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Chiropractic Care Resolves Headaches in Pregnant Patient

This paper reveals the potential chiropractic may have on birth outcome.  This 28-year-old woman was 14 weeks pregnant. She had a history of a prior C-Section and wanted to improve her chances of a vaginal delivery. 

Additionally, she had been medically diagnosed with migraine headaches, hypothyroidism (lacking sufficient thyroid hormone), and tachycardia (fast heart rate of more than 100 beats/minute).

The doctor of chiropractic’s spinal analysis showed a mild head and pelvic tilt.  Dr. Edwards examined the patient’s sacrum utilizing Webster sacral analysis and range of motion tests.

He found misalignments in the neck, pelvis, and upper middle back.  Utilizing a combination of Gonstead, Thompson and Webster Techniques, Dr. Edwards addressed the misalignments in her spine.

The patient continued chiropractic care throughout her whole pregnancy for a total of thirty-three visits over seven months.  Throughout her pregnancy, she mostly complained of mild headaches and sacral pain.

At her 26th week of pregnancy, she described “floaters” in her visual field of both of her eyes which improved by resting.  After reporting this, she said she lost the inferior part of her peripheral (side) vision.

The patient also described a numb, tingling feeling in her left hand and a loss of sensation on the left side of her face.  She was taken to the hospital where a complete examination was performed which included an ultrasound, MRI, and CT scans.  All tests came back negative.  The hospital released her soon after because her symptoms spontaneously resolved.

The patient continued chiropractic care and scheduled a follow-up with her local neurologist.  The neurologist found no abnormalities.

When she was 30 weeks pregnant, she fell at home and her obstetrician found that the fetus had moved from head down (vertex) to a side-to-side position (transverse).

She continued chiropractic care for two more visits and addressed the baby’s transverse position by doing inversions at home.  After two more chiropractic visits and initiating inversion (upside down) exercises at home, the patient reported that she felt that the baby had moved back to a vertex position.  Her obstetrician confirmed this two-weeks later.

When the patient was 38 weeks pregnant, she reported having visual field disturbance in her right eye which affected her peripheral vision.  The patient said her head became “cloudy” and that she felt disoriented, as well as tingling in her right hand that did not go away through movement.

She reported experiencing the same feeling in her face, like her face had fallen asleep, and then she had a headache.  The patient described this pattern of symptoms as the same as before but just on the other side.

The doctor of chiropractic adjusted her neck and upper spine based on misalignments found during examination.  Two days after the visit, the patient said all of the symptoms had resolved.

She successfully attempted labor when she was 40 weeks and 4 days pregnant.  The patient delivered a baby girl that was 8 lbs. 9 oz. and 21 inches long.  The patient decided to continue chiropractic care after delivering the baby for thirteen more visits over fourteen weeks.  She was then switched to a maintenance care plan with bi-monthly visits.

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MLA Citation: Edwards, John, & Alcantara, Joel.  “Chiropractic Care of a Pregnant Patient Presenting With a History of Migraine Headaches, Hypothydroidism, and Tachycardia.”  Journal of Pediatric, Maternal, & Family Health2015.1 (2015): 71-76.