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Functional Neurology

Functional neurology is a method of evaluating and treating conditions that stem from problems in the nervous system. A specialist in functional neurology uses characteristics of the nervous system to restore and maintain health. 

These treatments as based on findings in the fields of neurology, neurophysiology, neuropsychology, embryology and cellular biochemistry.

A functional neurologist utilizes this cutting edge research to test for and determine the cause of the problem and treat it using brain-based rehabilitation.

Some of the problems that may be helped by a functional neurologist include:

  • Vertigo/Dizziness
  • Head Injuries/Traumatic Brain Injuries
  • Concussions
  • Post-Concussion Syndrome
  • Dyslexia
  • Neck Pain
  • Numbness and Tingling
  • Whiplash and Complications from Car Crashes
  • Peripheral Neuropathies
  • Headaches
  • Movement Disorders
    • Cervical Dystonia
    • Torticollis
    • Writer’s Cramp
    • Tourette’s Syndrome
  • Shoulder Pain
  • Low Back Pain
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD/ADHD)
  • Temporomandibular Joint Disease (Jaw Pain)
  • Stroke Rehabilitation
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Other neurological disorders
Functional neurology has had success with patients when traditional medicine cannot explain and/or effectively treat the patient’s symptoms. While traditional neurology relies on having a specific diagnosis of a disease to treat a problem, functional neurology can treat problems that do not fit into a specific diagnosed disorder. For example, a patient may have symptoms of dizziness, but fall short of a diagnosis of vertigo. In functional neurology, the symptoms that the patient is displaying can be effectively treated by utilizing brain-based rehabilitation to treat the area of the brain that is causing the feeling of dizziness.

Bryan D. Royer, DC, DACNB is a chiropractic neurologist who is trained to assess groups of nerves and determines how well they are working. He is trained to understand and treat the problems that occur when there is an imbalance in groups of nerves. In many patients with neurological problems, some groups of nerves may be overexcited and express themselves too much while other groups of nerves may be lethargic. This imbalance leads to the nerves becoming fatigued too quickly and being unable to properly perform. Through functional neurology, a doctor can determine the specific group of nerves that need are imbalanced and target these nerves with specific brain-based exercises to improve their overall performance. Similar to exercises for muscles that are designed to increase the strength and function of muscles, these brain-based exercises are designed to increase the stamina or function of certain areas of the brain to improve their operation. Improvement in performance of these imbalanced groups of nerves often leads to improvement in symptoms experienced by the patient.

Correcting a functional neurological imbalance requires extensive knowledge of neurophysiology and neuroanatomy. Those who have taken specialist post-graduate study in functional neurology, like Dr. Royer, are trained to understand the physiological function and anatomical structure of the human nervous system to better differentiate the cause of the patient’s disorder.


While a medical neurologist generally prescribes medications and a neurosurgeon typically uses surgery as the means of correcting conditions, a chiropractic neurologist uses medication free and non-surgical treatment methods to accomplish their goal. Patients receive individualized care based on the findings of their examination. Brain-based rehabilitation methods may include precise chiropractic adjustments coupled with specific stimulations and exercise, as well as nutritional supplementation. Common exercises used in treating neurological conditions include: visual or auditory stimulation or stimulation of the inner ear such as spinning or balance work. These exercises are very powerful methods of stimulating the appropriate areas of the brain.

Through the use of brain-based exercises, Chiropractic Neurologists can effectively treat neurological problems without the use of drugs or surgery. These exercises help the brain to function properly by restoring balance to the brain and harmony to neurological system.

Dr. Royer is a chiropractic neurologist certified as a Diplomate of the American Chiropractic Neurology Board (DACNB). Dr. Royer has taken over 900 hours of post-graduate education in functional neurology from the Carrick Institute of Graduate Studies and was required to pass a rigorous written and practical examination process in order to receive his specialty. Less than 500 people in the world currently have this certification, and Dr. Royer is the only board certified chiropractic neurologist in the Toledo area. Dr. Royer is also member of the ACA Council on Neurology. He has been practicing chiropractic medicine in the Toledo, OH area since 2005. Dr. Royer also teaches Anatomy and Physiology at Owens Community College.

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