The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Using chiropractic to lower blood pressure

    Researchers from the University of Chicago report that a minor one-time adjustment of the Atlas, or C1 vertebra in the neck, can lower blood pressure by the same amount as the combination of two blood pressure medicines at once.

    How’d they do that?

    According to an article on Best Syndication, this has been known since the ’60s and ’70s. Dr. George Bakris, who is director of the hypertension center at the University of Chicago Medical Center, decided to study it.

    First the details.

    • 50 patients with Stage 1 hypertension (140-159/90-99 mm Hg)
    • Randomly assigned to a National Upper Cervical Chiropractic (NUCCA) procedure or a sham procedure.
    • No blood pressure (BP) drugs during the 8-week study duration.

    And the results at week 8.

    • Systolic BP: -17 mm Hg with NUCCA vs -3 mm Hg with placebo
    • Diastolic BP: -10 mm Hg with NUCCA vs -2 mm Hg with placebo
    • Both BP differences with NUCCA were significant.
    • Heart rate was not reduced in either group.
    • No adverse effects were recorded.

    Dr. Bakris writes, “Anatomical abnormalities of the cervical spine at the level of the Atlas vertebra are associated with relative ischemia of the brainstem circulation and increased BP.”

    “Restoration of Atlas alignment is associated with marked and sustained reductions in BP similar to the use of two-drug combination therapy.”

    More background is here.

    5/10/07 23:05 JR

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