On April 2, 2018, the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published a case study documenting the resolution of ear infections and nocturnal enuresis in a young girl who received chiropractic care. Nocturnal enuresis, more commonly known as bedwetting or nighttime incontinence, is when a child urinates in bed while sleeping, after the age when they should have been able to control their bladder.
The technical name for ear infections is otitis media. The study authors explain this condition by saying, "Otitis media is very common in children. Generally, it is referred to as acute otitis media (AOM) or otitis media with effusion. Otitis media is the most common reason that children, visit the doctor, take antibiotics, and have surgical procedures."
Common medical treatment of bedwetting involves some form of behavioral modifications or rarely medications. However, otitis media is commonly treated with medications and surgery by the insertion of tympanostomy tubes into the ears.
In this case, a 12-year-old girl was brought to the chiropractor by her mother. The girl's primary health issues were recurring ear infections and bedwetting. A health history showed that the girl, who had been adopted at an early age, had been suffering with repeated ear infections almost since birth. She was born with low birth weight and was drug addicted at birth.
The girl underwent her first surgery to insert tympanostomy tubes at the age of two. Over the next ten years, the girl had five additional surgeries for insertion of the tympanostomy tubes as each previous attempt had only lasted for a short time. The most recent tubes only lasted two weeks before falling out. Her medical physicians wanted to schedule the girl for a seventh surgery when her mother decided to try chiropractic care. During this entire time, the girl was also suffering from nightly bedwetting which was starting to cause sleep difficulties.
A chiropractic examination was performed which included observation, a postural evaluation, spinal range of motions tests, spinal palpation, and functional leg length checks. A determination of the presence of spinal subluxations was made. Chiropractic care was recommended at the rate of three visits per week for the first three weeks with gradual reduction in frequency as care continued.
On each visit, the girl was monitored for changes in her ear infections or her bedwetting problem. After 11 visits, the girl reported that she had no symptoms of ear infections. The study also reports that the girl had a progressive decline in frequency of bedwetting as a result of her chiropractic care.
The authors of the study noted that the patient and her mother stated the effectiveness of chiropractic. The study notes, "The patient's mother stated that prior to seeing a chiropractor the patient was having episodes of bed wetting every night and was constantly having ear infections. Since being under chiropractic care these conditions have stopped completely or have occurred noticeably less often."
In their conclusion, the authors summed up the results of this case by saying, "This case demonstrates the health outcomes following chiropractic adjustment to resolve neurological interference and decrease symptoms of enuresis and otitis media."