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Projects


Technique Lab of the Future

Creation of a technique lab of the future has helped to provide an entirely new and state-of-the-art methodology for the technique faculty to utilize as a part of student learning. Students can assess the force profile of the adjustment and understand the ergonomics of the adjustment. Research projects can be built around the system to help modernize technique instruction at LIFE University and demonstrate the effectiveness of electronic feedback for enhancing the motor skills required for safe, effective adjustments.

A randomized wait-list control trial evaluating the effect of team-based applied clinical neuroscience care on self-reported symptoms of depression and cerebellar function in adults with medication-resistant depression

A pilot study design that operationalizes the multimodal manner of care while evaluating changes in depression symptoms, dysmetria, and balance for medication non-responders.

Effectiveness of chiropractic care on a healthy population as assessed by balance and dual task performance analysis 

A study utilizing the NeuroCom Balance System to evaluate a participant’s balance following a Chiropractic adjustment. Pre-testing, Post-testing, and 1-week post testing assessments are done.

The influence of rhetorical sensitivity on the chiropractors’ cultural authority

When communicating chiropractic to the community, it behooves the speaker to remain consciously sensitive to how each message is received by others. Unfortunately, this communication skill called ‘rhetorical sensitivity’ is not instinctual; it must be taught, trained, and developed over time. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to evaluate chiropractors’ attitudes towards communication and relate how these preferences influence the messages chiropractors currently create. This investigation will provide insights for improving chiropractors’ communication success in future engagements.

Axial Stability Method (ASM) chiropractic care: an exploration of response to care within patient subtypes.

The purpose of this study is to determine if there are differences between patients who present with a left or right compensation of the pelvis. Assessments include surveys, balance testing, EEG, physiology recording using wrist band technology, and sensory-cognitive tasks.

Feasibility of synchronized EMG and movement analysis in the evaluation of the Global Assessment chiropractic protocol.

The focus of the study is to test the integration of movement and muscle activation pattern analysis equipment with force applied through use of the manual muscle test used in the Global Assessment chiropractic protocol. This will be used to evaluate changes in muscle activation response before and after a chiropractic adjustment.

Assessment of inter-limb symmetry in walking: establishment of methods (phase 1)

This study will assess the changes in arm swing and cognitive performance before and after a chiropractic adjustment, while including an evaluation of inter examiner reliability.

Variability in adjustive thrust characteristics of chiropractic faculty instructors

This project is part of the Technique Lab of the Future (TLoF), a multi-faceted biomechanical and educational project involving manual chiropractic adjustment. We use a standard pelvic “bench” with a built-in force plate, the PAT (Palpation and Adjustment Trainer) mannequin, and an Excel-based app to record and display forces and speeds of adjustment thrusts performed on the bench. Ten faculty members will perform posterior-to-anterior thrusts on the mannequin in trials with and without feedback of the amount of force, via display on a computer monitor, and we will examine their consistency with themselves and each other.

Autonomic dysfunction: a feasibility study of methodologies

This feasibility study will use a series of tests and data analysis methods on a generally healthy population to determine which measures to standardize for the projected series of autonomic studies. This study will take patient comfort into account along with the quality and quantity of data able to be elicited in order to determine which methods are best suited for our projected line of study in populations with autonomic dysfunction.

Evaluation of changes in autonomic balance following chiropractic care in patients with Covid-19 post-viral syndrome

While researchers and medical care professionals are working tirelessly to develop effective care strategies and a solution to the present SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) pandemic, many patients are looking for ways to boost their body’s own natural defenses. In addition to supplementation, chiropractic care is one of the leading complementary and integrative medicine modalities that patients utilize. According to a report from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, 53% of patients utilize spinal manipulative therapy – such as chiropractic – for wellness care, with 11% specifically utilizing the therapy for immune support. The purpose of this study is to pilot test an initial study protocol for the evaluation of the effects of Axial Stability Method (ASM) chiropractic care on autonomic function in individuals who are experiencing prolonged symptoms of COVID-19.

Changes in feedforward activation patterns following chiropractic care utilizing the Global Mechanical Assessment as a surrogate for neuromuscular dysfunction

The purpose of this study is to evaluate the utility of the Global Mechanical Assessment (GMA) method as a surrogate assessment for observing changes in neuromuscular function following a single chiropractic adjustment. To serve as an accepted standard of comparison, proprioception will be evaluated using the NeuroCom Dynamic Equitest Sensory Organization Test (SOT) and time-locked surface Electromyography (EMG) will be used to assess abdominal core responsiveness to GMA testing. Abdominal care responsiveness has been used in previous studies to represent feedforward activation as part of an individual’s anticipatory preparation for movement onset.

Practice-Based Research Network: Lifetime Care Project

Research exploring aspects of chiropractic care and longevity. This initiative has two primary goals: to study the attitudes of chiropractic patients toward health and longevity, and to study the long term benefits of chiropractic care as assessed through evaluation of patient well-being.

Angular kinematics of supine cervical spine adjustment: phase 2

Supine cervical adjustments are performed frequently by chiropractors, and there are claims associating these adjustments with adverse events. While there is epidemiological evidence disputing such claims, there has been almost no research into the range of motion experienced by patients during supine cervical adjustments. This project tested methods for the purposes of (1) determining angular magnitudes, velocities, and accelerations during supine cervical adjustments, and (2) comparing measured values to patient and doctor perceptions.

Examination of the effects of chiropractic care on resting state EEG and autism symptomatology in a pediatric autism population

Study comparing the outcomes of chiropractic adjustments on children with autism who are verbal vs non-verbal. EEG recordings will be used for the outcome measurements.

WHEEL Clinic Data Initiative

The WHEEL Clinic Data Initiative is a multi-phased approach designed to distill and study patient information collected daily within the Life University Clinic System. The initial phase includes the development of a data dictionary that will inform the development of past and future research study data needs and provide an opportunity for evaluation of data redundancy to assist in maximizing clinic efficiency.

Spinal kinematic assessment of a chiropractic performing side posture adjustments: a pilot study using motion capture system

This study was designed to describe the kinematics of lumbar side-posture adjustments (SPAs) as performed by a chiropractor. An expert in Gonstead-style adjustments performed ten right-handed SPAs, with motion tracking devices affixed on her spine and right arm. We were able to discern trends in both the speed of the doctor’s thrust, as well as the degree to which they moved. We hope this data may contribute to understanding occupational injuries or aid in proper education of students of chiropractic.

Does chiropractic care change post-stroke ADLs and brain activation patterns

Stroke, whether ischemic or hemorrhagic can culminate in devastating clinical outcomes due to differences in pathophysiological and possibly long-term cerebral and functional implications. Because of the limited research that has examined the functional outcomes between the two different stroke subgroups, the purpose of this proposed research is to evaluate the brain activation patterns and self-reported symptoms of individuals with ischemic versus hemorrhagic stroke released from post-stroke rehabilitative care differentially changed following 12 weeks of care.

Effect of chiropractic care on risk factors of cardiovascular disease.

Cardiovascular disease is a major health concern and tackling it one condition at a time requires a considerable amount of resources and effort. This research is designed to focus on key risk factors foundational to a number of cardiovascular conditions, evaluating the underlying neurophysiologic mechanisms of action and how chiropractic can be of benefit.

Evaluation of chiropractic care on stress adaptability as assessed through resting state electroencephalography and executive function task performance.

Recent chiropractic research has shown changes in the prefrontal cortex of the brain following a chiropractic adjustment. This brain region is responsible for many higher-level cognitive functions, but it is unfortunately impacted when an individual is under considerable stress. The purpose of this research is to examine the role of chiropractic care in stress adaptability and cognitive function, while examining the effects on the prefrontal cortex as a mechanism of action.

Feasability of Atlas Orthogonal chiropractic care for in-patient traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Dr. Patrick Gallagher has been working with in-patient traumatic brain injury patients and has observed positive results following care. This study seeks to document the care of five individuals using brain-based electroencephalography and cognitive assessments.

Comparison of EEG changes over time following application of chiropractic adjustive force vs non-force simulation

Chiropractic is a profession founded on the premise that correction of abnormal joint position and motion restores proper function to the nervous system. While much of chiropractic research has been focused on the pain-based results of care, investigators are beginning to explore the effects of chiropractic care on brain function.  However, there has been little attention given to understanding the mechanisms responsible for the adjustment-based brain changes. The purpose of this study is to test a study protocol designed to evaluate the physiologic and brain-based differences between the touch and force components of the adjustment.

Season Infectious Disease Patient Reported Outcome (SID PRO)

Creation of a survey tool that can be utilized by healthcare professionals to track the symptoms of specific seasonal infectious diseases over time.

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