Chiropractic May Enhance Immunity

Chiropractic is well-known for its a simple yet effective ability to treat a variety of pain conditions. Now, a growing body of data indicates chiropractic doesn't just eliminate pain; it may actually enhance immunity. In our office Keizer, OR, we help patients with both musculoskeletal pain and general health and wellness.

Earlier studies have shown that spinal adjustments can improve specific immune responses in both healthy people and back pain patients. However there have been no major literature reviews of the overall effect of chiropractic on immunity. In a recent presentation at the 9th Chiropractic, Osteopathy, and Physiotherapy Annual Conference in the UK, Jack Neil of the Anglo-European College of Chiropractic evaluated the existing literature on spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) and immune responses.

After examining the data up to January 2012, Neil confirmed that spinal adjustments are associated with a central anti-inflammatory response. Research suggests that spinal manipulative therapy may lead to a down regulating of pro-inflammatory cytokines and boost in antibodies involved in the immune response. Furthermore, spinal manipulative therapy may increase the production of tiny cells called leukocytes which support the white blood cells in fighting off a threat. spinal manipulative therapy may also affect Natural Killer cells, interleukin-2 activity, TNF-a levels, cortisol, and b-endorphin levels.

The mechanisms behind these processes are still vague, however. There isn't enough data yet to know whether these inflammatory reductions correlate with an improvement in symptoms. "Most research to date has focused on asymptomatic patients with short-term improvements. The challenge now is to clinically observe long-term health benefits in symptomatic patients," Neil concluded.

Although more research is needed, current evidence indicates that chiropractic adjustments can produce positive improvements in the immune system. These immunological changes may explain why chiropractic can decrease inflammation and pain while promoting overall wellness.

We have worked with many patients in Keizer, OR improve their health. If you would like to experience the advantages of chiropractic care, call  at (503) 390-1552 for a consultation today.

Neil J. Manipulative therapy and immune response: A literature review of the chiropractic and osteopathic evidence. Clinical Chiropractic 2012; 15(3): 186.