Dangers of a Subluxation 

 December 1, 2010

By  Dr. John Vilkelis


If you’ve been to my office you’ve certainly heard me talk about a subluxation.  A subluxation is a dangerous spinal lesion that often goes undetected for years before symptoms arise.  I would define a subluxation simply by saying it is a damaged joint, that is causing nerve dysfunction that is causing a problem out in the body somewhere.

Subluxations have five components that are usually all present in one form or another.

  1. Pain.  There is almost always going to be some pain associated with a subluxation.
  2. Inflammation.  There will be an increase in inflamation that is often detectable from the surface of our body.
  3. Spasm.  There will be an increase in muscle tension or tightness or spasm associated with a subluxation.
  4. Heat.  There will be an increase in temperature.  According to a very large study at John’s Hopkins University temperature imbalance along the surface of the spine is a very good indicator of nerve dysfunction.
  5. Fixation. A fixation means that the joint is locked into the wrong position and can’t move properly.

The danger of a subluxation is that once the joint becomes locked a process called degenerative disc disease sets in.  This can effect the nerves in many different ways like pain but also like headaches, shortness of breath, balance problems, sciatica, acid reflux, irritable bowel syndrome, carpal tunnel syndrome and much more.  It may be years before you have any symptoms and this is where the danger is.  Degenerative disc disease cannot be reversed.  The proper biomechanics can be restored even times when the degeneration is severe and so you can have a normal return of function in most cases.

It is much better to be checked for subluxations before you have a problem to head off any potential threats.  You need to see your local chiropractor to get checked.  No other healthcare professional checks for subluxations other than a chiropractor.

Something worth mentioning is that once you have degenerative changes they keep you predisposed to having a subluxation again at the same spinal level.  Your chiropractor will prescribe a course of acute care that will correct the subluxation but not the degeneration.  No matter where you live or who you will see you must see your chiropractor regularly so the degenerative process does not get started again.  Regularly can mean as little as once a month but for some people it may mean once every two weeks.

Please let me know what you think of this post.  I’d love to share your experience.

Dr. John Vilkelis

Dr. Vilkelis has been in private practice for over 27 years. He has a reputation for truly caring for his patients and goes the extra mile to make sure people get the help they need. He accepts patients of all ages and is eager to help you get well and stay healthy. Give him a call today at (914) 618-4330.

Dr. John G. Vilkelis

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