Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care for a Nine-Year-Old Male with Tourette Syndrome, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Asthma, Insomnia, and Headaches: A Case Report
by Erin Elster, DC. Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research. July 2003.
Objective: To review the effectiveness of chiropractic care using an upper cervical technique in the case of a nine-yearold male who presented with Tourette Syndrome (TS), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), depression, asthma, insomnia, and headaches.
Clinical Features: This nine-year-old boy suffered from asthma and upper respiratory infections since infancy; headaches since age 6; TS, ADHD, depression and insomnia since age 7; and neck pain since age 8. His mother reported the use of forceps during his delivery. His medications included Albuterol, Depakote, Wellbutrin, and Adderall.
Intervention: During the patient’s initial examination, evidence of a subluxation stemming from the upper cervical spine was found through thermographic and radiographic diagnostics. Chiropractic care using an upper cervical technique was administered to correct and stabilize the patient’s upper neck injury. Diagnostics and care were performed in accordance with the guidelines of the International Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association.
Outcome: Evaluation of the patient’s condition occurred through doctor’s observation, patient’s and parents’ subjective description of symptoms, and thermographic scans. After six weeks of care, all six conditions were no longer present and all medications were discontinued with the exception of a half-dose of Wellbutrin. At the conclusion of his case at five months, all symptoms remained absent.
Conclusion: The onset of symptoms soon after the boy’s delivery; the immediate reduction in symptoms correlating with the initiation of care; and the complete absence of symptoms within six weeks of care; suggest a link between the patient’s traumatic birth, the upper cervical subluxation, and his neurological conditions. Further investigation into upper cervical trauma as a contributing factor to Tourette Syndrome, ADHD, depression, insomnia, headaches, and asthma should be pursued.
Key Indexing Terms: upper cervical spine, chiropractic, Tourette Syndrome, depression, asthma, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, headaches, trauma, thermography