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Category: Other Papers
Date 24-aug-2007
Title A Single Mechanical Impulse to the Neck:Does Influence Autonomic Regulation Cardiovascular Function?
Author N. Watanabe; B. Polus
Main Condition/ Disease  Blood Pressure
Source Chiropractic Journal of Australia, Vol 37 No. 2, June 2007 (Chiropr J Aust 2007; 37:42-48)
Abstract Objective: This study aims to examine the effects of a simulated cervical manipulation in the absence of any head movement on automomic regulation of cardiovascular funciton in young healthy adults.
Summary Design: A Pre-post-test study design
Setting: An acute laboratory-based study that examined the effect of application of a brief mechanical stimulus (simulating a chiropractic adjustment using an Activator instrument) to the neck on cardiac automomic nervous and cardiovascular function.
Participants: Eleven young healthy adults completed this study.
Intervention: A single mechanical impulse (sham or authentic manipulation procedure) was applied to the neck.
Main Outcome Measures: Heart rate (HR), heart rate variability (HRV), and non-invasive beat-to-beat blood pressure (BP) were measured.
Results: There were significant reductions in BP after application of the mechanical stimulus in the supine posture (p>.05). Particularly the reductions peaked at 20 sec post-stimulation. Changes in HR and most HRV parameters, however, were not significant in either supine or sitting posture (p>.05). Also there were no significatnt differences in responses between authentic and sham manipulation procedures.

Conclusions: Our results showed that a mechanical stimulus applied to the upper cervical region is capable of acutely influencing cardiovascular function in young adults. The sham spinal manipulative procedure chosen for this study appeared to be contaminated with unspecified factors that had interventional effects, or the response might be due to an arousal reaction. This issue is being addressed in further investigations.
Keywords Blood pressure; upper cervical;

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