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Dynamic Chiropractic – November 11, 1991, Vol. 09, Issue 23

Potpourri -- Part I

By Richard C. Schafer, DC, FICC
The "t" in potpourri is not pronounced. Amazing.

It is also surprising that some DCs disavow the use of the title "physician." The term physician does not refer to one who administers physics (cathartics); rather, it is derived from the Greek word physikos, meaning natural; originally, one who treats by natural methods.

Thus, who has more right to use the title physician, a chiropractor or an allopath?

If we accept Dorland's Medical Dictionary as valid reference, the definition of surgery is "that branch of medicine which treats diseases, injuries, and deformities by manual or operative methods." Note that the word manual is stated first. Thus, a chiropractic adjustment should be considered and taught as a surgical procedure. For added verification, Dorland's defines the phrase operative surgery as "the operative or mechanical aspect of surgery; that dealing with manual and manipulative methods or procedures."

One reads some strange things in our journals, even those that are peer-reviewed. For example, a classic chiropractic adjustment is non-incisional, but it is not a non-invasive technique. Any significant force applied to the skin certainly penetrates the surface of the body. If not, deep articular fixations could not be manually released or even reflexes initiated by "light touch" techniques.

The substance surrounding the nucleus of an intervertebral disc is spelled anulus in North America, annulus in Great Britain. The status of an inflamed tendon is properly labeled tendinitis in this country, tendonitis in Great Britain. It appears we have more "Brits" authoring health-care literature than one might suspect.

Is there a good, cheap, natural alternative to synthetic cortisone for suprarenal cortex deficiency or as an anti-inflammatory agent? Research and clinical trials on substances derived from licorice root in arthritis, GI conditions, respiratory conditions (e.g., asthma), and a host of other conditions shows promising results. Licorice has long been used as a demulcent and sweetening agent. For years, it has been observed to have a value in the treatment of stomach ulcers and to have a deoxycortone-like action of value in treating Addison's disease. An important constituent of licorice is glycyrrhiza, a glycoside, the aglycon of which is glycyrrhetic acid. The molecular structure shows some resemblance to cortisone. Glycyrrhetic acid has proved experimentally to have a distinct anti-inflammatory property without causing depletion of liver glycogen. Unlike hydrocortisone, prolonged administration of glycyrrhetic acid (via licorice root extract) does not appear to cause adrenal atrophy or avascular necrosis of the hip.

A DC once confided that he had no difficulty in treating advanced varicose ulcers on the lower extremities but would never attempt to treat early peptic ulcers. Yet, both the epidermis and the surface layer of mucous and serous membrane is composed of epithelium. In both instances, epithelium serves the general functions of protection, absorption, secretion, and specialized functions such as movement of substances through ducts, the production of germ cells, and the reception of stimuli. Some have difficulty, and I know not why, in understanding that food in the stomach or bowels is not within the body -- no more than fluid passing through a pipe is part of the substance of the conduit. Gastrointestinal inflammations and ulcerations become easier to treat once it is realized that the lesion is on the surface of the body -- the inner surface.

The heart is not an efficient pump; it's a measuring cup. If it were not for the neuromuscular waves of propulsion initiated in the heart that are transmitted along the aorta and other major arteries and arterioles, the contractive force of the ventricles would be irrelevant. That is, because the circulatory system is hundreds of miles in length, a strong heart in a severely vasospastic or atherosclerotic arterial system will soon be bankrupt.

Do you know someone seeking an inexpensive face-lift? The nucleic acids DNA and RNA are the cellular components controlling heredity, and the subsequent ability of the body to keep reproducing its genetic pattern. These strands of acid within the cell nucleus govern all life processes in health and disease. Several studies report excellent results by using a dietary regimen rich in nucleic acids. In one study, the basic ingredient of the oral formula was RNA (from yeast), amino acids, B-complex vitamins, minerals, and metabolic sugars and lipids. While dosage varied, it was usually 3.5 grains of RNA daily for five days a week. In this study, changes noticed during the first week were first recognized in the skin of older patients. Facial skin appeared healthier, rosier, and smoother without any change in lines or wrinkles. After one or two months, there was increased smoothness and wrinkles began to diminish. The wrinkles in the forehead were often first to decrease in depth. The lines about the eyes decreased much slower. Skin appeared tighter, with increased moistness. Skin roughness disappeared around the joint, especially the knees, and callosities on the feet vanished or were remarkably slight.

One standard test of skin aging is the return of pinched skin of the back of the hand to normal. The treatment described above produced a faster return to normal in most patients after three or four months of therapy. Other anti-aging effects observed in the skin included, in most of the older patients, a gradual decrease in size and pigmentation of lentigos and senile keratoses after two to four months of therapy. Areas often became smaller and/or lighter in color. In control subjects, ranging from 40 to 70 years of age who received B-complex without the RNA factor, virtually no skin changes were found after three months of treatment.

Overall improvement in several degenerative conditions was also noted. In older patients with coronary heart disease and congestive heart failure, heart function was clearly improved as demonstrated by increased exercise tolerance and ECG tracings. In patients with abnormal liver function manifested by abnormal cephalin flocculation, thymol turbidity, and transaminase levels, liver function normalized after several months of therapy. Also, in geriatric cases, mental acuity sharpened and memory improved. Because of the benefits seen in extracerebral circulation, there was reason to assume that cerebral circulation was benefitted. Foods rich in nucleic acids are yeast, organ meats, and seafood. Especially abundant are sardines, herring roe, and thymus gland. In the clinical environment, however, supplementation assures adequate intake.

Richard C. Schafer, D.C.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Editor's Note:

Dr., Schafer's book on Clinical Chiropractic: The Management of Pain and Disability -- Upper Body Complaints is now available. Please see the Preferred Reading and Viewing list on Page xx, Part #T125 to order your copy.


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