Ankeny Chiropractic Health Center sets itself apart from other treatment clinics by focusing on treating the root causes of scoliosis or any health concern, not merely just addressing the symptoms.

Most conventional doctors generally deal with the managing of one’s symptoms of their health concerns, while never actually addressing the underlying cause. The three most common recommendations of traditional medicine for scoliosis are watching and waiting, bracing, and surgery, each of which is often accompanied by serious, negative consequences.

Given the margins of the majority of medicine’s approach, it should come as no surprise that people travel from all over the world to be treated by a CLEAR™ certified doctor for their scoliosis or health concerns. Every patient at Ankeny Chiropractic Health Center receives corrective treatment for their scoliosis or health concern that has been specifically created to meet their individual treatment needs. By doing this, it allows them to avoid the use of scoliosis braces or the need for surgery.

CLEAR Scoliosis Treatment

Established in 2000, the Chiropractic Leadership, Educational Advancement & Research, (CLEAR) Institute offers an alternative approach to the 3 most common scoliosis treatment options offered by the majority of orthopedic scoliosis specialists. The mission of the CLEAR Institute is to “empower the chiropractic and medical community with the mission of implementing an effective chiropractic system of scoliosis treatment and care to effectively treat the condition of scoliosis without the use of bracing or by performing surgery.”

Once the necessary patient information has been gathered and recorded the treatment can begin. Following the CLEAR protocols, Dr. Tanko and his team at Ankeny Chiropractic Health Center will begin the treatment process with the patient, following a specific 3 step process.

Step 1: MIX (warm-up or “prehab”)

Before receiving corrective chiropractic adjustments, the patient warms up their spine using specialized equipment to relax the ligaments and soft tissues of the spine. This step plays a critical role, because otherwise, the inter-vertebral discs will be stiff, rigid, and inflexible. Its worthy to note that if this step is skipped, it will be difficult if not impossible to effect structural changes to the spine.

Step 2: FIX (specific, instrument-assisted adjusting)

Following the CLEAR protocols, Ankeny Chiropractic Health Center uses only specific instrument adjusting to the cervical spine (the neck). Our adjusting tools enhance the precision and effectiveness of chiropractic care, while also decreasing the amount of force required to achieve the desired result. The application of these adjustments are correlated with the information obtained from the patient’s precision x-rays, and follow up x-rays should confirm correction of these areas.

Step 3: SET (rehab stage)

Immediately after the adjustment is completed, the spine needs to be“set” in its corrected position to ensure the permanency of the changes. This includes using Neuromuscular Reeducation (NMR). This involves using spinal weighting protocols (typically on the head, hips, and even shoulders), whole-body vibration therapy such as the Vibe and the Scoliosis Traction Chair (STC). In addition, a patient-specific scoliosis exercise program is conducted at home twice daily. If the prescribed SET or NMR protocols are not followed, the correction that has been achieved in the spine will be temporary in nature.

Follow up Exams:

After 12 visits, a CLEAR™- certified doctor will take a series of post x-rays to validate the effectiveness of the treatment protocol. The specific x-rays which are necessary, are limited as much as possible to the patient’s specific condition. For example, if the initial x-ray demonstrated that the patient’s low back was in pretty good shape prior to beginning care, a sideways view of the low back might not be necessary. It’s important to keep in mind that not every patient will show a reduction in the severity of the scoliotic curve, as measured by Cobb angle, within this time frame. This is due to the fact that Cobb angle is a measurement of only one dimension of the spine, and scoliosis is, in fact, a three-dimensional condition. Before the sideways curve can be reduced or corrected, the spine must be de-rotated and de-compressed in the other two dimensions. Treating a complex spinal disorder such as scoliosis is a little like reversing the path of a runaway train. It takes time to first slow down the momentum, then more time is needed to change the course of the disease.

Home Spinal Rehab Program:

This is arguably the most important part of your care, following the chiropractic adjustment. Your degree of participation determines your results. This means YOU’RE in control! It is crucial that every CLEAR™ doctor stresses to their patient the importance of their active participation in the treatment program. As stated by Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine, “The patient must combat the disease along with the physician.” Results are not guaranteed – they are earned. Patients who are willing to put in the time and work alongside of the doctor, acheive the best results. The traditional methods of scoliosis treatment, bracing & surgery, are considered “passive” therapies, in that the patient has the procedures done to them; the doctor designs the brace, the doctor performs the surgery etc. CLEAR™ Institute’s method, by comparison, is to be considered an “active” process – that is to say, the doctor teaches the patient how to do the procedures, and the patient does them. A small part of our protocols could be considered passive modalities, but the effectiveness of these treatments on their own is limited without the involvement of the patient. In other words, your degree of participation determines the degree of improvement. Every CLEAR™-certified doctor is instructed to make this clear to the patient prior to beginning care.