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Recent Study: Manual Therapy Is an Effective Treatment for Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

Recent Study: Manual Therapy Is an Effective Treatment for Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

A clinical study conducted in 2014 and 2015 by Wetzler, et al and published in the refereed journal
Medical Acupuncture showed that a combination of CranioSacral Therapy, Visceral Manipulation, and Neural Manipulation produced immediate and lasting improvements on patients suffering from Traumatic Brain Injury (TBIs) and Post-Concussinve Syndrome. Ten (10) retired NFL and CFL (Canadian) professional football players, each having experienced multiple concussions participated.  Each participant was medically evaluated by a physician prior to the study and received two, two-hour manual therapy sessions each day for five days. All were tested  prior to the first treatment, immediately after the last treatment, and three months later,  The 14 tests included a combination of the most reliable  medical tests for concussions and standard manual therapy tests for connective tissue restrictions. The press is filled with stories about the dangers of head injuries and concussions, but the average person may not understand the many ways that Traumatic Brain Injuries disrupt a person’s health and functioning.  The sheer number and variety of tests helps fill in those gaps. 

1)   Medical Examination

2)   Impact  Beurcognitive Test/Dynavision Test
3)   Short Form 36—Quality of Life Survey
4)   Headache Intensity Test
5)   Dizziness Handicap Inventory
6)   Range of motion tests for involved joints and cervical and lumbar region
7)   Vestibular and balance test
8)   Numeric pain ratting scale (Number given for overall pain)
9)   Quantity (hours) of sleep
10)  Cranial Rhythm Impulse Test
11)  Cranial Membrane Tension Test
12)  Peripheral and Cranial Nerve Mobility Test
13)  Visceral Mobility and Motility Test
14)  Fascial Listening Test to find primary driver of dysfunction

As is common with so many people who are ill, the individual participants felt alone prior to gathering for the clinical trial.  However, they quickly bonded into a team, sharing a common mission, namely to get better,  Although this aspect of the trial was not measured, participants embraced it enthusiastically.  It may have contributed to the positive outcome.  The manual therapists included Osteopaths, Physical Therapists,  and other allied health professionals certified in the techniques used.  While studies have shown that manual therapy might be helpful for military personnel suffering from post concussive syndrome, the injuries suffered as a result of explosions differ significantly from those received in football and other contact sports.   The study was funded by the John E. Upledger Foundation and the Ricky Williams Foundation.      


To read the study, please click on 
 CranioSacral Therapy and Visceral Manipulation: A New Treatment Intervention for Concussion Recovery.  Or go to MEDICAL ACUPUNCTURE  Volume 29, Number 4, 2017 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. by clicking the doi: 10.1089/acu.2017.1222