Going Above Atlas:
A New Model of Dis-ease
by John S. Blye, D.C.
(reprinted from the
December 2003 "Plexus" – Washington State Chiropractic Association
For over one hundred years, chiropractors have been doing
amazing things to improve the health of people. And we have done it accessing only the bottom 20 per
cent of the central nervous system. 80
per cent of the CNS (the brain and brainstem) lies sequestered beneath the 8
bony plates that make up the cranium. And
chiropractors have largely ignored those plates. Why?
Part of the reason is the erroneous assumption, fostered by
the "rigid box" model of the skull in the 1800's, that these plates
don't move. This theory was
ultimately laid to rest in 1974 when Michigan State University's College of
Osteopathy, using the newly developed tool of cinemaroentgenography,
demonstrated x-ray movies of cranial plate movement in live patients. The rigid skull model is still in vogue in neurology today,
despite its now obvious shortcomings.
Part of the reason is that there was no logical basis for
most chiropractors to go above Atlas. After
all, dis-ease (in the chiropractic model) is caused by nerve pressure.
Nerve pressure that is caused by subluxations.
Subluxations are misaligned bones or stuck joints (take your pick) that
result in nerve impingement. Where's
the impingement of nerves at brain level? How
far would a cranial bone have to "misalign" to impinge the brain, or a
cranial nerve? Is that even
Much of what we know today of the art of cranial
manipulation comes from the field of Osteopathy. Founded in 1865 by Andrew Still, osteopathy was based on the
premise that misaligned bones, particularly the vertebrae, caused interference
with the normal fluid dynamics of the healthy body. By 1930 William O. Sutherland, D.O. had demonstrated that
fluid dynamics could be altered at brain level.
He claimed that by manipulating the bones of the skull, he was resolving
many serious states of illness in his patients. Sutherland was a mentor to many of our great technique
masters, and fluid dynamics has become an integral part of nearly all cranial
techniques (e.g. the cranial – sacral pump mechanism).
A New Model of Dis-ease
The fluid dynamics model of classical osteopathy has held
only moderate interest for subluxation – based chiropractors.
Now, however, there is a new model that offers chiropractors a logical
reason for going above Atlas: the
Encephalitis/Resistance Model of Dis-ease (E/R Model).
The E/R Model proposes that many states of dis-ease occur
as a result of nerve pressure at the brain/brainstem level of the CNS.
Two coinciding phenomena are required for this nerve pressure to occur:
1) chronic regional encephalitis, that is, ongoing brain swelling due to
inflammation that may be limited to one or more regions of the brain, and 2)
resistance caused by cranial plates that are not moving properly, e.g.
subluxated. This subluxation-based model further proposes that the type of
disease is related to the location of the cranial resistance and the degree of
dis-ease is related to the degree of inflammation (and subsequent swelling) of
the brain tissues. This combination
could produce a nearly infinite variety of bodily dysfunctions, including
neurological, hormonal, and mental / emotional states.
A New Look At Inflammation
Health is the ability of a living tissue to re-organize
itself. Reorganization allows
living things to repair or replace damaged (disorganized) tissue, and also to
adapt to changes in the environment. This
may be done quickly and efficiently (with ease) or with relative degrees of
impairment (with dis-ease).
The inflammatory process is, by far, the most common
mechanism by which the body reorganizes damaged tissue.
It is both a necessary and desirable attribute of health.
Inflammation is characterized by four cardinal signs: rubor, dolor,
calor, tumor – redness, pain, heat and swelling.
These are the signs of healing. They
begin immediately following the injury of tissue and continue, gradually
dissipating, until the tissue is repaired.
It is important to realize that inflammation is a process: that is, under normal circumstances, it has a beginning, a
middle, and an end.
Occasionally, however, inflammation persists well beyond a
reasonable healing period. Most
commonly this occurs when the inflammatory process is "trapped" as
within the capsule of a subluxated joint. We
have all seen the reddened, swollen distal joint of a "ten-key"
finger. In many cases, this
arthritic finger has lingered for decades.
What you may not know is that, in many cases, this arthritis will
disappear (or greatly reduce) if the joint is unlocked with an adjustment.
D.D. Palmer wrote of adjusting subluxated toes to reduce the inflammation
of bunions (The Science, Art & Philosophy of Chiropractic – 1910).
The brain, too, inflames when brain tissue is injured.
The result is known as encephalitis, and occasionally as the broader
term, encephalopathy. The classical medical view of encephalitis is that it is an
event, and the term is traditionally used to denote inflammation that results in
increased Intracranial pressure (ICP) that is sufficient to put the patient at
risk of death. This can occur after
serious head trauma, an infection such as meningitis, a severe burn, or exposure
to neurotoxins such as lead or mercury. People who "recover" from this event, in about 60
days, are often left with residual neurological, immunological, and mental /
In his 1992 book, Vaccination, Social Violence and
Criminality, Dr. Harris Coulter made a startling hypothesis:
much of the immunologic and neurologic disorders of children are due to
the post-encephalitic effects of vaccinations.
He based that assumption on the remarkable similarities between
post-vaccination disorders and those documented following Von Economo's
Encephalitis, a plague that swept through Europe and America in the 1920's,
leaving thousands dead and tens of thousands with permanent disorders.
Dr. Coulter was not the first to blame vaccinations for SIDS, Autism, and
Learning Disabilities, but he was the first to describe encephalitis as a
probable mechanism, and to extend the relationship to antisocial and criminal
behavior. He referred to this as
Post Encephalitis Syndrome.
But what if Post Encephalitis Syndrome isn't permanent?
What if it isn't damage? What
if it is, at least partially, nerve pressure?
For the past several years, I had been developing a new
technique to find and correct cranial subluxations. A significant motivation was the clinical results I was
obtaining. People were claiming
that they were recovering from health problems upon which prior care had had
little effect. Problems like
depression, anxiety, OCD, Crohn's & IBS, panic disorder, anger disorder,
ataxia, Fibromyalgia and Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, systemic arthritis,
Learning Disabilities and Autism.
Many of these conditions have been attributed to Post
Encephalitis Syndrome. Some of them
have been thought to be permanent or untreatable, due to nervous tissue damage.
But there were two glaring inconsistencies with that model:
1) most of these disease states are dynamic, that is, people have good
days and bad days – nerve damage is relatively static, and 2) cranial
adjustments were bringing resolution, often complete, of many of these
supposedly permanent conditions.
An Army of Cranial Chiropractors
The E/R Model gives subluxation – based chiropractors a reason to go above Atlas: to remove nerve pressure that causes dis-ease. Cranial subluxations can be corrected quickly, safely, and with excellent clinical results. The world needs an army of cranial chiropractors. Care to join?John S. Blye, D.C. is the developer of the E/R Model of Dis-ease and Blye Cranial Technique. A 1974 graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic, he has practiced in Lynnwood, WA for 28 years. He can be reached at (425) 775-4533. Dr. Blye will present "Going Above Atlas: A New Model of Dis-ease" on Feb. 8, 2004 at the WSCA Winter Conference.
Copyright © 2003 by Cranial Subluxations.com, John Blye, DC, and Lynn Bamberger, DC. All rights reserved. Duplication without express written permission is strictly forbidden.
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