Respiratory Function, Breathing Ability, Bronchitis, Pneumonia

Adjustive osteopathic manipulative treatment in the elderly hospitalized with pneumonia: a pilot study. Noll DR, Shores J, Bryman PN, Masterson EV. Journal Of The American Osteopathic Association 1999; 99(3): 143-6

This was a study of twenty-one individuals with acute pneumonia. Eleven of them were given “specific osteopathic manipulative treatment for somatic dysfunction.” All twenty-one received medical treatment as well (antibiotics etc.).

The study found that those getting the manipulative treatments recovered more quickly from pneumonia. As the authors wrote:

Although the mean duration of leukocytosis, intravenous antibiotic treatment, and length of stay were shorter for the treatment group, these measures did not reach statistical significance. However, the mean duration of antibiotic use did reach statistical significance…3.1 days (versus) 0.8 days.

The types and frequencies of nonmusculoskeletal symptoms reported after chiropractic spinal manipulative therapy. Leboeuf-Yde C, Axen I, Ahlefeldt G, et al. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics Nov/Dec 1999:22(9) 559-64.

“How frequently [do] patients report nonmusculoskeletal symptomatic improvements and [what are] the types of such reactions that patients believe to be associated with chiropractic…”

Twenty consecutive patients from 87 Swedish chiropractors answered questionnaires on return visits. A total of 1,504 questionnaires were completed and returned. Twenty-three per cent of patients reported improvement in nonmusculoskeletal symptoms, including:

  • Easier to breathe (98 patients)
  • Improved digestive function (92)
  • Clearer/better/sharper vision (49)
  • Improved circulation (34)
  • Less ringing in the ears (10)
  • Acne/eczema better (8)
  • Dysmenorrhoea better (7)
  • Asthma/allergies better (6)
  • Sense of smell heightened (3)
  • Reduced blood pressure (2)
  • Numbness in tongue gone (1)
  • Hiccups gone (1)
  • Menses function returned (1)
  • Cough disappeared (1)
  • Double vision disappeared (1)
  • Tunnel vision disappeared (1)
  • Less nausea (1)

Specific upper cervical chiropractic care and lung function. , R Abstracts from the 13th annual upper cervical spine conference, Nov 16-17, 1996 Life College, Marietta, Georgia. Pub in Chiropractic Research Journal, Vol. 1V, No.1, Spring 1997 p.27 (also Kessinger R; Changes in pulmonary function associated with upper cervical specific chiropractic care J Vertebral Subluxation Research 1997; 1(3):43-9.

From the abstract:

This was a study of 58 patients to determine whether the upper cervical knee chest adjustment as developed by Dr. B.J. Palmer, influenced pulmonary function. FEV-1 and FVC were measured before care and two weeks after care on a computerized auto spiro spirometer.

Of the 58 patients, 33 (57%) were considered to have “abnormal” lung function before care. The rest were within normal range. The abnormal group showed the greatest increases in FEV and FVC over the two-week study. Forty-two percent of the abnormal patient population actually tested within normal limits after the two-week study. The “normal” subject population also showed predictable increases in lung function, but not as dramatic as the abnormal group.

Chiropractic adjustments of the cervicothoracic spine for the treatment of bronchitis with complications of atelectasis. Hart, D.L. Libich, E, Ficher R. International Review of Chiropractic, 1991; Mar:31-33.

This is the case study of a ten-month-old female with atelectasis. The symptoms included rhinorrhea (runny nose), pyrexia (fever), tussis (cough) and dyspnea (difficulty breathing). She had symptoms of bronchitis since 6 months of age. The child had been on repeated doses of antibiotics. In addition she began to develop otitis media. More antibiotics were prescribed and she was placed in an oxygen tent and monitored for four days. After discharge her symptoms soon returned.

Chiropractic was begun as “a last resort.” Her condition subsided over a period of four weeks during which four upper thoracic and mid to lower cervical spinal adjustments were delivered.

A follow-up interview nine months later found the patient in good health.

Somatic Dyspnea and the orthopedics of respiration. Masarsky CS, Weber M Chiropractic Technique, 1991; 3:26-29

Author’s Abstract:

Several brief cases are presented in which the symptom of dyspnea was alleviated or abolished following the correction of vertebral subluxation complex or other somatic dysfunctions. In discussing such cases, the term “somatic dyspnea” is suggested to denote air hunger or shortness of breath related to somatic dysfunction. Somatic dyspnea is a condition, which may accompany other causes of dyspnea (lung pathology, psychogenic or “functional” causes etc., or can exist alone. In our chiropractic practice, most somatic dyspnea is seen as a secondary condition in patients presenting primarily with orthopedic complaints. When the symptom is secondary, the patient will often not mention it until an examination procedure reproduces it or treatment causes it to improve or disappear. The response to manipulative therapy is sometimes so dramatic and rapid that a strong linkage between the dyspnea and the primary presenting complaint is suggested.

Chiropractic management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Masarsky CS, Weber M. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 1988; 11:505-510.

A 53-year-old man with 20 years of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease was treated with chiropractic, nutritional advice and exercises. Improvements were noted in forced vital capacity, coughing, fatigue and ease of breathing.

Lung function in relation to thoracic spinal mobility and kyphosis. Mellin G, Harjula R. Scand. J. Rehab. Med., 1987; 19:89-02.

Mobility of the thoracic spine is shown to directly affect respiratory function.

Chiropractic and lung volumes - a retrospective study. Masarsky CS, Weber M. ACA Journal, Sept 1986; 20:65-68.

Lung vital capacity was found greater after chiropractic adjustment.

Somatic dysfunction associated with pulmonary disease. Beal MC, Morlock JW, Journal Of The American Osteopathic Association, Vol. 84 No. 2 Oct. 1984.

A review of osteopathic literature on respiratory disease revealed that the majority of those with lung disease had changes in the spinal area T2-7. In this study, all 40 patients with lung disease had abnormalities of T2-7.

The physiologic response of the nose to osteopathic manipulative treatment: preliminary report. Kaluza CL, Sherbin M, May 1983, Journal Of The American Osteopathic Association, Vol. 82 No.9

The work of breathing was lessened after an osteopathic manipulative treatment.

Relation of faulty respiration to posture, with clinical implications. Lewit K. Journal Of The American Osteopathic Association, 1980, 79:525-529.

The relation of faulty respiration and posture of the spine and pelvis is considered.

A comparison of the effect of chiropractic treatment on respiratory function in patients with respiratory distress symptoms and patients without. Hviid C. Bulletin of the European Chiropractic Union, 1978; 26:17-34.

It is suggested that there is a change of the peak flow rate and the vital capacity in patients with obstructive lung disease after chiropractic care.

Treatment of visceral disorders by manipulative therapy. Miller WD. In: Goldstein M, Ed. The Research Status of Spinal Manipulative Therapy. Bethesda: Dept. HEW. 1975:295-301.

Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease were treated with osteopathic manipulation. 92% of the patients stated they were able to walk greater distances, had fewer colds, experienced less coughing, and had less dyspnea than before treatment. 95% of patients with bronchial asthma said they benefited from chiropractic care. Peak flow rate and vital capacity increased after the third treatment.

Chiropractic management of chronic bronchitis. Rosenbaum LP J Australian Chiropractor’s Assn. Dec 1976;10(3):16-19

This paper discusses areas that patients with bronchitis tend to need adjusting: C1, C2 and C3; T1 and T2, ribs. Other techniques are also discussed

The influence of osteopathic manipulative therapy in the management of patients with chronic obstructive lung disease. Howell RK, Allen TW, Kappler RE. J IS Osteopathic Association 1975; 74(8): 757-60.

This was a 9-month study on the effects of spinal manipulative therapy as a treatment for obstructive pulmonary disorders.

There was a progressive decline in the severity of the condition. The average reduction in severity was approximately 10.7%. All of the patients were noted as having costo-transverse dysfunction at the level of T3, as well as T2 being noted in patients with asthma. Joint motion between T3/T4 was restricted. Local tissue was edematous and tender to palpation.

Somatic dysfunction as a predictor of coronary artery disease. Beal MC, Kleiber GE. Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. Vol 85 No. 5. P. 302-307.

From the abstract:

Ninety-nine patients who were scheduled for cardiac catherization tests were examined for palpatory evidence of somatic dysfunction on the day preceding angiography. The palpatory examination was carried out without knowledge of the patient’s history. Somatic dysfunction was found on the left side from T1 to T5 in 70 patients who were found to have coronary artery disease. The efficiency of the palpatory test was 79% for the detection of patients both with and without coronary artery disease.

The osteopathic treatment for lobar pneumonia. Facto LL, The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association Vol. 46, No. 7 March, 1947.

From an osteopathic viewpoint, vertebral and rib lesions are important etiological factors in lobar pneumonia.

The osteopathic treatment produces favorable results because it aids and assists the normal physiological reaction of the body to overcome the infectious process. It increases the production of antitoxins and antibodies, stimulates the production of a greater number of leukocytes, and accelerates the action of the endocrine glands and the sympathetic nervous system which is so important in helping to defend the body when it is attacked either from within or without.

Copyright 2004 Koren Publications, Inc. & Tedd Koren, D.C.

Top of Page