Chiropractic Treatment of Temporomandibular Disorders Using the Activator Adjusting Instrument and Protocol
Reference: James w. DeVocht, DC, PhD, James w. DeVocht, DC, PhD, Walter Schaeffer, DC, Dana J. Lawrence, DC Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, Nov/Dec 2005; Volume 11, Number 6
Objective: To describe the chiropractic management of a 30-yearold woman with temporomandibular joint (TM.I) pain and to discuss the general etiology and management of TMJ conditions.
Clinical Features: The patient suffered from daily unremitting jawpain for 7 years, which was the apparent sequela of a series of 8 root canals on the same tooth. Pain radiated from her TMj into her shoulder and was accompanied by headache, tinnitus, decreased hearing, and a feeling of congestion in her right ear. Symptoms were not reduced by medicat ion or other dental treatments.
Outcome and Interventions: The patient underwent a series of chiropractic treatments using the instrument and protocol of Activator Methods, international. During the first 5 months, her VAS rating of jaw pain decreased from 60 (on a scale of 0 to 100) to 9, her abilitv to eat solid foods increased, her headache intensity and frequency diminished, and her maximum mouth opening without pain measurement increased from 22 to 28 mm. Overall, 20 months of chiropractic treatment along with 2 concurrent months of massage therapy yielded slow but continual progress that finally resulted in total resolution of all symptoms except some fullness ofthe right cheek.
Conclusion: Use ofthe Activator Methods protocol of chiropractic treatment was beneficial for this patient and merits further study in similar cases.
James W, DeVocht, DC. PhD, and Dana J. Lawrence, DC, are associate professors at the Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research, Davenport, Iowa.
Wally Schaeffer, DC, is a treating clinician in private practice, Coralville, Iowa.