New Research on Forward Head Posture, Spinal Alignment & Chronic Pain

Research News Staff
New Research on Forward Head Posture, Spinal Alignment & Chronic Pain

Chiropractic Restores Spinal Structure & Improves Nerve Function 

Recent research reporting on a 26-year-old male suffering from chronic pain from structural spinal shifts obstructing his nervous system reveals that chiropractic may play an important role in caring for people with these conditions. The research, reported in the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research, includes a review of the literature on the topic and calls for more research in this area.

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“Research is revealing that structural abnormalities of the spine such as forward head posture and loss of the normal spinal curves can be improved following chiropractic care” stated Dr. Matthew McCoy, a chiropractor, public health researcher and editor of the journal that published the study. Other chiropractic researchers have reported on similar results and reviews of the scientific research reveal numerous other studies that have shown a similar connection. 

McCoy added “This case adds to the body of scientific literature suggesting that chiropractic should play an important role in managing people with structural spinal distortions.” 

Abnormal spinal alignment and posture are associated with poor general health, physical function, emotional function, social function, and pain. Normal spinal curves provide shock absorption and leverage, which protect the spinal cord and nerve tissue from the forces of gravity and other daily traumas one may encounter. 

Research has shown that abnormal spinal alignment and posture also increase stress and strain to the nerve and blood supply of the spinal cord. This can seriously affect the nervous system. It is a rare phenomenon for resolution of spinal structural abnormalities in the absence of intervention. However, there is literature that supports the effectiveness of chiropractic to restore a healthy spinal alignment and posture according to established normal values, thereby lowering the risk of degeneration and poor health.

The patient reported on in the study was a 26 year old young man who presented to the chiropractor with a history of chronic low back and rib pain. He had a history of significant trauma from a car accident many years prior. He could not stand for more than 45 minutes and he was not able to engage in his regular daily activities.

The chiropractor examined the man and found abnormal posture, anterior head carriage, muscles spasms in his spine, loss of motion of joints in his spine and a loss of the normal curve in his neck. Testing revealed there was obstruction of the man's nervous system being caused by these structural shifts in his neck, mid back, low back and pelvis. These structural shifts can lead to obstruction of the nerves and it is this obstruction, called vertebral subluxations, that chiropractors correct.

Following chiropractic care to reduce his vertebral subluxations and improve the structural shifts in his spine the function of his nervous system improved, the curve in his neck improved and his forward head posture resolved. He no longer experienced back or rib pain. 

The authors called for more research on chiropractic and its effects on the spine, nervous system and general health. 

Contact Information: 

Matthew McCoy DC, MPH
Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health – Chiropractic
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McCoy Press