Truly, this headline seems incredulous. How could the movement of one bone in a hypertensive cause blood pressure to lower? Well, maybe a little connecting of the dots may help to clarify the issue. Picture this- starting from your lower back and up to your brain, a boney tunnel exists that houses your spinal cord. Multiple bones, called vertebrae, sit on top of one another to make up the tunnel. You can feel the boney backside of the tunnel up and down the middle of your back. The top bone of the tunnel is your atlas and it is the seat for your skull. For perspective, your head is like a bowling ball which has to set perfectly positioned on this small, first circular bone. Now, realize that the spinal cord in the tunnel is a superhighway to convey all messages from the body into the brain and from the brain back to the body. At any point on the superhighway a traffic jam can occur if the vertebrae lose proper functional movement, cutting off the flow and the ease of communication from brain to body and body to brain.  Vital information can be backed up and distorted. Bodily functions and systems can suffer from compromised input/output of messages relayed through the nervous system.

For over one hundred years Chiropractors have shared testimony to patients having all sorts of wonderful patient outcomes when the correct type of adjustment is given to realign the “traffic jams” of this vital nervous system tunnel.

This study proves one of those claims scientifically true.

A double blind 8 week study for non-medicated Stage I Hypertensives demonstrates that a specific adjustment to the first vertebrae, the atlas, reduced average systolic blood pressure by 17mm and diastolic blood pressure by 10mm in the treatment group compared to controls which received sham adjustments and reduced their average systolic blood pressure by 3mm and diastolic by 2mm.

84 yr-old Dr. Marshall Dickholt, Sr., DC was the practicing physician in the study. Here is Dr. Dickholtz’s simple summary as to what is happening,

“At the base of the brain are two centers that control all the muscles of the body. If you pinch the base of the brain– if the Atlas gets locked in a position as little as a half a millimeter out of line-it doesn’t cause any pain but it upsets these centers,” Dickholtz tells Web MD.

The study leader, George Bakris, MD, is quoted on Web MD-
“This procedure has the effect of not one, but two blood-pressure medications given in combination,” “And it seems to be adverse-event free. We saw no side effects and no problems,” adds Bakris, director of the University of Chicago hypertension center.