A case study research article published in the August 24, 2014, issue of the Annals of Vertebral Subluxation Research documented the case of a woman suffering from urinary incontinence and pain being helped by chiropractic. The study authors begin by noting that urinary incontinence is a relatively common condition where the bladder empties involuntarily. They also report that the International Continence Society defines urinary continence as the “…complaint of any involuntary leakage of urine.”
This condition affects approximately 13 million Americans with the large majority, 85 percent, being women. Some estimates say that 50% or more of elderly persons living at home or in a long-term care facility suffer from urinary incontinence. Medical care for urinary incontinence consists mainly of drug therapy or surgery. Both approaches have limited success and come with possible significant side effects and risks.
In this case, a 63-year-old woman went to the chiropractor with complaints of neck pain, mid back pain, and lower back pain which made standing difficult. At the time of her chiropractic visit, she was taking a beta blocker as well as medication for her overactive bladder.
An examination was performed which included range of motion, a postural analysis, and spinal x-rays. The results showed several postural abnormalities, along with abnormal curvatures in her spine. The authors noted that the woman’s neck x-rays revealed a loss of the normal forward curve when looked at on the side view. From the findings, it was determined that the woman had multiple vertebral subluxations present in her spine.
Chiropractic care was started which included specific chiropractic adjustments at the rate of three times per week for the correction of her subluxations. In this study, the care continued for twenty-two visits over fifty-four days.
The results showed that after the fifty-four day period, there was a complete resolution of the woman’s neck and lower back pain. Her mid-back pain minimally persisted with the rating being only 1 out of ten in severity. Although the woman did not seek chiropractic care for this issue, she reported a complete resolution of her urinary incontinence. She was also able to discontinue the medication she was taking for this condition. She even reported that her bowels were functioning better. Follow-up spinal x-rays showed that the woman’s spinal curvatures underwent considerable improvement.
In their conclusion, the authors of the study wrote, “This case shows improvement in subject and objective measurements after conservative chiropractic care.” They also report that chiropractic care “…may indeed help patients with neurological problems, including urinary incontinence.”