Jeffrey A. Sklar, D.CCase Study NN-ERMC2:

by Jeffrey A. Sklar, D.C., Eastern Regional Director of Chiropractic for Cancer Treatment Centers of America®

Introduction: This case study shows an example of chiropractic being utilized in the integrative setting for treatment of a patient with cancer. This patient was treated with direct infusion for metastatic colon cancer. After extensive surgery of liver resection, omentectomy and cholicystectomy, the patient’s sleep became severely interrupted and they became sleep deprived due to discomfort. He developed radicular pain in the left side of his neck that traveled down into the medial border of his left scapula and the posterior head of his deltoid muscle. Furthermore, sitting for several hours to receive chemotherapy became a painful process. The patient was adamant about not wanting to take pain medication. After receiving chiropractic treatment, the patient was able to sleep through the night without the radicular pain in his neck, upper back and shoulder, as well as sit more comfortably during his chemotherapy. Chiropractic was instrumental in reducing the patient’s pain level facilitating a more restful night’s sleep. Because chiropractic care was available to her in the same facility as the radiation treatment her plan of care was not delayed. This is a perfect example of true integration of services. Learn more >>

Case Study NN-ERMC2:

by Jeffrey A. Sklar, D.C., Eastern Regional Director of Chiropractic for Cancer Treatment Centers of America®

Introduction: This case study shows an example of chiropractic being utilized in the integrative setting for treatment of a patient with cancer. This patient was treated with direct infusion for metastatic colon cancer. After extensive surgery of liver resection, omentectomy and cholicystectomy, the patient’s sleep became severely interrupted and they became sleep deprived due to discomfort. He developed radicular pain in the left side of his neck that traveled down into the medial border of his left scapula and the posterior head of his deltoid muscle. Furthermore, sitting for several hours to receive chemotherapy became a painful process. The patient was adamant about not wanting to take pain medication. After receiving chiropractic treatment, the patient was able to sleep through the night without the radicular pain in his neck, upper back and shoulder, as well as sit more comfortably during his chemotherapy. Chiropractic was instrumental in reducing the patient’s pain level facilitating a more restful night’s sleep. Because chiropractic care was available to her in the same facility as the radiation treatment her plan of care was not delayed. This is a perfect example of true integration of services.

Objective:  Quality of life for cancer patients directly relates to survival (Mayo Clinic- http://www.mayoclinic.org/news2008-rst/4805.html). This patient experienced immediate relief after his first adjustment and had results lasting over one week. The significance of this is that he was able to sleep through the night without pain. Additionally, his overall outlook toward treatment improved.  

Case Report: Patient AM-EMRC1 was a 58 year old male that was diagnosed with metastatic colon adenocarcinoma. He was diagnosed by endoscopy and biopsy in 11/05. The patient responded well with post surgical treatment until 2008 when he was found to have liver and peritoneal metastasis. After traveling to Mexico for treatment, the patient experienced sepsis after which he developed a bowel obstruction due to a large sigmoid colon recurrence. He underwent a transverse colostomy for the obstruction in June 2010. The patient began a course of direct infusion chemotherapy in July of 2010.  In March of 2011 he developed radicular pain after sitting in an infusion chair for a couple hours. The pain was in the left side of his neck and radiated into his left shoulder and down the medial border of his left scapula. The pain lasted throughout the day and interrupted his sleep that night. The pain became unrelenting over a two week period. The patient did not want to take any pain or anti-inflammatory medications sought out a chiropractic evaluation. The patient presented to for a chiropractic evaluation on March 23, 2011. Orthopedic evaluation demonstrated + foramina compression on the left side with pain radiating from C5-6 dermatome distribution to the left bicep brachii region along the musculocutaneus nerve and along the medial border of the left scapula along the dorsal scapular.  Deep tendon reflex of biceps was hyper reflexive. Cervical range of motion was decreased on left rotation and left lateral bending.  Segmental dysfunction was noted on palpation at Oc-C1, C5-6, T4-5 and the left gleno-humeral joint. The patient was diagnosed with Cervical Radiculopathy, myospasm and vertebral subluxation complex.

Treatment consisted of joint mobilization of the occiput, cervical and thoracic restricted segments.  The patient reported immediate relief of pain after his adjustment. Follow up visits were recommended to the patient.

The patient was seen again the next day and reported that he slept through the night uninterrupted by pain. He stated that the relief was instantaneous and lasted through the next morning. However, the pain had returned mildly by the time of his second visit. He was adjusted again with successful results regarding a reduction in pain. The patient was scheduled for chiropractic care on his next cycle of chemotherapy.

Conclusion: Patient AM-EMRC1 was able to sit without discomfort for chemotherapy and sleep through the night. This reduction of pain and uninterrupted sleep contributes to improved quality of life. Thus, chiropractic can be utilized safely and effectively at any stage of the disease process. The chiropractor’s role in pain management for oncology patients.

J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2001 Jan;24(1):52-7.
Schneider J, Gilford S. Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton, Camp Pendleton, CA, USA.
JOSDC@aol.com