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Making Sense of Guidelines for Care

Senior Health Can Benefit from Chiropractic Care
Chiropractic Care and Chronic Health Problems

Chronic health problems such as high blood pressure and diabetes often require treatment plans from several different specialists. Effective treatment of high blood pressure may involve a person’s family physician, internist, and cardiologist. A person with diabetes may be receiving treatment from her internist and endocrinologist, and possibly from an ophthalmologist and even a neurologist. An additional key specialist involved in any of these scenarios is a chiropractor.

Of course, chiropractic care is not directed toward treatment of any disease. Rather, chiropractic care focuses on the health and well being of the whole person. By concentrating on biomechanics and the nerve system, that is, the integrity and functioning of the spinal column and spinal nerves, chiropractic care helps ensure that the body as a whole is working effectively. This means that whatever a person’s clinical circumstances may be, regular chiropractic care is essential to his or her long-term health. Your chiropractor is a key member of your health care team in any situation.

Not too long ago, the Eighth Joint National Committee (originally commissioned by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute) released a new set of evidence-based guidelines for evaluation and treatment of hypertension (high blood pressure). The guidelines committee, comprised of 17 academics, spent five years reviewing evidence as preparation for developing the new recommendations.

The committee’s report represents nothing less than a sea change in the treatment of patients with higher-than-normal blood pressure readings. The primary shift is from a long-held standard of implementing treatment when a person’s blood pressure is higher than 140/90 mmHg. The new guidelines recommend beginning treatment only when blood pressure readings are higher than 150/90 mmHg. The new standard is a huge modification of decades-old practice methods, and has generated substantial controversy.1.2 Of course, a good portion of the pushback is from those who have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo, such as physicians who dispense medications from their office and earn substantial income from selling antihypertensive drugs at multiples of their wholesale costs. In addition to physicians who act as pharmacies, drug companies who manufacture antihypertensive medications also stand to lose significant revenue. But aside from considerations related to the practice of medicine as a business, the real issues should be focused on the benefits and harms to patients. In this context, it may be reasonably stated that fewer medications are, by and large, a good thing.

The new blood pressure guidelines have two primary impacts. First, for people over age 60, treatment for presumed hypertension should be initiated when blood pressure readings are higher than 150/90 mm/Hg. More than 7.4 million Americans over age 60 will be in the new safe range. Many of these millions of people have been taking antihypertensive medication for years, possibly needlessly as implied by the new guidelines. Next, for all those under age 60, there is insufficient medical evidence that a systolic blood pressure (the first number in the reading) threshold exists that would dictate treatment. In other words, for many years the systolic threshold had been 140 (as in 140/90 mmHg). Higher systolic readings virtually mandated antihypertensive treatment. Although the committee expressed its opinion that the systolic threshold of 140 mmHg ought to be maintained for those younger than age 60, even though evidence for such a threshold is weak. Thus, it may be that many millions more people have been taking antihypertensive medication without such recommendations being backed by sound scientific research.

The point here is not that people should stop taking their blood pressure medication.3 All such types of decisions should be made in consultation with the prescribing physician. The main consideration is having the ability to make informed choices. Some medication regimens may be appropriate. Some may not. Some may need to be reevaluated. As always, regular chiropractic care is of value by providing you with the best opportunity to achieve maximum good health.

1Mitka M:Groups spar over new hypertension guidelines. JAMA 311(7):663-664, 2014
2Kieldsen SE, et al: Hypertension management by practice guidelines. Blood Press 23(1):1-2, 2014
3Sheppard JP, et al: Missed opportunities in prevention of cardiovascular disease in primary care: a cross-sectional study. Br J Pract 2014, Jan;64(618):e38-46. doi: 10.3399/bjgp14X676447

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Conveniently located in Downtown Stamford

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2nd Floor
Stamford, CT 06901

Located on the corner of Atlantic and Bedford Streets across from the Ferguson Library and McDonalds on the second floor of the Bank of America building

  • NORWALK

Conveniently located on Rt. 7 between the DMV and Merritt Parkway

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Norwalk, CT 06851

Located on the corner of Main Avenue and Valley View Road across the street from Merritt Building 301

We value our patients' experience at Stamford Sports & Spine. If you are currently a patient, please feel free to complete the following Client Experience Questionnaire. The Questionnaire is in Adobe Acrobat format, and requires the free Acrobat Reader to view.

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Dr. Andrew Zomick & Dr. David Avallon

I have been coming to Stamford Sports and Spine for almost 10 years. I am active and have unfortunately been in a few car accidents. The care and treatment offered at Stamford Sports and Spine is world class and without them I would be living with an inordinate amount of pain and discomfort. Going to Stamford Sports and Spine has made my injuries manageable.

--James


Very good team of therapists. Flexible and available schedule. They helped get my teenage athletes back on the field in half the time.

--Shawn


I was experiencing some pain in my right shoulder and numbness down my arm to my hand. The range of motion in my shoulder was limited and I could not participate in volleyball. Dr. Z came to our office offering a free chair massage and a chance to come in for an evaluation. I did this and we worked out a treatment plan that included therapy and adjustments. I noticed in the first few weeks the pain subsided greatly in my shoulder. The numbness in the arm and hand were present but noticeably better. After three weeks, the range of motion in my shoulder was back to normal and the pain was gone. Now after one month of therapy the numbness in the arm is extremely better and I do not notice the symptoms as often as I used to. Coming into the office has helped tremendously. I can now play volleyball pain-free.

--Mary


After moving from London to the USA, two weeks into living in Stamford and having carried and unpacked a lot of heavy boxes my shoulder froze and I was in a great deal of constant pain. After finding Stamford Sports & Spine on the internet I made an appointment and the corrective programme S.S.S. put together for me meant that I immediately had some pain relief, and over the next few weeks the pain left completely. The programme is also ensuring that I am not only pain free but fully corrected so as this problem should not occur again. Very friendly staff and very detailed assessment programme that has ensured my full recovery.

--Laura


From my first visit to Stamford Sports & Spine I was extremely impressed and pleased with their service. Everyone including staff and doctors were very knowledgeable with their chiropractic services. I learned a great deal about my symptoms and overall care more than I expected. I have visited a few other chiropractors but none were as thorough as Stamford Sports & Spine. I was experiencing severe pain in my shoulder and arm and after a few visits my pain decreased substantially. I really appreciate all the services from the adjustments, rollers and even exercise room. I would highly recommend this facility to everyone. The entire staff are friendly, professional and just simply great!

--Sherri


Everyone was incredibly professional and helpful.  The staff is friendly and goes beyond what was expected to meet my needs and education me about my condition.

--Jon


Came in with severe and constant numbness and tingling in my legs and feet. The treatment worked quickly and resolved all of my symptoms. Thanks!

--Erik


My arms were falling asleep every night and had numbness and tingling during the day. I no longer have any of those symptoms during the day and have very rare episodes of pain at night due to my treatment here at Stamford Sports & Spine

--Eric


I came in for hip pain and stiff neck that also affected my right arm and hand. Using the relaxing rolling / traction bed and electrical muscle stimulation along with stretching and the adjustments my hip pain is gone. I can walk without sharp pains running up and down my legs. My neck range of motion has improved and my muscles are more flexible and less spastic.

--Karen


I had severe neck pain which was aggravated by a recent move. I have been coming to be adjusted for a few weeks now and not only has it helped with the neck pain I had been experiencing, but it has also made me feel better overall. I feel like I am able to sit up straighter, and my muscles are looser and less tense. I no longer have the intense pain I had once been experiencing

--Kim


When I came in my pain was a 10 out of 10. After just one week of care my pain went down to a 4 and has been improving ever since. The staff are very friendly and great educators. I learned a lot about my body and how to take better care of myself.

--Heidi


After a car accident,  I had to seek help for my upper back and neck pain. Slowly but surely I started to feel better, not immediately, but by keeping up with my visits with Dr. Q & Dr. Z. Now I can tell you that I feel leaps and bounds better, and am now looking forward to a pain-free summer.

--Rudy


I have been with Stamford Sports & Spine for more than a year now. I still remember how much pain I was in during my first session. I can now walk in and out without any aches or pains.

--Rick


When I first started going to Stamford Sports & Spine, my back had been seizing up with alarming regularity. After just a few months of working with Dr. Z and Dr. Q, I feel much more confident in my daily activities and have even been able to return to the gym.

--Dan


Thank you to Dr. Z, Dr. Q and the whole Stamford Sports & Spine team! For many years, I have been suffering from severe back pain that would sometimes keep me from going to work. The recurring pain would come and go and I couldn't figure out what I was doing to cause it. When I came to the office, Dr. Z took x-rays, did a complete examination and educated me as to what was happening and why. I began treatment and was given exercises to prevent these injuries from happening in the future. Since starting the treatment, I have seen a great improvement in my back. The pain is gone and I have an increased range of motion. Thanks again to the entire staff who are very friendly and always willing to accommodate my hectic schedule when I make appointments.

--Ron


The strabismus in my eyes caused a vertical deviation in my eye placement.  This resulted in my head naturally tilting to the right and throwing my muscular structure in my neck and shoulders off.  I had accepted the tilt and tightness as a way of life and a natural dis-figuration of my spine.  I almost didn't sign on for initial treatment.  After 3 visits I have already noticed a difference in the position of my head, my posture and regular comfort levels.  There is still a ways to go to rid that area of  a lifetime of dysfunction, but what a relief to know it's treatable and already improving.

-Jenn


I found Dr. Z and Dr. Q earlier in the week after experiencing some back pain and sciatica. After the consultation and x-rays I began therapy. After just 2 treatments I felt much better and had a significant reduction in discomfort in the area of concern. I am looking forward to continuing my treatment in an effort for long term recovery and a return to my heavy exercise routine.

--Tom


FANTASTIC. When I leave I feel like a whole new woman. I have been going there for my neck pain and headaches for about 1 year now; off and on and ever since I started treatment there my headaches have been reduced to one every few months instead of a few every month. The intensity of of my pain has also been reduced to almost nothing. The doctors seem to have a very friendly relationship with all of the patients and I feel very welcomed by the staff as well. Not to mention I love how they incorporate therapeutic massages into my treatment. I have since sent over many of my colleagues and family, who also share the same feelings. Thank you.

--Bri


I had a great experience. My low back pain is completely gone. I found the staff extremely knowledgeable, accommodating and friendly. I would highly recommend them.

--Jay F.

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