Can a Chiropractor help if you’ve had a stroke

This animated video looks to answer the question as to whether Chiropractic Care can help patients who have had a stroke.

A transcript of the video follows.

Can Chiropractic help if you’ve had a Stroke Video transcript

Having a stroke can be devastating, not just for the person who has had the stroke, but also for their family, their friends, and their caregivers.

A stroke is a problem with the blood supply to the brain. This could be because of a blockage in an artery in the brain, or a bleed in the brain itself. We all know how important our brain is, and without blood, it just doesn’t work.

This means that if you have a stroke, an area in your brain can basically die, which is why it’s not too surprising that stroke is one of the leading causes of death and disability in the world. In fact, about 17 million people around the world suffer from a significant stroke every year, and about 5 million of them experienced long-term disability.

One of the most common disabilities after a stroke is muscle weakness, often on one side of the body. This may mean that after a stroke, a person has trouble using their arm or hand, or they may struggle to stand or walk. Living with muscle weakness can be really hard and have a big impact on a person’s ability to look after themselves or to work.

There are lots of rehabilitative approaches that may help people who have had a stroke from physiotherapy through to robot assisted therapies. But doctors and scientists are constantly looking for new approaches to help stroke survivors. One possible intervention that might help, but most people wouldn’t think of is chiropractic care.

Over the past 20 years, scientists have shown that chiropractic care doesn’t just have an impact on how your back works. It actually changes the way your brain works and how it controls your body, including movements and strength.

A number of recent studies have shown that a single session of chiropractic care can have an immediate increase in strength.

In one of these studies, the researchers found a 16% increase in strength of leg muscles in a group of students after a single session of chiropractic care. Another study reported an 8% increase in strength in elite athletes after they were adjusted by a chiropractor. And one more study found an 11% increase in jaw strength in a group of healthy people after chiropractic adjustments.

What’s really interesting though, is another recent study that looked at changes in strength in weak leg muscles after chiropractic care in people who had suffered from a stroke. In this study, a team of scientists from around the world measured the strength of weak muscles in chronic stroke patients before and after a single session of chiropractic care or a sham control session.

They also used electrical stimulations of nerves in their legs, which could help them work out whether any changes in strength came from their brain or something that was happening in their spinal cord. When the scientist analyzed the data from their study, they found an average improvement in strength of almost 65% in the affected leg of their stroke patients.

They were blown away by this finding because 65% is a huge difference.

They also found that these strength changes were due to changes in the way their brain was communicating with these weak muscles, and this increase in strength was not because of changes at the spinal cord level. These results are really exciting.

But you do need to remember that the scientist only looked at immediate changes after chiropractic care, so they don’t know yet how long these changes last for. That’s why these scientists are now doing another study looking at how longer term chiropractic care impacts muscle function in stroke patients.

However, these initial groundbreaking findings are really important, and may mean that chiropractic care can help people who’ve had a stroke to improve their strengths and ability to walk and move. So if someone you know has suffered from a stroke, let them know that chiropractic care really may help improve their brain body communication and get them moving again.


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Part 2

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  4. Haavik Taylor H, Murphy B. Altered Central Integration of Dual Somatosensory Input Following Cervical Spine Manipulation. Journal of Manipulative & Physiological Therapeutics 2010;33 (3):178-88.
  5. Haavik Taylor H, Murphy B. The effects of spinal manipulation on central integration of dual somatosensory input observed following motor training: A crossover study. Journal of Manipulative & Physiological Therapeutics 2010;33 (4):261-72.
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