Upper Cervical Therapy
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Description of the Treatment Process

After the medical history survey, introduction into the treatment process and explicit consent of the patient, the latter takes seat on a straight-backed chair; between the backrest and the thoracic spine, a bobbin is clamped to allow rotary angle measurements using the neutral zero method . As a further accompanying diagnostic palpation is provided.

  • Before and after therapy as well as after vibration exposure on the back muscles ('massage'), angular measurements of the horizontal rotation, lateral bending, and flexion and extension will be performed. The resulting data will be used diagnostically, for illustration, and statistically.
  • Before and after therapy as well as after massage, palpatory findings are also yielded and, if necessary, documented. For research purposes, photographic and filmic material might be produced in the course of the therapy process.
If one applied a vibrathode medially of the mastoid process, this would mobilize the left posterior digastric muscle.

The digastric muscle rearrangement is done by brief mobilization or rather application of a very small amplitude vibration on the left suboccipital area and a self-determined head movement of the patient. Admittedly, other muscles of the left suboccipital area are also stimulated. The decisive effect is achieved through left-sided tilting of the head while the posterior digastric muscle is mobilized for a short period of time by vibrational impact. At the end of flexion, vibration is stopped and the head is lifted up without vibrational exposure. At that moment, the muscle comes off with its fascia and installs itself in front of the upper cervicals. Under these conditions, the left posterior digastric muscle leaves its implantation point at the posterior arch of the atlas or on there accreting upper cervical muscles, is briefly at a standstill next to the atlas process and, after lifting of the head, does no more return to the implantation point. The left posterior digastric muscle stands henceforth in front of the upper cervicals, and in symmetric position with respect to the right posterior digastric muscle belly.

The process can be accompanied by palpation: As compared to the prior state, a diametrically opposite, brand new condition is installed, which is usually strongly noticed by the patients.

After muscle rearrangement, the patient is given opportunity to follow his or her bodily sensations and fathom out the new head mobility and posture.  At first, a highly noticeable increase in head mobility is usually noticed. Particularly the horizontal rotation to the right is expanded, which is caused by the fact that the hold caused by the left upper digastric muscle is suddenly released. Furthermore, among other things, mainly left-sided reinforcement of the vertebral artery blood flow occurs, which is manifested by feelings of heat, tingling, or pulsing. These phenomena should be accompanied therapeutically.

A second essential step consists in the vibrational after-treatment on shoulders and upper cervical muscles in prone position in order to achieve hyperemic effects. During that measure, elderly and critically ill patients may sit. In this way the propioceptive reorientation in the cervical region is promoted. If this step was not taken, a successfully made ​​muscle rearrangement might easily tilt back due to persisting muscle asymmetries. The former, asymmetrical condition reestablishes again.

Education on posture optimization concludes the second therapy step. This consists essentially in conscious cultivation of head retraction. After muscle rearrangement, the head can be more easily pushed horizontally rearward and held there. In this way, posture and general condition optimize. In order to strengthen cervical muscles, it is in some cases recommended to use a stretch band held before the mouth, which in turn ensures the success of therapy.

Once open questions, possible side effects, and the reversibility of the digastric muscle rearrangement were discussed, an appointment concludes the process. In severe pathologies, one must reschedule closely because in that way most problems and reactions related to treatment can be discussed and accounted for. In milder pathologies two to three appointments in increasingly longer intervals and a check after a period of six to seven months will suffice.