New Research Sheds Light on Immune Deficiency & Allergies in Kids

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New Research Sheds Light on Immune Deficiency & Allergies in Kids

Chiropractic May Play Role in Alleviating Suffering

Recent research reporting on improvement in a 5 year old girl undergoing chiropractic care reveals that chiropractic may play an important role in managing children with immune and allergy related issues. The research, reported in the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health – Chiropractic, includes a review of the literature supporting the role of chiropractic in children suffering from immune disorders and allergies and calls for more research in this area.

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“Numerous case studies and some clinical studies are revealing that there is a relationship between structural shifts in the spine, the nervous system and various problems related to immunodeficiency and allergies” stated Dr. Matthew McCoy, a chiropractor, public health researcher and editor of the journal that published the study. “These types of structural shifts in the spine cause obstructions of the nerves and cause a ripple effect through the nervous and immune systems. By removing the structural shifts, chiropractic may improve the function of the nervous and immune systems.” 

The unique aspect of this research study is the wide range of immune challenges this child had following a birth that was not only premature but also traumatic. After suffering since birth the parents of the child finally brought her to a chiropractor who checked the child’s spine for nerve obstructions, found them and then reduced them. 

According to McCoy “With everything we know about the relationship between the nervous and immune systems, chiropractic makes perfect sense in the case of autoimmune disorders and allergies. In fact, chiropractic is not treating the allergies or immune dysfunction but re-establishing normal neurological function which benefits the immune system of the patient and allows the body to heal.”  

There is an intimate connection between the functioning of the immune and nervous systems. The immune system has even been described as a continuation of the nervous system, with immune cells functioning as the effector cells of the nervous system as it alerts and guides the immune system, mediated by numerous factors such as neurotransmitters and cytokines. This close association of the two systems has long been acknowledged in chiropractic as an underlying feature of why people improve under chiropractic care for various problems. 

The patient reported on in the study was a 5-year-old female with a chief complaint of recurrent respiratory illnesses related to a medical diagnosis of immunodeficiency. The child was born 5 weeks premature using a forceful vacuum extraction that resulted in a traumatic birth. As a baby, the patient had frequent constipation and ear infections. She had undergone surgery to have tubes placed in her ears twice and had also had her tonsils and adenoids removed. Since birth, the young girl had a chronic cough, bronchitis and suffered from frequent bouts of pneumonia as many as three times a year. She had routinely been on antibiotics from the time of her birth and had recently been diagnosed as immuno-deficient by a specialist in pediatric and adult allergy, asthma, and immunology. She was taking a variety of medications, including antibiotics, for allergies and asthma.  

The chiropractor examined the girl and found abnormal posture, loss of spinal range of motion, spasm of the spinal muscles, pain and discomfort in the neck, mid and low back and a severe decrease in her neck curve. These were all being caused by structural shifts in her spine that were obstructing her nervous system. 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 her vertebral subluxations and improve the structural shifts in her spine, the curve in her neck improved, her posture was better and she no longer had any pain. According to her mother, she remained symptom-free for the majority of her time under chiropractic care and this was the longest time she had gone without getting sick since birth. She was also able to get off all of her medications with the exception of occasional use of an inhaler. Additionally, she missed very few days of school, was able to concentrate more efficiently, and slept better. She was behaving better both at home and at school and reported an increase in energy levels.  

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

The authors called for more research on chiropractic and the management of enuresis and constipation.  

Contact Information: 

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