My name is Dr. Richard L. Baez and I want to share with you the top four research breakthroughs that have people with MS knocking down my door. Patients have been calling the office for years now seeking hope that we may have the answer to their health issues. I decided to dive in and try to understand why people with multiple sclerosis were able to achieve such incredible results in the office. Below are the 4 breakthroughs that have been able to help so many people here in Boulder.
Breakthrough #1 A misalignment of the top bone in the spine compressing a major vein leaving the skull
The first study I want to bring to your attention was published in 2014 in the Journal of Phlebology. Djordje et al. utilized a unique way to look at not only the bones of the upper neck and skull but could also visualize how the blood was flowing in and out of the skull. What this study found was patients with Multiple Sclerosis are often suffering from a condition called chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI). What that means is the flow of blood entering and leaving the skull has become abnormal, causing a change in the fluid pressure within the skull. The study found that this phenomenon occurs in over 50% of MS patients. Advanced imaging has found the cause to be the top bone in the neck, called the Atlas, shifting in such a way that it is compressing the blood vessels leaving the skull.
Over 50% of Multiple Sclerosis patients had a compression of the major vein which drains the skull, called the internal jugular vein, by more than 70%. To put this in perspective, imagine you turn on your garden hose. The water normally flows out effortlessly in a steady stream. Now imagine you put your thumb over the spout, the water would flow with much greater velocity and intensity. That is what is occurring within the brain of those suffering from CCSVI.
Breakthrough #2 A change in pressure within the skull causes CSF to leak out of its normal circulation
Cerebrospinal fluid is the substance which surrounds the brain and spinal cord. It has many functions, most notably cushioning the brain during normal movement, delivering nutrients to the brain and its tissue, and clearing out waste from between the neurons. Obviously, it is hugely important in maintaining the health of you and your central nervous system. This study demonstrates what happens when this fluid leaks out of its normal channels either due to a trauma in the past, or an inherent weakness in the pathway CSF normally flows through.
Changes in pressure within the skull are responsible for abnormal changes in CSF flow. When this occurs, a whole host of symptoms manifest. Issues including: positional headache, neck pain, nausea / vomiting, hearing changes (described as echoing or being under water), tinnitus / dizziness, visual blurring or visual field deficits, double vision, and decreased level of consciousness. This phenomenon is not rare, but it is under diagnosed in patients.
Breakthrough #3 When CSF leaks out of its normal channel, the body attacks it as if it were a hostile invader.
Multiple Sclerosis is characterized by a progressive autoimmune attack of brain tissue. It is not clear why exactly this occurs, and up to this point it has also been unclear the exact process of the autoimmune attack. For this study, CSF and brain tissue were studied of MS patients. It is now known that a particular portion of the immune system, the T-independent B cell activation is part of the humoral immune response to pathogens. What that means is the body is attacking a type of protein called an oligomer found in CSF. What results is the plaqueing seen on MRI, usually around the collecting channels for CSF.
What is of particular interest in this article is the plaqueing seen on MRI is comprised of amalyoid precursos proteins, the same seen in Alzheimers patients. There was also a rise in tau proteins, the same seen in Parkinson’s disease, all found in the CSF and brain tissue of MS patients studied. This indicates a link between CSF leakage, the autoimmune response, and progression of the disease process of other neurodegenerative disorders.
Breakthrough #4 When the top bone is realigned, patients with MS have a reduction in symptoms and begin to heal.
Up to this point we have been discussing what is occurring physiologically and mechanically to cause changes in the fluid circulating the brain and spinal cord. This study looks at 44 patients diagnosed with MS and 37 diagnosed with Parkinson ’s disease. These patients had very specific x-rays taken of their upper neck and were found to have a misalignment of the top two bones. This is consistent with what the most up to date research is also finding.
The procedures for these patients were as follows. First, three radiographs were taken of the upper neck to determine malposition of the top two bones. Second, specialized testing of the nervous system was conducted before and after each office visit. Lastly, the top bones in the neck were realigned with a non surgical, non invasive technique called upper cervical specific. What this study shows is 91% of the cases responded favorably to care, with a reduction in their symptoms and improvement of neurological function.
Each of these articles is a single piece of a puzzle. On their own, they do not offer answers to those suffering from multiple sclerosis. However, when we are able to put a few of these puzzle pieces together, we can begin to see a beacon of hope taking shape. What I have compiled for you may seem a bit confusing when looking at the individual article summaries or the journal articles themselves. But it is actually quite simple once the puzzle is put together.
What is occurring in the majority of MS patients is a process where the normal pressure around the brain and brain stem has become abnormal. When this happens, the fluid which protects and nourishes the brain begins to leak out of its normal pathway. This causes the body’s natural immune system to attack the fluid resulting in the plaqueing seen on MRI. This pressure change is being caused by the top bone in the spinal column, called the Atlas, shifting in such a way that it has compressed a major blood vessel leaving the skull. When this top bone is realigned, patients with multiple sclerosis have a dramatic improvement in not only their symptoms, but overall health as their body begins the healing process.
About Atlas Chiropractic of Boulder
At Atlas Chiropractic of Boulder we are not only concerned about your symptoms, but also you as a person and what is important to you. We know that not everyone’s the same and not everyone has the same goals. It is important to us that we present a chiropractic care plan that works for you and is tailored to you and your health concerns.
We’re a specialty Boulder Chiropractor focused on back pain, neck pain, vertigo, and migraine headaches. Our patients visit our Boulder office from all over Northern Colorado, including, Longmont, Erie, Superior, Lafayette, Niwot, Louisville, Broomfield, and Denver, Colorado.
Contact Atlas Chiropractic of Boulder today to schedule a free evaluation. Specialized upper cervical chiropractic care is by no means a “hail Mary” solution, but if you haven’t yet seen Dr. Bremner, you’re nowhere close to running out of options.