Back to school Backpacks

Backpacks – Children and Back Pain
It is that time again in Olathe, Overland Park, Spring Hill and Leawood, kids are heading back to school.  With kids heading back to school and experiencing a change in routine we often see an increase in kids experiencing neck and back pain.  We know that the change in routine, increased time sitting in desks and starting back up with school sports can attribute to back and neck pain, but often we overlook one of the biggest causes, Backpacks.   Public health experts have recognized for many years that excessively heavy backpacks can cause back and neck pain in children. heavy bagThree new studies have recently been published on this issue, and they shed some light on prevention of back pain in children.
Physical and Psychological Factors in Children with Back Pain
This British study1 was designed to examine ergonomic and other factors that might account for back and neck pain in schoolchildren.
The authors gave questionnaires to 697 children aged 11-14. Of these students, 27% reported having neck pain, 18% reported having upper back pain, and 22% reported having low back pain.
After analysis of the collected data, the authors found the following:
• Neck pain was linked to school furniture, emotional and conduct problems, family history of low back pain and previous treatment for musculoskeletal disorders.
• Upper back pain was associated with backpack weight, school furniture, emotional problems, and previous treatment of musculoskeletal pain.
• Low back pain complaints were associated with school furniture, emotional issues, and “family history and previous injury or accident.”

Effects of Backpack Weight on Posture
This Italian study2 looked at 43 students with an average age of 12.5 years. The authors tested each of the children with an 8-kg and 12-kg backpack, and they had the children wear them over one shoulder and two shoulders. Posture was evaluated on the children while they did a 7-minute treadmill walk.
The authors found that the posture of the children was substantially altered under load. Not surprisingly, asymmetrical loading (carrying the backpack on one shoulder rather than both), resulted in the most complex postural changes.
“Our results suggest that a 12 kg load, fairly common in this population (carried at least once a week), seems to push the postural system to its physiological limits.” 2
They found that the postural changes were corrected once the load was removed, but the long-term consequences of these excessive weights are unknown.
Limit Backpack Weight to 10% of Child’s Body Weight

backpackIn the third report,3 the researchers interviewed 531 children from 5th to 12th grade and weighed the backpack of each student. The found that:
• “Younger students and females are more at risk due to relatively lower body weight…”
• Female students carried heavier backpacks than did male students.
• “Greater relative backpack weight is associated with upper– and mid–back pain reports but not neck or lower back pain; it is also associated with lost school time, lost school sports time, and greater chiropractic utilization.”
The authors of this study recommend that backpacks weigh no more than 10% of the child’s body weight, which is lower than the current recommendation of 15%. Previous studies have found that students often carry between 17-22% of their body weight. 2
From these studies, it’s clear that a significant number of children suffer from neck and back pain. Because a substantial portion of these complaints may originate in backpack usage, it is critical when dealing with children with neck and back pain to ask about backpack usage. Musculoskeletal pain in children is especially a concern since it has been associated with pain in adulthood.
1. Murphy S, Buckle P, Stubbs D. A cross-sectional study of self-reported back and neck pain among English schoolchildren and associated physical and psychological risk factors. Applied Ergonomics 2007;38(6):797-804.
2. Negrini S, Negrini A. Postural effects of symmetrical and asymmetrical loads on the spines of schoolchildren. Scoliosis 2007;2(1):8.
3. Moore MJ, White GL, Moore DL. Association of Relative Backpack Weight With Reported Pain, Pain Sites, Medical Utilization, and Lost School Time in Children and Adolescents. Journal of School Health 2007;77(5):232-239. Foster Family Chiropractic

Performance Enhancing Chiropractic

keeping you moving towards your goals

keeping you moving towards your goals

Many athletes in Olathe and Overland Park use chiropractic to recover from injury or difficult training.  However, with regular chiropractic care these athletes could also benefit in enhancing performance.  This added benefit is nothing new to those in high level professional and college sports as they have been consistently using chiropractic care to enhance performance for well over 10 years.  From professional golfers like Zach Johnson (whose father is a Chiropractor) Jordan Spieth (who thanked his chiropractor after winning the masters) to NFL football teams (who all have Chiropractors on staff) the performance enhancing benefits received from chiropractic and an optimally communicating nervous system is well understood. It always amazes me that 85-100% of professional athletes use chiropractic care for top performance, injury prevention and treatment while only 8-10% of American adults and 3-5% of American kids have had an adjustment in the last year.  Clearly the message has not been delivered to the masses.  The same way that an adjustment can rid you of a headache and enhance your ability to heal from back pain, it can also enhance performance and functioning of any joint, muscle, tendon, ligament, tissue, organ or system that is innervated by a nerve(even your immune system is directly nerve connected) or needs motion.  You are an expression of your nervous system, you need it optimally functioning to perform at your best no matter what the task.

A new award-winning study supports what these high level athletes have known for years; chiropractic can improve performance.  In this study, researchers examined the effects of chiropractic on 18 professional judo athletes in Brazil. Half of the athletes received chiropractic adjustments and the other half received a sham treatment. Researchers then evaluated athletes’ grip strength using a device that measures muscle force.

Despite the fact that both groups maintained their regular training schedules throughout the study, the chiropractic group had substantially better outcomes. After just three treatments, the chiropractic group improved their grip strength by 11% on the left side and 17% on their right, while athletes in the sham treatment group had only improved by 4-6%.

This study is more evidence that chiropractic improves nervous system functioning, which in turn strengthens muscles.

Whether it’s injury prevention or enhancing peak performance, chiropractic care can play a vital role in keeping your nervous system working efficiently and optimally.  Everyone can benefit from regular chiropractic care.

You don’t have to be a professional athlete to benefit from chiropractic.

Call our office today to see how we can help.

ProCARE Chiropractic Acupuncture and Rehabilitation
913 393 1303

Botelho MB, Andrade BB. Effect of cervical spine manipulative therapy on judo athletes’ grip strength. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 2012;35(11):38-44.
Chiropractic Nexus


NSAID's more harm then good

NSAID’s more harm then good

When our athletes/patients in Olathe and Overland Park suffer an injury they often hear us saying to avoid NSAID usage whenever possible.  They are often surprised to find out that something they commonly use as an over the counter pain killer and antiinflammatory could be so damaging to their bodies and also be delaying their healing.  Conservative estimates on the number of deaths in the USA per year from prescription use of NSAIDS for arthritis has been widely published at 16,500 or about 45 people per day.  If these estimates included over the counter usage for all conditions and not just prescription arthritic usage these numbers would be significantly higher.  If this is not enough alone to change your pill popping ways then I suggest you read this.

NSAIDs: Why We Do Not Recommend Them
The following statement comes from a well-known sports medicine book that has gone through five printings. “In spite of the widespread use of NSAIDs there is no convincing evidence as to
their effectiveness in the treatment of acute soft tissue injuries.” (Bruckner, P. Clinical Sports Medicine. New York City, NY: McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1995, pp. 105-109.)
This is a true statement, but definitely not strong enough. More appropriate would be something like, –In spite of the widespread use of NSAIDs there is substantial evidence that they hamper soft tissue healing.–
NSAIDs have been shown to delay and hamper the healing in all the soft tissues, including muscles, ligaments, tendons, and cartilage. Anti-inflammatories can delay healing and delay it significantly, even in muscles with their tremendous blood supply. In one study on muscle strains, Piroxicam essentially wiped out the entire inflammatory proliferative phase of healing (days 0-4). At day two there were essentially no macrophages (cells that clean up the area) in the area and by day four after the muscle strain, there was very little muscle regeneration compared to the normal healing process. The muscle strength at this time was only about 40 percent of normal.(Greene, J. Cost-conscious prescribing of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for adults with arthritis. Archives of Internal Medicine. 1992; 152:1995-2002.)
The authors concluded that NSAIDs might delay muscle regeneration, when their study did in fact show delayed muscle healing. But you know politics…
Another study confirmed the above by showing that at day 28 after injury the muscle regenerative process was still delayed. The muscles of the group treated with Flurbiprofen (NSAID) were significantly weaker. The muscle fibers were shown under the microscope to have incomplete healing because of the medication. (Almekinders, L. An in vitro investigation into the effects of repetitive motion and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication on human tendon fibroblasts. American Journal of Sports Medicine. 1995; 23:119-123.)
The key question regarding the healing of sports injury is, “What exactly does any therapy do to the fibroblastic cells that actually grow the ligament and tendon tissue?” Treatments that stimulate fibroblast proliferation will cause ligament and tendon repair and will help the athlete heal. Therapies that kill or hamper fibroblastic growth will be detrimental to the athlete.
In 1993 at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, Sports Medicine section, Dr. Louis Almekinders and associates studied human tendon fibroblasts to determine the effect of exercise and the NSAID Indomethacin on fibroblasts. Group I was the control in which no treatment was done; Group II-the tendons were exercised; Group III-the tendons were exercised and anti-inflamed with Indomethacin; and Group IV the tendons were just anti-inflamed with the Indomethacin. All the tendons underwent injury through repetitive motion, similar to what would happen to an athlete in training. Seventy-two hours after the injury, it was noted that compared to controls the only group that showed increased levels of prostaglandins was the exercised group. The group that was exercised and received the NSAID, as well as the NSAID group, had statistically significant lower levels of prostaglandins (specifically Prostaglandin E2) in the tendons. This showed that the NSAID blocked the inflammatory healing of even the tendon injuries that were exercised or rehabilitated. The tendonitis that was treated with just the NSAID had almost no prostaglandins in the sample, signaling a complete inhibition of the inflammatory healing process. The effect was even more pronounced at 108 hours.
The researchers also measured DNA synthesis in the fibroblasts. This showed which fibroblasts were proliferating. Again, the exercised group was the only group that exhibited elevated levels of DNA synthesis in the fibroblasts. Compared to the control group there was 100 percent more growth of fibroblasts in the exercise group. The tendons treated with Indomethacin had no DNA synthesis noted.
This showed there was no fibroblastic growth occurring. The group that exercised and took the NSAID showed a little bit of growth. The authors concluded, “Motion and prostaglandin release in Group II were associated with increased DNA synthesis. Inhibition of prostaglandin by Indomethacin also coincided with a decrease in DNA synthesis… Inhibition of prostaglandin synthesis, and thereby DNA synthesis, may not be desirable during the proliferative stage of a soft tissue injury, when DNA synthesis for cell division of fibroblasts is needed to heal the injury to the tendon.” The paper also stated a fact that many researchers in this field are wondering, “Despite the lack of scientific data, NSAIDs are widely used, often as the mainstay of treatment.” (Almekinders, L. An in vitro investigation into the effects of repetitive motion and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication on human tendon fibroblasts. American Journal of Sports Medicine. 1995; 23:119-123.)
Another study was done on the use of perhaps the most popular anti-inflammatory medication used in sports medicine, ibuprofen, in the treatment of tendon injuries. It was found that the only thing the ibuprofen doses caused, was the strength of the flexor tendons to decrease. A decrease in strength of the flexor tendons of 300 percent was observed at four weeks. The peak force of the flexor tendons of controls was 12.0 newtons, whereas in the Indomethacin group it was an average of 2.5 newtons. Extensor tendon analysis showed similar results, with controls having a breaking strength of 12.0 newtons and the tendons treated with the NSAID, 3.5 newtons. The authors noted, “Examination of the data reveals a marked decrease in the breaking strength of tendons at four and six weeks in the ibuprofen-treated animals….This difference was statistically significant.” (Kulick, M. Oral ibuprofen: evaluation of its effect on peritendinous adhesions and the breaking strength of a tenorrhaphy. The Journal of Hand Surgery. 1986; 11A:100-119.)
From the above studies, it is clear that NSAIDs inhibit the fibroblastic growth process and thus diminish an athlete’s chance of healing. NSAIDs are used because they decrease pain, but they do so at the expense of hurting the healing of the injured soft tissue. A good example of this is a study on the use of Piroxicam (NSAID) in the treatment of acute ankle sprains in the Australian military.
Compared with the placebo group, the subjects treated with Piroxicam had less pain, were able to resume training more rapidly, were treated at lower cost, and were found to have increased exercise endurance on resumption of activity. The conclusion of the study was that NSAIDs should form an integral part in the treatment of acute ankle sprains. (Slatyer, M. A randomized controlled trial of Piroxicam in the management of acute ankle sprain in Australian regular army recruits. American Journal of Sports Medicine. 1997; 25:544-553.) At first glance in reviewing this study, NSAIDs appear to be great, but the real question is did they help the ligament injury heal?
In reviewing the study, the answer is a resounding NO! To test ligament healing the ankles were tested via the anterior drawer test. During this test the ankle was moved forward to determine the laxity in the ligaments. This study was published in 1997, and the author stated that this was the first time the clinical measurement of the anterior drawer sign had been used in a clinical trial. It meant that all the studies done prior to this one, in assessing whether anti-inflammatories helped with ankle sprains, did not test whether the ligaments healed. In this study at every date of testing after the initial injury, days three, seven, and fourteen, the Piroxicam-treated group demonstrated greater ligament instability. At the time of the initial injury the ligament instability in the Piroxicam group and the control group were exactly the same. This study showed that the NSAID stopped ligament healing, yet the person felt better. The authors noted…”This result is of concern in that it may reflect a paradoxically adverse effect of the NSAID-derived analgesia in allowing subjects to resume activity prematurely.” (Slatyer, M. A randomized controlled trial of Piroxicam in the management of acute ankle sprain in Australian regular army recruits. American Journal of Sports Medicine. 1997; 25:544-553.)
Do you see the difference between pain relief and healing? The athlete needs healed tissue. Up until the present, too many studies were advocating NSAID use when it came to Muscle, Tendon, Bone and ligament injuries, because they were such great pain-relievers, when in fact they were and are stopping the healing mechanisms of the body. Any technique or medication that stops the normal inflammatory process that helps heal the body must have a long-term detrimental effect on the body.
(This information was compiled from various studies and websites primarily Dr. Ross Hauser MD in his reviews on and was not written by ProCARE Chiropractic)

Preventing Weeds in Olathe/Overland Park

ProCARE Chiropractic and Acupuncture preventing health weeds from growing in Overland Park and Olathe

ProCARE Chiropractic and Acupuncture preventing health weeds from growing in Overland Park and Olathe

Prevent Your Health Weeds

Every Spring/summer  residence of Overland Park and Olathe make their way to the lawn care stores and hire lawn service crews to tend to their lawns.  Johnson county is out in full force laying down pre-emergents and fertilizers in their best efforts to prevent unwanted weeds that harm the health and look of their lawns.  But, are we treating our bodies and health with as much respect for prevention?  or, are we letting our bodies become ridden with weeds that are sure to create future health problems.  This same analogy can be observed with most things of value in life, from cars and finances to houses and smiles/teeth. Most of us apply this “preventive principle” to everything of value in our lives–EXCEPT OUR HEALTH and certainly not our joints and nervous system.   Ask yourself these questions:  What am I, family, friends and co-workers doing to prevent unwanted “health weeds” this summer?  What am I doing to prevent the health of my joints from decaying?  What am I doing to enhance my adaptive ability and nervous system health? Today, what did I do to improve my health? 

Clearly the most valuable thing we can own is good health, just ask anyone who has major health issues.  I always find it ironic that the one thing that should be of most value to us is the one thing that is often put on the back burner and neglected.  People constantly make decisions about their health and well-being based on short term finances and not on the long term.  For example, someone might decide not to join a gym or see a chiropractor because of the monthly investment, but yet forget to look long term at the cost of decreased mobility, strength, joint motion, arthritis, bone density, diabetes, heart disease…. Just like the old saying goes “those that elect to spend their health to gain wealth will end up spending their wealth to later try to regain their health.”
Waiting until you MUST do something is always more costly and time consuming than preventive measures.   Don’t wait for a crisis, think of maintaining, preventing, improving and maximizing instead of reacting, masking, treating and killing disease and symptoms.

Consult an Expert  Just as you should consult a financial adviser if you inherited a large sum of money, create a team of trusted professionals that can help maximize your health. ( We have links to a few trusted health partners on our website but their are hundreds more out there and we are happy to help you build a team.  Read our blogs and facebook posts, ask us exercise and nutrition questions.)
When you are feeling and functioning well is the best time to see a Chiropractor and get expert advise on your health and that of your joints and nervous system. Have a regular check up for you and your family it could be the best investment you could ever make.

We are here to help and serve in any way we can.