by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
Chiropractic Journal of Australia : December 2011
Chiropractic Journal of Australia Volume 41 Number 4 December 2011 137 ANIMAL PATIENTS IN CHIROPRACTIC ROME • McKIBBIN Case 38. Canine - Weimaraner I was treating a young English medical doctor who happened to mention that she would have to have her dog put down as it was paralysed in the back legs and could not walk. She asked me if I could help her as she was very attached to the animal which was a 2-year-old Weimaraner. The dog had been examined by a veterinarian, who also conducted a radiological study. The veterinarian's diagnosis of the dog was that of a ruptured disc, and that the dog would have to be put down. The doctor brought her dog over to my home. An examination involving palpation of the lumbar spine revealed severe tenderness and muscle spasm of that region. The x-rays flms had previously been reported as unremarkable. However, in analysing the flms from a neuromuscular- mechanical aspect, I noted that L3 spinous was rotated to the right side, and the disc was bulging due to the wedging of the vertebral body on the opposite side. I explained this to the dog's owner and she was happy for me to treat her pet. To quieten the dog the owner gave it an injection of Valium, and we waited for it to take effect. The dog was placed on her right side, and an L3 adjustment was carried out resulting in a reasonably audible cavitation. I saw the dog again the next day and it ran to meet me. (Holdway KB. Personal communication, 29 August 2011.) It can be noted that the health management of animals under chiropractic care is not necessarily limited to spinal adjustments. It can also involve manipulation of the extremity joints, as well as employing some of the more natural therapies such as acupuncture. It can also be in collaboration and cooperation with traditional veterinarians.37,77 Summary • "Anecdotes are powerful tools that humans use to make decisions." • "Ignoring or under-estimating the role of anecdotal information in health care decisions is likely to hinder communication among decision makers, and to retard their uptake of research evidence." • "Anecdotal evidence should not be considered a replacement for, but as a complement to formal research evidence." • "If evidenced-based health care is to meet its potential, the important role of anecdotes must be acknowledged, studied and utilized." 71 By presenting these anecdotal histories, it is anticipated that in the absence of formal research they may assist in representing the state of animal chiropractic, further endorse the value of spinal care and the importance of the vertebral subluxation in health care. The apparent clinical results reported in these cases would tend to suggest that there is not a functional overlay or placebo effect involved. There have been reports in chiropractic publications over the years regarding the role of spinal adjustments in vertebrate health conditions.17-19,22,25,42-44,78-81 We also noted a series of anecdotal case reports on animal websites.9,14,19,20 Again, the range of conditions22,58-60,63 and the variety of quadrupeds mentioned are remarkable.9,13,15 However, perhaps two of the more detailed reports were found in a chapter on chiropractic animal care in a veterinary textbook -- one an equine case study, the other a canine case report.59 This has been followed by a more detailed study of the utilisation of allied health therapies for performance horses such as dressage, jumping, and racing. Chiropractic was the most utilised of these professions at 37%, with physiotherapy at 24%.82 It is submitted that these anecdotes provide a basic form of pattern recognition where "the provider uses experience to recognise a pattern of clinical characteristics." 83 It can be defned as "a method for evaluating alternative diagnostic hypotheses that yields true probabilities; and a framework that should facilitate unsupervised learning of medical knowledge and the integration of medical diagnosis with other ... applications."84 Wakefeld states that "pattern recognition has been a fundamental part of good medical practice and essential in the detection and description of disease syndromes." 85 CONCLUSION This paper is not presented as formal scientifc evidence, it is intended as a presentation and sharing of observations. However, the evidence of infuence and effcacy of vertebral adjustments as refected through these anecdotal histories appears compelling. The emergence of this relatively new profession -- Chiropractic Veterinary Science, appears to be firmly established and well accepted by the public. The inter- professional collaboration and co-operation between the two professions is also most positive. The types of anecdotal conditions reported tend to counter claims that chiropractic care may be successful only as a placebo effect, or that spine-related disorders may be psychosomatic. We found no scientifc evidence to support either theory. It appears that anecdotal reports on animals are the primary source of evidence that is currently available. It is to be trusted that this is an early step towards establishing a sound research base. The research can begin with similar fundamental clinical fndings. It is apparent in the cases presented, and as noted in the texts by Kamen,42-44 that subluxation disorders in animals would seem to be related to neurological and somatovisceral sequelae, analogous with similar neurovertebral processes to those in humans. A call is hereby made for the compilation of additional anecdotal evidence of spine-related disorders in all vertebrates. This is made with the hope and expectation that it will foster formal levels of research. “A man’s own observation, what he fnds good of, and what he fnds hurt of, is the best physic to preserve health.” 86 Acknowledgements The authors would like to thank Dr Joe Ierano whose generosity and energy was a signifcant contribution in
CJA March 2012