Study says spine adjustment can lower blood pressure
06:11 PM PST on Friday, January 4, 2008
By JEAN ENERSEN / KING 5 News
Spine adjustment could lower blood pressure
About 72 million adults in the United States are living with high blood pressure. That's one in three people. Statistics shows only 35 percent of them have it under control. Now, research shows a spinal adjustment may help.
Chiropractor Marshall Dickholtz has been fixing spines for 50 years. He works solely on the top bone of the spine, called the atlas.
"Think about it. If your neck is not balancing your head, it's like blowing a fuse. Your wonderful brain does not control your body as well," says Dickholtz.
He says a misaligned atlas can raise blood pressure.
"When you have a pinched brain stem, it closes out your arteries. If the arteries close down, the blood pressure has to be higher to go through those arteries," said Dickholtz.
A study by University of Chicago doctors shows the treatment can lower blood pressure by 17 points.
After her alignment, 80-year-old Maribeth Zickert is now off her blood pressure drugs.
"At my age, to be on no medication is almost a miracle I think," said Zickert.
Denise Niemann also had high blood pressure. Hers was 144 over 98.
"After one treatment, my blood pressure was 115 over 76," said Niemann.
"In our high blood pressure research, the average age was 53 and they had 40 years of damage in their spine that could have been taken care of years before and maybe never had high blood pressure," sad Dickholtz.
The key word there is maybe. It should be noted that this approach does not work for everyone, and if you are currently taking blood pressure medication, you should check with your doctor first.
The study was published in the Journal of Human Hypertension.