STUDIES: Insomnia and Sleep Disorders
note: Case studies summarizing patientsí responses
to care are intended for educational purposes
only and do not imply a guarantee of benefit.
Individual results may vary, depending upon several
factors including age of the patient, severity
of the condition, severity of the spinal injury,
and duration of time the condition has been present.
Age 47, Sleep Disorder, Fatigue, Depression
47-year-old female suffered from a sleep disorder
since her daughter's birth 12 years prior. She
had been unable to get a good night's sleep since
and as a result was extremely fatigued. She also
described trouble with depression and mood swings
because of her extreme lack of sleep. She described
most nights with frequent awakening without any
consistent sleep hours in a row.
her initial evaluation, an upper neck injury was
discovered. It was postulated that going through
the birthing process was enough to cause injury
in her case since the development of the sleep
disorder coincided with her daughter's birth.
One week after the initiation of upper cervical
care, she began sleeping and reported several
nights where she slept between 7 and 10 hours
without awakening. This continued consistently
and she felt her energy and her happy mood return.
Eventually she was able to discontinue all sleep
and anti-depression medications.
Age 31, Fatigue, Sleep Disorder
31-year-old female described such extreme fatigue
and trouble sleeping that she required 3 different
alarms to get her out of bed each morning for
work. This had been going on for years and she
could remember having trouble as far back as age
her evaluation, an upper cervical injury was discovered.
She reported that she had had a difficult birth
requiring forceps and thought that perhaps might
have been the original cause of her neck injury.
After the first adjustment, she immediately began
sleeping better. Several weeks later, she reported
being able to wake up before her alarms went off
and she felt energetic and well-rested.
Age 11, Fibromyalgia, Fatigue, Sleep Disorder,
11-year-old male suffered with Fibromyalgia, Chronic
Fatigue, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder,
and Headaches for many years. He experienced constant
muscular pain throughout his body and had trouble
participating in sports or exercise due to pain
and muscle spasms. He couldn't even wear a watch
due to pain around his wrists. He frequently took
hot baths or used a heating pad to relax his muscles.
In addition, he was home-schooled due to frustration
and difficulty in school. Headaches occurred twice
per week, sometimes severe. His sleep was extremely
irregular-- he usually awakened every few hours.
Frequently he would be in bed for 13 hours and
still wake up fatigued.
this 11-year-old's upper cervical chiropractic exam, an upper neck injury was
found. When questioning his mother about the boy's medical history, she recalled
that he fell out of a grocery cart at age 3 months. After only 1 month of upper
cervical care, all symptoms were greatly improved. He was able to participate
in sports without pain; he no longer had muscle spasms; all headaches were gone;
school work improved in that he had less frustration and better attention span;
he slept through the night and had energy upon awakening; and all fatigue was
Age 19, Headaches, Insomnia, Fatigue, Fainting Spells
age 15, this 19-year-old female was struck by several large waves while on vacation
with her family. After the waves hit her and knocked her face-down against the
ocean floor, she ran out of the water with severe pain in her neck and back.
While she appeared to recover, when she returned home at the end of the vacation,
she began having fainting spells, where she would wake up in strange locations,
not knowing what had happened. One fainting spell occurred while she was driving
her car, causing her to run a red light and get hit by a bus traveling the opposite
direction. After this incident, she was no longer allowed to drive. In addition
to the fainting spells, she also began suffering from headaches, which escalated
into a constant, daily occurrence, as well as frequent insomnia, which lead
to extreme fatigue.
consulting with several local doctors and undergoing numerous tests, including
an MRI, her physicians could not find anything wrong with her and could only
conclude that she had migraines and possibly psychological problems. Not accepting
this, this patient and her parents searched the internet for additional help
and decided to undergo an upper cervical chiropractic evaluation.
her evaluation, an upper neck injury was discovered, which was likely caused
by the trauma from the waves. Because this patient had traveled from a distance
to undergo the evaluation, her family decided to have her stay in the area for
7 weeks to be treated. After her first upper cervical adjustment, the fainting
stopped. By the second week of care, her headaches began to diminish. In addition,
she began to sleep better and felt more energetic. At the end of seven weeks,
all fainting, headaches, and insomnia were absent. She felt healthy, happy,
"Dear Dr. Elster, After
several weeks back at home, my daughter is still feeling well. She has not had
any headaches or fainting and she feels happy and healthy. We had a party the
week after she came home and all of her friends and family were excited to see
her eyes so bright and full of energy. My wife and I want to thank you so much
for what you did for her and for your enthusiasm and encouragement. We can hardly
believe the changes in our daughter!" Ton,
about his daughter, Sept '02
Age 9, Tourette Syndrome, ADHD, Depression, Insomnia,
9-year-old boy began having health problems soon
after his birth (a forceps birth). He also fell
down the stairs at age 1. He had many infections
including ear infections and pneumonia every year
for the first several years of his life. He was
diagnosed with asthma at age 2 and prescribed
inhalers. The asthma attacks occurred during weather
changes, humidity, and physical activity. By age
7, he was diagnosed with ADHD and Tourette Syndrome.
The Tourette's tics occurred head to toe and involved
his eyes, neck, voice, rolling of his toes, flinching
of his side, and lifting of his arms overhead.
He was not prescribed Ritalin for ADHD due to
an increased risk of tics. In addition, he was
diagnosed with insomnia and depression at age
8 and was prescribed 2 different anti-depressant
medications. He also experienced neck pain and
headaches 3 times per week since age 8.
this boy's upper cervical exam, a neck injury
was found, which possibly stemmed from either
his birth or fall down the stairs.
his first upper cervical adjustment, his mother
reported only 2 days later: 1) his attitude and
personality were happier, 2) no headaches, 3)
no neck pain, 4) no wheezing, 5) tics were cut
in half, 6) slept through the night. One month
later, no headaches or neck pain occurred over
the month; no asthma or wheezing occurred over
the month and no asthma medications were used;
all motor tics were completely gone and only an
occasional verbal tic occurred; sleeping had been
consistently improved; personality and behavior
had been consistently improved and anti-depressants
had been cut in half; attention in school to school
work and interaction with other kids in school
was also greatly improved. Six weeks after the
first adjustment, all symptoms were absent. All
family members remarked that by having his neck
injury corrected, the boy had become a completely
different, happy, and healthy child.
Age 23, Bipolar Disorder, Epilepsy, Sleep Disorder,
Headaches, Back Pain
23-year-old male suffered a closed head injury
at age 17 in which he landed on his head due to
a pole-vaulting accident at a high school track
meet. Since the fall, he suffered from bipolar
disorder (rapid-cycling mood swings), seizures
(2-3 per day), daily headaches, daily neck and
back pain, and sleep disorder (he would often
be awake for 24-36 straight hours before finally
going to sleep and then often would sleep for
24 or more hours). He was taking tegretol for
bipolar disorder and pain medication for headaches.
During this patient's upper cervical exam, an
upper neck injury was found, most likely stemming
from the pole-vaulting accident. The injury was
compromising this patient's brain and spinal cord
function. After five months of upper cervical
care, all mood swings, headaches, seizures, pain,
and sleep trouble were corrected, and all medications
were discontinued. All family members remarked
at the enormous change in the patient's mental
outlook, personality, and health.
Age 24, Chronic Headaches, Neck Pain, Difficulty
24-year-old female suffered from daily headaches,
neck pain, and difficulty sleeping for the past
year. The headaches started at the base of her
skull and shot up behind her eyes and down her
upper back. The pain was severe enough that she
often was kept awake at night, and as a result,
she experienced fatigue.
upper cervical care, she was head and neck pain
free. Also she slept through the night and reported
a large increase in energy level. Male, Age 25,
Neck Pain, Headaches, Numbness in Hands, Fatigue
After an auto-accident last spring, this 25-year-old
male experienced spinal pain, fatigue, restlessness,
headaches, and numbness in his hands for the last
6 months. After the first adjustment, his symptoms
improved substantially. One month later, all of
his symptoms were completely gone. Years later,
he had no return of symptoms.
would like to take this opportunity to thank Dr.
Elster for her outstanding chiropractic care.
I had been suffering for 6 months from chronic
fatigue, restlessness, numbness of fingers and
hands, neck pain, and headaches after a car accident.
Upon referral from my girlfriend, I decided to
set all skepticism aside and visit Dr. Elster's
office. Even though Dr. Elster noted my skepticism
right away, she continued to explain the possibilities
available for me. I do have to admit that I did
not believe that her care would help to relieve
my numerous symptoms. After she explained the
reasons for my discomfort through x-rays, experience,
and acquired knowledge, I agreed to treatment.
The treatment itself was comfortable and I could
see positive results within a short period of
time. The only thing I still don't believe about
Dr. Elster's treatment is that all of my symptoms
had nearly disappeared within one week -- after
only ONE adjustment! My only regret is that I
did not seek Dr. Elster's help sooner. I would
highly recommend her services to anyone. Thank
you very much, Dr. Elster!" Dennis, age 25,
Age 20, Insomnia
bike racer crashed during a race 4 years prior
to seeking help from upper cervical care. During
the crash, he landed on his head, was knocked
unconscious, and dislocated a shoulder. Ever since
the accident, he had difficulty sleeping and could
lie in bed for hours before falling asleep. He
reported that his lack of sleep seemed to inhibit
his ability to train because he recovered slowly
after workouts and was frequently fatigued.
his initial upper cervical examination, an upper
neck injury was found (possibly resulting from
the concussion 4 years prior).
After one month of upper cervical care, normal
sleep resumed. He was able to fall asleep shortly
after going to bed and slept soundly through the
night. As a result, he was able to train harder
and recover faster, thereby vastly improving his
cycling performance. He moved up to higher racing
categories and decreased his race times.
started racing bicycles in 1990 and steadily progressed
in my skills and fitness until a bad crash in
the fall of 1993. I went down on a road ride and
dislocated my shoulder. I eventually healed and
resumed riding and racing. It did not take long
to regain my fitness, however I soon plateaued
and was unable to move beyond a certain level.
During the next few years I became actively involved
in other aspects of the sport including coaching.
It was then that I noticed that something was
not quite right. I was able to coach a family
friend to four Jr. National championships, so
I clearly understood training principles and knew
what needed to be done to achieve a high level
of fitness, but I could not reach that level personally.
During this time, I noticed that I gradually had
more and more trouble falling asleep at night.
I started seeing Dr. Elster in April '97 and within
a few weeks I began to sleep better. I can now
fall asleep almost immediately. In addition, I
have finally started to advance to a higher fitness
level because I am able to rest and recover from
workouts more effectively. I am currently a category
3 road racer and expert level mountain biker.
Both upgrades I have achieved just this year."
age 20, September '97
Age 37, Insomnia, Headaches
37-year-old female suffered from insomnia and
headaches since an auto accident 2 years prior
to seeking help from upper cervical care. When
she tried to sleep at night, it usually took her
4-5 hours to fall asleep even though she was exhausted
all day. When she tried to take naps, she could
never fall asleep. She also was plagued with headaches
since the accident that involved pain near her
ears and cheeks and occasionally caused nausea.
1 month of care, she fell asleep within a half-hour
when she went to bed at night and slept through
the night. She also took naps but eventually did
not find them necessary because she was no longer
exhausted and fatigued during the day. In addition,
the headaches were gone.