Childhood Asthma & Chiropractic
It is estimated that as much as 15 million individuals have problems with asthma. Of those, 14.8 million are children younger than 18. In 1993 alone, there were 198,000 hospitalizations for asthma. In that same sample year, 342 people under the age of 25 died due to this problem. In money terms, the direct cost of managing a patient with severe asthma has been estimated at more than $18,000 per year.
The following statistics about asthma come from the Better Health & Medical Network.
* Asthma has increased 46% from 1982-1993 with an 80% growth in children under 18.
* In the 5-17 age group, asthma causes an annual loss of more than 10 million school days per year.
* Asthma accounts for more childhood hospitalizations than any other childhood disease.
* Children with asthma spend approximately 7.3 million days per year restricted to bed rest.
* In 1990, there were 7.1 million physician visits for asthma.
* Health care costs for asthma were estimated to be $6.2 billion, which is almost 1% of the total US health care costs.
* More than 5,200 Americans died from asthma in 1991.
Recent articles in publications such as "The American Chiropractor", and "Today's Chiropractic" describe strong links between people who suffer from these conditions and nerve interference from subluxation. Subluxations are when bones in the spine pressure or irritate nerves causing abnormal nerve function. An article appearing in the Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research Vol. 1 No. 4, also demonstrated the positive effects of chiropractic care on 81 children with asthma.
According to Richard Pistolese, research assistant for the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association, "Based upon information currently available, chiropractic care represents a safe non-pharmacological health care approach, that may be associated with a decrease in asthma-related impairment, reduced respiratory effort, and a decrease incidence of asthma attacks." Pistolese goes further to say, "The correction of vertebral subluxation is a non-invasive procedure, which could reduce or eliminate the need for medication, and potentially ease the severity of the asthmatic condition."