Just like specialists in the medical field, there are also specialists in the chiropractic profession known as functional neurologists. This designation is only held by a limited number of chiropractors in Canada who have passed stringent tests and evaluations.

graphic of a brain with textures and viens
Your nervous system starts at the brain


Functional neurology focuses on diagnosing and treating brain-based challenges. It can be argued that most medical conditions can be linked back to changes in the brain as it governs and controls almost every process in the body. Practitioners diagnose, treat, and rehabilitate patients by taking advantage of neuroplasticity—the ability of our neural pathways and brain synapses to physically change. Among most people, 60% of our nerve pathways are the same at birth (called cannalized pathways). This allows the remaining 40% to be shaped by experience, environment and genetics.

Functional neurology evaluates the body’s neurological systems and networks, treating a broad range of conditions from neuropathy, back pain, ADD/ADHD, migraines, depression, vertigo and even concussions.

Functional neurologists use the musculoskeletal (muscles and bones) and sensory systems (sight, taste, touch, smell, hearing) as they interact with the neurological system (brain, spinal cord and associated peripheral nerves) to improve quality of life. They use a variety of treatment modalities including the technique of adjustment as well as other sensory-based treatments to elicit improvements in health. This exciting new field is gaining a lot of momentum. Media coverage has highlighted the success of functional neurology in high profile athletes, such as Sidney Crosby and Olympic medalists, looking for a competitive edge. In everyday life, many people are utilizing functional neurology after being told their test results are normal but their symptoms are still affecting their daily lives.

As more research is conducted in the field of neurology, functional neurologists can modify and evolve their treatments to conform to the newest standards of care for the best possible results.

For more information you can visit the American Chiropractic Neurology Board website.

James Haxton
Dr. James Haxton graduated cum laude from Life Chiropractic College West in the San Francisco Bay area. Dr. Haxton is a diplomate of the American Chiropractic Neurology Board (DACNB) which means he has a specialty in chiropractic neurology, also known as functional neurology. This designation is only held by 27 chiropractors in Canada.
#27 The Exciting Field of Functional Neurology

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