Should Spinal Manipulation Be Used to Treat GERD?

Chiropractic CareUp until recently, GERD or gastroesophageal reflux disease was one of the last things that someone would ask a chiropractor about. However, studies completed within the last few years have revealed that there is a connection between the all too common digestive disease and the human spine.

One of the ground-breaking studies appeared in a back issue of Neurogastroenterology & Motility magazine. It pointed out that spinal nerves are impacted by unresolved GERD, which has led some to speculate that spinal manipulation may help people living with the disease.

Doctors have long believed that undue pressure on the abdomen is one of the leading causes of GERD. That’s why the disease is often linked to conditions like obesity, weight gain and pregnancy. They all put pressure on to the abdomen. However, injuries to certain areas of the spine have the ability to do the same.

This has been indirectly noted in cases where people complain of abdominal pain related to health problems like spinal tuberculosis and thoracic disc prolapse. In many cases, it is the thoracic spine and its related nerves that are to blame. It is a section of the spinal column that runs from the area near a person’s shoulder blades to the start of the lower back.

So in theory, spinal manipulation and other chiropractic treatments may help relive abdominal pressure, thereby reducing incidents of GERD. Of course more research will need to be conducted in this area to be sure. In the meantime, patients who have not found relief using traditional forms of GERD treatments may want to consider giving chiropractors a chance.

They can assess the person’s body to determine if there is a problem with the thoracic spine and provide treatment, if applicable. They may also be able to ease spinal nerve sensitivity, which has already been scientifically connected to the disease courtesy of the study that we mentioned earlier. To learn more about spinal manipulation and its impact on the abdomen, please reach out to a Indianapolis chiropractor listed here.


Image courtesy of cooldesign/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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