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Restoration of Pediatric Cervical Lordosis: A Review of the Efficacy of Chiropractic Techniques and their Methods 

Paul Oakley, DC, MSc & Deed Harrison, DC


Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health – Chiropractic ~ Volume 2015 ~ Issue 3 ~ Pages 112-116 




Background:  The cervical lordosis is a normal postural development that occurs as early as 7-9.5 weeks in utero. We reviewed the existing literature for any and all peer-reviewed evidence of any chiropractic technique system that has documented an improvement of cervical lordosis in pediatric patients (age <18 years). 

Methods:  A systematic review of peer-reviewed clinical studies was performed in Index Medicus and the Index to Chiropractic Literature databases using relevant keywords related to correcting cervical lordosis. All retrieved references were reviewed for their references, and relevant articles were retrieved. Self-published technique manuals were not included. Only articles featuring pediatric patients (age <18 years) were included in this review.

Results:  Listed in descending order of quantity, Chiropractic Biophysics (CBP, 4), Gonstead (2), Toggle (2), Atlas Orthogonal (AO, 1), and Pettibon (1) were the technique papers located. There was only one level I evidence paper by AO.

Discussion:  Of the 10 cases included for review, only 6 reported an x-ray measurement documenting the increase in cervical curve resulting from treatment, the other 4 papers merely commented on a post-treatment improvement in lordosis. Only 4 studies used a reliable measurement method; that being the Harrison posterior tangent method. These 4 studies were all CBP cases.

Conclusion:  Although the amount of evidence is small, for pediatric patients, there appears to be reliability in extension-traction procedures for increasing lordosis, as well as promise in upper cervical treatments to have effect on lordosis due to AARF.

Keywords:  Cervical lordosis, subluxation, chiropractic techniques, restoration, correction

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