Child With Sensory Processing Disorder Experiences Improvement After Chiropractic Care
The November 8, 2012 issue of the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health reports on
the case of a three year-old boy with Sensory Processing Disorder who experienced
considerably improvement after undergoing a short course of chiropractic care.
Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) is the result of a dysfunctional sensory system. Instead
of smoothly integrating sensory input and generating an appropriate response, the brain limits
some of the incoming information to prevent brain overload. This results in the child
inappropriately responding to his environment.
According to author Jeff Crippen, ND, DC, the boy’s mother had a normal, planned
pregnancy and normal delivery. The baby’s APGAR score was 9,9. He dealt with skin rashes
since about the age of 9 months. His parents reported he did not sleep regularly for the first
year of life and was extremely colicky. Other than that, no major issues were noted.
Until, that is, the administration of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine. The
author goes on to say, “He had the MMR vaccine at age 24 months. After the vaccination, he
broke out in a head to toe rash, had enlarged lymph nodes that were extremely swollen, and
pock marks on his belly, according to his parents. The mother called the nurse to report a
vaccine reaction. However, even after seeing pictures, the nurse said the patient was just
fighting off something viral. Because the mother works at the CDC, she was able to show an
immunologist on staff the photos.”
“The immunologist then said it was definitely a severe reaction to MMR and advised the
patient and his mother to not get another dose of the vaccine. The patient’s fever continued
for a few days and the pock marks and swollen glands on the back of his neck normalized
within a week. The total body rash continued for a couple of months. Patient was advised to
apply topical steroids and do oatmeal baths. Since this time, he has never stopped having red
His mother reported that at about 27/29 months, he experienced a major halt in his
development. He began banging his head and not feeling or noticing pain.
If he was overstimulated, he would crawl into a corner or under his crib and rub himself against a wall and
chew holes in his clothes. He stopped responding to instructions at about 27 or 28 months. He
also started losing speech and not gaining any new speech.
He stopped feeding himself and his sleep patterns deteriorated even more. He had frequent
“meltdowns” involving sensory irritability, grinding teeth and touching his own feces. At 33
months he was formally diagnosed with SPD by an occupational therapist.
He presented to the chiropractor at 36 months of age. His exam revealed asymmetries in
head and neck position, shoulder level, ankle and foot alignment, leg length and range of
After beginning his chiropractic care
After beginning his chiropractic care, he has achieved improvements in light touch and
vibration sensitivity, gross motor skills and social skills. His parents reported his language
skills as “jumping through the roof.” He still has the occasional “meltdown” but the frequency
and intensity have both decreased.
His parents have also noted improved communication, more opinionated (told his parents
no for the first time), more imaginative, engaged and affectionate, longer attention span and
he is sleeping better, longer and more soundly. He has been described as “emerging from a
The Occupational Therapist has been “shocked” at how fast he has progressed in the last
month of the study.
According to the author, his parents “have become accustomed to great progress by the
patient which includes “exponential” increases in his communication and motor skills.