A case study published in the August 15, 2011 issue of the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research documents the improvement with chiropractic care, of a patient suffering with chronic hemifacial spasm, neck pain, and low back pain.
The author of the study explains that hemifacial spasm is a rare condition characterized by irregular clonic twitching of the muscles. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke describe it as "Hemifacial spasm is a neuromuscular disorder characterized by frequent involuntary contractions (spasms) of the muscles on one side (hemi-) of the face (facial)." Medical treatment recommendations include injections of botulinum toxin into the affected areas, or surgery.
In this case a 48-year-old male presented with left hemifacial spasms that he had been suffering with for the past year. In addition, he was also experiencing significant neck pain. The facial spasms were causing his left eye to blink or even completely close at times. He reported that his neurologist had tried to treat his problems with Botox injections, but these only gave short term help. Additionally, he also reported a chronic, off-and-on lower back pain of moderate intensity.
A chiropractic examination was performed which included spinal x-rays. The x-rays noted a reversal of the curve in his neck. Normally, the neck should have a bowing arch forward. In this case the neck was curved in the reverse direction with the bow being to the back of the patient. A determination was made that subluxations of the spine were present causing nervous system interference.
Care was initiated consisting of specific adjustments of his neck and lower spine. The author of this article reported that after just three visits the patients problems were completely resolved. After a three month follow-up the patient was still free of the symptoms that he had originally complained of.