Patient was able to reduce insulin dosage, improve blood sugar control

Recent research reported in the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research reveals that chiropractic may play an important role in helping people suffering from Type I Diabetes. The man showed improvement in blood glucose averages, percentage of time of blood glucose in a healthy target range, and glycosylated hemoglobin. The patient reduced his basal insulin by approximately half during chiropractic care.

“Research is revealing that disturbances in spinal alignment and function may be a factor in a number of disorders. These spinal shifts lead to nerve obstruction and can result in a host of disorders because the nervous system controls and coordinates all functions of the body” stated Dr. Curtis Fedorchuk, the lead author of the study. Other chiropractic researchers have reported on similar results.

Dr. Doug Lightstone another researcher involved in the study explained “If you obstruct the neurological structures in the spine this can have far reaching implications on the functioning of the body. Through research reports like this we are finding that correcting the structural shifts associated with these spinal problems reduces the nerve obstruction and people experience improvement. In this study it was a young man who had Type 1 diabetes.” 

Over 300 million people have diabetes with around 4 million dying each year from it. People under 60 account for half the deaths. Type I diabetes is believed to result from beta cell destruction in the pancreas, usually leading to absolute deficiency in insulin.  This chronic autoimmune disease requires self-management and medical care to reduce the risk of long-term complications. Intense monitoring of blood sugar and continuous insulin therapy is generally recommended. This is important because keeping blood sugar levels low helps prevent or delay chronic complications. Glycemic control in type I diabetes is a complex and demanding challenge day to day due to the need for frequent self-monitoring and regular adjustments in insulin dosing.  These challenges have a substantial impact on quality of life and also on the healthcare costs needed for recommended treatment.

“Finding the cause and or contributing factors of the diabetes and reducing those risks and contributing factors is a much better strategy” according to Fedorchuk.  One such risk is thought to be structural spinal shifts, called vertebral subluxations, which result in nerve obstruction. It is this obstruction that may cause a cascade of neuroendocrine events that lead to abnormal endocrine function. The theory is that once those spinal shifts are corrected the body is better able to balance its physiology.

The patient reported on in the study was a 26-year-old young man who presented with chronic mid-back pain and type 1 diabetes mellitus. X-rays and MRI revealed structural spinal shifts in his mid-back consistent with vertebral subluxation. Glycosylated hemoglobin and blood-glucose averages were obtained by continuous glucose monitoring. His back pain, nerve obstruction and quality of life were monitored. Following chiropractic care the patient reported improvement in his mid-back pain and quality of life. Repeat x-rays showed correction of the structural shift and follow-up testing of his nerve system showed improvement.

Continuous glucose monitoring showed dramatic drops in blood glucose immediately following each visit along with improvement in blood glucose averages, percentage of time of blood glucose in a healthy target range, and glycosylated hemoglobin. The patient reported he was able to reduce his insulin by half.