Objective: To chronicle the improvement in plagiocephaly measurements, cervical range of movement, primitive reflexes, and subjective parental feedback in an infant co-managed with age appropriate chiropractic care for assessment and correction of vertebral and cranial subluxation and helmet therapy. This case report was prepared following the CARE guidelines as presented in 2017.
Clinical features: A five-month-old female infant was presented to clinic by her mother “seeking shared care” for her daughters plagiocephaly. Previous care included four chiropractic visits over the previous month, and recent attendance at a specialist paediatric physiotherapist. Clinical assessments using the caliper system demonstrated a 20 mm difference in diagonal cranial vault measurement. Decreased left lateral flexion and left rotation of the cervical spine, cranial restrictions, vertebral subluxations, and altered primitive reflexes were found.
Intervention and Outcomes: Age appropriate chiropractic care was delivered on 35 visits between 5 months and 17 months of age. Home care including tummy time and infant exercise ball posterior chain activation was recommended. Helmet therapy began at 6 months and finished at 10.5 months. Growth charts were within considered developmentally appropriate percentiles. Prior to helmet therapy beginning, cervical range of motion and aberrant primitive reflexes improved. Cranial Vault Asymmetry (CVA) and Cranial Vault Asymmetry Index (CVAI) improved over the 12 months from a CVA of 20mm and CVAI of 14.3% to a CVA of 9mm and CVAI of 5.8%.
Conclusion: This case report chronicles reduction of plagiocephaly rating from severe to mild, improvements in primitive reflexes and in cervical range of motion, and subjective parent reported infant quality of life in an infant co-managed with age appropriate chiropractic care and helmet therapy. Further prospective studies are required to ascertain the clinical significance of helmet therapy with chiropractic care, helmet therapy versus chiropractic care, and different technical approaches (cranial/cervical/pelvic or combinations of each) for the delivery of the adjustment.
Indexing Terms: plagiocephaly; chiropractic; helmet therapy, case report.
Cite: Doyle M. Improvement in plagiocephaly, cervical range of movement, primitive reflexes, and subjective parental feedback in an infant co-managed with chiropractic care and helmet therapy: a case report and review of the literature. Asia-Pac Chiropr J. 2020;1.2:online only. URL https://apcj.rocketsparkau.com/plagiocephaly-reduction--doyle/