Rose Arteaga, a chiropractic assistant that works the front office in a Los Angeles practice says, “I think people are stressed, that’s the real reason they are coming in. On the surface we may think it’s physical, but I see their eyes when they come in, and they look different on the way out. Chiropractic works wonders for stress and patients know that, even if only on a deeper level.”

I asked a chiropractic patient that was flying to Nevada later in the day about the reason for her chiropractic visit. “Definitely emotional” stated the grade school teacher. “I’m going to be in someone else’s home for several days. While the travel is physical, my chiropractic adjustments help me maintain a level of sanity and calmness. It’s difficult to explain, yet anyone that get’s adjusted regularly knows what I am talking about.”

So while the rest of the nation will be heading to department stores on Friday for possibly the biggest sales events of the year, most chiropractors around the country will either be taking the day off, or working limited hours. That’s OK, there is always Monday, typically a chiropractors busiest day of the week.

America, please travel safely, watch the heavy lifting, and have a wonderful time with loved ones. Thank you for choosing chiropractic as part of your plan for healthy natural living! @ 11:09 am | Article ID: 1164233418

Canadians abusing prescription painkillers more than heroin

By Michael Dorausch, D.C. staff writer

OTTAWA: According to recent research, which was sponsored by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), Canadians have been abusing prescription painkillers in greater numbers than they have heroin.

drugs, painkillers, opioidsThe government-sponsored research looked at the the use of heroin as well as some commonly prescribed painkillers such as OxyContin, morphine, Tylenol 3 and 4, Demerol, and Percodan from the years 2001 through 2005.

The study was conducted in seven Canadian cities: Vancouver, Edmonton, Toronto, Montreal, Quebec, Fredericton, and St. John. The findings raise questions about the current focus of Canada’s policy on drug control and drug treatment programs.

An opioid is any agent that binds to opioid receptors, found principally in the central nervous system and gastrointestinal tract. There are four broad classes of opioids: endogenous opioid peptides, produced in the body; opium alkaloids, such as morphine (the prototypical opioid) and codeine; semi-synthetic opioids such as heroin and oxycodone; and fully synthetic opioids such as pethidine and methadone that have structures unrelated to the opium alkaloids.

Opioids are commonly prescribed by medical doctors as painkillers. In Canada, prescription opioids that are the most commonly prescribed include OxyContin, morphine, Demerol, Percodan, and Tylenol 3 or 4.

According to the study, the use of heroin in Canada has become an increasingly marginal form of drug use among illegal opioid users in Canada, especially outside of Vancouver and Montreal.

Demerol, a brand-name for the drug pethidine, is a fast-acting opioid analgesic intended for the treatment of moderate to severe pain. OxyContin contains oxycodone, a very strong narcotic pain reliever similar to morphine. It is intended to help relieve pain that is moderate to severe in intensity.

Percodan is a brand-name potent opioid pain killer intended to treat moderately severe to severe acute pain. Its most active ingredient is oxycodone hydrochloride. It has largely been replaced by Percocet (which is a compound of oxycodone and acetaminophen).

Tylenol 3 and 4 are brand-names for acetaminophen (the active ingredient in Tylenol) combined with codeine. Combination medicines containing narcotic analgesics and acetaminophen are typically prescribed by medical doctors to relieve pain.

One thing is for certain, Canadians are not getting their opioid prescriptions filled by local family chiropractors, since chiropractors in Canada (and the United States) do not prescribe medications, not even pain pills. @ 7:08 pm | Article ID: 1164089343

Things are going to be happening here (really!)

OK, so things have been slow. Not for me, but on these pages. Things are coming online soon, I promise.

Some cool features here involve the use of RSS. You can use Internet Explorer 7.0 and click on any of the RSS links or click “subscribe” at the top of this page (on your browser bar) and can then add content from the chiropractic blog pages to your active bookmarks.

More on RSS and how it is being used at Planet Chiropractic coming up.
Update: You can subscribe to the Planet Chiropractic XML Chiropractic News RSS feed here.

NFL football & chiropractic star Emmitt Smith wins ‘Dancing with the Stars’ TV show competition

By Michael Dorausch, D.C. news staff

LAS VEGAS: Emmitt Smith, the former NFL Dallas Cowboys football star, has been named the winner of the popular USA reality TV show “Dancing with the Stars.” Smith, the NFL’s all-time leading rusher, three-time Super Bowl champion and chiropractic advocate beat out actor Mario Lopez (saved by the bell) in the final dancing competition Wednesday night.

According to various news reports, Emmitt Smith said this about his dancing competition win… “It is awesome!” In congratulating and thanking his fantastic dance partner, Cheryl Burke, Emmitt also said… “We came a long way, we really have.” There is one chiropractor in Texas that must also be feeling “awesome” about the shows results. Dr. Rob Parker is a third generation chiropractor who has had a successful practice in Texas since 1991. His grandfather, Dr. Jim Parker (of Parker Seminars), was one of the most renowned chiropractors in chiropractic’s early years.

Dr. Rob has been Emmitt’s chiropractor since his days with the Dallas Cowboys. Both Dr. Rob and Emmitt have appeared in the media before since Smith has long been an advocate for regular chiropractic care. Dr. Rob was featured during one of the Dancing with the Stars episodes, shown adjusting Emmitt Smith during a grueling week of dance training. Just two weeks prior, the Stars TV show had a Los Angeles chiropractor (see Chiropractors are Dancing with the Stars) out to the set of the show (filmed in Los Angeles) to adjust others that were performing that evening.

There is no questioning Emmitt’s abilities as an athletic performer, and now he will be known as a dancing star. For us, Emmitt Smith is also a chiropractic star. In his day going into the record books as the NFL’s leading rusher (October 27, 2002 – Seattle Seahawks at Dallas), Smith credited his longevity in pro football not to his own ability but to his chiropractor. Smith began getting weekly chiropractic care (sometimes 3x per week) with Dr. Parker almost seven years prior to the day he past Walter Peyton as the National Football League’s career rushing leader.

To the chiropractic skeptics out there, Smith has had this to say, “…if you traveled where I’ve traveled, done what I’ve done and seen the results that I’ve been getting, then you’d understand where I’m coming from…”

One person that wanted to know where Smith was coming from was San Diego Chargers running back LaDainian Tomlinson. Back in 2000, Tomlinson (then at Texas Christian) contacted Emmitt Smith for advice. Smith reportedly told LT to find a good chiropractor (see Emmitt Smith Gives Good Advice). Today, LaDainian Tomlinson is often considered the NFL’s best player. No word from LT on his chiropractic care but when we get news we’ll post it here.

Congratulations to Emmitt Smith, his dance partner Cheryl Burke, and Dr. Robert Parker, you are all chiropractic superstars!

– – – – – – – – – –
Find a chiropractor in your state. Visit our Local Chiropractors or Chiropractor Directory to find a chiropractic office near you. @ 7:33 am | Article ID: 1163702034

Antibiotics Found Useless for Most Cases of Bronchitis

By Michael Dorausch, D.C. news staff

Virginia: There is no evidence antibiotics do any good for the great majority of patients suffering with acute bronchitis, and medical doctors should cease routinely prescribing them, according to recent reports by university researchers.

Acute bronchitis, an inflammation of the main airways to the lungs, is primarily caused by viruses that infect the respiratory system. There are a number of different respiratory viruses that can be involved, including rhinovirus, which is related to the common cold. Acute bronchitis is one of the most common conditions seen in a medical doctor’s office. Classic acute bronchitis symptoms may mimic a cold and may include a tickle in the back of the throat that progresses into a dry, irritating cough.

The research appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine and was conducted by two Virginia Commonwealth university doctors. Researchers did an extensive review of past research studies and former clinical trials, discovering no evidence to support prescribing antibiotics for acute or short-term bronchitis.

Why would acute bronchitis not respond to antibiotics? One does not have to be a scientific research guru to know that antibiotics are typically ineffective when applied to viral infections. Simply doing a google search for “antibiotics ineffective” we find top results that include… Antibiotics ineffective for many ear infections: study, Antibiotics Ineffective for Common Childhood Illnesses, and 25% of Prescribed Antibiotics Ineffective.

While it is well known in the medical community that viral infections typically do not respond well to antibiotics, an estimated 70 to 80 percent of patients seen with an acute bronchitis diagnosis are prescribed a ten day course of antibiotics, according to the research. That’s a lot of drugs being prescribed un-necessarily. Not only do unneeded antibiotics raise the costs of healthcare for all, antibiotics have side effects that can include fungal infections of the mouth, rash, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and digestive tract problems, just to name a few.

Misuse of antibiotics also increases ones risk of encountering disease-causing microbes that have become resistant to drug therapy and have become hard to treat with antibiotic drugs. According to the FDA website “Facts About Antibiotic Resistance” page, unless antibiotic resistance problems are detected as they emerge, and actions are taken to contain them, the world could be faced with previously treatable diseases that have again become un-treatable, as in the days before antibiotics were developed.

Consumers should consider doing their own research before taking any drug since medical doctors are often “too busy” to take the time and explain that an antibiotic may not be helpful or effective, and could possibly be dangerous. Maybe taking antibiotics is not such a good idea after all, as there are many ways people can improve and maintain their health naturally.

Chiropractic Search Results for ‘antibiotics
FDA on a growing threat: Antibiotic Resistance
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Antibiotic / Antimicrobial Resistance @ 1:58 pm | Article ID: 1163638709

Flu Vaccine increases risk for neurological disorder

By Michael Dorausch, D.C. news staff

It is important to be aware of the risks involved when considering taking any drug or vaccine or putting a drug or vaccine into a young ones body. A new study has revealed that the flu vaccine is associated with an increased risk of developing a debilitating neurological disorder known as Guillain-Barré syndrome.

The debilitating nerve destroying syndrome affects about one in 100,000 people each year. It results from the body’s immune system attacking parts of the nervous system, causing weakness or tingling that can eventually lead to paralysis. Previous research had linked Guillain-Barré syndrome to the flu vaccine, but researchers continue to look for more connections between debilitating conditions and flu vaccines.

According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Guillain-Barré (ghee-yan bah-ray) syndrome is a disorder in which the body’s immune system attacks part of the peripheral nervous system. The first symptoms of this disorder include varying degrees of weakness or tingling sensations in the legs. In many instances the weakness and abnormal sensations spread to the arms and upper body. These symptoms can increase in intensity until certain muscles cannot be used at all and, when severe, the patient is almost totally paralyzed.

The research comes from the University of Toronto. Researchers studied residents in Ontario, where a flu vaccine immunization program was started in 2000. All Ontario residents 6 months or older received a FREE flu vaccine. Researchers looked into cases of hospitalization for Guillain-Barré syndrome from 1993 to 2004. They then researched who had received a flu vaccine and compared the individuals risk for the syndrome within two to seven weeks after vaccination up to twenty to forty-three weeks later. Researchers also compared the number of Guillain-Barré cases before and after the immunization program began in 2000.

Researchers discovered that Ontario residents were more likely to be hospitalized for Guillain-Barré syndrome in the two to seven weeks after being vaccinated than at forty-three weeks. It showed a small but increased risk for the disease after vaccination.

There has been a lot of discussion whether the flu vaccine is even effective in preventing the flu. Add to that, the risk of developing disabling nerve disorders, mercury toxicity (from shots containing thimerosal), as well as other side effects, and you may wonder we one would even subject themselves to the shot. One thing is for sure, the more people that get the flu shot, the more data researchers will have to determine what disorders and conditions are caused by the shot.

Other Flu Vaccine Related Articles…

Deaths After Flu Vaccine Halt Vaccination Program
Poor evidence to support flu vaccine effectiveness
Autism, mercury poisoning, thimerosal and the flu vaccine
Mercury in your child’s flu vaccine @ 5:32 am | Article ID: 1163608370

Doctors using Google to diagnose disease

By Michael Dorausch, D.C. news staff

According to a recent study from some Australian researchers, doctors are doing google searches to find out what diseases their patients may have.

subluxationAccording to the study, which was reported online in the British Medical Journal, doctors googled common symptoms for conditions such as Paget-von Schrotter syndrome, Cushing’s syndrome, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, encephalitis and cirrhosis and compared the results to those found in medical journals.

As it turns out, Google got the results right 58 percent of the time (which is probably better than the results most medical doctors get). The doctors in the study felt sifting through all the data could be difficult for some (non doctors) and could present challenges in making a correct diagnosis, so don’t think that Google is going to replace medical doctors and various diagnostic tools such as stethoscopes and thermometers.

The researchers do believe that diagnostic searching is better suited for MDs rather than patients since they are more likely to know what to look for. But if you have the correct diagnoses, or at least a 58 percent shot, and direct access to big Pharma (your meds), who needs a medical doctor?

Let’s see, your sitting at your computer and you are experiencing some symptoms… itching, burning, painful urination… google that and you get?

To all those students getting ready to take their MCATs… Turns out you may not need that medical degree after all. Set yourself up a website (outside the USA) so you can sell drugs online. Do some google searches when people email you or visit your site with questions about what they might have. Pick a condition and then pick your poison. Get the meds mailed off to them and you are ready for the next patient.

Better be able to sell them for less than four dollars a bottle though, because Wal-Mart is planning to bring drugs to the nation and proces are falling. Hey Wal-Mart and Target (also discounting drugs), how about a Google Search Kiosk right next to the pharmacy? Make sure you keep those sanitary towel thingys nearby though, would not want to spread any infections.

Have a healthy day! @ 8:23 pm | Article ID: 1163143434