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Matthew Sweat DC Bio & Stephen Wallace DC Bio    

Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research ~ Issue 2 ~ May 31, 2012 ~ Pages 46-54


Objective: To report on the effectiveness of Atlas Orthogonal (AO) chiropractic in the management of an upper cervical subluxation for a patient with trigeminal neuralgia (TN).

Clinical Features: A 54-year-old male presented with right-sided facial pain along the distribution of the mandibular branch of the trigeminal nerve for the past 5 years. The patient also has a secondary complaint of lower cervical stiffness which he attributes to a skiing accident. Following digital palpation, comparative leg length analysis, and radiographic examination it was determined that the patient had an atlas subluxation with a left anterior listing.

Intervention and Outcomes: Two days following the initial AO adjustment to the atlas, the associated TN pain reduced significantly. After one month under AO care the patient no longer  experienced any pain associated with TN.

Conclusion: AO needs to be recognized as an initial approach for the immediate and long-term relief of TN. The relationship between an upper cervical subluxation and the referral of pain from the trigeminocervical nucleus to the distribution of the trigeminal nerve is discussed.

Key Words:Upper cervical chiropractic, Atlas Orthogonal, upper cervical subluxation, trigeminal neuralgia, mandibular branch, atlas subluxation, trigeminocervical nucleus, trigeminal nerve

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