Research Shows Chiropractic May Help Children with Constipation

Recent research reported in the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health – Chiropractic reveals that chiropractic may play an important role in helping resolve constipation in children.

Atlanta, GA, May 18, 2010 --( Following a brief trial of chiropractic care, the research on a 6 year old female resulted in resolution of all presenting complaints including constipation, stomach pain and neck pain.

“Research is revealing that minor disturbances to spinal alignment and function may be a factor in a number of disorders. These disturbances lead to nerve interference and can result in a host of disorders such as constipation and related gastrointestinal disorders,” stated Dr. Matthew Horkey the author of the study. Other chiropractic researchers have reported on similar results and reviews of the scientific research reveal other studies that have shown a similar connection.

“It makes a lot of sense when you think about it,” stated Dr. Matthew McCoy a chiropractor, public health researcher and editor of the journal that published the study, “If you damage or compress or otherwise interfere with the neurological structures in the spine this can have far reaching implications on the functioning of the body. Through research reports like Dr. Horkey’s we are finding that correcting the misalignments or abnormal motion associated with these spinal problems reduces the nerve interference and people improve. In this study it was a child suffering from constipation.”

Ordinarily children suffering from constipation may be given medications that in many cases have not been fully studied in children. Finding the cause of the gastrointestinal issues is a much better strategy. One such cause is thought to be spinal misalignments and/or abnormal motion of the spine, termed vertebral subluxations by chiropractors, which result in structural and neurological interference to the spine and nerve system. It is this interference that may cause symptoms such as those seen in this study and chiropractors correct or reduce this interference.

History and examination of the child in this study revealed that she had suffered from constipation since the age of two with bowel movements spanning from once a week to every 2 or 3 days. She also had stomach pain and complained of motion sickness. Dietary changes did not bring about resolution of the symptoms and laxatives were also ineffective. Her neck pain had become chronic and interfered with her sleep.

Within 13 visits the constipation and stomach complaints had resolved with bowel movements now occurring daily. The child’s neck pain completely resolved as well and the parents of the patient were encouraged to maintain regular chiropractic care for the child.

According to Dr. Horkey, these results suggest a possible link between gastrointestinal dysfunction and spinal subluxations. Correcting the subluxations through the use of specific chiropractic adjustments appears to have returned this child’s gastrointestinal function to normal. The author calls for further study in a controlled environment.

Matthew McCoy, DC, MPH