So I’ve had lots of response to the original article I wrote on my experience with CTE, and it’s about time I gave an update! Since last writing, I underwent several months of intensive care with Dr Samuel Zoranovich developing our protocol (the Sardonicus-Zoranovich Method) of treating CTE. For those of you new to the game, CTE stands for Cerebellar Tonsilar Ectopia, also referred to as a Chiari Malformation – it’s a herniation of the lower brain through the bottom of the skull. In silly terms, my brain won’t stay inside my head. But really, symptoms can be debilitating: intractable headache, nausea, dizziness, weakness, difficulty breathing, heart palpitations and severe neck pain – among others. The Sardonicus-Zoranovich Method (hereinafter referred to as SZM) draws upon a base of infant-style chiropractic adjustments, CranioSacral Technique, SacroOccipital Technique and long-axis neuromobilization.

Under Dr Zoranovich’s care, I experienced a tremendous improvement: fewer and less intense headaches, decrease of all symptoms, and more importantly – I experienced an increase in vitality and life force. I was able to return to my daily running practice. I consistently “leveled up” – that is, every few weeks I found myself saying “wow, I never imagined I could feel this good / functional again!” … and a few weeks later, it would happen again. I continued care with my godfather Dr William Haffenreffer, a chiropractor near my home in New Hampshire (where I now practice, having left Dr Z in California). I taught him the protocol, and he now maintains my care (much less intensively than initially required). I still get checked 2-4 times a month: more frequently than someone without this condition, but I don’t mind as it keeps me going strong! Not only don’t I mind, but I credit this work as having saved my quality of life entirely. I am indebted with gratitude to the healers who have helped me on this journey.

Since I was diagnosed with CTE in 2010, and subsequently developed the SZM, I have diagnosed several cases and treated many more. Individuals with CTE have come to my office from near and far, sometimes for periods of intensive care when travelling from other states, to seek respite from this frustrating and debilitating condition.

With these individuals we have found varying levels of success. It very much depends on the individual situation: the extent and severity of the injury, as well as other factors affecting healing. Sometimes in addition to the SZM, emotional traumas embedded in body memory are processed and help to facilitate healing. I do believe I can say this about every single person who has come to me for help with CTE: we have made significant improvements in their quality of life.

I believe that we are all faced with individual challenges based on what life has for us to learn. Learning that I have CTE has been part of a tremendous journey for me, as has the subsequent development of the SZM with Dr Z. I chose not to follow traditional medical protocol for this condition (brain surgery with moderate to poor outcomes, and/or drugs that do next to nothing in the way of palliation). I am grateful for the opportunity this has provided me to learn and grow, and honored to participate in the healing journey of others who wish to learn from my experiences.

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with CTE, I am happy to schedule a phone consultation to discuss your options. Visit my office website at