The Blair Technique

The Blair Technique is a very specific upper cervical adjustment named after Dr. William Blair who developed his distinct method of analysis and correction of subluxations in the upper cervical spine. It is a very specific adjustment that helps patients with chronic headache pain.

The Blair Technique was not a technique taught in chiropractic school, so Dr. Mulcahey studied it for two years while practicing in Kansas City. Since moving to Lawrence, Dr. Mulcahey has a large percentage of patients who seek her out due to this specific training which helps them through their headache pain.

How does it work?

The very top bone of the spine (the atlas) is adjusted by Dr. Mulcahey. The atlas bone is different than the other vertebrae of the spine in that it does not have a spinous process, which is the bone that chiropractors feel when they adjust the other segments of the spine. Rather, the atlas looks like a circle located just below the skull. The Atlas (also called C-1) and the Axis (also called C-2) are the only vertebrae in proximity to the brain stem. The Atlas can move in different directions when it becomes misaligned and when it does, the patient will develop headaches.

The atlas can become misaligned for a variety of reasons: An accident such as a fall or a car accident, a jarring movement, work related activities, stress or even the birth process. Many of our patients can identify the approximate time frame their headaches began, and often can connect it to a trauma, whether large or small, that occurred around that time.

While some patients get relatively quick relief with the Blair technique, the long-term stability and correction of the upper cervical alignment usually takes time to stabilize. Typically, the vertebrae has been misaligned for months or even years before a patient seeks care from a chiropractor trained in the upper cervical spine. Dr. Mulcahey can relate to this because she had headaches every day for many years and experimented with all that traditional medicine could offer (without results) before finding a chiropractor who helped her out of pain with the Blair technique. What a wonderful gift to be pain-free again!

If you have any questions about this technique or chiropractic care and how it may help you, just give us a call at 785-832-9355 and Dr. Mulcahey will be happy to talk with you about it.