Subluxation Chiropractors must make sure there is not a grain of truth in allegations being made by sceptics

January 1, 2007
By

As a profession we must make sure that none of the allegations being made about subluxation chiropractors have a grain of truth in them. Articles like the one below by Stephen Barrett are all over the internet.

First we have to ask members of the public who visit our office why they are here, if they want pain relief, either give it to them or send them to another chiropractor who will do it for them.
If people like and trust you they dont complain to the GCC or provide Ernst et al with ammunition to use against us . If in the patients head you are going to sort out their back pain and in your head there is a member of the public who needs their subluxations corrected and life time care, the relationship will end in tears.

The BCA have done a good job promoting chiropractic as a treatment of back pain for their members. Subluxation chiropractors have not been nearly as sucessfull at promoting wellness care ( see recent UCA survey) as a result there are many interpretations of "Wellnesscare" out there. It is now up to Wellness Chiropractors to articulate what we doclearly and differentiate the service we provide from back pain specialists and accept the fact some people just want pain relief. The information is out there but you have to read it and assimilate it, explain it to the public and where necessary stand up for it in front of the PCC.

Tips on Choosing a Chiropractor
Stephen Barrett, M.D.
Choosing a chiropractor can be difficult because the majority of chiropractors are involved in unscientific practices [1,2]. If you do decide to consult one, begin with a telephone interview during which you explore the chiropractor’s attitudes and practice patterns.
Positive Signs
Try to find a chiropractor whose practice is limited to conservative treatment of back pain and other musculoskeletal problems. Ask your medical doctor for the names of any who fit this description and appear to be trustworthy.
Membership in the National Association for Chiropractic Medicine or the Canadian Academy of Manipulative Therapists (CAMT) is a very good sign, but the number of chiropractors who belong to these groups is small. CAMT’s "orthopractic guidelines" describe a science-based approach to manipulative therapy.
In addition to manual manipulation or stretching of tight muscles or joints, science-based chiropractors commonly use heat or ice packs, ultrasound treatment, and other modalities similar to those of physical therapists. They may also recommend a home exercise program. For most conditions that chiropractic care can help, significant improvement should occur within a few visits.
Negative Signs
Avoid chiropractors who advertise about "danger signals that indicate the need for chiropractic care," make claims about curing diseases, try to get patients to sign contracts for lengthy treatment, promote regular "preventive" adjustments, use scare tactics, or disparage scientific medical treatment or preventive measures such as immunization or fluoridation.
Avoid chiropractors who purport to diagnose or treat "subluxations," who have waiting room literature promoting "nerve interference" as an underlying cause of disease, or who post charts or distribute literature suggesting that chiropractic might help nearly every type of health problem.
Avoid any chiropractor who routinely performs or orders x-ray examinations of all patients. Most patients who consult a chiropractor do not need them. Be especially wary of full-spine x-ray examinations. This practice has doubtful diagnostic value and involves a large amount of radiation.
Avoid chiropractors who "prescribe" dietary supplements, homeopathic products, or herbal products for the treatment of disease or who sell any of these products in their offices. For dietary advice, the best sources are physicians and registered dietitians.
Avoid chiropractors who offer Biological Terrain Assessment, body fat analysis, computerized "nutrient deficiency" testing, contact reflex analysis,, computerized range-of-motion analysis, contour analysis (also called moire contourography), cytotoxic testing, electrodermal testing, Functional Intracellular Analysis (FIA), hair analysis, herbal crystallization analysis, inclinometry, iridology, leg-length testing, live blood cell analysis (also called nutritional blood analysis or Hemaview), testing with a Nervo-Scope or similar spinal heat-detecting device, Nutrabalance, NUTRI-SPEC, pendulum divination, reflexology, saliva testing, spinal ultrasound testing to "measure progress, surface electromyography (SEMG), thermography, a Toftness device, weighing on a twin-scale device called a Spinal Analysis Machine (S.A.M.), or any other dubious diagnostic procedure identified on Quackwatch.
Avoid chiropractors who utilize acupuncture, Activator Methods, allergy testing, applied kinesiology, Bio Energetic Synchronization Technique (B.E.S.T.), chelation therapy, colonic irrigation, cranial or craniosacral therapy, laser acupuncture, magnetic or biomagnetic therapy, Neuro Emotional Technique (NET), or Neural Organization Technique (NOT), or who exhibit a dogmatic attachment to any other specific chiropractic technique or school of thought.
Understand that some chiropractic treatments involve significant risk. Spinal manipulations involving sudden movements have greater potential for injury than more conservative types of therapy. Be aware that chiropractic neck manipulation can cause serious injuries. Neck manipulation should be done gently with care to avoid excessive rotation that could damage the patient’s vertebral artery. It should never be used unless symptoms indicate a specific need for it. A small percentage of chiropractors advocate neck manipulation to "balance" or "realign" the spine no matter where the patient’s problem is located. I recommend avoiding such chiropractors.
Additional Safeguards
Never consult a chiropractor unless your problem has been diagnosed by a competent medical practitioner. Don’t rely on a chiropractor for diagnosis. Although some chiropractors know enough to avoid diagnostic difficulty, there is no simple way for a consumer to determine who can do so. As an additional safeguard, ask any chiropractor who treats you to discuss your care with your medical doctor.
Remember that although manipulative therapy has value in treating back pain and may relieve other musculoskeletal conditions, chiropractors are not the only source of manipulative therapy. Physical therapists, many osteopathic physicians, and a small number of medical doctors do it also. The Canadian Association of Manipulative Therapists is a good referral source for Canadian practitioners.
References
1 Christenson MG, Morgan DRD. Job Analysis of Chiropractic: A Report, Survey Analysis, and Summary of the Practice of Chiropractic within the United States. Greeley, Colorado: National Board of Chiropractic Examiners, 1993. This report is based on the responses by 4,835 full-time chiropractors who responded to a 1991 NBCE survey about their practices during the previous two years. The figures included: Activator Methods 51.2%, applied kinesiology 37.2%, acupressure/meridian therapy 65.5%, acupuncture 11.8%, cranial adjusting 27.2%, and homeopathic remedies 36.9%. "Nutritional counseling, etc." was listed by 83.5%. Although the data don’t indicate what this involved, it is clear that a large percentage are inappropriately prescribing dietary supplements.
2 Chiropractors. Consumer Reports 59:383-390, 1994. This included a survey of 476 chiropractors chosen randomly from the American Chiropractic Association membership directory. Nearly one quarter of the 274 who responded sent material stating that spinal misalignments and "interferences" threatened overall health, and 35% implicated the spine in disorders of the body’s organs.

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     have a grain of truth in them. Articles like the one below by Stephen Barrett are all over the internet.

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    but you have to read it and assimilate it, explain it to the public and where necessary stand up for it in front of the PCC.

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  • http://www.webspawner.com/users/compare82massac/privateschoolsd.html Josh Freeman

    Hi Paul,

    I said the same to Steffan recently. However when skeptics start talking about chiropractic as if it were a religion and “mythical”, their arguments are laughable particularly in relation to subluxation. There has to be a universal name for joint dysfunction. Medics use the term in relation to hypermobility and chiropractors in relation to hypo. They more the hurl insults the more child like they appear, would you call a child a wanker? So be patient with them they know we dont have a pile of RCTs to support what we do and so what. We base our work around principles of anatomy and physiology of the human body that are not in dispute.

    For the life of me I don’t see why Subluxation is so controversial especially having read Meridel Gatermans book twice. Thats the only reading material a chiropractor needs in his office. Then he/she must develop his adjusting skills, the more you adjust the better you get. There are some bad adjusters out there and the idea they are representing what I do in clinical trials of chiropractic appals me.

  • Garland Glenn

    The Dark Side has many manifestations.

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  • http://spinaljoint.com Richard Lanigan

    Paul but we dont know for sure that they are grown ups, they could be kids just winding us up, do you remember Doogie Howser MD. Stefaan may have spotted something now its half term.

    Thanks for that Fed UP; MMR is perfectly safe, not linked to Autism but on rare occasions can cause severe brain damage.

    I have not put anything new on my vaccination.co.uk site for years due to all this GCC crap.

  • Paul

    Whilst I would not call a child a wanker Richard, grown adults (men mostly, surprisingly) masturbating their egos in such a fashion should be described for what they are.

  • http://www.chiropractorswarwick.co.uk Stefaan Vossen

    Funny thing is that zeno’s gone quiet for the week… school holidays?
    Stefaan

  • fed up

    “There must be a place for scepticism in science, or any other field: it is important for the prevailing orthodoxy to be challenged, because it is not always right. But it is not always wrong, either”

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  • http://spinaljoint.com Richard Lanigan

    I just dont think we should be insulting them no matter how foolish their arguments are. You are right they can not grasp the fact that chiropractic evolved from people who were skeptical about medicine.

    In their world you can not be skeptical about vacination, you are an anti vaxer.They are as dogmatic as any evangelist

  • fed up

    Hi Richard. I aagree with Paul, there is no point trying to educate selective skeptics.or septics as they should be known. I have likened the Sublux to the Higgs Boson or dark matter, or grey matter, or dark light or string theory or any other science theory that has no real basis, has not been found and can,t be proved BUT is taught as fact in colleges and uni’s. All I got was “what do you know about science” or ” you don’t know what you are talking about, you don’t understant science and your not a scientist”
    Obviously they can’t quite grasp that their argument is also my argument.

  • http://spinaljoint.com Richard Lanigan

    Hi Paul,

    I said the same to Steffan recently. However when skeptics start talking about chiropractic as if it were a religion and “mythical”, their arguments are laughable particularly in relation to subluxation. There has to be a universal name for joint dysfunction. Medics use the term in relation to hypermobility and chiropractors in relation to hypo. They more the hurl insults the more child like they appear, would you call a child a wanker? So be patient with them they know we dont have a pile of RCTs to support what we do and so what. We base our work around principles of anatomy and physiology of the human body that are not in dispute.

    For the life of me I don’t see why Subluxation is so controversial especially having read Meridel Gatermans book twice. Thats the only reading material a chiropractor needs in his office. Then he/she must develop his adjusting skills, the more you adjust the better you get. There are some bad adjusters out there and the idea they are representing what I do in clinical trials of chiropractic appals me.

  • Paul

    In case it is removed:

    Richard I never understand why you bother trying to change some random w–ker’s (sorry waiter’s) minds.

    They matter not in the scheme of things and get off at antagonizing you into reply. Their opinions are cynicism dressed up as skepticism… indeed hoping to pretend they are intelligent health care warriors protecting the public… when they haven’t the background knowledge nor intelligence to assess what you are talking about never mind think critically.

    They remind me of cabbies – they know everything and are always right – global leaders driving us around our major cities….

  • Paul
  • http://spinaljoint.com Richard Lanigan

    Hi Garland, The NACM was wound up a few years ago, I have their membership papers somewhere. “You must renounce satan, sorry no you must renounce subluxation.

    Been having a little debat with the sceptics about subluxation http://skepticbarista.wordpress.com/2010/10/17/subluxations-still-no-evidence/comment-page-1/#comment-699

    What about Brady Mennings spam comment, could be former GCC deputy registrar Greg Price who made comments about the size of my willy. Dont know how they knew unless Margret Coats had her private investigators watching me back in 06

  • Garland Glenn

    Wow. The type of chiropractor that he is suggesting you should avoid , is exactly the type I would look for. The type he’s recommending is the type that’s worthless.

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