Objective: To describe the chiropractic care of an elderly adult with presenting complaints of shoulder pain and co-morbidities.
Clinical Features: A 73-year-old female presented with a chief of complaint of shoulder pain of one year duration with co-morbidities of hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, a hiatal hernia, acid reflux, arthritis, and a history of stroke. The patient reported burning pain located at the left acromioclavicular joint and the posterior aspect of the axilla, ipsilaterally. Tylenol provided only temporary and minor relief. Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the cervical spine revealed narrowing of the C4-C5 and C5-C6 intervertebral foramens concomitant with degenerative changes. The patient was diagnosed with brachial neuritis and cervicalgia concomitant with osteoarthritis and subluxations of the cervical spine.
Intervention and Outcome: The patient was cared for with spinal adjustments characterized as high velocity, low amplitude thrusts and adjunctive therapies consisting of moist heat and y-axis traction of the cervical spine. Following a trial of care consisting of 11 visits over 2½ months, the patient was pain free with improved functioning and quality of life as measured by the Upper Extremity Functional Index and Bournemouth Neck Pain questionnaires.
Conclusion: This case report provides supporting evidence on the effectiveness of chiropractic care in elderly patients presenting with symptoms associated with cervical spine dysfunction.
Author keywords: chronic shoulder pain, chiropractic, vertebral subluxation, elderly
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