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John Edwards, DC, DACCP, Allison Union, BS, Joel Alcantara, DC, PhD (C)


Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health, Chiropractic ~ October 18, 2022 ~ Pages 95-100



Objective: A retrospective file review to determine fetal adverse events via fetal heart rate (FHR) monitoring in women receiving concurrent care with chiropractic and nurse-midwifery.

Methods: In addition to socio-demographic and pregnancy status data, inclusion criteria for file review were: (a) the patient underwent a complete history and physical examination with their respective provider (b) the patient attended consistent care with both midwife and chiropractor, (c) the patient provided consent for the review of both the chiropractic and midwifery patient records, and (d) FHR monitoring was performed and recorded. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistics.

Results: A total of 33 pregnant women received FHR monitoring at various stages of pregnancy. Six women in their 1st trimester (mean weeks gestation (MWG)=12.4; 0.58) met our inclusion criteria. Their mean FHR was 150 beats per minute (bpm) (SD=6.32). Fourteen women were in their 2nd trimester (MWG=22.03; SD=3.59) with mean FHR at 143.71 bpm (SD=5.98). A total of 33 women were monitored in their 3rd trimester (MWG=35.75; SD=3.37) with mean FHR at 140.30 bpm (SD=8.48). All subjects received consistent chiropractic care throughout their pregnancy. Comorbidities were present in 75% of the subjects. All FHR data were within normal limits reflective of an indirect measure of safety to the unborn fetus concurrent with chiropractic care. All pregnant subjects delivered without complications.

Conclusion: The use of spinal/pelvic chiropractic adjustments during pregnancy did not result in adverse events for the fetus as measured by FHR, a major indicator of fetal health in obstetric care.

Key Words: Fetal heart rate, subluxation, chiropractic, adjustment, pregnancy, midwifery, risk management

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