Sacro-occipital Technique (SOT): or "a model for how human structures react to stress."
This chiropractic technique developed by Major Bertrand DeJarnette, who was both a qualified Chiropractor and an Osteopath. Dr. DeJarnette was also an engineer. He felt that there were several contradictions and inadequacies within the professions as well as in his own practice. He began dividing his time between the actual practice of chiropractic and the researching of its principles. He came up with the SOT system and technique.
SOT divides the patient's condition into one of three categories. The aim of the system is to determine the correct category of the injury complex and the major area (cranial, cervical, lumbar, or pelvic) to be addressed first, in order to unwind the layers of distortion and uncover the causative pattern and then remove it.
Category I deals with the movement of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) between the sacrum and occiput. When the initial subluxation of the anterior portion of the sacroiliac joint (SIJ) occurs, restricting normal sacral nutation, it puts a strain on the spinal and cranial dura that may inhibit the flow of cerebrospinal fluid throughout the spinal-cranial system. This dural involvement creates distortion patterns at the occiput, C1, and the sacrum with specific accompanying spinal and cranial compensatory subluxations in response to this primary sacral subluxation.
Category II involves hypermobility of the Sacroiliac Joint causing instability between the sacrum and its corresponding ilium. The sacroiliac weight-bearing subluxation causes neurophysiological dysfunction since the body’s righting mechanism will now have to struggle to maintain itself against gravity, resulting in postural and sometimes extremity structural subluxations. This imbalance also affects the cranial sutural system, the temperomandibular joint, and transverse facial planes of the body. Failure of Category II indicators to compensate for the stress of this type may lead to the Category III complex.
Category III is usually the end result of a chronic failure of the body to compensate for or correct the neurophysiological consequences of the primary subluxation or the weight-bearing Sacroiliac Joint instability, compromising the integrity of the intervertebral discs. At this point in time, nerve root compression or stretch syndrome due to direct involvement of the cartilaginous discs and joints of the spine has occurred, usually involving discogenic degenerative changes.
The beauty of SOT lies in its indicator system. Based on neurological reflex patterns, these indicators allow the chiropractor to determine where, when and even how to adjust the various subluxations. Once the subluxation is detected, the SOT chiropractor can make an adjustment under the SOT technical umbrella in a variety of ways ranging from standard high-velocity osseous corrective techniques, leverage-based (using SOT blocking procedures) minimal invasive procedures, or low-force corrective adjustment protocols.
Pelvic blocks, the trademark of SOT, are among the most effective tools in the chiropractic profession for addressing core subluxation complexes including but not limited to Sacroiliac Joint instability and fixation, disc lesions, lumbar subluxations and spinal meningeal distortion patterns. Dr. DeJarnette dedicated his life and inspired others to dedicate theirs to the pursuit of excellence in the detection and correction of spinal and cranial subluxation complexes.