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Atlasprofilax: A potentially dangerous procedure.

Posted By Dr. Michael Polsinelli, DC On September 17, 2007 @ 11:57 pm In Health,Upper Cervical | 84 Comments

Imitation as a form a flattery.

Two weekends ago, I had a booth at a health and wellness expo and I had a chance to observe a practitioner of a new form of atlas work called Atlasprofilax. Initially I was curious about what he was doing, I’m always open to learning new things.  But now have decided that this is a potentially dangerous procedure and do not recommend people receive it. Here are my reasons:

  •  His literature states that the atlas moves out of alignment the same way in every person. This is not true!  In the thousands of x-rays that I have taken, I can demonstrate that each misalignment is unique and individual to each person.  This is backed up by decades of research by NUCCA and other upper cervical chiropractic procedures. To make this worse:
  • They use an thrusting instrument on the upper neck, delivering multiple hard thrusts. If they are trying to move a person’s atlas in a certain direction, only a percentage of their clients will have their atlases misaligned in the direction they they think it is. They could be moving the atlas in the wrong direction.
  • Then they label any adverse reaction as a healing crisis. A healing crisis can
    occur when someone retraces an old injury and may feel pain and
    discomfort. A health crisis is when you have pain and problems from a
    new injury or an aggravation of an old one. It takes a qualified health
    practitioner to be able to listen, do an accurate and objective analysis
    (that includes a follow up visit) to determine if a person is having a
    health or healing crisis. Unfortunately, these lay people are using range of motion and palpation to fool themselves into thinking that they are realigning everyone.
  • They don’t realign everyone. I was only able to asses three people that had received this procedure. All three were showing an atlas misalignment with stress on their nervous systems. I regularly screen individuals that do not have an atlas misalignment. These three were not one of them.
  • They only see people one time. This practitioner and others travel to different towns, manipulate people’s atlases and then leave. The one that was here was from Los Angeles and seems to be making a circuit around the country.

Before I get a bunch of email, let me clarify. I know that they are helping some people (they are dealing with the atlas of course!), but I am giving my professional opinion on why this procedure could be dangerous. If you want to get your atlas realigned, go to one of the many excellent upper cervical chiropractic doctors around the country.

In my office, I take upper cervical x-rays before the first adjustment, as well as after to make sure that the correction is good. I also to regular follow up visits to make sure that people are doing well. Unfortunately, I don’t always get it right the first time, but I as I improve this happens less. Some of my patients that have had the most amazing results were are ones that I didn’t get right the first time. I followed up, listed, made the appropriate “adjustments”, and they did well. That is why we call this practice.

~Dr. Michael

Update 3-2-2014

I’ve received emails and comments from people all over the world about Atlasprofilax, Atlantotec and Atlas Evolution since I first published this article. Many people have told me the benefits that they’ve received from these procedures. However, I’ve had numerous people contact me both on this site and privately about being injured by it. It wasn’t just by one rogue practitioner, it was by several different practitioners. I stand by my comments that there can be a serious downside with the force that they use and directing it into the upper cervical area. There are some upper cervical chiropractic procedures that use lots of force, but they at least take x-rays that minimize the chance of problems. Personally, I don’t even like that amount of force and use significantly less in my practice.

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