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Shane Lynch DC, William R. Boone Ph.D, DC

Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research ~ March 17, 2009 ~ Pages 1-5



Objective: To examine the literature for probable mechanisms supporting a somatovisceral response.

Review: Chiropractors maintain that vertebral subluxations may influence visceral physiology. In support of this viewpoint, case studies report improvement of visceral problems following chiropractic spinal adjustments. As well, a smaller number of controlled studies have demonstrated measurable changes in somatovisceral parameters such as heart rate, heart rate variability, bladder pressure, gastric motility and blood pressure.

Discussion: The somatovisceral responses produced in these controlled studies have been, in general, of short duration. Consequently, it is not known if this response time is sufficient to influence long term visceral physiology. While the body of evidence supporting long term somatovisceral change following chiropractic adjustments is growing, it remains a topic for continued investigation.

Conclusion: It is concluded that research into this concept is essential to underpin the rationale behind adjusting the spine for the correction of vertebral subluxation.

Key Words: Autonomic nervous system, chiropractic adjustment, somatovisceral , spinovisceral, subluxation.

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