A myofascial trigger point on the skull: Treatment improves peak flow values in acute asthma patients

Wm Thomas Crow, David Kasper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: 4.4 to 6.2 percent of the adult population has a physician confirmed diagnosis of asthma. Physicians use pulmonary functional tests to accurately assess and reproduce the pulmonary functional state of an asthmatic or non-asthmatic patient. Myofascial trigger points in various parts of the body have been documented to have physiological effects on the organs of the body. Objective: A myofascial trigger point on the skull was identified and treated in nine patients with an acute asthmatic exacerbation and who were at the time refractory to standard rescue treatments. Methods: A Peak Flow Meter was used to determine peak flow. These measurements were obtained after the use of a rescue inhaler or nebulizer but before the experimental treatment. A trigger-point was found at the left parietal eminence on the skull in patients. The trigger-point was treated using direct pressure, and the scalp was folded around the point. An additional measurement was obtained approximately three minutes after the treatment was applied. Results: The percent change in peak flow for patients classified as mild varied from 82% to 89%. For the moderately involved, the percent change was 52% to 87%. Only one patient was classified as severe and the increase was approximately 53%. A significant change in peak flow was seen with the patients treated with the osteopathic manipulative treatment technique described (p < 0.0003). Conclusion: While the retrospective study showed interesting and dramatic results, further study is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-25
Number of pages3
JournalAAO Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2006


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