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SUBLUXATION (AKA PATHOMECHANICS):
The term subluxation is the classic word that has been used for decades and it means a minor misalignment of a vertebrae. However, the effects on the human body as a result of a subluxation on the upper cervical spine for example, can be far from minor. In the simplest of terms, a subluxation is when one or more vertebrae (bones in your spine) move out of line and create pressure on spinal nerves, facet joints, recurrent meningeal nerves or discs. Spinal nerves are the nerves that come out from the vertebrae in your spine. Pressure on the nerves or other structures, can cause interference with the signals traveling through them - leading to numerous health related problem.
>PATHOMECHANICS is another, far more modern term many chiropractors (especially Dr. Haberstroh) use to describe the misalignment of a vetebrae. Some doctors, like Dr. Haberstroh, find the term pathomechanics, to be somewhat more descriptive than the term subluxation. The human spine is really about motion, or lack therof, of the individual spinal segments. Pathomechancis, thus refers to a "pathology of the mechanics" of the spinal column and for some DCs, is a better term to describe this phenomena.
Chiropractors commonly recognizefive categories of components present in the VertebralSubluxation Complex (VSC) or, the Pathomechanics of the human spine.
Due to the intricacies of the nervous system, more research is being conducted in the areas of hormonal involvement, aging, immune system response, even genetic consequences. The Vertebral Subluxation Complex (pathomechanics of the spine) may be one of the most regular, yet overlooked sources of health problems.
Chiropractors are trained in identifying and treating vertebral subluxations/pathomechanics. This is done through first, the case history. A detailed case history often reveals the source of an underlying problem and barring the biziarre, the treating doctor can often make an accurate differential diagnosis from just listening to the patient. This is followed by the actual physical exam. X-Rays may be taken if indicated. Palpation (touching) the spine is also part of the exam and is utilzed to locate pathomechanics. Often is the case where other medical/chiropractic records will need to be obtained to complete the clinical picture such as recently radiographs taken elsewhere that need to obtained. Provided the patient is accepted for care, and after a report of findings is made to the patient explaining everything the chiropractor will usually begin a series of chiropractic adjustments specifically designed to correct the vertebral subluxations/pathomechanics in your spine.
Chiropractors are the only professionals who undergo years of training to be the experts at correcting subluxations/pathomechanics. While Osteopaths (D.O.) have training in spinal manipulation, it is chiropractors who have the more extensive training and perform over 95% of the spinal manipulations in the USA. it is also chiropractors that are publishing the most literature and the most widely read books on aspects of chiropractic case management. Go to Amazon.com to find out more regarding the two biggest health care books in Lippincott's history: Essentials of Skeletal Radiology, Yokum & Rowe and Whiplash Injuries: The acceleration/deceleration syndrome, Foreman & Croft. Yokum, Rowe, Foreman and Croft are all chiropractors.