Gonstead System


Information comes from a pamphlet designed & written by Mary Goble-Heal


The Gonstead Technique is a system of chiropractic used to analyze and care for the spine, in a gentle, effective, and specific way.

In dealing with the vertebral subluxation complex, it is important to the Gonstead Chiropractor to thoroughly examine the spine before adjusting it.

In order to give a specific adjustment, the Gonstead Chiropractor first needs to find the specific locations of the subluxations.


Complete Analysis

The Gonstead Chiropractor uses the following thorough methods of analysis:

* Case History If your car breaks down you explain to a car mechanic what problems you are having with your car. The mechanic also asks you what type of fuel your putting in your car.

Likewise, your doctor wants to know what kind of problems or discomfort you have been experiencing and how you are fueling you body. Automobile accidents, falls, other traumas or injuries are important information in evaluating your spine and overall health.

* X-ray Analysis To further understand the condition of your spine, it is also important to view the structure of your spine through the use of x-ray examination. Your doctor looks for signs of pathology (disease) and fracture; evaluates posture, the joints of the spine, the condition of the disc, subluxations and other conditions of the spine. Your doctor also uses x-rays to visualize what position the subluxated vertebrae are stuck in so that he or she can adjust the spine gently, specifically and effectively as possible.

* Instrumentation The Gonstead Chiropractor uses an instrument (a Nervoscope) on your back. This dual probe instrument measures heat. Abnormal heat distribution is a sign that there may be nerve dysfunction and joint swelling in the spine. It helps the doctor find the subluxations. The instrument glides down the length of your and feels like two fingers gliding down either side of your spinal column.

* Static Palpation Your spine, when subluxated, will send warning signals to your body. Muscles may become tight or tender, tissues damaged from the subluxation or subluxations. To detect the warning signals, the Gonstead Chiropractor uses static palpation. This simply means that your doctor runs his or her fingers over (or palpates) your spine in a static (or stationary) position. The doctor is looking for edema, swelling and tender or tight muscle fibers.

* Motion Palpation Like static palpation, the Gonstead Chiropractor palpates your spine while moving it at different angles. The doctor determines how each segment of your spine moves. Lack of movement is one of the signs of a subluxation .


A Gonstead Adjustment is Specific

After a complete evaluation using these methods of analysis, the Gonstead Chiropractor is ready to provide a specific, accurate and precise adjustment. The areas or subluxation have been determined so there is a focus on adjusting only the problem areas.

The Gonstead Chiropractor approaches the spine biomechanically--which means that they relate the structure of the spine to how they will adjust it. Gonstead doctors take great care in making sure you are in a mechanically correct position for the adjustment. Accurate positioning and precision thrusting insure that the correction is as specific and accurate as possible.

To help illustrate the necessity of correct positioning, think of how a pottery sculptor carefully positions the clay on the pottery wheel before shaping or reshaping the clay. If the clay is not in the center of the pottery wheel it will become off-balance and lose its shape. Likewise, your Gonstead Chiropractor is "reshaping" the position of the vertebrae in your spine.

In summary, The Gonstead Chiropractor uses the following methods of analysis to evaluate your spine for subluxations: case history, X-ray examination, visualization, instrumentation, static palpation, motion palpation. By using these methods of assessment, giving careful consideration to positioning, and relying on his or her expert training, your doctor can give you a specific adjustment to restore function to your spine and nervous system.