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Chiropractic Treatment of Temporomandibular Disorders Using the Activator Adjusting Instrument and Protocol

March 17, 2015

NOVEMBER 11, 2005

Subject: Temporomandibular Joint Disorders.


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


ABSTRACT: 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.

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