Glossary

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A

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Abdomen

— The front part of the body that lies between the chest and pelvis.

Activator® Methods

— A diagnostic approach as well as a handheld instrument that is used to deliver a consistent low-force, high-speed chiropractic adjustment.

Acute

— Of short duration and relatively severe.

Adjustment

— An intervention with the intent of facilitating the body’s ability to “right” itself and function more normally.

Afferent

— Carrying impulses toward a centre, such as when sensory nerve impulses are sent toward the brain.

Antalgic Position

— An abnormal position of the body resulting from the body’s attempt to minimize pain.

Anterior

— Toward the front of the body.

Articulation

— The connection of bones; a joint.

Assignment

— An agreement between doctor and practice member to waive payment until a claim is paid by an insurance company, which is then paid directly to the doctor.

Atlas

— The uppermost and most freely movable bone of the spine.

Atrophy

— A decrease in the size of a normally developed tissue or organ.

Autonomic Nervous System

— The part of the nervous system that regulates involuntary action, including the intestines, heart and glands. It is comprised of the sympathetic nervous system and the parasympathetic nervous system.


B

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Bilateral

— Pertaining to both sides of the body or structure.

Biomechanics

— The application of mechanical laws to living structures.

Blocks/Blocking

— Wedge-shaped devices used by SOT practitioners to raise one or both sides of the pelvis into a healthier pattern for better support of the spine and head.

Brain Stem

— The “primitive” and oldest area of the brain.

Bursitis

— Inflammation of a bursa (e.g., knee and shoulder), which is a fluid-filled sac situated where friction would otherwise develop.

C

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CAT Scan

— (Computer Aided Tomography) An imaging device that uses narrow X-ray beams and a computer to create a type of three-dimensional X-ray.

Central Nervous System

— The brain and spinal cord.

Cerebellum

— The “hind” brain.

Cerebral Hemispheres

— The “higher” brain, which is the most evolved area of the brain.

Cervical

— The vertebrae of the neck, usually seven bones.

Chiropractic

— The discipline of detecting and reducing vertebral subluxation.

Chiropractor

— A doctor who has received a Doctor of Chiropractic degree; a doctor of chiropractic or D.C.

Chronic

— Persisting for a long period of time.

Coccyx

— A series of small bones at the end of the sacrum, commonly called the tailbone.

Compensation Reaction

— A new problem that results from the body’s attempt to respond to a problem elsewhere in the body (i.e., the spine).

Compressive Lesion

— A malfunctioning spinal bone or bones that results in direct pressure on a spinal nerve resulting in decreased nerve transmission.

Congenital

— Existing at or dating from birth.

CT Scan

— Also known as CAT Scan or Computer Aided Tomography, which uses pencil-thin X-ray beams and a computer to create a type of three-dimensional X-ray.

D

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Davis Series

— Seven X-ray views of the upper spine that are helpful in instances of whiplash injury.

Dermatomes

— Tests used to reveal areas of skin, and their sensitivity, serviced by nerves distributed from the spinal cord.

Diagnosis
— The act of distinguishing one health problem from another.

Diagnostic Imaging

— The use of X-rays, MRIs, CAT scans, EMG, thermography and other tools to create pictures of the structure and function of the body.

Diathermy

— The therapeutic use of high-frequency current to create heat within an area of the body.

Disability

— The partial or total loss of mental or physical abilities caused by an injury or disease that prevents an insured from engaging in some or all of the duties of his or her usual occupation.

Disc

— A cartilage (cushion/pad) that separates each spinal vertebra, absorbs shocks to the spine, protects the nerve systems and assists in creating the four spinal lateral curves (also known as intervertebral disc).

Disc Herniation

— An extreme bulging of the soft nucleus pulposus into a defect or weakened area of fibrous disc exterior.

Disease

— Any deviation from or interruption of the normal structure or function of any part, organ or system of the body that is manifested by a characteristic set of symptoms whose prognosis may be known or unknown.

Dorsal

— Pertaining to the back; the 12 thoracic vertebrae are also referred to as dorsal vertebrae.

E

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Edema

— A condition in which excessive fluid fills a damaged joint area, causing swelling similar to the swelling of a twisted ankle.

Efferent

— Carrying away from a central organ; nerve impulses leaving the brain to peripheral tissues.

EMG

— Electromyogram; a device used to measure muscle tone and detect subluxation patterns by detecting changes in electrical activity in millionths of a volt.

EMS

— Electro-Muscle Stimulation; a form of electrical stimulation designed to reduce swelling and inflammation.

Examination

— The process of inspecting and testing the body and its systems to determine the presence or absence of disease or injury.

Extension

— To stretch out or to spread to its fullest length or reach.

F

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Facet

— A small, smooth area on bone or another hard surface.

Facilitative Lesion

— A twisting or stretching of nerve tissue due to a malfunctioning spine.

Fixation

— Being held in a fixed position. An area of the spine with restricted movement.

Flaccid

— Soft, limp.

Flexion

— To bend to the side, forward or backward.

Foramen

— A small opening.

Frontal

— Pertaining to the forehead.

H

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Health

— A state of optimal physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease and infirmity.

Homeostasis

— A state of physiological equilibrium produced by a balance of functions and of chemical composition within an organism.

Hypermobility

— Excess movement of an area of the spine.

Hypomobility

— Restricted movement of an area of the spine.

I

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IME
— (Independent Medical Examination) An examination arranged by a third-party payer which is theoretically designed to impartially evaluate a practice member’s disability or another doctor’s diagnosis or treatment plan.

Impairment
— A loss, alteration or abnormality of psychological, physiological or anatomical structure or function.

Inferior
— Lower in position.

Inflammation
— A reaction of soft tissue due to injury that may include malfunction, discomfort, rise in temperature, swelling and increased blood supply.

Interference
— Damage or deficit to the nervous system.

Intervertebral Disc
— Fibrocartilage padding between vertebral bodies that act as a shock absorber, with a pulpy centre that acts as a ball-bearing.

Intervertebral Foramina
— The lateral opening through which spinal nerve roots exit the spinal column.

L

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Lateral
— The side view of the body.

Lien
— A creditor’s claim against assets to secure a debt.

Lipping
— The development of a bony outgrowth.

Listing
— A system used to describe the motion or position of vertebral segments in relation to adjacent vertebral segments.

Lordosis
— From the side, the forward curve of the spine, found in the cervical and lumbar spine.

Lumbar
— The vertebrae of the lower back, usually five bones.

N

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Neural Canal
— The opening in the spine through which the spinal cord passes.

Neurological
— Pertaining to the nervous system.

Neurologist
— Medical doctor whose practice focus is on the function of the nervous system.

Nucleus Pulposus
— The gelatinous mass in the centre of the intervertebral disc.

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