The purpose of this report is to describe the response of a geriatric patient with low back pain and a history of leukemia, multiple compression fractures, osteoporosis, and degenerative joint disease using Activator chiropractic technique.


An 83-year-old man who is the primary caretaker for his disabled wife had low back pain after lifting her into a truck. The patient had a history of leukemia, multiple compression fractures, osteoporosis, and degenerative joint disease. His Revised Oswestry Low Back Pain Disability Questionnaire was 26%, with a 10/10 pain rating at its worst on the Numeric Pain Scale. The patient presented with a left head tilt, right high shoulder, and right high ilium with anterior translation and flexion of the torso and spasm and tenderness from the lower thoracic spine to lumbar spine.


The patient was cared for using Activator Methods protocol. After 8 treatments, the patient was stable and remained stable for 4 months without spasm or tenderness in his spine. His Revised Oswestry score dropped to 6%, with a 4/10 Numeric Pain Scale pain rating when at its worst; and the patient reported being able to take care of his wife.


The findings of this case suggest that Activator-assisted spinal manipulative therapy had a positive effect on low back pain and function in an elderly patient with a complex clinical history.

J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2013 Feb;36(2):68-77. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2013.01.004. [PMID: 22942837] Author information: Roberts JA, Wolfe TM. Doctor of Chiropractic, HealthQuest Chiropractic, Farmington, ME 04938.


Free PMC Article

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