Man who cracked his own neck to avoid chiropractor bills went blind
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A man who cracked his own neck to avoid chiropractor bills ended up losing his vision.
Andy Wilson, 53, from New South Wales, Australia, suffered from a bad back since he was a child and sought help from a variety of chiropractors but found continuing treatment as an adult too expensive.
His attempt to save money led to life-threatening consequences when he tried to mimic the experts’ movements and do his own neck adjustments at least twice a day.
The artist twisted his neck at least twice for 31 years with no problems, but this all changed on 5 March when he ruptured his right artery, triggering a stroke and three brain clots that left him unable to move and temporarily losing his vision.
"I've met different ones over the years and they all do this one neck adjustment. I'd relax my muscles and twist my head from side to side,” he said.
"It was an unconscious habit like cracking my knuckles, I'd do it at least once or twice a day.
"I had the TV on and all of a sudden all I could hear was like digital gurgling. It was very strange.
"Then my limbs didn't feel normal, I picked up my hand and it started to wave on its own."
Andy was able to call his uncle, Craig Wilson, 64, who he now lives with, using the Google Assistant function.
Craig, who was upstairs, called for an ambulance and when paramedics arrived they initially believed he was suffering from a drink or drug related issue. They even searched his home for paraphernalia before taking him to hospital even though Andy is teetotal.
Andy said: "It was painful and overwhelming, there was so much feedback from all my senses.
"I pulled myself upstairs and my uncle saw me. I was trying to talk but the feedback was so intense. I'd started sweating a lot and I had to lie down.
"I threw up quite a bit, I'd completely lost my coordination, I could feel the pressure in my head.
"I was losing my sight, part of my left vision on both sides started to disappear.
"It was the weirdest thing. It wasn't one side, it was half of both eyes. I was extremely disoriented and nauseous."
Now Andy has fully recovered and, thankfully, regained his vision.
"I was actually having a stroke. The combination of the neck adjustments and my back injury caused a calcium build-up in my spine," he continued.
"This caused my right artery to sever resulting in three brain clots and a stroke to the occipital region of my brain."
After mentioning what he did to his neck, Andy recalled: "The stroke specialist [in the ICU] just looked at me horrified and said 'don't ever do that'."
He has recovered ‘pretty much 99 percent’ because paramedics were able to treat him within the first four hours and put in stents to thin his blood.
Andy has also vowed to stop cracking his neck and is now urging others to do the same to avoid the same thing happening to them.
"I definitely won't be doing those neck adjustments ever again. The hospital outright forbade me, I can't even get a neck massage,” he said.