Multiple sclerosis is a lifelong condition that may lead to a serious disability. Today, Dr. Beth Bagley and Dr. Frederick Schurger explore the promising role of upper cervical care in supporting individuals with multiple sclerosis. They dive deep into some case studies that have shown the efficacy of upper cervical care for not only multiple sclerosis but also Parkinson’s. Plus, they talk about how people can help their immune health with vitamin D. As with all things health-related, consult with your doctor on Vitamin D dosing and get your levels checked. Tune in to this episode to learn more!
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Multiple Sclerosis (MS), Vitamin D & More!
Welcome to the show. I’m Dr. Frederick Schurger.
I’m Dr. Beth Bagley. Welcome.
How have you been?
It is a holiday week. I know this is going to come out some weeks later, but this was the 4th of July. Trying to pile all of the patients into two days in my office was quite fun.
I am in the same boat except I lost power this past weekend.
Everyone who does math will appreciate this joke. I decided I was going to see patients for about an hour starting at 9:00 on Thursday morning because that would mean I could leave the office by noon. Do the math. Have some fun with that. That’s when the storm came in. We were going to head out of town for the weekend.
The storm comes in like a derecho, and it’s a full-on derecho in Springfield. I was driving back to meet up with a patient who never made it. She’s like, “I’m going home to check on the kids.” I make it back to the office. I got drenched walking in by the time I got here, but I almost couldn’t make it. I was worried that there was a tornado coming through here. It was bad.
You don’t have a basement in your office, do you?
We don’t here.
I looked and I had questions. Honestly, by the time I got to the office, the worst of it was over, but we lost power. We were out of power until Monday.
In the office or at home?
At home. The office had power.
I would have slept at the office.
I thought about seeing patients. I was so exhausted that I was like, “I need this time to decompress so that I’m ready for patients.” I ended up with three new patients in two days and got them all adjusted today. It was a very good day. We may talk about these cases at another time. It’s nice to camp at home.
I can see that, except I like air conditioning a lot.
Yes and yes. I get much better sleep and I can do harder workouts when I’ve had some air conditioning.
We’re so spoiled. If you think about our parents and our grandparents, they grew up with no air conditioning.
I was chatting with my dad. When I was in my twenties, I didn’t run the air conditioner. Oftentimes, I’d get a little studio apartment, turn off the air conditioner, and open up the windows wherever I was because I wanted the fresh air. I enjoyed the heat. I gave my dad a brief about how we were weak in enjoying the air conditioning. When I told him we didn’t have air conditioning, he said, “Weren’t you complaining about that when you were growing up?” I’m like, “Yeah. I can still tolerate the heat as long as I don’t have to wear anything but a pair of shorts.” Most of my patients appreciate me in a bow tie. I’m just saying.
I have a great segue to that. Heat is one of the triggers that a lot of patients have who have multiple sclerosis.
Exactly. I was surprised. I’m going through symptoms and conditions that we haven’t covered yet. We haven’t covered multiple sclerosis. A lot of people are going to be surprised that we have probably one of the best non-invasive and non-medicated solutions for multiple sclerosis.
Solution is a strong word, but many of my patients would agree that it’s probably one of the best ways to manage. The reason that you end up managing multiple sclerosis is because we think it’s an autoimmune disease. I put an asterisk there next to think because based on what we’re going to share here, I don’t think it falls in a direct autoimmune situation.
I agree because of the way it reacts, especially with what we do here.
Also, the way that people respond to the upper cervical work does not suggest that it is a purely autoimmune condition. Let’s talk a little bit about MS for people who are unfamiliar. I was going through a couple of different places, refreshing my brain mostly more than anything else. It’s a lot of neurological stuff like pain, muscle spasms, bladder and bowel problems for a lot of them, and cognitive symptoms. Balance is another big one.
Tingling and numbness with visual disturbances. I have a short list of signs and symptoms associated with multiple sclerosis. How do you get diagnosed with multiple sclerosis? You go see a neurologist. They have some very specific tests including an MRI that starts showing white spots on your brain matter and your white matter. That’s the big stuff. Heat is not a favorite condition or situation for people with multiple sclerosis, especially in summer. It often makes all these symptoms worse.
People will call that a trigger. It makes them fearful of the summers a lot of times.
I have a couple of MS patients. I have several, but one in particular, she likes working in her basement during this time of the year.
That makes sense.
She and her husband moved down to Florida. She’s down there all summer long.
In the summer?
All summer long in the heat.
They don’t have basements in Florida.
They don’t but she does great. I’ve adjusted her. Dr. Julie Mayer Hunt has adjusted her. She is with Dr. Lee Angle. He has been taking great care of her. She’s like, “I’m walking well.” She has to use a walker, one of these rollator-type things. She gets along very well with that. As long as we keep her in alignment, she does great. It’s not debilitating for her life, which is the best part.
If you have a medical diagnosis of MS, what are they looking for?
They’re going to take an MRI of your brain, and they’re going to be specifically looking for white spots. The autoimmune theory associated with multiple sclerosis is that the body is attacking the white matter. I don’t know why I want to say white matter, but that seems right. If I’m wrong, please somebody correct me. I’m more than happy to be correct on that.
Since you say that, my brain goes, “Hmm.” Does anybody tuning in truly care? Maybe you do.
There are going to be five of them out there, five people who are going to say, “You’re wrong,” and I’m going to be like, “I was.”
At least you admitted it.
It’s the central nervous system. What they’re finding are these lesions in the brain tissue that are leading to all these other problems. Before we started the recording, you mentioned that latitude makes a difference.
Which is interesting. The theory behind that is latitude, if you’re thinking about why we are talking about maps here, in the United States, the higher up you are, the more likely or the faster you will get symptoms of MS if you are prone to or going to get MS. The study I looked at was two years difference. The reason according to this study was that there is a correlation between vitamin D levels and symptoms of MS. It is interesting because we saw that during the pandemic too. People who didn’t get a lot of sunshine would have lower vitamin D naturally, like in New York. It did a lot worse than big cities like Florida per se. It’s not like, “What’s the difference there?” In my mind, I’m like, “It’s that sunshine.”
I had a patient come in and she was like, “Why do you think I need more vitamin D?” We took a new X-ray and I told her she needed more vitamin D and more Omega-3s. We all need more Omega-3s largely if we’re carrying extra body weight along. That’s going to help tamp down the inflammation response that we’re having.
Her X-ray didn’t look as dense as previous ones or her cone beam. My brain says, “Let’s put you on a little bit of extra vitamin D.” Vitamin D is not a vitamin. It’s a hormone. It’s a prohormone for all the other hormones, so it is a basis and basic starting block for everything else. You want to make sure your vitamin Ds are at least over 50, but there is some speculation that vitamin D levels that are even higher than that, getting into the low hundreds, are even more neuroprotective and more immunoprotective. It is a basis for everything else in your nervous system in your body. The higher levels you have, the better off you’re going to be.
There is a chance people could overdo it on vitamin D though.
Maybe. If you are getting a food-based or a lanolin-based vitamin D, you’re going to be okay. There is some discussion about whether or not you can push it too high. The question is, what is too high? A lot of doctors will be like, “You’re over 50. You should cut back.”
Fifty is still good. You could go higher.
The upper limit of vitamin D is suggested to be up into the 170s. That was from the lab testing that I got a couple of years back. Here’s the thing. Has anybody tested an upper limit of vitamin D consumption to a toxic level? The interesting thing is the body will self-regulate the vitamin D. If it has too much, it will start flushing it out because it is so readily used. Even though it is an oil, it’s still readily used. Your body will be able to self-regulate it pretty well.
What is a symptom that you should be concerned about? It’s constipation. If you’re constipated, first, drink some water, then if that doesn’t help within a couple of days, back off on the vitamin D. Generally speaking, most people are going to have a hard time getting enough vitamin D. These higher levels are unstudied at this point. Most people aren’t going to be taking 30,000 IU of vitamin D as I do on a regular basis. I’m taking it for some autoimmune stuff because it is helping those factors. For someone with MS, especially if you’ve got a lot of neurological factors, maybe some more vitamin D is a good idea.
I’m just going to read off, “Getting too much Vitamin D can be harmful. High levels of vitamin D in your blood greater than 375 nanomoles per liter or 150 nanograms per milliliter can cause nausea, vomiting, muscle weakness, confusion, pain, loss of appetite, dehydration, excessive urination, thirst, and kidney stones.”
How do you get to that level? You have to work to it. One of the supplement reps that I’ve worked with over the years and I were talking back and forth for several decades. They would use one vitamin D where every drop was 2,000 IU from one brand. As soon as you stop taking it, the levels will drop. You’d see this increase right off the bat. As soon as you stop taking it, it will immediately decrease.
He had suggested that the standard process for vitamin D, Cataplex D, would help stabilize that over the long term. It has other co-factors. That’s one aspect of it. There was one other that was on the tip of my tongue as I was talking about this. Your body knows how to regulate vitamin D. I was taking the study that looked at both psoriasis and vitiligo. It was vitiligo, not versicolor. Down in Brazil, they were giving something like 50,000 on a regular basis for over six months.
Daily or weekly?
I know a lot of people, if they are at their medical doctors and they happen to do a vitamin D test, which you have to fight for, they’ll do 50,000 weekly to help get people up.
That was the other thought that I had. Thank you for refreshing my brain. They were taking 50,000 daily if I’m not mistaken. It might’ve been 35,000 IU.
No matter what, it is way more than most people take.
It was way more, which is why I take 30,000 and don’t worry about it. They did that over the course of six months. They had no adverse effects from taking vitamin D. Seventy percent of the psoriasis folks got better and about half of the vitiligo folks got better, which is still fantastic. The interesting thing about uptake is when you take that mega-dose once a week, that 50,000 IU that they often prescribe, that 50,000 doesn’t hit the bloodstream properly because the body doesn’t know how to deal with it. You’re better off taking 10,000 every day.
You’re working yourself up to it. Over time, your body can work up a store to get into that nanograms per deciliter. When I took mine, it had been three years. I need to get new blood work. When I did mine, it was something like 110 or 111, somewhere in that range. I’d been taking that for a couple of years at that point in time. It takes a long time to get up to the chronic “I’m going to have problems” range. Your body says, “I see 50,000 IU,” and it doesn’t absorb it properly. That’s what the literature is suggesting. You’re better off with a smaller high dose and work your way up to more.
In general, what the studies have shown with vitamin D is higher vitamin D levels could possibly stop people from getting multiple sclerosis.
They are certainly protective of symptoms. That’s the better way to think about it more than anything else. You don’t see the cases of MS further south as you do further north. The same thing flips around in the southern hemisphere as you get further south. There is less vitamin D. There is a protective benefit that seems to be present with vitamin D dosing.
Some studies have shown that trauma, especially to the neck or back, or whiplash, is somewhat related to MS diagnosis. That is the case with what I’ve seen in my office, especially whiplash-type injuries or concussion-type injuries. It’s not like I get whiplash and the next day, I get MS. It is more like over the course of years. It is like, “Fifteen years ago, I had a terrible whiplash and now I’ve been diagnosed with MS.”
Some studies have shown that trauma, especially to the neck or back, is somewhat related to MS diagnosis.
People don’t put that together because it’s so far apart. What we do is when we have our history and consultation with a patient, we find out what happened to them before. Can we say for sure that’s connected? No. I see a relationship with Meniere’s. We see whiplash in Meniere’s. With the upper cervical subluxation, and the cerebral spinal fluid dynamics, do you think that’s where it’s happening?
I think that’s what’s happening. Dr. Scott Rosa is up in Albany, New York.
We’ve talked about him before.
It was in the last episode where were talking about the hydrocephalus book. We were getting into what he was looking at there. I’ve got a nice little article here talking about that. The cine study here is great. A cine study of cerebral spinal fluid flow is a motion study MRI, which is cool. What they’ll do is they’ll take a slice and then they’ll record over time to see all the cerebral spinal fluid flow. What they were finding here is that in these MS cases, there was a decreased cerebral spinal fluid flow in certain areas or certain parts. Dr. Rosa has been doing these cine studies for many weekends. He has his own neuroimaging center.
Let’s break it down real quick, and I’ll let you continue to go. I’m confused. Cine study, what is that?
A cine study is you go into an MRI machine. What they do is they set you up. They’re going to look at this narrow spot coming this way.
It’s a thin slice down the center.
It’s a thin slice down the middle is what they’re looking at. They’re going to record that over a period of time.
Cine is cinematic.
It is exactly cinematic.
That’s where that’s coming from. It’s a movie of your brain.
It’s a short movie. Instead of taking a number of slices across to get a 3D image, we’re taking a very narrow slice in the middle. That way, we can see the cerebral spinal fluid flowing as it’s supposed to. It’s supposed to drop down the back of your spinal cord and then come back up the front.
Cerebral spinal fluid is the fluid that is inside part of the brain but also around the brain. The brain sits in a cushion of fluid. There’s no air in there. Even though you get called an airhead, you are not an airhead. It’s floating in this fluid, which is why in shaken baby syndrome, when you shake a baby, their brain is getting smashed.
It is something like that.
There’s other stuff too.
It’s bad. Don’t do it. Don’t shake a baby.
It’s terrible. It breaks the blood vessels. The babies will never be the same or die. A terrible car accident or a fall can do similar things. Liam Neeson’s wife got into a skiing accident. That’s one of the things that happened to her. She had broken blood vessels in the brain because of the brain smashing around in the head. The brain is supposed to smash around because it’s protecting it. The problem, which is what we’re talking about here, is that flow, the way that the body moves that fluid, it doesn’t have a heart. It’s not pumping blood, but the blood will increase the pressure of the brain when it pumps. It decreases when it goes out. Our brain is constantly swelling and getting smaller. It is like a pumping mechanism itself because of the blood.
It’s a pumping mechanism, but it’s not pumping with a heart. Cerebral spinal fluid is more than just the water holding the brain in place. It is nourishing the brain the way it’s supposed to, but it is very viscous much like water. It is supposed to flow around. These cine studies allow us to see these pulsating pictures. It’s supposed to flow around. What they were finding in these MS patients compared to people who are normal was there were spots where the cerebral spinal fluid didn’t flow and didn’t pulse the way it’s supposed to. They found that much more common in MS patients compared to a regular patient.
There are spots where the cerebral spinal fluid didn’t flow and didn’t pulse the way it’s supposed to. That is more common in multiple sclerosis patients compared to regular patients.
Just to bring this out there, we’ll also see similar things with Parkinson’s patients and people who have dementia, ALS, and migraine patients.
There are variations of this. This is why the autoimmune response of MS might not hold up. The suspicion is maybe what’s happening is the cerebral spinal fluid, because it has nowhere to go, and the pressure builds up. When you have a non-compressible liquid, which is cerebral spinal fluid, blood, or water, you can’t compress it. You start putting pressure on it. It’s got to go somewhere. It will end up going into an area that’s the weakest. You’re not going to go up against bone. If you try to push liquid into a bone, it’s not going to happen. Where is it going to go? It’s going to go into that soft tissue of the brain. This is where it ends up having infiltration of the cerebral spinal fluid. We start to see these white spots.
Dr. Rosa takes pre and post-MRIs. He’ll do these cine studies after adjusting a patient, and he’ll do another one almost immediately after. Bear in mind that this is 30 minutes of a patient sitting in an MRI. They get adjusted, and then they’re back into the MRI for another 30 minutes of imaging. It can take a very long time. It’s very taxing on the patient. What Dr. Rosa found within 30 minutes of an adjustment is those spots, those lesions, or that infiltration of the cerebral spinal fluid into these various spots in the brain are gone.
He is very specific and meticulous about making sure that they are positioned exactly the same way they went into the machine the first time as they did the second time. As best as possible, we are seeing something that suggests that these brain infarcts from cerebral spinal fluid disappear. The same lesions that we would consider an MS lesion are gone within 30 minutes after an adjustment.
I’m not saying this is the only causative thing going on with multiple sclerosis, but it does suggest that there is an improvement in the tissue that is allowing the body to heal. Maybe it’s simply a matter of getting the pressure off of those individual spots and then the body can work the way it’s supposed to. In the case of vitamin D, we know vitamin D has some neuroprotective benefits, as well as some immune benefits. If you have a better vitamin D level, maybe you aren’t as prone to the spots hitting or to the cerebral spinal fluid pushing into that tissue as severely in some cases.
Your body doesn’t react as badly to it. If we could psychically know that this person was going to get MS but they have good vitamin D and good health. They work out and they do all the right things. We knew that they were going to get it and we took an MRI, I bet we would still see some of that stuff. It’s just not causing symptoms yet. It’s what I’ve said on other things. Upper cervical is so successful with this if we catch it early or someone has just started getting the symptoms of MS.
I have seen many patients who have had advanced MS, but I don’t see the miraculous type of results that I do with someone who only had it for a year or has only been diagnosed for a year. We know that this has been going on long-term. I can think of one of my patients who wasn’t flared up when I met her, but she came in and knew that she wanted care. She knew that every summer she flared up.
We got her started. It was the end of fall or winter when we got her started in her care. We got through the initial phase of care. She was holding adjustments relatively well. We were seeing her on a monthly basis. We got all the way through the summer into the fall again. She did not have one flare-up over the summer. I hadn’t realized how much of a big deal that was to her. She had not had that for many years.
Come now 3, 4, or 5 years later, she still has not had a flare-over. She moved on me. I think something happened. She has gotten a new upper cerebral doctor in Indiana. At least under my care, she didn’t have a flare, which is good. She did get back under care, which is good. One of the other things I wanted to bring up is about why 50% more women than men get MS. I don’t know why. Do you have any ideas of why that would happen?
50% more women than men get Multiple Sclerosis.
It would come down to the structural strength of the ligament tissue or the density of the ligament tissue in the neck. I’ve got up the cine study, for those who are watching it at home.
If you’re seeing this on YouTube or video form, what I’m seeing is the center of the patient. It’s a tiny slice down the center of the patient through the nose to the back of the head. It looks like on the right side, I’m seeing the flow of cerebral spinal fluid. Every time it pumps, it’s going down like it’s supposed to.
There’s a pulse you see on the right. It’s all the way around this cord.
I don’t like the fact that it’s got white noise static in the background, but that’s whatever they decided to do. You can see on the one on the right, which is our normal healthy volunteer, you’ve got this nice pulsing all the way through. With the MS case on the left, you don’t.
There is some. It’s not like this person’s head is about to explode.
Yeah, but it’s very irregular comparatively.
Is it hydrocephalus? I’d say subclinical hydrocephalus. It’s not to the point where this person needs a stent.
No. Going back to what is going on in the brain as far as fluid dynamics, you have three fluids that are playing back and forth. You have oxygenated blood, which is arterial blood. You have the venous blood, which is deoxygenated, and then you have the cerebral spinal fluid flow. The two drive the other to create a pulse for the cerebral spinal fluid, but all three of them have to move in their coordinated efforts.
If something isn’t sitting where it’s supposed to be, you have an increased cerebral spinal fluid and other problems. Getting to the point that we were making earlier about where it hits in the neuro tissue if it hits more in the spinal cord, we call that Lou Gehrig’s disease. If it hits more in the brainstem around the pons, that might be Parkinson’s hitting around the red nucleus. Is it a red nucleus for Parkinson’s?
It’s substantia nigra.
That’s it. I knew it was one of those two. If it’s in the brain tissue higher up, it’s multiple sclerosis. It’s all a matter of where the pressure problem and where the pressure gradient imbalance are that might be leading to the symptom profile that the patient is experiencing. It may all be the same thing. Getting back to putting a stent in, there was a study several years ago. Back in 2011, an Italian researcher by the name of Zamboni had this grand idea. He was saying that there was an insufficiency of cerebral spinal venous flow. He found that MS patients had an increased cerebral spinal fluid venous flow insufficiency.
What are those words meaning?
It’s a mouthful, but it’s the venous flow out of the brain.
It’s the flow of the blood that’s already been used, going out of the brain.
He had this grand idea that he was going to put a stent in to help improve the venous outflow of the brain. The problem is twofold. One, the venous flow is always a low-pressure flow all the way up into the brain. The question is where does that stent need to be? Does the stent need to be in the brain or does it need to be further down? He ended up putting his stent down towards the lower neck when he was doing these studies and doing his research.
Was he doing these on humans?
I believe he had some human volunteers. A stent in a vein, as studies go, is probably one of the lower risks. Still, people are desperate. Sometimes, you need to have some human volunteers. He was putting it way down low in an area where it wasn’t making the effect. Some of his colleagues got together with some of our upper cervical colleagues over there. Dr. Sandro Mandolesi and Marceca here were working with upper cervical doctors and were looking at the same cerebral spinal venous insufficiency. They found that many of them were related to where the atlas is causing stress and pressure on the jugular vein coming out of the skull. It is much higher up. It is right at the atlas.
There’s another syndrome called the Eagle Syndrome. It’s when we got the styloid, which is right behind your ear, there’s a little bone that pops down and it connects to the front of your neck. It shouldn’t be a bone, but what happens with Eagle Syndrome is it’s turned to bone. I wonder if there’s a correlation between those people. They may have an elongated process because that could put pressure because the two are right next to each other.
It shouldn’t because the jugular sits more along the spine.
That’s more in the carotid?
It’s more anterior. Even the carotid is sitting against the spine.
We’ll have to look that up.
We’ll have to double-check on that. There are a lot of questions as to how much calcification is there. We see a lot of them.
Sometimes, they’re really big.
In any case, I don’t think that’s what’s going on.
That’s not it. It’s not theirs.
The two docs working with one of our upper cervical docs were finding that the rotation of the atlas, which is how the atlas and the axis were turned, which sometimes is a little bit of motion back and forth, would cause enough pressure to suggest that a misalignment of the C1 and C2 vertebrae might be causing stress on that jugular vein, preventing normal flow. This is something we see oftentimes on MRIs as we’re looking at them that suggests that something is causing pressure on a jugular vein.
The jugular is low pressure. You can push on an artery and you can feel some pushback on a vein. There’s that nice little artery right there that tends to pop on a lot of people. You can oftentimes feel that one. On a vein, you push on it, and you will start cutting off blood flow pretty quickly because it doesn’t take a lot of pressure.
They’re thinner walls.
They don’t have the same pressure as an artery does. That was one of their theories. They started testing that with other cases, both with improvements by getting an upper cervical adjustment and seeing how patients did. They were seeing lots of great improvements. We saw a statistical significance with some sort of rotation of the X-rays in these MS cases. They found encouraging information to suggest that correcting of atlas or axis adjustment would lead to an improvement in these cerebral spinal fluid venous insufficiency. It’s the cerebral spinal venous insufficiency. I said fluid earlier.
Correcting the atlas or axis would lead to an improvement in this cerebrospinal venous insufficiency.
It’s not the CSF. That is part of it too. What we’re saying is there could be multiple things happening when there’s an upper cervical subluxation. It’s not just cerebral spinal fluid flow, which is important, but there could be actual pressures that are happening within the neck, outside of the nervous system. The brain isn’t pushing the blood or able to push the blood as fast as it should out, so it’s getting a backup.
They’re pointing to the internal jugular veins having some sort of compression that causes a backup. It’s pieces and parts. It’s not all one thing that leads to a case of multiple sclerosis. As you have all these pieces and parts and you are the person who has that perfect situation, you may end up with your cerebral spinal fluid not working the way it’s supposed to, and then you have a backlog. You can’t flush out all the garbage.
If the garbage collectors go on strike for a month, you’re going to have a bunch of junk. You’re going to have stuff that you don’t want like rats after a short period of time. That’s what I’ve got. We’ve seen good results with MS cases. This is not my favorite study, but I’ll share it real quick. This was a study that Dr. Erin Elster had published several years ago. This was back in 2004. She was looking at a batch of multiple sclerosis patients and a batch of Parkinson’s patients.
I remember this one.
She found good symptomatic improvement and decreased progression for both. The MS patients are at 91% and 92% for the Parkinson’s patients. The reason this isn’t my favorite study is because this should be two studies, in my opinion. I don’t know why she put it all together as one.
If we think about it though, they are connected. There is a connection.
Quite honestly, this would be better as two studies. One that says they could be identical completely, one that says Parkinson’s, and one that says multiple sclerosis. Studies like this happened to be in a chiropractic journal so this is a great rah-rah for chiropractors. If I were going to publish something like this, and I had this cohort, I would want to publish it in a public PubMed journal so that medical doctors can see it if they’re searching for it. The ones who are looking for multiple sclerosis see it and the ones who are looking for Parkinson’s see it separately. Those are two different neurologists. I hate to say it.
I get it. It’s been almost twenty years since this study was done. It’s time for us to do it again.
It’s got a lot of great data. She’s got tons of stuff as far as what the injury or trauma was. It goes down the list of symptoms that they were having. We need to do another study very much like this. At the end of the day, we see these MS patients and we see these Parkinson’s patients. I’m sad to say I have not had a Lou Gehrig patient come in yet, but I’d love to see one and see if I can help them out.
The mechanism is consistent that there’s something wrong in the upper cervical that is preventing either venous flow to work properly or cerebral spinal fluid flow from working properly, or that there’s some other combination of stressors in and around the brainstem that’s preventing the body from functioning.
It’s the same thing with ALS. I have had two patients with ALS come in. They always find me last. They’re already in a wheelchair. They already have a BiPAP machine.
Why do we have to be the last one?
That’s why we’re doing this show. It is to share this information so that when they’re desperate to search for answers for a loved one or for themselves, they find this first rather than last. It breaks my heart that it’s already so far gone when we see a lot of people.
Of the two new patients I had, one had three different MRIs. Two were recent and one was an old upright. I quickly scanned over the reports to see if what I saw that was sticking out like a sore thumb was in any of the reports. It wasn’t. There was a Chiari at 5 millimeters, which is a Chiari 1, on at least one of her MRIs. I didn’t go digging further.
Did they see it on the MRI?
No. There was no mention of it. No one looked at it.
That MRI was done lying down then. It’s probably much worse if she was doing an upright MRI.
Potentially. I’ve seen it switch a little bit but it’s not helpful. If you can get an upright as well, oftentimes, you see it more severely. She was 5 millimeters lying down and nobody made a note of it. I saw it immediately. My brain goes right to that. With her symptom profile, she’s got some Meniere’s. She’s got some weird neurological stuff. I’m like, “You are a perfect candidate for upper cervical work,” aside from the fact that she decided when she was three years old to jump off the monkey bars into a frozen sand pit at three years old. Maybe it started back then and then she’s had all these problems. Twenty months ago, she started having Meniere’s severe.
This other gentleman fell off a mountain. He was training in the Military. He takes one step incorrectly and rolls down the entire hill. He’s at the top of the ridge. The next thing he knows, he has broken ribs. He’s got cactus and has hit boulders. He is a mess. He’s been feeling like this for almost 30 years. All of a sudden, in January 2023, he started having Meniere’s symptoms full on. He gets a medical doctor down the road or a neurologist who says, “There’s nothing we can do for Meniere’s. You’re going to have to cut back on your salt. If that doesn’t help, I’m going to give you a dietary pill.” Meclizine wasn’t touching stuff.
He comes in like this. His left eye is open, but it’s not open. I adjust him and sit him up. His eyes are as wide as mine. Both eyes were open. I’m like, “We’re on the right path. I’m confident.” Some patients are going to respond fast. Some people are going to take a little bit of time. In my TN case, she’s been dealing with this for a bit.
It’s going to take some time. Those nerves are on fire.
They haven’t had proper nutrition coming through the spinal fluid because it goes to every nerve. Not only is it bathing the brainstem of the spinal cord, but it goes out to every nerve in the body all the way down to our fingers and our toes, and then it goes back. It takes time. These healing processes do not happen overnight as much as I wish they did because then, I’d have hair.
These healing processes do not happen overnight.
I feel like we would have more patients, but fewer patients at the same time. They would get one adjustment and they’d be like, “We’re good.”
We charge more.
That’s true. I had a patient. I happened to answer the phone. My front desk was busy with another phone call. I was sitting at my desk. He called. He’s not a patient yet, but he broke his neck in 1980. I was like, “How long has this been going on?” He is like, “I broke my neck in 1980.” I was like, “That’s a little while.” He has been to multiple chiropractors. The last chiropractor he was at was rough. It was the conventional type of adjustment.
He said, “The first time, it was good. After that, it hurt me.” I was like, “You called the right place. We are very gentle and precise.” He didn’t make an appointment because he wanted to get adjusted today. I have one appointment available at 5:00, and I never have an appointment at 5:00. I was like, “You could get in today, but you will not get adjusted until the next week.” The reason we do that is because it takes us so long to look at the images and put everything together. It’s not like, “I see it right away. Let’s get it adjusted.” We don’t eat lunch. We don’t take lunches. We are sitting in front of computer screens looking at your images.
If people are like, “Dr. Schurger sounds off and he’s repeating words,” I did not eat lunch. I only had coffee and a couple of meat sticks. The last time, I was purposely fasting. I hope my wife thought something out for dinner because I forgot to.
You can eat eggs.
I’m out of eggs. I ran out because I didn’t know how long they were going to last in the coolers when we lost power. I do have some beef liver. I might eat a pound of beef liver.
In general, why most of us can’t give you an adjustment on the first day you come in is because it takes time. It’s not, “Whack them and crack them. We’re going to move some bones.” We are very precisely moving bones. When you schedule with us, we set time aside to, first of all, get your imaging done and get everything looked at. That second appointment is really important too so we can show you what we found and get you your first adjustment done. We can’t rush the process. Hopefully, he’ll call later because it sounds like he needs us.
The other part of rushing the process is you need to have that rest after that adjustment because you don’t know what the body is going to go through. You need to take it easy. Even if you felt 100% better after your first adjustment, you might want to take the next weekend or week easy because your body has not fully healed from all of those symptoms.
I still remember a patient of Dr. Hall’s. He had torticollis, so he had his head stuck to his shoulder. He gets one adjustment. In standing up straight, there were no problems. Dr. Hall told him to take it easy. He goes out. They’re out. It’s LA. They hop on a boat. It was one of these double-decker boats. He jumps off the upper deck into the ocean.
As he’s getting out of the water, his head is stuck to his shoulder again with the torticollis. He’s like, “That’s all right. Dr. Hall will put me back in place. I’ve been dealing with this for twenty years.” Dr. Hall can never get him as clear as that first time because something else got damaged that wasn’t able to come back. Take it easy.
It’s important. It’s not the time to start a new workout after your first adjustment.
Another new patient started not too long ago. Her mom has been a patient forever. The daughter is finally like, “I don’t want surgery for my TMJ. I need to do something. Dr. Schurger is going to fix me.” We sit and talk. She likes me. She’s like, “You’re going to be my doc. I’m good with that.” She comes in with the worst pain. She feels as bad or worse than when she came in earlier. She’s pulling in an inch short. Half an inch is plenty off. You don’t have to come in at an inch short.
He’s talking about leg lengths.
An inch off for her legs. If she is 5’4”, I’d be surprised. She comes in with lots of pain. I get her adjusted and she’s feeling better. The next day, I got a call from her mom saying, “What did you do to my daughter? She decided to take a day off work. She never takes days off work.” She said, “I’m too tired. I need the time to heal.” We chatted and joked about it here. She’s like, “I needed that day. I feel so much better.” She was holding her adjustment today. That’s exactly what we want to hear.
Holding is healing. That’s what we want. We don’t want to have to adjust you every time you come in, so don’t screw up your adjustments.
One of the things that your parasympathetic nervous system or the side of your nervous system that does all the healing will also do is it will put you to sleep.
It’s some of the best sleep after getting an adjustment. It’s so good.
We are approaching our sleep time because I’m old.
Let’s wrap it up here.
Dr. Bagley, where do they find you?
I am in St. Louis, Missouri. You can find me at PrecisionChiropracticSTL.com.
That’s wonderful. I’m in Springfield, Illinois. Find me at KeystoneChiroSPI.com and all the socials as well.
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I need to get some food. We have both hit that slap-happy stage where we are past where we should be. We look forward to another great episode of the show. We will be back in a week. Have a good one.
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