Functional neurology is a treatment approach for various neurological disorders. In general, they treat brain injury patients, degenerative disorders (such as dementia), movement disorders, vestibular challenges (i.e. balance and dizziness issues), or any other neurological disease or disorder of unknown origin (typically something that traditional doctors have not been able to diagnose and treat successfully). However, each clinician may have their own subspecialties. Functional neurology may use some combination of brain-based rehabilitative exercises, chiropractic manipulation, other rehabilitative modalities (electrical stimulation, soft tissue mobilization, etc) and recommended lifestyle changes (diet, supplementation, exercise, etc.).
Traditional medical neurology treats neurological disease or pathology with the use of drugs and surgery. While this may work for some patients, others feel that it doesn’t fully address the root cause. Functional neurology looks at the dysfunction in the nervous system, even before this is a medical diagnosis, and aims to treat a broader array of brain dysfunction through receptor or brain-based rehabilitative therapy.
Functional Neurology works on the approach of NEUROPLASTICITY, which is the ability for the brain and nervous system to change in response to physical, emotional, and environmental stimuli. Our doctors then combine this with their extensive knowledge of the nervous system to activate pathways to the brain and create long term positive changes and reduce symptoms. To learn more information about this treatment approach, check out this recent review of functional neurology. To see this care in action, you can watch this short video from ABC News Nightline where it was featured.
Functional neurology could be used to treat a variety of conditions, including:
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Dr. Sullivant began her journey into the field of health care as a high schooler when she obtained her first job as a chiropractic assistant at one of Flint’s most successful chiropractic practices. There, she learned what it looks like to work in the field of health care as well as what it takes to be a small business owner. She also grew a passion for people and helping her community in any small way she could.
From there, she went on to receive her Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. While in her career at Michigan, she worked on a longitudinal health study at Michigan’s School of Public Health. She spent two years working with the SWAN Study (Study of Women Across the Nation) which helps provide useful research and data on aging in women and the health implications which they may face.
After graduating from Michigan, Dr. Sullivant went on to begin her post-graduate studies in the doctor of chiropractic program at Life Chiropractic College West in the Bay Area of California. While in school, she was very active in the school and chiropractic community. Dr. Sullivant graduated Summa Cum Laude from Life West in 2016 and has worked to bring functional neurology to Genesee County in Michigan. In 2018, she passed her diplomate exam through the American Chiropractic Neurology Board after completing 300 hours of post-doctoral studies through the Carrick Institute in Clinical Neurology.
Since graduating, Dr. Sullivant has worked to grow the chiropractic department at Insight Institute of Neurosurgery & Neuroscience. She specializes in motor vehicle accidents, post-surgical patients, and migraines. Her office recently partnered with the Flint Firebirds, a professional hockey team in the Ontario Hockey League. She provides spinal care to the players and coaches, as well as post-concussive therapy.
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