Chiropractic care has always been viewed as an “alternative” form of medicine by the mainstream medical community, but it’s actually a highly effective form of spinal care and has helped millions of Americans improve painful health conditions – particularly those related to, but not limited to, the back and neck.
However, for all of the good that chiropractic care offers patients, there are also a lot of unknowns regarding how the spinal column – a complex structure of vertebrae that interacts with ligaments, muscles, tissue, and nerves – can and should be manipulated for optimal health and safety. In fact, there’s plenty of research to suggest that improper chiropractic care can lead to arterial dissection and stroke.
“When a chiropractor adjusts a patient’s neck, the vertebral artery is twisted by the manipulation. When the artery is twisted at a high velocity, there is a risk that it can tear or dissect,” explains Ken McKenna, Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney. “Studies show that the carotid and basilar arteries may also be vulnerable to tearing following manipulation. The dissection does not tear through the artery: these are intimal tears, very small ones, on the inside lining of the arteries.”
While most patients visiting a chiropractor won’t experience this problem, there are risks associated with having your body twisted, popped, and manipulated. Thankfully, a handful of new technological advancements have been introduced over the past couple of years – each of which makes chiropractic care just a little bit safer.
3 Chiropractic Technologies to Keep an Eye On
It can take a while for technology to evolve in the chiropractic space, but there’s been an uptick in the level of innovation over the past few years. Let’s briefly examine some of the developments to get a better idea of what’s happening.
1. INSiGHT Scanning Technology
While the chiropractic adjustment is what actually improves the condition of the patient, the most important step for the chiropractor is to identify subluxations and understand exactly what’s wrong with the patient. An incorrect diagnosis can worsen the underlying problem. Unfortunately, diagnosing takes lots of time (and often some guesswork).
The INSiGHT Scanning Technology allows chiropractors to scan the entire nervous system in just 8 minutes and detects hidden patterns of stress and tension, exposes internal changes, and establishes a baseline understanding of the patient’s body for future care.
2. The ProAdjuster
If you’ve visited a chiropractor any time in the past year, it’s possible that you’ve been exposed to the ProAdjuster. This sophisticated tool leverages the same technology that NASA engineers use to evaluate the integrity of ceramic cooling tiles on the outside of the space shuttle.
The technology looks simple enough – just a small device attached to a computer with a cord – but it produces some pretty amazing results. “The ProAdjuster utilizes a precise oscillating force with uninterrupted motion. It is able to increase the mobility of the spinal segments by reducing or enabling motion in the abnormal areas,” Comfort Chiropractic explains. “In other words, the ProAdjuster is ‘unsticking’ the joint.”
3. K-Laser Therapy
Laser therapy has become increasingly popular in a variety of medical fields, but chiropractic care has found particular use for it. Using a technology like K-Laser, a chiropractor can apply red and infrared light over injured areas of a patient’s body to stimulate cells and repair tissue. It’s been shown to be a safe, quick, and drug-free method of pain relief.
Technology Making Chiropractic Care Safer
There will always be some inherent risk associated with chiropractic care. And if you believe you’ve been hurt or put at risk as a result of an improper adjustment or procedure, you have rights. But from the outside looking in, the good news is that new technologies are making the industry safer as a whole.