The MVA Patient

Skill, Art, Science

This two-day course is for all therapists interested in this subject and would also be suitable for final year physiotherapy students.

Post-whiplash head and neck pain are probably the most frustrating clinical challenges facing the orthopedic manual therapist with the added stress that this patient is potentially one of the most dangerous that we see. Frequently manual therapy provides only temporary relief and the patient becomes a regular feature in the office. The main purposes of this course is:

  1. help identify seriously injured patients including those with fractures and vertebrobasilar problems
  2. to teach a focused method of diagnosis and treatment for these patients
  3. to teach a new neurophysiologica evaluation and treatment concept for the stalled patient
This course will cover:
  1. Clinical reasoning for the whiplash patient
  2. The anatomy and physiology of the spine
  3. The anatomy, physiology and pathology of the balance system
  4. The forces and effects of the impact will be described
  5. A detailed neurological examination aimed at this primarily orthopedic patient
  6. The assessment and manual treatment of the cervical spine
  7. Headaches, and dizziness including differential and biomechanical diagnosis
  8. Prognostic features based on research of the accident and patient presentation will be discussed to allow a reasonable prediction to be made early and late in the progress of the patient and to tailor treatment accordingly
  9. It introduce a new approach to the non-recovering MVA patient integrating the re-education of the vestibulo-oculo-spinal reflexes with traditional manual therapy and balance exercises.
Teaching Materials and Methods

Preclassroom Preparation:

  • Review of previously learned topics such as video of diagnostic and biomechanical examinations will be available for streaming and these will remain available indefinitely after the conclusion of the class.
  • pdf versions of the Powerpoint presentations and the course manuals will be sent to students
  • Powerpoint presentations of the anatomy of the cervical spine and neurovascular systems


  • Tutorial style lectures and lectures using PowerPoint presentations
  • Lab sessions
    • teaching and/or reviewing the detailed neurological examination for this patient
    • teach the diagnostic and biomechanical examinations of the neck
    • teaching neurophysiological examinations and treatments
    • teaching manual therapy treatments
    • teaching specific exercise prescriptions based on the above examinations


In order to support what was learned in the classroom session each student will be supplied with a USB containing the following:

  • All text including manuals
  • All PowerPoint presentations
  • Technique videos of all examination and biomechanical treatment techniques demonstated during the lab session
  • The complete commercially produced MVA video made by Jim Meadows FCAMPT

Course Descriptions

Curriculum Courses

Series 1 – Spinal Manipulation
Series 2 A – Peripheral Manipulation
Serices 2 B – Advanced Clinical Reasoning
Series 3 – Advanced Technique & Clinical Reasoning Mastery

Non-Core Courses

A Workshop in Spinal Manipulation
Headache and Dizziness: Assessment and Treatment
The MVA Patient
Biomedical Dry Needling
The Whiplash Patient
The Chronic MVA Patient