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Palmer Upper Cervical

Upper Cervical Specific Chiropractic is a branch of chiropractic developed and promoted by B. J. Palmer beginning in the 1930s until his death. According to Upper cervical chiropractic, a vertebral subluxation can only occur in upper cervical vertebrae. Therefore this technique places great importance on the anatomical structures of the atlanto-occipital joint, pointing out that it floats on two toed-in spoon like surfaces and is a potential source of instability. This potential instability of the atlanto-occipital joint is theorized to predispose people to an “adaptational imbalance” in the head/neck region.

The techniques are characterised by:

  1. Main influence on the upper cervical articulations of the occiput, and the atlas and axis vertebrae
  2. Focus on vector calculation based upon the theory that kinematic joint dysfunction is related to a positional disturbance.
  3. Attempted radiographic analysis of positional disturbance of the atlanto-occipital joint
  4. Documentation of post-adjustment results with objective measures
  5. Use of a specific vectored force

According to Upper cervical chiropractic, a subluxation can only occur in upper cervical vertebrae. A subluxation must have the following components:

  1. A vertebra out of alignment with its co-respondents above and below.
  2. Occlusion of a foramen or foramina
  3. Pressure upon nerves
  4. Interference with transmission of the normal quality flow of mental impulse supply between brain and body
  5. No vertebrae is subluxated unless it is off normal position in three directions and remains such

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