MD, PhD, FMedSci, FSB, FRCP, FRCPEd

The following is a guest post by Preston H. Long. It is an excerpt from his new book entitled Chiropractic Abuse—A Chiropractor’s Lament’. Preston H. Long is a licensed chiropractor from Arizona. His professional career has spanned nearly 30 years. In addition to treating patients, he has testified at about 200 trials, performed more than 10,000 chiropractic case evaluations, and served as a consultant to several law enforcement agencies. He is also an associate professor at Bryan University, where he teaches in the master’s program in applied health informatics. His new book is one of the very few that provides an inside criticism of chiropractic. It is well worth reading, in my view.

Have you ever consulted a chiropractor? Are you thinking about seeing one? Do you care whether your tax and health-care dollars are spent on worthless treatment? If your answer to any of these questions is yes, there are certain things you should know.

 

1. Chiropractic theory and practice are not based on the body of knowledge related to health, disease, and health care that has been widely accepted by the scientific community.

Most chiropractors believe that spinal problems, which they call “subluxations,” cause ill health and that fixing them by “adjusting” the spine will promote and restore health. The extent of this belief varies from chiropractor to chiropractor. Some believe that subluxations are the primary cause of ill health; others consider them an underlying cause. Only a small percentage (including me) reject these notions and align their beliefs and practices with those of the science-based medical community. The ramifications and consequences of subluxation theory will be discussed in detail throughout this book.

 

2. Many chiropractors promise too much.

The most common forms of treatment administered by chiropractors are spinal manipulation and passive physiotherapy measures such as heat, ultrasound, massage, and electrical muscle stimulation. These modalities can be useful in managing certain problems of muscles and bones, but they have little, if any, use against the vast majority of diseases. But chiropractors who believe that “subluxations” cause ill health claim that spinal adjustments promote general health and enable patients to recover from a wide range of diseases. The illustrations below reflect these beliefs. The one to the left is part of a poster that promotes the notion that periodic spinal “adjustments” are a cornerstone of good health. The other is a patient handout that improperly relates “subluxations” to a wide range of ailments that spinal adjustments supposedly can help. Some charts of this type have listed more than 100 diseases and conditions, including allergies, appendicitis, anemia, crossed eyes, deafness, gallbladder problems, hernias, and pneumonia.

A 2008 survey found that exaggeration is common among chiropractic Web sites. The researchers looked at the Web sites of 200 chiropractors and 9 chiropractic associations in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Each site was examined for claims suggesting that chiropractic treatment was appropriate for asthma, colic, ear infection/earache/otitis media, neck pain, whiplash, headache/migraine, and lower back pain. The study found that 95% of the surveyed sites made unsubstantiated claims for at least one of these conditions and 38% made unsubstantiated claims for all of them.1 False promises can have dire consequences to the unsuspecting.

 

3. Our education is vastly inferior to that of medical doctors.

I rarely encountered sick patients in my school clinic. Most of my “patients” were friends, students, and an occasional person who presented to the student clinic for inexpensive chiropractic care. Most had nothing really wrong with them. In order to graduate, chiropractic college students are required to treat a minimum number of people. To reach their number, some resort to paying people (including prostitutes) to visit them at the college’s clinic.2

Students also encounter a very narrow range of conditions, most related to aches and pains. Real medical education involves contact with thousands of patients with a wide variety of problems, including many severe enough to require hospitalization. Most chiropractic students see patients during two clinical years in chiropractic college. Medical students also average two clinical years, but they see many more patients and nearly all medical doctors have an additional three to five years of specialty training before they enter practice.

Chiropractic’s minimum educational standards are quite low. In 2007, chiropractic students were required to evaluate and manage only 15 patients in order to graduate. Chiropractic’s accreditation agency ordered this number to increase to 35 by the fall of 2011. However, only 10 of the 35 must be live patients (eight of whom are not students or their family members)! For the remaining cases, students are permitted to “assist, observe, or participate in live, paper-based, computer-based, distance learning, or other reasonable alternative.”3 In contrast, medical students see thousands of patients.

Former National Council Against Health Fraud President William T. Jarvis, Ph.D., has noted that chiropractic school prepares its students to practice “conversational medicine”—where they glibly use medical words but lack the knowledge or experience to deal appropriately with the vast majority of health problems.4 Dr. Stephen Barrett reported a fascinating example of this which occurred when he visited a chiropractor for research purposes. When Barrett mentioned that he was recovering from an attack of vertigo (dizziness), the chiropractor quickly rattled off a textbook-like list of all the possible causes. But instead of obtaining a proper history and conducting tests to pinpoint a diagnosis, he x-rayed Dr. Barrett’s neck and recommended a one-year course of manipulations to make his neck more curved. The medical diagnosis, which had been appropriately made elsewhere, was a viral infection that cleared up spontaneously in about ten days.5

 

4. Our legitimate scope is actually very narrow.

Appropriate chiropractic treatment is relevant only to a narrow range of ailments, nearly all related to musculoskeletal problems. But some chiropractors assert that they can influence the course of nearly everything. Some even offer adjustments to farm animals and family pets.

 

5. Very little of what chiropractors do has been studied.

Although chiropractic has been around since 1895,  little of what we do meets the scientific standard through solid research. Chiropractic apologists try to sound scientific to counter their detractors, but very little research actually supports what chiropractors do.

 

6. Unless your diagnosis is obvious, it’s best to get diagnosed elsewhere.

During my work as an independent examiner, I have encountered many patients whose chiropractor missed readily apparent diagnoses and rendered inappropriate treatment for long periods of time. Chiropractors lack the depth of training available to medical doctors. For that reason, except for minor injuries, it is usually better to seek medical diagnosis first.

 

7. We offer lots of unnecessary services.

Many chiropractors, particularly those who find “subluxations” in everyone, routinely advise patients to come for many months, years, and even for their lifetime. Practice-builders teach how to persuade people they need “maintenance care” long after their original problem has resolved. In line with this, many chiropractors offer “discounts” to patients who pay in advance and sign a contract committing them for 50 to 100 treatments.  And “chiropractic pediatric specialists” advise periodic examinations and spinal adjustments from early infancy onward. (This has been aptly described as “womb to tomb” care.) Greed is not the only factor involved in overtreatment. Many who advise periodic adjustments are “true believers.” In chiropractic school, one of my classmates actually adjusted his newborn son while the umbilical cord was still attached. Another student had the school radiology department take seven x-rays of his son’s neck to look for “subluxations” presumably acquired during the birth process. The topic of unnecessary care is discussed further in Chapter 8.

 

8. “Cracking” of the spine doesn’t mean much.

Spinal manipulation usually produces a “popping” or “cracking” sound similar to what occurs when you crack your knuckles. Both are due to a phenomenon called cavitation, which occurs when there is a sudden decrease in joint pressure brought on by the manipulation. That allows dissolved gasses in the joint fluid to be released into the joint itself. Chiropractors sometimes state that the noise means that something therapeutic has taken place. However, the noise has no health-related significance and does not indicate that anything has been realigned. It simply means that gas was allowed to escape under less pressure than normal. Knuckles do not “go back into place” when you crack them, and neither do spinal bones.

 

9. If the first few visits don’t help you, more treatment probably won’t help.

I used to tell my patients “three and through.” If we did not see significant objective improvement in three visits, it was time to move on.

 

10. We take too many x-rays.

No test should be done unless it is likely to provide information that will influence clinical management of the patient. X-ray examinations are appropriate when a fracture, tumor, infection, or neurological defect is suspected. But they are not needed for evaluating simple mechanical-type strains, such as back or neck pain that develops after lifting a heavy object.

The average number of x-rays taken during the first visit by chiropractors whose records I have been asked to review has been about eleven. Those records were sent to me because an insurance company had flagged them for investigation into excessive billing, so this number of x-rays is much higher than average. But many chiropractors take at least a few x-rays of everyone who walks through their door.

There are two main reasons why chiropractors take more x-rays than are medically necessary. One is easy money. It costs about 35¢ to buy an 8- x 10-inch film, for which they typically charge $40. In chiropractic, the spine encompasses five areas: the neck, mid-back, low-back, pelvic, and sacral regions. That means five separate regions to bill for—typically three to seven views of the neck, two to six for the low back, and two for each of the rest. So eleven x-ray films would net the chiropractor over $400 for just few minutes of work. In many accident cases I have reviewed, the fact that patients had adequate x-ray examinations in a hospital emergency department to rule out fractures did not deter the chiropractor from unnecessarily repeating these exams.

Chiropractors also use x-ray examinations inappropriately for marketing purposes. Chiropractors who do this point to various things on the films that they interpret as (a) subluxations, (b) not enough spinal curvature, (c) too much spinal curvature, and/or (d) “spinal decay,” all of which supposedly call for long courses of adjustments with periodic x-ray re-checks to supposedly assess progress. In addition to wasting money, unnecessary x-rays entail unnecessary exposure to the risks of ionizing radiation.

 

11. Research on spinal manipulation does not reflect what takes place in most chiropractic offices.

Research studies that look at spinal manipulation are generally done under strict protocols that protect patients from harm. The results reflect what happens when manipulation is done on patients who are appropriately screened—usually by medical teams that exclude people with conditions that would make manipulation dangerous. The results do not reflect what typically happens when patients select chiropractors on their own. The chiropractic marketplace is a mess because most chiropractors ignore research findings and subject their patients to procedures that are unnecessary and/or senseless.

 

12. Neck manipulation is potentially dangerous.

Certain types of chiropractic neck manipulation can damage neck arteries and cause a stroke. Chiropractors claim that the risk is trivial, but they have made no systematic effort to actually measure it. Chapter 9 covers this topic in detail.

 

13. Most chiropractors don’t know much about nutrition.

Chiropractors learn little about clinical nutrition during their schooling. Many offer what they describe as “nutrition counseling.” But this typically consists of superficial advice about eating less fat and various schemes to sell you supplements that are high-priced and unnecessary.

 

14.  Chiropractors who sell vitamins charge much more than it costs them.

Chiropractors who sell vitamins typically recommend them unnecessarily and charge two to three times what they pay for them. Some chiropractors center their practice around selling vitamins to patients. Their recommendations are based on hair analysis, live blood analysis, applied kinesiology muscle-testing or other quack tests that will be discussed later in this book. Patients who are victimized this way typically pay several dollars a day and are encouraged to stay on the products indefinitely. In one case I investigated, an Arizona chiropractor advised an 80+-year-old grandma to charge more than $10,000 for vitamins to her credit cards to avoid an impending stroke that he had diagnosed by testing a sample of her pubic hair. No hair test can determine that a stroke is imminent or show that dietary supplements are needed. Doctors who evaluated the woman at the Mayo Clinic found no evidence to support the chiropractor’s assessment.

 

15. Chiropractors have no business treating young children.

The pediatric training chiropractors receive during their schooling is skimpy and based mainly on reading. Students see few children and get little or no experience in diagnosing or following the course of the vast majority of childhood ailments. Moreover, spinal adjustment has no proven effectiveness against childhood diseases. Some adolescents with spinal stiffness might benefit from manipulation, but most will recover without treatment. Chiropractors who claim to practice “chiropractic pediatrics” typically aim to adjust spines from birth onward and are likely to oppose immunization. Some chiropractors claim they can reverse or lessen the spinal curvature of scoliosis, but there is no scientific evidence that spinal manipulation can do this.6

 

16. The fact that patients swear by us does not mean we are actually helping them.

Satisfaction is not the same thing as effectiveness. Many people who believe they have been helped had conditions that would have resolved without treatment. Some have had treatment for dangers that did not exist but were said by the chiropractor to be imminent. Many chiropractors actually take courses on how to trick patients to believe in them. (See Chapter 8)

 

17. Insurance companies don’t want to pay for chiropractic care.

Chiropractors love to brag that their services are covered by Medicare and most insurance companies. However, this coverage has been achieved though political action rather than scientific merit. I have never encountered an insurance company that would reimburse for chiropractic if not forced to do so by state laws. The political pressure to mandate chiropractic coverage comes from chiropractors, of course, but it also comes from the patients whom they have brainwashed.

 

18. Lots of chiropractors do really strange things.

The chiropractic profession seems to attract people who are prone to believe in strange things. One I know of does “aura adjustments” to treat people’s “bruised karma.” Another rents out a large crystal to other chiropractors so they can “recharge” their own (smaller) crystals. Another claims to get advice by “channeling” a 15th Century Scottish physician. Another claimed to “balance a woman’s harmonics” by inserting his thumb into her vagina and his index finger into her anus. Another treated cancer with an orange light that was mounted in a wooden box. Another did rectal exams on all his female patients. Even though such exams are outside the legitimate scope of chiropractic, he also videotaped them so that if his bills for this service were questioned, he could prove that he had actually performed what he billed for.

 

19. Don’t expect our licensing boards to protect you.

Many chiropractors who serve on chiropractic licensing boards harbor the same misbeliefs that are rampant among their colleagues. This means, for example, that most boards are unlikely to discipline chiropractors for diagnosing and treating imaginary “subluxations.”

 

20. The media rarely look at what we do wrong.

The media rarely if ever address chiropractic nonsense. Reporting on chiropractic is complicated because chiropractors vary so much in what they do. (In fact, a very astute observer once wrote that “for every chiropractor, there is an equal and opposite chiropractor.”) Consumer Reports published superb exposés in 1975 and 1994, but no other print outlet has done so in the past 35 years. This lack of information is the main reason I have written this book.

 

References

1.    Ernst E, Gilbey A. Chiropractic claims in the English-speaking world. New Zealand Medical Journal 123:36–44, 2010.

2.    Bernet J. Affidavit, April 12, 1996. Posted to Chirobase Web site.

3.    Standards for Doctor of Chiropractic Programs and Requirements for Institutional Status. Council on Chiropractic Education, Scottsdale, Arizona, Jan 2007.

4.    Jarvis WT. Why becoming a chiropractor may be risky. Chirobase Web site, October 5, 1999.

5.    Barrett S. My visit to a “straight” chiropractor. Quackwatch Web site, Oct 10, 2002.

6.    Romano M, Negrini S. Manual therapy as a conservative treatment for idiopathic scoliosis: A review. Scoliosis 3:2, 2008.

293 Responses to Twenty Things Most Chiropractors Won’t Tell You

  • I have just started reading Preston Long’s book and, having read most skeptical books on chiropractic, I have to say that I’m particularly shocked by this one. I’ve only got as far as p.15, but have already read about rampant cheating in exams and am now learning about the frightening standards of teaching at the chiropractic college where where Preston Long studied. One small example of what he was confronted with:

    Quote:
    The head of the Biology Department used the word “pacific” to refer to specific microorganisms.

    This book is an absolute must buy for anyone wanting an in-depth look behind the chiropractic facade.

    • Thanks for the remarks Blue Wde. It seems you are the only one here that has bothered to read the book before pronouncing on it’s bias. Good for you.

      All my best,

      Preston

      • I will be honest in that I have not read your book, so cannot speak on it, however commenting on what I read on this website, I feel bad for you. The school you’ve gone to (I can only hope it doesn’t exist right now) has obviously not given you a great education, and I feel bad you had this experience. I finished chiropractic scool not too long ago, and I saw over 500 different patient in my clinic, with many different diseases, along with chronic low back pain, or neck pain. I would say that over 50% of them have gotten no help from their medical doctors, when it comes to their pain and expected very litle from me, since they’ve been disappointed with our healthcare system. Furthermore, I had a choice of going to medical school, but lost 2 grandparents because of medical mistakes, and decided that is not what I want to do. I think it is very low of you to attack a profession which focuses on helping people and bringing them back to health. I am in no shape or form denying the need for the medical profession, and if I am bleeding internally, or having a stroke I would sure hope I will be taken to the ER and not the chiropractor’s office, however we are not inferior in treating many of the diseases that MD’s treat, and for many of us newly graduated doctors this is not accomplished through an adjestment, but functional medicine.

        • @Lina

          Just one question: with all that success you claim for chiropractic, why is there no good research evidence to substantiate these claims?

          • Let me answer that for you in her absence. “Crickets chirping”

          • Exactly which claims are you speaking of? You are painting the whole profession with one brush. Many of the claims are very well researched in peer reviewed journals such as JMPT.

          • Tyler said:

            Exactly which claims are you speaking of?

            The claims Lina made.

            You are painting the whole profession with one brush.

            Quite possibly. But the paucity of good evidence is not my problem, is it?

            Many of the claims are very well researched in peer reviewed journals such as JMPT.

            Perhaps you could highlight the evidence you believe to be the most compelling?

          • This book is EXCELLENT! I used it as a reference for a report on ‘Modern Day Quackery’, which included chiropractic, acupuncture, reflexology, Reiki, etc. As the daughter of a science professor and a CN3-RN that supervised our hospital, I grew up with a healthy understanding of medical practices and hearing about patients that were seriously damaged due to being treated by the local chiropractor for herniated discs, degenerative disc disorder, osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, etc. and were brought into the hospital needing extensive treatment. I can remember my mother being furious at the elderly patients who had been ‘robbed’ because they placed their trust in what she considered a con artist.
            Before I became a psychologist, I was in advertising and marketing and chiropractors spent tons of money advertising. While it added to my commissions, it just reaffirmed that a good doctor doesn’t have to advertise for patients. I also make it a point to never have medical services performed in malls, indoor or strip malls are where you find all these types of ‘healers’. I have told many friends that if they don’t want to see a medical doctor, just throw the money down a toilet. It will have a safer outcome than being ‘adjusted!

        • Lina,

          I can’t agree with you more. Preston appears to have a sense of false premise about chiropractic, which ironically is his own profession (which school did receive his degree 30 +years ago? A lot has changed since then!). I feel sorry for him. As far a strokes are concerned the generalizations he has made are lucretius. Just ask the medical malpractice insurance industry to compare the average medical doctor’s malpractice insurance v. that of a doctor of chiropractic. Based on the research by the MIT (and other) actuarials, the chiropractic profession has the lowest malpractice rates compared to M.D.’s. I wonder why? There’s a good chance that the average driver in this country has higher rates of car insurance premiums per year than a doctor of chiropractic malpractice insurance. So by default we, as drivers, have a higher chance of hurting others v. a chiropractor. That should be an indicator for Preston Long D.C. and the ones fooled by his oxymoronic definition of chiropractic. The main question is WHY has he stayed in the profession this long? Why didn’t he become an M.D.? And WHY so much animosity towards his own profession. He sounds bitter. If he were to UNITE the profession (instead of trash talking about D.C.’s) then maybe he would be able to change the profession in a more positive way. I believe this is a very selfish person just trying to sell a controversial book. I agree, people question chiropractic as it is not mainstream medicine, but unsubstantiated comments by one of our own does not help. So it appears that he obviously had spent more time shooting down chiropractors, teaching as an assistant and too busy writing a book on his opinions rather than actually treating patient and improving there health of the public. I have to give it to him, though, he got my attention. But shame on him for his pessimistic small minded attitude that deviants from the true meaning of what it is to be a doctor of chiropractic. He just brings more problems than solutions to the image of chiropractic to the raw public.

          • All I can say is “Buyer Beware”

          • So many commenters feel bad for the author, feel sorry for the author, think the author must be ‘bitter’ etc, but only you have managed to come up with the brilliant and useful neologism ‘lucretius’. I imagine you conceived it as a portmanteau of ‘ludicrous’ and ‘lucrative’? Well played indeed Sir.

            Do you think it’s possible that real doctors need higher malpractice insurance because they *actually do things that work*? And because things that work carry risks? I don’t suppose you’d need a lot of insurance to hire out crystals and heal bruised auras…except when it involves rectal exams, of course. And maybe not even then if you’ve managed to brainwash your client sufficiently.

        • Lina given you cannot spell ‘school’ and barely put a sentence together I do not believe for a second you could have gone to a real medical school. Unless you mean an online unregistered one.

          • Someone has a typo and you attack them as well as point out sentence structure? Good lord, what a ridiculous comment.

      • Thank you SO much for writing this. Sick of hearing the bullshit from people who didn’t even pass high school science. Not a single chiropractic article I’ve come across was conclusive and all the ones that chiropractic websites tout are either fake or written in the 1970s.

    • Firstly, you really spend your time reading Chiropractic skeptic books? Theres a skeptic book for everything if you look for it hard enough. Have you many with a contrasting opinion to Prestons? I doubt it.

      That is a gross over-generalisation regarding cheating. What because Preston noticed cheating while he was there, therefore all Chiropractors must cheat there way through? Cheating is not associated with Chiropractic, its associated with students in general. Believe just as common in a medical degree or an engineering degree as it is in any other.

      If this is the content of the book, do you truly take it with merit? Think bigger mate, there is more reading to be done than skeptical reviews.

      • Lachlan wrote: “Firstly, you really spend your time reading Chiropractic skeptic books? Theres a skeptic book for everything if you look for it hard enough. Have you many with a contrasting opinion to Prestons? I doubt it.”

        It doesn’t take long to read the skeptical books on chiropractic. There are less than a dozen, and they, as well as blogs like this (which I read daily), address fairly comprehensively “contrasting opinion to Prestons” (especially in the comments). Suffice to say they have all helped me to form my low opinion of chiropractic, and continue to reinforce it.

        Lachlan wrote: “That is a gross over-generalisation regarding cheating. What because Preston noticed cheating while he was there, therefore all Chiropractors must cheat there way through?”

        There have also been allegations of widespread cheating at the Anglo European Chiropractic College in the UK. They were published in the Times Higher Education Supplement about six years ago, and thereafter were, I understand, hushed up by the chiropractic fraternity.

        Lachlan wrote: “If this is the content of the book, do you truly take it with merit? Think bigger mate, there is more reading to be done than skeptical reviews.”

        The rampant cheating was dealt with before page 15 of the book. What I’ve read since then – and it’s also far from complimentary – fits in with my other observations on chiropractic (particularly the behaviour of chiropractic leaders) during the last dozen years or so.

        • Just like this “article”, your basing you opinion solely on reading non-factual books about chiropractic is ridiculous. I know dozens of chiropractors, seeing as my husband is one, and NONE have ever been sued, none have ever worsened a condition, and they have helped patients conditions by the hundreds. Now, to address the completely idiotic,incorrect “facts” whoever wrote this piece of garbage: clearly you have no clue what the curriculum for chiropractors is like. Clearly you don’t know that chiropractors take the same EXACT science courses the first two years as MD students on TOP of WAY more advanced anatomy courses with cadaver labs. And I mean MUCH more advanced. Which is why chiropractors are, by a large percentage, more knowledgable about anatomy than MDs. Look it up. Chiropractors take FAR more credits than MDs total, and they take so many more radiology credits, you would be blown away. In fact, DCs are so much more accurate interpreting x-rays than MDs, it’s laughable. Clearly, if you were in chiropractic school for one week, you’d drown in the vast amount of work and information. I’m in school now and have a brilliant friend who just completed her MD. Do you think she could identify the third perforating artery in the body I personally dissected with my group members? Nope. In fact, she could ID half the structures on our massive list. You have no clue, and spend your time reading books based on complete nonsense and ignorance. You do realize that there are medical doctors who also practice adjusting as well, right? Actually, I wouldn’t be surprised if you didn’t. You seem like you’re stuck in the 60s. By the way, chiropractic studies have been done “scientifically” by the thousands. If you had bothered googling it, you would’ve found that out. Become educated by reading LEGIT material.believing everything you read in a skeptic’s book is moronic.

          • to call someone who makes a reasonable argument ‘moronic’ is moronic!

          • Couldn’t get past the big bad MCAT eh?
            lol. butt hurt much?

          • If you had read the little blurb at the top, you would know that this guy IS a chiropractor. Which is how he knows. He’s not just conjuring this out of nowhere. I am a physical therapist and personal, in depth conversations with the chiropractors in my city, trying to understand their view, but it flat out doesn’t make any sense. I asked for scientific articles and one person sent me her own “published” articles which were horrendous. Spelling mistakes, awful grammar, and no scientific basis whatsoever. They conveniently ignore modern science. There is no way that article would make it into a medical or therapy journal. I do not like, nor do I trust, chriopractors.

          • “By the way, chiropractic studies have been done “scientifically” by the thousands.”

            Show us one. Just ONE!

          • If a profession or its members are never sued, and have never worsened a patient’s conditions, then it’s an utter waste of time and money to anyone looking for genuine medical treatment and expertise. Every drug, operation and procedure that has the potential to help or heal, also has the potential to harm or kill.

            And if there is SO MUCH ‘legit’ material out there, why haven’t you linked even one?

        • There seems to be a lot of hush hush in the chiropractic community and I look forward to reading this book. Not many will actually divulge the truth and people need to know. I have recently been lied to, robbed (that’s what it feels like), been insulted and, in my opinion, deliberately injured because of the lies, overtreatment, when I didn’t even have a real problem, because I was scammed, and deliberate ignoring of my complaints after treatments. I wish I had known sooner because x-rays nor an MRI will detect or diagnose what’s wrong, I’ve been told. So now I have to suffer with problems I’ve never had in my life, they’re debilitating and I haven’t the faintest idea how to prove it, what I can do about it, or who to even contact. People should stop judging Preston for writing this book. People need to know, and the only reason there aren’t more cases found, is probably because people don’t know what they can do, because I don’t. And I’ve had low back treatments years ago and that chiropractor was an honest man and I went when I needed to and I felt better. The one now, is about wellness, smooth talking and care plan junk that is unnecessary. Somebody needs to finally tell the truth because my neck didn’t need to be messed with and it shouldn’t have been.

    • Lol, this book is nothing but an unresearched, baseless piece of garbage, actually. Do your homework and don’t believe everything you read when it clearly STATES that it is not impartial.

      • insults are not very convincing arguments!

      • Totally agree. This author overstates & takes an individual incident or small number of incidents and then makes a generalized statement. His book is garbage, he has NOT done his research. There are numerous studies on the efficacy of Chiropractic, just google it for yourself. Do some chiropractic students cheat, probably, so do medical students & those studying for their PhD & in EVERY other profession. Those people are generally weeded out of any profession quickly as they cheat themselves & either flunk out of higher level courses or quickly fail in practice.
        Do SOME Chiropractors overstate what they can do for them, sure, so do MDs, PhDs, contractors, etc.
        It would be great if there were even more studies done on the efficacy of Chiropractic for different conditions but who is going to pay for these studies? There isn’t any company that would be able to make money off of the positive outcome of the study. There are reports from many Chiropractic patients stating how Chiropractic has helped them, although these reports are generally dismissed as not substantiated because the report was not backed up by a study using the scientific method (double blind studies). He needs to remember that the medical profession & it’s methods were not substantiated using the scientific method for many, many years (& some treatments still are not) but the medical profession went forth, adjusting their treatment methods using patient’s reported responses to the treatments previously used.
        My personal point of view is not to believe ANYONE that sees anything in absolutes. I personally have been helped by Chiropractic for 2 different conditions after spending many years with different MDs none of which were unable to help me.
        There is room for all types of practitioners, they all have something to offer or all these different types of practitioners would not still be in practice after all these years.

      • 100% Agree, read it (borrowed from a friend as I wouldn’t pay money on this garbage) and everything he points out could be pointed right back at MD’s throughout history also (or anyone else in almost any other profession).

        Many DC’s I have been to do not go on about being able to heal anything and everything throughout the spine as the Author of this book has written. I could write a book on how MD’s have killed countless amounts of people and blamed it on “Surgery complications” over 10,000x from that of which DC’s have injured people.

        Anyhow, glad I read the book and found it to be about as informative as a gossip magazine you can pick up that reports weekly on hollywood stars, that’s how correct and informative this book is, the only people that would believe it are the ones that believe THOSE kinds of magazines!

        I’ve lost count of how many times “MD’s” are on TV and the news as a result of killing people, yet strangely I’ve yet to see a DC on tv resulting in the same….. interesting.

      • Oh, and on what basis do you stand, “My husband is a chiropractor, so I know everything about chiropractic.” You have not given any sources or evidence to your study; much less any information that truly holds water. The only thing you have proven thus far is that you are under the opinion that your husband is “perfect” and could not possibly be one of those “quacks” mentioned in the book. I strongly suggest that you open your mind to the fact that just because someone thinks that they are indeed correct, it is not always so. If that were the case, no one would ever fail tests, so long as they had a strong belief that they are correct. Also, as someone stated above, everything that works comes with a risk… commonly known as SIDE EFFECTS. No, seriously, it’s a legit term http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/side%20effect just paste that into your browser to see for yourself. So instead of just attacking someone because you have a difference in opinion, become more educated on the subject at hand and produce a valid argument instead of making a huge paragraph that could be summed up in two words: “I disagree.”

    • So what?

  • “4. Our legitimate scope is actually very narrow.
    Appropriate chiropractic treatment is relevant only to a narrow range of ailments, nearly all related to musculoskeletal problems. ” I agree . Most UK chiropractors would.

    “8. “Cracking” of the spine doesn’t mean much.” I agree, lots of UK chiropractors don’t crack joints.

    “9. If the first few visits don’t help you, more treatment probably won’t help.
    I used to tell my patients “three and through.” If we did not see significant objective improvement in three visits, it was time to move on.” I totally Agree and every chiropractor should tell this to every patient.

    “12. Neck manipulation is potentially dangerous.
    Certain types of chiropractic neck manipulation can damage neck arteries and cause a stroke.” Many UK chiropractors do not use “the certain types” of adjustments.

    10. We take too many x-rays. Many UK chiropractors do not and never have taken x rays.

    • …and I am sure you have evidence for your statements.
      does the fact that you comment on merely 5/20 points mean that you agree with all his other arguments without objection?

      • fedup wrote re the scope of chiropractic being very narrow, and appropriate chiropractic treatment being relevant only to a narrow range of ailments, nearly all related to musculoskeletal problems: “I agree. Most UK chiropractors would.”

        Let’s have the data in support of that claim, fedup. The subluxation based/vitalistic Alliance of UK Chiropractors (AUKC) claimed recently that it represented the *majority* of chiropractors in the UK. See the links in the last paragraph here:
        http://www.ebm-first.com/chiropractic/uk-chiropractic-issues/2253-the-british-chiropractic-association-aligning-itself-with-uk-fundamentalist-chiropractors.html

        As you’ll see from the links, the AUKC’s scope of practice is far from ‘very narrow’.

        • Blue Wode I have been around newly qualified chiropractors for the last 8 years so have spoken to many and many do not work as subluxation based chiropractors. Infact next year I will run a study and see if I can provide you with data. Any questions you would like asked? I do find it ironic that when 1 chiropractor gives you anecdotal evidence that condems chiropractic you are all over it like flies round you know, but any positive anecdotal evidence is just that. I would like to ask Preston if he really does think he’s made the right career choice. I for one am very happy with what I do, I work within a very narrow field, I’m not always happy with “chiropractors” or how some work but believe me, I know many, who feel the same. The AUKC may represent the majority, but most chiros only stay with their associations to get insurance. It doesn’t dictate how anybody should practice.

          • fedup wrote: “Any questions you would like asked?… I’m not always happy with “chiropractors” or how some work but believe me, I know many, who feel the same. The AUKC may represent the majority…”

            Yes, how would someone know to look for an evidence-based chiropractor, and what source would they consult if they wished to find an evidence-based one in their area?

            fedup wrote: “I do find it ironic that when 1 chiropractor gives you anecdotal evidence that condems chiropractic you are all over it like flies round you know, but any positive anecdotal evidence is just that. I would like to ask Preston if he really does think he’s made the right career choice.”

            fedup, please get back to us once you’ve read the book.

    • Whenever I talk with someone about these types of things, he or she assures me that, “MY chiro is not like that, he’s GOOD and makes me ‘feel better'”. I usually advise the person to try a massage instead of spending so much on the chiro. One of these people has been getting “cracked” weekly for twenty years and thinks her chiro is a “genius”. o_o

    • Today I had first adjustment at local chiropractor. He was straightforward.his charges are 35pounds but as I am housewife not able to work it is 25pounds each time.I take morphine in the form of Fentanyl 75patch and it barely helps the pain I suffer since eosophagogastrectomy..partial removal of my gullet and stomach which now is repositioned up high in My chest and the surgery involved cutting open a rooftop incision on my tummy and another from under my right breast and around to my back and up to my shoulder. Major ten hour surgery that has left me with nerve damage and this limits mobility. I got an introductory gift of consultation and three sessions for 30pounds….normal cost claims to.be 155. It’s worth a try. He thinks I will need two a week for six weeks then one a week for six weeks then one or two a month for wellbeing….500pounds! I am in absolute agony tonight and worry about all the cracking noises…not sure it should be doing that. If said i have three bits near the bottom of my spine that are kind o,fixed..inflexible and the same between and just below my shoulder blades and a thick swelling kind of lump at back of my neck. Also another bit between my lower spine and pelvis at left side. Most of the session was pressure rather than pain except lying on my back with him holding behind my relaxed knees and behindmy head at the neck and told me to Be floppy and As I breathed out he bent my head and knees toward each other then pulled my body to the side and really stretching it..quite beyond anything I could achieve on my own. Uncomfortable lbut not painful. It felt good to feel the flexing. I will try and go again on Thursday but tonight I feel as though the small of my back is very bruised. What I did notice when I left his office was a kind of sinus headache each side of nose and along the side of cheeks and up and across eyebrows…it felt as though something was being unblocked.feel free to contact me if you want to know more if it helps with research or whatever.
      Sincerely , Wilma.

      • Be careful, Wilma. The only evidence for chiropractic is spinal manipulation for short-term relief of pain in a sub-group of low back pain sufferers, and even this it is no better than cheaper and more convenient options like exercise. Other more evidence-based therapists, such as physiotherapists, can also perform the spinal manipulation for you. Do not hesitate to see a real doctor if you have any concerns about your health (even during your ongoing sessions with this chiropractor).

        • You beat me to it Blue Wode, but it’s worth adding that there’s also no evidence for ongoing chiropractic ‘wellness care’ (or whatever marketing jargon they use these days).

          Wilma

          Please think carefully about this before spending any more money and, as Blue Wode says, it might be best to consult your GP.

        • @Wilma
          I totally agree with Blue Wode! This is terrible! A chiropractor is in no way a competent therapist for this kind of problems. Even the best ones. Physical and mental rehabilitation is what you need. He/she will only be taking your money while time and nature takes care of some, hopefully much of the problem. In my opinion the chiro is led by greed, not good intentions in taking on such a case.

          I am not so familiar with the UK system (it is the UK i presume?) but it surprises me greatly if you are having to pay for rehabilitation yourself after major surgery.
          From what you write I cannot really discern if the problem is pain from your thoracotomy (the chest incision) or pressure induced nerve damage from a long procedure and lying improperly positioned and protected for a long time on the op-table.
          A ten hour esophagectomy is very much longer than it should have been. Four hours is more normal depending on the case and some of that time for repositioning from supine to the side for the chest part. One may guess that severe overweight was a deleterious factor but in such case they should have been even more ardent in avoiding pressure-induced nerve damage form lying too long on the op-table. Something probably did not go as it should have during that surgery. I am not implying that someone is liable for malpractice, does not have to be, but this eventuality should really be explored under such circumstances. At least you should be assisted in finding out about your rights.
          You might consider (if you did not already) contacting a lawyer, an ombudsman or a patients rights organisation – or whatever is available to assist you in finding out what your rights are and pursuing them. The hospital should have someone who takes care of such requests by patients.

          As I said, the incision in the chest can by itself give severe pain for a very long time, especially after long, difficult operations. There are methods to deal with that. Your problems should be dealt with by several specialists but absolutely no chiropractors. Time is a big factor in your favour and it is very likely that your problems will improve as time passes, notwithstanding chiropractic. You will improve your chances of recovery greatly if you are ardent yourself with the physical rehabilitation and if you follow the therapy and advice of a good physiotherapist.

          I write this as a surgeon who has experience with this kind of surgery and also has first hand experience of chiropractic – it was useless in my case as I have described on this blog before.

          I sincerely hope you will recover and regain a life of at least some quality.

    • As a retired, third generation chiropractor who has been very critical of the problems inside the chiropractic world, I must comment;

      1. I have always had a problem with the word “subluxation.” It is in any medical dictionary, but what “true believers” make it into I agree is not legitimate. However, many joints, especially the demi-facets in the spine become fixed in non-optimum biomechanical relationships (could be called subluxations) and it is a learned skill to know how to manually detect and correct them and not everyone who would has the talent or even muscular control required. Many times an audible occurs (not all joints, such as the sacroiliac are constructed in a way that would allow enough decavatation and correction is usually done via a transverse gliding force). Use of the term “crack or cracking” conveys a lack of understanding of joint physiology. There have been many independent studies that have found that decavatation produces stimulation to circulation, and also affects neural receptors with positive results were sub-decavatation does not. What this demonstrates is that a certain amount of decavatation has occurred. What the majority of chiropractors including myself have noticed is that the most immediate relief of NMS pain and symptoms and restored function accompany this sort of treatment while the passive, below threshold “treatments” provide some relief, but more treatments are required and the concern that the body has merely adjusted to a chronic, unsymptomatic “spontaneous remission” has occurred. The problem with avoiding decavatation is that this has led to many phony techniques that are heavy on psychological treatment and light on physical treatment. I have long noted that the “low force” or “no force” techniques seem to attract the most neurotic patients. Such “chiropractors” have no more real value than a massage therapist and in fact, compete with them. A smart consumer would merely go to the less expensive massage therapist and get the same exercises, nutritional therapy and whatever New Age health trend is currently up for marketing.

      While adhering to the old “Meric System” of pathologies as related to the spinal nerve levels is archaic and silly, treating the NMS (that’s right, Musculo-Skeletal System has to include the prenom – Neuro because its an integral part of the two!) treating the NMS is what modern chiropractic is about. In as much as neglect of the basic structural system can affect a person’s overall well-being, such an idea is NOT outside of the realm of a scientifically supported notion. It’s not a question of all or nothing.

      “Three and through” is a cute slogan, but it doesn’t nearly cover the realm of cases usually presented to a chiropractor. In acute cases when neuritis is included, three treatments can make a huge difference. However, a chronic, nagging problem is going to require a much longer treatment regime, although not 6 months or a year. A chronic problems presenting in an acute exacerbation isn’t going to respond completely in three treatments. (Yes, I do think that proper biomechanical function is part of optimal function overall). A traumatic problem affecting the NMS isn’t going to resolve and perhaps not even respond in three treatments. My father used to say that if there is no change after six treatments, it is time to look for another cause (and possible referral). Now, that IS how a physician thinks.

      There have been studies done on the stroke risk of certain “chiropractic” adjustments. The old, full “rotary break” is unnecessary for results, but even then, the incidence is 1 in 1,250.000. Treating patients with arterial sclerosis (which can be imaged on x-ray as it shows in the carotid arteries) would provide a screen for contraindication for any sort of upper cervical manipulation.

      Below is a web searched result of stroke studies done regarding chiropractic manipulation. This is mere sampling, there have been many more;

      search 1998;2(2):77-85.

      The RAND corporation estimated that the risk of stroke from chiropractic adjustments was “one in a million.” (“The appropriateness of manipulation and mobilization of the cervical spine. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation 1996: xiv. (6).)

      Over a ten-year period, Danish researchers found only five cases of “irreversible CVA after chiropractic treatment.” Based on this, they estimated a risk of one stroke per 1,320,000 neck adjustments. (“Safety in chiropractic practice. Part I: The occurrence of cerebrovascular accidents after manipulation to the neck in Denmark from 1978-1988,” Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 1996; 19: 371-7.)

      Based on a survey of 64 California neurologists, Albers, M.D., estimated the stroke-chiropractic correlation to be “one in every 500,000 manipulations.” Co-investigator Philip Lee, M.D. noted, “Indeed, most interventions by allopathic physicians have a higher complication rate than chiropractic interventions.” (“Neurologic complications following chiropractic manipulation: A survey of California neurologists,” Neurology 1995; 45: 1213-5.)

      The author of a Canadian study found 13 documented CVAs related to chiropractic care in Canada, and no deaths, over a five-year period. Since some 50 million cervical adjustments were given by Canadian chiropractors during that time period, he concluded that a reasonable estimate of risk was one serious neurological complications per 3 million neck adjustments. (“A report on the occurrence of cervical cerebral vascular accidents in chiropractic practice.” Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association, 1993; 37 (2): 104-6.

      Researchers in Holland concluded that the overall rate of complications from chiropractic adjustments was one in 518,886. (“Complications in Manual Medicine: A Review of the Literature,”Journal of Manual Medicine, 1991; 6: 89-92.)

      No strokes or any other significant complications were found during an examination of 168,000 cervical adjustments during a 28-year period. (“Chiropractic therapy: diagnosis and treatment,” Aspen Publishers, 1990: 61.)

      When one considers that as many as 98,000 Americans die every year from preventable medical mistakes, the complaint about the risk of stroke resulting from a chiropractic adjustment is petty and evidence of rampant anti-chiropractic bias in the skeptic (giving skepticism a bad name).

      Taking x-rays as part of an initial examination in a chiropractic office is as important as a dentist in taking x-rays of the teeth. When the carotid artery is calcified, it shows up on x-ray as noted above as do a huge amount of other issues that affect accurate diagnosis and treatment. A good chiropractor can see “subluxations” or at least the abnormal orientation of a joint in an x-ray. What not doing x-rays does is liberate the lazy and issue in a huge swathe of non-effective sham techniques (as identified in some studies). The abandonment of x-ray in the chiropractic examination leads to poor care and even an undermining of the effectiveness of chiropractic treatment. Chiropractors that don’t use an x-ray screen most often misdiagnose and the possibility that inappropriate treatments or at least minimally helpful treatments will be applied. Not using x-ray as an examining tool helps support the “non-force” schools of practice because if you are merely pulsing a joint (like a physical therapist) you are minimizing treatment (and by an interesting coincidence) conserving the doctor’s energy, allowing for high volume practices that typically use a myriad of post treatment gimmicks like exercise balls, surgical tube exercises and things that a patient can acquire on the internet by themselves, or through a massage therapist (who often get away with mimicking physical therapists and even chiropractors).

      On cheating, hasn’t there been national news stories on rampant cheating in college in almost every field including medical schools? This is no excuse for what cheating does go on, but when I attended there wasn’t any going on that I noticed. Students studied hard and were serious about it. However, I can say that the technique peddlers were the main problem and distracted students and even mislead some into belief systems rather than science based chiropractic treatment. And that leads to my central criticism of chiropractic. The real problem with chiropractic careis that it is too easy to fake and many chiropractors did not really learn actual chiropractic and sometimes even had the notion of it as a pathway to gain a license for practicing their own preconceived ideas. (I was amazed and angered when I heard students talking about “aura adjusting” in my first year, but as time went on, you didn’t hear about it because of the educational process). Basically, the more “marketing” the chiropractor uses the more likely it is that what he’s doing is not actually that effective or even patient specific. My father used to talk about the need to standardize chiropractic. The failure to do this has led to abuses in many directions, from all the misleading technique pedlars to chiropractors that fail to use the basic physical exam including x-rays as a screen. All of this constitutes some form of cheating and many chiropractors are very good at blinding themselves to the facts, including you, “fedup.”

      Most of this criticism stems from the results of the medical establishments early and ongoing strategy to isolate chiropractic education. The main problem is that chiropractic colleges are exclusively private, for profit institutions. After WW2 and the introduction of the GI Bill, more people went to college than ever before. It was a boom time for chiropractic as well. I know for example that in California alone, where was once up to 50 “chiropractic colleges.” I remember a friend of my father’s who had attended a Six month “college.” Since the liberalizing of government educational loans, many different and questionable “colleges” have come into being, some are exclusively online. Chiropractic college matriculation jumped when these loans were approved for chiropractic colleges in the early 1980s. This has led to a kind of return of the post WW2 education quality question. However, entry requirements have increased (BS required). Chiropractic colleges became more like online diploma factories are now (as an extreme). This was possible because the strategy of the AMA was to suppress academic standards development for chiropractic while simultaneously criticizing those standards. This led to partisanship that led to success by chiropractic and chiropractic colleges due to the huge world of medical malpractice and neglect when those who would look for a better alternative found value in chiropractic. (Chiropractic has got something going for it in a basic way, it would have died out long ago, if it were simply a health trend like pyramid power, or crystal healing). But extremes create extremes and the very people that love extremes end up attracted to chiropractic because it is too easy to matriculate and it has been difficult to control what graduates actually do once they are licensed (due to inside politics that result from outside pressure from the AMA). Clinical experience is way below that of the medical doctor, but as the critics say here, our actual clinical focus is a specialty, like dentistry. How many pelvic exams must a dentist perform in dental school? If you review the actual hours that chiropractic students spend in the basic and clinical sciences, they rival the medical school. As for the author’s criticism of nutritional knowledge is concerned, I don’t know where he went to school, maybe the failed radically “straight” Sherman Chiropractic College where chiropractic was taught in Bible Belt fashion (where the school was located), but the standards are for many classes in biochemistry, physiology and specifically in nutrition. We all learned what the Krebs Cycle and ATP production was about. My oral exam question was around diabetes.

      There is a huge world of abuse in the medical profession that reach a far deeper and consequential reality than the anti-chiropractic issues this article presents. I have an active complaint against one in my area for fraud in reaching a fake diagnosis of sleep apnea rather than my actual problem just to push his particular CPAP machine to me. The over diagnosis and billing for sleep apea is a big thing right now, and it’s just one of hundreds. Most people have gotten something valuable from traditional chiropractic or it would not have survived all the attempts to suppress/destroy it since the beginning of the 20th century. Yes, our worst enemy may be within, but there is a huge lack of understanding as this article illustrates as well as these responses.

      • Marc LeRoux, DC wrote: “Below is a web searched result of stroke studies done regarding chiropractic manipulation. This is mere sampling, there have been many more”

        Indeed there have been. Lots more here http://www.ebm-first.com/chiropractic/risks.html

        Marc LeRoux, DC quoted: “The RAND corporation estimated that the risk of stroke from chiropractic adjustments was “one in a million.” (“The appropriateness of manipulation and mobilization of the cervical spine. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation 1996: xiv. (6).)”

        That RAND investigation also found that 90% of neck manipulations were inappropriate. Also, you don’t seem to be factoring in this regarding risk:
        http://edzardernst.com/2014/03/complications-after-chiropractic-manipulations-probably-rare-but-certainly-serious/#comment-55695

        Marc LeRoux, DC wrote: “Co-investigator Philip Lee, M.D. noted, “Indeed, most interventions by allopathic physicians have a higher complication rate than chiropractic interventions.” (“Neurologic complications following chiropractic manipulation: A survey of California neurologists,” Neurology 1995; 45: 1213-5.)

        Here are “allopathic” physicians’ answers to their critics:

        Part 1
        http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/answering-our-critics-part-1-of-2/

        Part 2
        http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/answering-our-critics-part-2-of-2-whats-the-harm/

        And here’s a snippet from Death by Medicine:

        QUOTE
        “Doctor-bashers use their numbers to argue that alternative medicine is safer. Maybe it is. I suppose not treating at all would be safer still. It depends on how you define “safe.” To my mind, a treatment is not very “safe” if it causes no side effects but lets you die. Most of us don’t just want “safe:” we want “effective.” What we really want to know is the risk/benefit ratio of any treatment.
        The ironic thing is that all the statistics these doctor-bashers have accumulated come from the medical literature that those bashed doctors have written themselves. Scientific medicine constantly criticizes itself and publishes the critiques for all to see. There is NOTHING comparable in the world of alternative medicine.”
        Link: http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/death-by-medicine/

        Marc LeRoux, DC wrote: “Chiropractic has got something going for it in a basic way, it would have died out long ago, if it were simply a health trend like pyramid power, or crystal healing.”

        Chiropractic has been kept alive by slick marketing tactics and the persistent lobbying of legislators who are not well versed in science. The undeserved courtesy title of ‘Dr’ (which conveys prestige, honesty, and expertise in the eyes of the public) is also a factor in helping chiropractors stave off a rapid demise. However, it’s worth remembering that blood-letting seemed to have something going for it for a few decades until it was finally recognised as bogus and then discarded.

    • What’s your point? It sounds as if UK chiropractors curriculum is FAR less advanced than American chiro schools. We take 64 credits more than MDs and take the same courses MDs do for basic sciences, on top of much more advanced anatomy and physiology courses. It sounds like the UK is much more limited in their curriculum.

      • I am a specialty trained MD and these stats make no sense Britt
        It is absolutely ridiculous to try to compare chiro to med school. It is possible your course work may compare in hours (even that I doubt) but the majority of medical school is clinical work. All the course work you are talking about is condensed in the first two years. In third year I spend an average of 100 hours a week in the hospital or doing clinical work x 48 weeks. Every third night we did a 36 hour shift in the hospital. During this time we would see thousands of sick patients with conditions that you only read about in a book. In my third year of medical school alone, I delivered 42 babies, assisted on over 280 surgeries, did 84 intubations and on and on. I worked in the intensive care managing patients who are tenuously holding onto life. Outside of these 100 hour weeks I had to study!
        On surgical rotations we had to pre round at 4 am, followed by rounding with the residents at 5 and then staff at 6 am and then to the operating room from 7 to 4 and then admit the patients for the next day from 4-7 pm.
        This is all in third year. I won’t even go onto 4th year medical school and then a 5 year residency.
        How can you compare? Do you even see sick patients. So what if you read things in a book
        Don’t even try to compare what you do!!

        • Brittdoc was referring to the first two years, he/she didn’t even speak on clinical work. Calm down. Your points are more valid for anyone on here bashing the medical profession’s clinical hours, dedication or commitment. I for one agree that the divide is in the 3rd and 4th year, but unfortunately incompetency is in all fields of work, regardless of the education received. You ask Briitdoc not to “compare what you do!!” yet you do just that….you should prescribe a chill pill and don’t be a hypocrite.

    • “If the first few visits don’t help you, more treatment probably won’t help.”

      Great! I’ll tell that to my next patient with severe whiplash conditions and see how that goes over! The last time I checked, soft tissue injury actually requires a period of healing and rehabilitation to return to normalcy. But I guess with your approach, I would just adjust them three times, wrap them up in a neck collar and send them on their way!!

      “Neck manipulation is potentially dangerous. Certain types of chiropractic neck manipulation can damage neck arteries and cause a stroke.”

      And what are the odds of that happening? About 1 in 10 million cases or so? And conversely, what are the odds that a patient is going to react badly to a prescribed medication and DIE!!? Or undergo a “routine” surgical procedure and DIE!!? Oh yeah, that only happens about 300,000 times a year!!

  • Well that could be extended to straight medical profession too… we still see physios using Ultrasounds or medical devices with no proven efficacy on plethora of MSK conditions, dozen and dozen of cyclic treatments prescribed by physicians who doesn’t know the difference between cruralgia and sciatalgia, unnecessary surgery, unnecessary investigations and so on and so forth… I don’t know in the US but in the UK Chiropractic and Osteopathic colleges have a decent and sound syllabus, surely better than the one I had when I trained to become a physio in Rome… and it may be true that the experience in clinic is tight but you do see patients supervised by tutors with a certain experience and background (from ones more wooly and wishy washy to people with solid EBM approach and with their feet right down on earth)… of course a lot depends from student to student (and from practitioner to practitioner), how much one is open minded or dogmatic (should I say stupid or not?), how keen to learn you are from other experts and how humble you are to sometimes saying “sorry I am not too sure I can deal with that” and send the patient to someone more competent…

    Nice interview by the way!

    Regards

  • 1.”Only a small percentage (including me) reject these notions and align their beliefs and practices with those of the science-based medical community” I don’t believe only a small percentage operate in this way, I believe a large percentage, like him and me, reject these notions. But I still can’t see how he can work based on the science/medical community when he also states “little of what we do meets the scientific standard through solid research. Chiropractic apologists try to sound scientific to counter their detractors, but very little research actually supports what chiropractors do.” But again to use lack of evidence for lack of efficiency.
    “7. We offer lots of unnecessary services.” I agree, but it’s not me, its not we. I believe we should offer 1 service. Chiropractic.
    11. I agree but disagree with the statement that patients in research studies are safer because “medical teams that exclude people with conditions that would make manipulation dangerous.” This is I find hard to understand, especially if the chiropractor is using techniques that have no/very little incidence of adverse effects.
    14. Chiropractors who sell vitamins charge much more than it costs them.” why would you sell vitamins?
    “19. Don’t expect our licensing boards to protect you.” The GCC are no friends of Chiropractors, they have been overly punitive on many occasions.
    “3. Our education is vastly inferior to that of medical doctors.” I agree. Mine was. I don’t and never have pretended to be as qualified as a medical doctor. I don’t want to be a medical doctor, I don’t and never have used the title DR. And again I know many chiropractors who will give you the same answer. Especially in the UK.

    “16. The fact that patients swear by us does not mean we are actually helping them.
    Satisfaction is not the same thing as effectiveness. Many people who believe they have been helped had conditions that would have resolved without treatment. Some have had treatment for dangers that did not exist but were said by the chiropractor to be imminent. Many chiropractors actually take courses on how to trick patients to believe in them. ”
    I agree, but sometimes a patient will swear by you because you have not manipulated them but referred back to their GP for further investigations. you can satisfy, you can be effective , you can be both or neither.

    • Dear Fedup, it is very simple. Unsubstantiated claims, anecdotal witnessing and post hoc ergo procter hoc beliefs propel chiropractic forward since its creation by Palmer. Continues to this day I see after reading replies here.

      Have the best day possible,

      Preston

      • Wrong. Chiropractic is results driven. People arent stupid. If they arent getting results why would they waste their time, energy and money. Chiropractic is investing alot of time and money into investiagating what we do as a profession. It is undeniable that Chiropractic has a respectable amount of research backing its use in low back, neck and headaches amongst adults. So to use such terms as unsubstantiated claims and anectdotal witnessing are not only offensive. But also wrong. If you wish to truly help people maybe you would write a letter to the editor regarding these research papers, instead of writing a small blog online, venting your frustrations.

        Guess it depends on your intent.

        • your opinion seems based on cherry-picking your research. read the Cochrane reviews on the subject.

          • Could I not say the very same for the above 20 points? There are 6 references for 20 points. 2 are websites, which are low levels of evidence. One is yourself and another S Barrett. Just saying that if you accept articles like this to be published on your website with poor ‘cherry picked’ references. How can you debate anyone else’s ability to do so.

            Once again, depends on your intent.

          • I will answer your question once you respond appropriately to my comment that the Cochrane reviews fail to support the points you were trying to make. the technique of ignoring challenges of such types by making a counter-challenge seems very popular with chiropractors and other apologists of alternative medicine but it is nevertheless inappropriate.

          • You’re talking about “cherry-picking”, then tell someone who is telling a general truth to read one specific source of reviews? Unbelievable. The FACT is that chiropractic is a very gentle therapy at the muscular and skeletal level. There is very little room to cause a serious injury and in fact that is very very rare. Do you know how many MDs are used for malpractice?! Nearly 1 in 5. Chiropractors are sued so rarely, I literally don’t know of a single one- and my husband is an experienced chiropractor. Plus, I’m in chiropractic school and 90% of our friends are chiropractors. Only an ignorant, uneducated human being could ignore the MILLIONS of positive results to point out a minuscule handful of failures. It’s ridiculous, and clearly you are one of millions of zombies that simply believe allopathic is always right. Good luck with that. Unfortunately, it’s likely you’ll end up being over medicated, or worse, be prescribed a drug that will seriously hurt or kill you. I see a commercial for law offices at least 10 times a day, advertising their ability to sue physicians for hundreds of injuries caused by dangerous drugs and treatments. Have you ever once seen a commercial from a lawyer offering to sue chiropractors? No. You haven’t. By the way, MDs malpractice insurance is up to half their salaries. Chiropractors pay about 1,000 bucks a year. To say that what chiropractors do is dangerous and that they are used often is laughable. Malpractice insurance isn’t dirt cheap for practitioners who are practicing a dangerous treatment.

          • this is opinion, not evidence!

    • Regarding your comments on #11, your comment on finding it hard to understand confuses me. Is this because you don’t believe there are conditions that are contraindicated for chiropractic care? I ask because I have such a condition, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, and getting chiropractic care could have devastating consequences for anyone with EDS, especially the hypermobility or vascular type. I understand certain types of Chiari malformation could be a condition that contraindicates chiropractic care, as well, although I’m not 100% certain. But H-EDS and V-EDS, definitely.

  • Fedup: you use the word ‘many’ a lot on that comment. Could you give an idea of what that means? 25% 40% Not more than 50% or surely you’d have used ‘most’ instead.

    Even if only 10% were as dodgy as those discussed above, that’s still an awful lot in an unregulated and unsubstantiated field.

    • Many just means “many chiropractors I’ve met, mentored and discussed with over the last 22 years” I am unable to give you exact figures, I’ve not kept count. But I could also use “most” or even “nearly all”. I agree if only 10% are dodgy it casts a shadow over the whole profession, BUT no profession can be without it’s faults, or bad apples.
      I think the problem is not with Chiropractic the problem is with “patient management schemes” these have nothing to do with the patient and his/her best interests, they have been devised to get the patient coming back as much and for as long as possible, no matter what the initial problem.

  • who is this idiot, who wouldnt know the first thing about chiropractic. I learned more about it as a patient and then having sought out to become one as well. He did independent medical exams which means he was paid by the insurance compainies to discredit chiropractic, shame shame on you mister.
    YOU SOLD OUT…..and you disgust me.
    chiropractic works and millions upon millions are now aware of this.
    Im just not sure who paid you and the other idiots out there doing the same thing. I would sooner go work at a grocery store packing groceries.
    Preston H Long you are a disgrace to the chiropractic profession…take off your chiropractic hat, you dont deserve to wear it. YOU sir are a shame and a folly!!

    • Hehe a good brotherhood is cute but it won’t cover up for the profession – it only reinforces the mythical aspect of the chiro-gurus. With that being said, if they’d actually stop teaching you that “actual” medecine is the epiphany of evil and incarnation of the Devil with a capital D, you could actually get some sense into you. The usual yadda-yadda medecine kills people and so on. Because I’m sure chiros have similar case as doctors do in the ER – oh and complicated cases too. (lol)

      • Hi Stephanie, I could not agree more. It seems impossible to stick to the topic at hand and have a disputation without tangents and personal attacks. I find it amusing to read these posts and count the logical fallacies, ad hominem attacks and anecdotes.

        All my best,

        Preston

      • I dont think we have ever been taught Medicine is the devil at all. At our practice we treat many GP’s, Psychiatrists, Nurses, even a Neurosurgeon. Never have we had an issue. We get referred to by many surrounding medics from around the area. Using the term mythical chiro-gurus is disrespectful and offensive, it is Chiropractor. If you wish to throw around offensive words then you have already lost the discussion.

        All the best,

        Lachlan

      • Stephane, why don’t you do yourself a favor and check out the curriculum required to undergo before being granted a chiropractic license? I doubt you’d get through it. It is so rigorous and difficult, many end up failing out, regardless of the fact that they aced the pre reqs to get in (which, by the way, are identical to the pre reqs MDs have to take). DCs take 64 credits more than MDs, which includes WAY more advanced anatomy, physiology and radiology courses. And they are nothing but hard science- adjusting isn’t even taught the first two years. Also, look at DCs accuracy in interpreting x-rays. They are so far above MDs abilities (including radiologists!), it’s unbelievable. DCs are also more knowledgable in the anatomy arena. Try doing research before babbling about nonsense. The RESULTS are what SHOULD prove to you that chiropractic is legit and works, seeing as the majority of insured Americans have seen chiropractors or see them regularly. Are you saying millions of people are not getting any results or are seeing negative results, yet go back again and again and again?! Please. Your argument is completely based on your ignorance of the profession, NOT on facts.

        • argumentum ad populum = fallacy. evidence would be better!

          • edzard, i haven’t read anything you’ve posted where you aren’t simply volleying back resistance, unwilling to concede anything, and you don’t seem to have the slightest interest in actual debate. i find you the least trustworthy of anyone posting on here and the person with the most overt agenda.

            but if i may ask you to please respond to this one point: do you think the pittance chiropractors must pay in malpractice insurance compared to the outrageous amounts allopathic doctors must pay indicates that they are a MUCH smaller risk of doing actual damage to their patients? insurance companies are kind of known for simply charging based on statistics to insure a profit.

          • oh dear!
            I have tried to explain this so many times!
            but i’ll do it again.
            EVEN IF THESE FEES WERE A TRUE REFLECTION OF THE RISKS, WE NEED TO CONSIDER NOT THE RISKS OF INTERVENTIONS ALONE WHEN JUDGING THE USEFULNESS OF HEALTH CARE. WE MUST CONSIDER THE RISK/BENEFIT BALANCE.
            if not heart surgeons could be seen as far less useful than homeopaths, for instance.

      • Stephane, you should learn how to string together a sentence coherently, and maybe you would be a little more credible,but furthermore, you obviously know NOTHING about this profession. Tell me, what is the curriculum a DC must complete to become licensed? I find it funny that someone who can’t write thinks they are above chiropractic physicians who completed a highly rigorous program that MDs have also completed prior to receiving their medical license, who say it was far more difficult a program than the one they completed first. You’re just ignorant of all the facts. Go find yourself some actual research instead of basing your opinion off of what some people you overheard talking or your mom thinks.

        • you are a champion of muddled thinking and ad hominem attacks.

        • Seeing as your own and your husband’s livelihood, and that of most of your friends, is entirely dependent on chiropractic, give me one good reason why we shouldn’t simply assume your arguments are all motivated by money?

    • Thanks for your opinion Anna Maria have a wonderful weekend.

      Preston

    • That explains it – you get to wear a special magical hat when you’re sworn into the Holy Siblinghood of Chiropractic. Is it like the Hogwarts Sorting Hat? If you disgrace the Siblinghood, does the Chief Wizard cause your hat to shatter (like Gandalf does to Saruman’s staff?).

      The most sinister words a chiropractor ever hears – ‘Sir, take off your chiropractic hat’.

  • Preston Long is clearly a person who regrets his career choice and has chosen to make it into a book that panders to medicine. He practiced a profession for 30 years that he condemns wholesale, what does that say about him?
    He leaves out the fact that the third leading cause of death in our country is medicine! The leading cause of personal bankruptcy is medical bills and around 30 percent of procedures are unnecessary. He also cites Steven Barrett who is a disgraced psychiatrist and like Long has dedicated his bitter, puzzling life to going after chiropractic.
    As a practicing chiropractor I will be the first to admit, that like any profession, ours has its challenges and a few bad apples. However, Long discounts the multitudes that chiropractic has helped and saved from dangerous drugs and surgery. As far as risks of injury from seeing a chiropractor vs. medicine, all one needs to do is compare malpractice insurance rates to see that insurance carriers rate medicine as an exponentially more dangerous undertaking.
    I think Mr. Long would benefit from a hobby. It might ease his lament for what he must feel was a wasted life.

    • The absolute ignorance of this article is insane. Its almost funny. Most, if not all points are completely biased and manipulated to represent your opinion. Which is all this is. You have 6 references for 20 points. Wow. One reference is from S. Barrett (are you kidding me), another is from Ernst E (once again, are you kidding me). Another two of the references are 15+ years old. Its funny how you only look at research that supports your opinion, and seemingly forget the remainder which debates it.

      Chiropractors are 5 years university trained. Have an enviable safety record (compare it against medicine). Enviable patient satisfaction record. Are registered and regulated by professional bodies nationally. We must continue to improve our self and our skills in order to maintain registered.

      Many of you will be aware that the risk of injury in hospitals and reported adverse drug reactions has escalated over time and it is estimated in the (1) British Medical Journal 2000 (no recent figures available) that as many as 18,000 people die every year as a result of medical error in Australia, while 50,000 people suffer a permanent injury. These figures are estimated to now be significantly higher.

      More recent statistics from the Therapeutic Goods Act of Australia (2) state that there were 233,300 reports of
      suspected adverse drug reactions in 2010. This does not include deaths or injuries attributable to medical care in
      2010 nor does it include complaints relating to misconduct, advertising or communication issues.

      In that same year (2010) there were 11 million estimated visits to chiropractors within Australia (3) and a total
      of only 41 reported treatment complaints made about chiropractors. (4) (There were no alleged deaths or serious
      complications in this time frame reported in the Australian literature.)

      1.) Weingart SN, Wilson RM, Gibberd RW, Harrison B.
      Epidemiology of medical error. BMJ 2000; 320(77): 4-7.

      2.) Adverse Drug Reactions, Australian Statistics on Medicines
      V1.0 September 2011 Online. http://www.tga.gov.au/pdf/
      medicines-statistics-2010.pdf

      3.) Chiropractors Association of Australia (CAA) records (2010)

      Its always funny how certain things can seem “unsafe” when they are compared against nothing.

      Shouldn’t this whole debate not be about shaming any one particular profession and more be about working together to improve patient outcomes? Because believe it or not that’s what its all about at the end of the day…the patient and their improvements. Not your ego.

      People keep reading and researching for yourselves, don’t rely on incredibly biased blogs/articles like this that push a persons opinion on you.

      Finally I leave you with this; Voltaire once wrote in an essay on tolerance: “Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so too.”

      Article did make me laugh though.

      • @Lachlan

        A good laugh is always helpful.

        But, like quite a few of the other replies here, you throw insults, do rather a lot of hand-waving and introduce red herrings all over the place.

        Obviously it may vary in different countries, but to pick up on one of your points relevant to the post, perhaps you can say something about this ‘enviable safety record’? How do you know?

        Also, I’m sure if there was a survey of astrologers’ customers, we’d find a high satisfaction rate, so what do you think a survey of chiros customers shows?

        • If critiquing the authors references is an insult, then please feel free to critique mine.

          Is not stating in the above article that ‘chiropractic causes strokes’ a direct insult against chiropractic as a profession? What is one to do. Would you not do the same, if the tables were turned? What’s more these claims are not supported with evidence, but are mere opinion (which is the lowest form of evidence). Here is a small amount of supporting evidence for my statements regarding chiropractic NOT causing stroke:

          The inaccurate or false assertion that chiropractic is unsafe due to the risk of stroke is not evidence-based. Cassidy et al (1) looked for an association between chiropractic visits and VBA stroke and an association between GP visits and VBA stroke. They compared the two and found no diference — patients having spinal manipulation did not have a greater rate of stroke than patients having primary medical care with a GP. Again, it could not be demonstrated that seeing a chiropractor or a GP had anything to do with causing stroke. Instead, as the study concluded, the main reason for any association was most likely due to patients seeking care for neck pain and headache prior to an impending stroke, since these are very common precursory symptoms.
          It is not only extremely rare to have one of these strokes in general terms, it is so rare to have one associated with chiropractic care that the risk can’t even be accurately determined. Common medical treatments for neck pain and headache such as anti-infammatories have medically acceptable risk ratios that far exceed even the highest risk estimates for chiropractic. (2)
          But misleading reporting in the medical literature regarding chiropractic has been widespread and the terms chiropractic and chiropractor have been misused in many medical journal articles that examine the safety of chiropractic. Associate Professor Allan Terrett, in his book Current Concepts in Vertebrobasilar Complications (3) discusses how authors have frequently quoted examples of ‘chiropractic injury’ when it is clearly known that the involved therapist was not a chiropractor. He says, “Chiropractic adjustments are among the safest procedures in the provision of human health care service, when compared to mortality and morbidity rates in medical practice.” Chiropractic has an outstanding and enviable safety record.

          1.) Cassidy JD, Boyle C, Cote P, He Y, Hogg-Johnson S, Silver FL, Bandy SJ. Risk of Vertebrobasilar stroke and chiropractic care. European spine journal. 2008; 17(1): 176-183

          2.) Dabbs V DC, Lauretti W DC. A risk assessment of cervical manipulation vs NSAIDS for the treatment of Neck Pain. JMPT 1995; 18: 530-536

          3.) Terrett AGJ. Current Concepts: Vertebrobasilar complications following spinal manipulation. West Des Maines, IA: NCMIC Group Inc 2001
          TERRETT IS A LEADING WORLD EXPERT ON VEEREBRAL ARTERY ACCIDENTS!!

          Additional:

          4.) Haldeman S, Kohlbeck F, Mcgregor M. Stroke, Cerebral artery dissection, and cervical spine manipulation therapy. J Neurology. July 2002, 249(8) 1098-1104

          Found the risk of VBA from a chiropractic adjustment was 1 in 5.8 million!!!!!

          In regards to patient satisfaction and furthermore to patient safety. An INDEPENDENT inquiry into chiropractic was performed in 1979 via the NEW ZEALAND GOVERNMENT, which found, and let me quote “Remarkably safe and a clinically effective form of health care. Chiropractors have more thorough training in spinal care than any other health professional. Furthermore, Chiropractic has an excellent safety record. It is the result of a conservative approach to health that minimises invasive procedures or addictive drugs”

          Heres the source have a read:
          Hasselberg PD. Chiropractic in New Zealand: Report of the commision of inquiry. Wellington, Government Printer: 1979

          An older source, but its credibility holds true and strong today.

          Another INDEPENDENT Large study done by an the RAND organisation in 1991 found similar findings.

          THIS STUFF IS NOT HARD TO FIND WITH SIMPLE LITERATURE SEARCHES ONLINE. Im not going to run around for you, considering how easy it is to find all of this. I could quote SO many more articles supporting what I say. But unfortunately its one of those arguments with so much emotion involved, its hard to get to the truth.

          Chiropractic, particularly here in AUS is working its butt off to get more and more high quality evidence to support what they do. And what we dont need are articles like this presenting points with no evidence to support it.

          So to counteract your question: How do you know? How do you know any of the above 20 points are true, if so where’s your proof/your evidence? Is it high qualty? I have questioned what I do and come out more confident, can you say the same reviewing my above comment?

          Im off to do something I dedicated my life to, helping people.

          • Lachlan, you really need to get up to speed with what the Cassidy paper really told us:
            http://www.ebm-first.com/chiropractic/risks/491-chiropractic-and-stroke-evaluation-of-the-paper-risk-of-vertebrobasilar-stroke-and-chiropractic-care-results-of-a-population-based-case-control-and-case-crossover-study-spine-2008-feb-15334-suppls176-83-cassidy-jd-boyle-e-c.html

            Indeed, bearing in mind that chiropractors (globally) have either no adverse events reporting systems, or very unreliable ones, the many reported complications associated with their treatments are pretty scary to say the least:
            http://www.ebm-first.com/chiropractic/risks.html

            In view of the above, what Simon Singh concluded in his 2008 Guardian article over which he was personally, but unsuccessfully, sued for libel by the British Chiropractic Association, would still seem to stand:

            Quote
            “If spinal manipulation were a drug with such serious adverse effects and so little demonstrable benefit, then it would almost certainly have been taken off the market.”

            Link: http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2008/apr/19/controversiesinscience-health

            NB. Reports of deaths after chiropractic treatment are “about three times the number of deaths from trovafloxacin, an excellent antibiotic abandoned in the U.S. as too dangerous”:
            http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/compare-and-contrast/

          • @ Blue Wode.

            Thank you for engaging in a scientific debate.

            Firstly, several things must be mentioned before continue. I referenced 3 quality references in my first comment. 5 quality references in my second comment. For which you combatted with links to opinion based Websites.

            Any reader reading this comment, must first understand that websites are poor forms of evidence, and any scientist will not hold a website to high credibility or validity. Why? Because very often they are based on that authors opinion and are not assessed or peer reviewed like an article in a reputable journal.

            Now we may continue.

            Secondly, my remaining 7 pieces of peer reviewed literature remain to be critiqued by yourself. Why? Please provide supporting literature for your comments.

            Your first link is to a website (poor level of evidence). This website is clearly biased towards your opinion considering the propaganda and advertising on the site. Which critiques cassidys 2008 paper. Most of which is opinion based via Ernst. If follow the link further to the next page. It leads you to 2 more supporting papers of cassidy et al. One (if you choose to read them) showed a decrease utilization of chiropractic care in certain regions of canada with an increase occurence of VBA stroke in those same regions?
            What is your response to this?

            2.) Your second comment and link talks about No adverse event reporting system. In AUS we have the Chiropractic Board of Australia AND AHPRA who regulate us and take complaints/adverse events. Just the exact same as a medical board and registrational board would. So unsure of your comment there? The link you supplied, once again is a website ( poor form of evidence), which links to the same biased opinion based blog, where several of the stories are quoted by Ernst, who is the direct author of this blog with which we currently reside. Bias once again enters the equation.

            3.) Your third article is I believe an online newspaper link? Which is avery poor source of evidence. Where once again the bottom of the page is littered with links back to Ernst blog and online articles.

            4.) I do believe if Trovaflaxcin was so excellent, then why was it removed from all public use and completely abandoned by the US government for being dangerous?

            I read your final link also, also reading the systematic review hidden in the article. Please let me quote from it: ” CONCLUSION: There is no robust data concerning the incidence or prevalence of adverse reactions after Chiropractic. Further investigations are needed to assess definite conclusions regarding this issue”

            He also states that MOST adverse events were benign and transitory and the rates of serious adverse events were between 5/100,000 adjustments at the absolute worst he could find. Interstingly he found that they were as rare as 1.46/10,000,000 adjustments. Are you serious?

            SO YOU HAVE FAILED TO COMMENT ON MY REMAINING 7 SOURCES OF LITERATURE. YOU CRITIQUED 1 POORLY USING WEBSITES.

            MY FINAL QUESTION IS THUS. PLEASE COMMENT ON MY REFERENCES 1-2 DISCUSSING RATES OF MEDICAL ERROR AND INJURY, INCLUDING DEATHS.

            Please compare these against the rates which you just provided me from your last link.

            Lastly, anyone choosing to read this far. This argument shall not be won on a blog. Please once again read for yourselves, research actual research not opinion based blogs.

            Thank you. My time in my life and with family and my patients is too important to continue here.

            Cheers.

        • Astrologers’ customers? Are you serious? That’s your argument? Well, how about we talk about actual facts then? The AMA recently concluded through a large study that the defects of chiropractic are immediately apparent on an MRI and they highly recommended chiropractic treatment before resorting to surgery and pain meds. Yes, the AMA. Look it up. And I find it funny that anyone could possibly say that chiropractic is “unsafe”- seeing as the ratio of injuries to chiropractic treatments is so low, it’s laughable. The ratio of injury to MD treatments? Ridiculously high. Which is why the MEDICAL association recommends seeking chiropractic help first. Did you do ANY research whatsoever, other than reading nonsensical articles on quack watch??

          • Brittdoc said:

            Astrologers’ customers? Are you serious? That’s your argument?

            No. Please try again.

            Well, how about we talk about actual facts then? The AMA recently concluded through a large study that the defects of chiropractic are immediately apparent on an MRI

            Well, how about citing your source then?

            And I find it funny that anyone could possibly say that chiropractic is “unsafe”- seeing as the ratio of injuries to chiropractic treatments is so low, it’s laughable. The ratio of injury to MD treatments? Ridiculously high. Which is why the MEDICAL association recommends seeking chiropractic help first. Did you do ANY research whatsoever, other than reading nonsensical articles on quack watch??

            Oh dear. Would you like me to point out the errors in your flawed, fallacious thinking or do you want to have another go?

          • Brittdoc, you are driving me nuts. I am scared for everyone of your patients. I have never read more posts from somone as close minded as you. YOU NEED TO BE MORE OPEN MINDED TO BE A DOCTOR. Also, STOP making everything about an MD and DC comparison, it sounds ridiculous. You sound very very bitter. MD and DC are completely two different things. An MD school blows any chiropractic school out of the water and you know it. My best friend goes to chiropractic school and is 12th quarter, he even admits and I’ve witnessed that his work load at Palmer has not held a candle to our other buddy who is at Keck School of Medicine at USC. I am really starting to become annoyed how DC’s always just want to compare or bash MD’s. You always see it’s so one sided too, chiros are very bitter with the AMA, yet it seems the AMA stays too busy to really care about the one-sides rivals. I’ve heard over a dozen chiropractors bad mouth doctors, but I’ve never heard and M.D waste time on the issue. The scopes are completely two different things. Chiropractors deal with muscular-skeletal injuries and pain management. If they were in a hospital they belong in rehabilitation, that’s it. They probably should be in hospitals and SNF’s. MD’s do all sorts of things at many different physiological levels. Again the scope is different you can’t even begin to compare. But you sound very confident in your two years of anatomy and love to keep saying you had to take the same pre reqs as any MD. Most medical prereqs are all the same!!! A P.A. who works under a doctor also has those prereqs. If a M.D with a specialty wanted to actually waste his/her time to compare the curriculums, you know it would be a joke. M.D programs are way more intense period. I know you chiro school has been difficult for you as you keep saying how tough it is, but don’t compare the programs. I also see one thing consistent throughout the chiropractic community, and for lack of a better work, brainwashing. I don’t know what they teach the first couple quarters, but I have never met a chiro, who doesn’t think that they can’t cure cancer. My buddy even thought Payton Mannings surgery wasn’t needed if he got right chiropractic treatment….the ignorance and close mindedness!! It just seems they make you guys believe that if everything is in align, you will NEVER be sick or ill. On another note, I work as a Paramedic, want to try and compare my scope. What can you adjust or rehab, when your patient has the back of their skull smashed in from a 15ft fall, has a pulse of 74/40 , airway is compromised by blood and skull. What in the world would a chiro do? What would a dermatologist or gynecologist do? I work more closely with the hospitals than I do rehab, and I have the upmost respect for the ER doctors and RN’s, they work very very hard stressful shifts, and very long hours, something DC’s don’t have to experience. I also have respect for chiropractors who work hard and push rehabilitation to new boundaries. Health care encompasses everything and everyone. It requires talents from different scopeS. The whole point of my tangent is just people on here need to STOP COMPARING THE FIELDS. They are different!! If anything as a country it should be a collective effort to pursue the best health and patient care possible. This bickering about Med School, chiro school, who knows what, needs to stop. And you Brittdoc are very guilty of being a little too one sided. Your comment of “you must be one of the millions of zombies who thinks allopathic is always right” is very juvenile, shows you have little or zero experience. Who are you talking about when you say the millions of zombies doctor? Are you referring to Americans, who are possible potential patients? I can tell you are all fired up on team Chiro, BEING A STUDENT, but that is just what you are. I know the curriculum is hard, you take some anatomy courses, get a few X-rays in, and next thing you know you are feeling all like a big bad doctor, but you really really need to humble yourself. Medicine and science is very humbling, seeing patients in conditions that I’ve seen them in is also very humbling. You really shouldn’t be making posts like you are making. You have not had the experience yet. Be a student, and learn to give a little more respect to the health care system as a
            whole, you are clearly very bitter with some aspects of it. Anyways best of luck out there, im sure in the future you will turn out to be a great chriopractor. To all the health care professionals out there stay safe and much appreciation to everyone.

  • Stupid post.
    This chiropractor obviously feels left out that he didn’t go to medical school instead. The author should go back to medical school so he can feel proud to be a “real” doctor.

    “3 and done”. Who came up with this rule, obviously this guy did. It’s basic physiology, fibrosis and repair of tissues…and that should be accomplished in 3 or less visits? Makes no sense.

    Get out of the profession!

  • Some of this I would agree with, many are overstepping.

    “Insurances don’t want to pay for chiropractic” is a joke. INSURANCE COMPANIES DON’T WANT TO PAY FOR ANYTHING!

    “Chiropractors sell vitamins at much more than their cost.” Yeah, of course they do. Did you know those “shady” supermarkets are doing the same thing? They get food and supplies at a wholesale cost and sell it for retail. Scumbags! Boycott safeway, it’s not safe! That’s what our “resellers license” is all about. Typical markup on any wholesale item in any business is 2X.

    Many chiropractors are under educated, over treating, and just not that good at what they do. I would say that many MD’s are just as bad as their job. The chiropractic field is difficult to be a part of because of the variety of approaches, and the large discrepancy between capable and incapable physicians, but overall, most of these comments are overstatements.

    AGREED WITH:

    1) SOME CHIROPRACTORS BASE THEIR PHILOSOPHY IN SUBLUXATION, but not all.
    4) Legitimate scope is very narrow. Yeah, we should stick with musculoskeletal conditions, and if other things get better, awesome.
    5) Chiropractic needs better research
    7) Lots of unnecessary services. Gosh, there are some practice management groups that teach over treatment, and it drives me bonkers.
    8) Cracking of the spine doesn’t mean much. Yeah, so what.
    10) We take too many Xrays. Totally agree.
    16) Just because someone swears by us doesn’t mean we help them. Totally agree.
    18) Lots of chiropractors do really strange things. Totally true. Some of it works, but a lot of it is strange.
    19) Don’t expect our licensing boards to protect you. Not well run organizations.

    Disagree
    2) Most every professional promises too much, in any field.
    3) Vastly inferior to MDs. A far narrower scope gives us far less to need to be aware of. Without learning all the drug complications, less time is needed. However, I would love to see a residency program for chiropractic students.
    6) Unless your diagnosis is obvious, get diagnosed elsewhere. Lots of chiropractors have good diagnosis, but may offer the wrong treatment plan. Or the right one, but I have SO MANY PATIENTS that come in with the wrong diagnosis from their MD or DO.
    9) If the first few visits don’t help, then more treatment wont either. This depends on the condition. Sometimes you have to work through some stuff… and it can be slow.
    11) Research doesn’t reflect what is happening in the offices… In some offices it does, in some it doesn’t, but that just means we need more research on all types.
    12) Neck manipulation is potentially dangerous. This has been debunked so many times. IT DOESN’T CAUSE STROKES! You can sprain someone’s neck, or give them headaches, or possibly paralyze them, but you can do the same with almost any treatment
    13) Most chiropractors don’t know much about nutrition. Maybe in your day, you old goat!
    14) We already brought this up. It is a business you moron.
    15) Chiropractors have no business treating children. What if it was for our scope of practice of musculoskeletal conditions?
    17) Insurance companies don’t want to pay. This was by far the dumbest statement I’ve read all week.
    20) The media rarely looks at what we are doing wrong. Or right. We don’t get hardly any press. So what, neither do dentists.

    Sorry you got so frustrated with the profession. I’m with you on that one. I’m fairly disappointed with the conclusions you’ve come to, and the actions you’ve taken, because if you get very much traction, you make it more difficult for chiropractors to succeed, even the ones that have a similar, musculo-skeletal view.

    • @ Max Lippman

      Re:

      13) Most chiropractors don’t know much about nutrition. Maybe in your day, you old goat!
      14) We already brought this up. It is a business you moron.

      For a professional, you’re not doing your credibility any favours.
      http://edzardernst.com/2012/12/ad-hominem-attacks-are-signs-of-victories-of-reason-over-unreason/

    • Hi Max, I appreciate your review of my top 20. I have only met chiropractors and reviewed their patient charts for the treatment of subluxations. Even when a strain/sprain is diagnosed the manipulation was for subluxations. Subluxations are mythical entities that were/are the foundation for the chiropractic profession. Since there is no scientific support for them the treatment of them is never medically necessary. At 57, I am an old goat already?

      Respectfully submitted,

      Preston

      • Preston, you are so incredibly wrong in saying chiropractors don’t know much about nutrition. Are you saying MDs know more?? MDs, the doctors who take zero nutrition courses? Do you know how many extremely difficult nutrition courses a chiropractor must take? Clearly not. My husband is a chiropractor and a nutrition expert who knows more about nutrition than any MD, dietitian or nutritionist you will ever meet. Chiropractors are trained specifically in nutritional counseling. Do you have ANY idea what the curriculum is like for this profession?! That’s a rhetorical question, of course. You don’t.

        • Brittdoc said:

          My husband is a chiropractor and a nutrition expert who knows more about nutrition than any MD, dietitian or nutritionist you will ever meet.

          I doubt that very much. But please feel free to prove me wrong.

    • @ Max

      “12) Neck manipulation is potentially dangerous. This has been debunked so many times. IT DOESN’T CAUSE STROKES! You can sprain someone’s neck, or give them headaches, or possibly paralyze them, but you can do the same with almost any treatment”

      Is possibly paralyzing someone not considered potentially dangerous?

      – Kelly

      • Kelly, if you had done a simple google search, you’d know that a chiropractic just meant has NEVER paralyzed anyone. And secondly, it has NEVER caused stroke. Patients who have had strokes while getting adjusted were already in line to have a stroke, and would have no matter what they were doing. If you knew anything about medicine and physiology, adjustments CAN NOT CAUSE A STROKE. PERIOD.

        • the evidence shows otherwise, i’m afraid

        • Brittdoc said:

          Kelly, if you had done a simple google search, you’d know that a chiropractic just meant has NEVER paralyzed anyone.

          Why would anyone rely on a Google search to tell them whether a treatment was safe?

          • @Alan: “Why would anyone rely on a Google search to tell them whether a treatment was safe?”

            Because google will tell you about the dangers of cipro, for example. Apparently many US docs won’t. Google will also tell you that it (cipro) probably isn’t the best first choice for diverticulitis, UTI, etc. Again, apparently many US docs won’t. For whatever reason.

          • Good grief. Yes, there are some websites that provide good, reliable information on treatments, but there many that are not and it can be difficult for a lay person to know which is which if all you’re doing is going by the first page or so of results returned by Google.

          • Some reliable information (internet) is better than no reliable information (many US docs). When dealing with medications that can permanently alter or end your life, it’s a sorry state of affairs when you can spend a few minutes on the FDA website and be more informed about the dangers of flouroquinolones than the ER doc that prescribed it.

            Good grief indeed.

          • @jm
            Are you trying to make a point here? Seems like you have information on usage of ciprofloxacin by “some” doctors for non-listed indications? Is that relevant to the discussion? Did you do a study on this?

            Of course Ciprofloxacin has side effects. It is a powerful antibiotic and can be life saving. Only non-effective things have no side effects, like Ledum Palustre 30C or Reiki for ADHD. Some non-effective therapies even have side effects. Like Gua Sha, Cupping and Chiropractic cervical manipulation. (If you wish to contradict this please do so by providing credible evidence)
            This straw-man of yours has nothing to do with the subject of this discussion thread. Maybe you can tell us why chiropractors do not list their side effects, even the rare ones.

          • @ Bjorn – Before you put in your two cents, you should read all the words. I’ll sum up them for you:

            Alan asked why rely on google.
            So I told him.

            I used cipro as an example. (Sometimes people use examples.) Of course cipro has side effects. It would be nice if the person prescribing them knew what they were, and informed their patient. You actually disagree with that?

          • Interesting how alt-med aficionados reliably fail to comprehendwhen someone throws a sarcastic innuendo at them.

          • Don’t worry Bjorn – you’ll catch on eventually.

        • Actually, I personally know someone who is now a quadriplegic from a chriopractic manipulation. Care to change your tune??

  • After injuring my back, I’m getting kicked out of the house I’m renting because my new landlady is a chiro, furious, I wouldn’t make the proper chirping sounds when she offered to “help” me. Forcing her services on me is what it is. She just blew up yesterday, with no way to reason with, or console her. I’ve got to get out.

    They’re crazy – and they’ll screw anyone they suspect doesn’t go along.

  • There is a lot of research proving that techniques like CBP correct spinal posture problems. There is also a lot of research (by MDs) stating that postural issues cause problems health problems.

  • Thanks for the good work and helping some of us see the light! I saw a chiro for over 20 years and took my kids as well until I read your book “Trick or Treatment”. Having read that I decided to see if my back pain resolved itself after a week rather than going to a chiro. That was about 5 years ago – I’ve never been back. Just like many, I thought it was helping me and had no idea that it has not backed by science (after all, in Australia they get a science degree through a reputable university, though not for much longer in Sydney). I guess the first inkling that it was not what I thought came when the chiro wanted my two healthy under 10 year old children to get full body x-rays just to check out their spines. The radiology clinic refused to do it and looked at me like I was insane. I told the chiro and he said he knew of a small clinic that would do it. I was pretty disconcerted that a radiology clinic attached to a major hospital refused so I didn’t get it done. Then I got your book and that was it!! Thankyou! I’ve since read many books and blogs about alt med and it makes me furious to think of all the useless (and expensive) products I’ve had recommended by pharmacists (and even a general practitioner). I recently saw a government funded “Help your kids cope with their final exams” site that recommended an “amazing” product “Rescue Remedy”. Unbelievable!! At least I think I have finally convinced my mother not to let her chiro crack her neck after months of her protesting “but he’s very experienced and knows what he’s doing!”

  • So basically the author of the referenced book only took a few bad examples of chiropractors and making an over generalization about the profession as a whole? Very weak to say the least. You can do the exact thing about any profession. I personally know many MDs who seek chiropractic care.

    Because the author clearly has not done his research properly and only found the research he wanted to find, I hold no credit to the author or to this post.

    It did make for a good laugh though.

    • @ Matt

      Science will have the last laugh. If you read the book, you will discover that Preston Long’s approach wasn’t “very weak to say the least”. Throughout the book he references robust scientific research.

    • Who do you treat and how do YOU help them?

      I don’t know what your motivation in writing this book is other than to make money. I personally have been to both a chiropractor who released me after my insurance quit paying – and now to the DOCTOR who has treated me for the last 8 years for sympthoms of my degenerative disk, degenerative scoliosis and arthritis. He has never led me to believe he could cure me or make me better. He tells me I am defying the odds, but he says that most likely I will eventually need surgery.
      I could not be more pleased with the medical knowledge this man possesses and that which he professes not to know, or his candor – OR his ethics!

  • My mother had a friend who swore by her chiropractor. She had her husband going for his back pain for months, I believer, and as it turned out he had cancer of the spine. Of course by the time he got to a REAL doctor, it was too advanced to do anything about.

    Also, I knew an elderly woman who went, and as far as I could tell, wasted her money on one every couple of weeks. For the first few days after the treatment she could barely move, and then she felt better for a couple of days, and then felt worse again until her next appointment.

    I personally wouldn’t let one touch me with a ten-foot pole.

    • God, that’s awful, Leslie. While we’re on anecdotes, a chiro (in Dublin) treated my 16-year-old niece for chronic pain. He talked about ‘subluxations’, made by bizarre clicking noises as he manipulated her spine and said all kinds of nonsense including that he could feel the problem leaving and it would just need a few more sessions. On about session 8 he said that unfortunately there’d been a regression and he could feel the problem had returned and it would, of course, need a few more sessions.

      She quite liked the sessions and said the treatment was relaxing but at no time was her pain relieved. This isn’t surprising as it turned out that her pain had nothing to do with so-called subluxations in the spine. It wasn’t even a muscular-skeletal problem but an extremely rare problem with her bile duct (now successfully treated by medical doctors). The chiro was talking BS and he must have known it.

      • yes he was talking BS; but did he know it? many don’t and are entirely convinced of their bizarre theories. and this conviction makes them much more dangerous for the unsuspecting patient

    • Do you know how many cancers are discovered because a chiropractor took “a too many, unnecessary” x ray???????????????

      Have you guys heard of the girl who suffered from 3rd degree burned when she dropped her coffee in the car?
      I hope no one drinks a coffee ever again! As a nation lets all make the switch to iced coffee! It’s the only logical solution because all coffee served hot is the Devil with a capital D

  • What a joke of an article.

  • Twenty Things Most Medical Doctors Won’t Tell You
    Have you ever consulted a medical doctor? Are you thinking about seeing one? Do you care whether your tax and health-care dollars are spent on worthless medical treatment? If your answer to any of these questions is yes, there are certain things you should know.

    1. Medical theory and practice are often not based on the body of knowledge related to health, disease, and health care that has been widely accepted by the scientific community.
    Most medical doctors believe that the cause of disease is disordered biology that must be corrected chemically with a variety of medications or physically by surgery. MDs often overlook the power of the human body to seek health through physiologic mechanisms of homeostasis. Drugs and surgery would be completely worthless were it not for the human body’s inherent ability to heal itself. Most medical doctors believe that their interventions are the cause of healing. A small percentage of medical doctors realize that health and healing require much more than the correct drug or the best surgical procedure. They are technically very good at curing, but not so good at being healers.

    2. Many medical doctors promise too much.
    While many modern medical interventions are truly life saving, many others contribute little to lengthened life span or improved physical capacity. For example, a recent “breakthrough” in pancreatic cancer treatment has shown improved survival from 4 months to 6 and a t a cost of $6000 to $8000 per month. The most common forms of treatment administered by medical doctors are drugs and surgery. Most drugs have side effects and many surgeries risk serious complications. Medical interventions have recently emerged as the third leading cause of death in the US. Medicine is largely silent with regard to the lethal effect of modern medicine.
    Review of pharmaceutical websites and daily media advertising reveals remarkable claims of benefit for a variety of medications with only minimal discussion of costs, side effects, unintended consequences and problems associated with taking multiple drugs in combinations (polypharmacy). Surgeons routinely downplay risks of the surgeries that they recommend.

    3. Medical education produces highly technically competent doctors who know very little about people.
    Medical education requires dedication to intense study of science-based course work, but little in the way of personal or inter-personal awareness. Medical doctors’ training in academic medical centers focuses almost exclusively on high tech intensive interventions facilitated by ever more sophisticated and complex technology. However many patients and their families are not very satisfied with their care and once they leave the hospital, they fail to carry through with doctors’ orders. Compliance with medical treatment plans is very poor because patients do not or cannot follow through with the recommendations from medical doctors because of cost, lack of social support or the ability to comprehend detailed instructions. Doctors who take the time to understand their patient’s motivations, circumstances and preferences have much better health outcomes and patient satisfaction.
    Unfortunately these doctors are a rare commodity.
    4. A medical specialist’s scope is actually very narrow.
    The health care system in the US encourages increasing specialization by doctors. Payment mechanisms favor care and procedures performed by specialists. Unfortunately increased specialization has led to a loss of a whole person perspective that most patients want and need. It is said that if your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. If you are an orthopedic surgeon, every musculoskeltal ache and pain has a surgical solution.
    Each specialist’s treatment is relevant only to a narrow range of ailments. But some specialists forget that their interventions can influence the course of nearly everything else in their patients life.
    5. Very little of what medical doctors do has been studied.
    Estimates from health policy experts suggest that as little as 15% of medical interventions are fully supported by solid scientific research. Others put that figure much higher, but nobody asserts that all of medicine is based on high quality research. Although modern medicine has been around since about 1925 as a result of the Flexner Report on medical education, only some of what medical doctors do meets the scientific standard through solid high quality research. Medical apologists claim to be the only health profession that is evidence based and they try to sound scientific to counter their detractors, but very little high quality research actually supports what medical doctors do. Review of the evidence for medicine as summarized for example in the Cochrane Collaboration shows that many mainstream and frequently used medical interventions have only fain to poor evidence supporting them.
    6. Unless your diagnosis is obvious, it’s best to get diagnosed elsewhere.
    Misdiagnosis in medicine is common, involves millions of patients and trillions of dollars. Rates of misdiagnosis range from 15-25%. In certain specialties, oncology for example, diagnoses are incorrect over 40% of the time. Some attribute the frequency of misdiagnosis to over-confidence on the part of medical doctors. Medical education only rewards clinical certainty and questioning a diagnosis is resisted. Patients who request a second opinion are often seen as threatening to a medical doctor. From a patient’s perspective any diagnosis and proposed treatment plan should prompt questions to the doctor and unsatisfactory answers should result in seeking another opinion.

    7. We offer lots of unnecessary services.
    Many medical doctors provide unnecessary services. It is estimated that as much as 30% of health care is “waste.” The Institute of Medicine identifies waste as “spending on services that lack evidence of producing better health outcomes compared to less-expensive alternatives; inefficiencies in the provision of health care goods and services; and costs incurred while treating avoidable medical injuries…”

    8. Prescribing a drug or performing a surgery often doesn’t mean much.
    The medical ritual of a doctor visit, taking a drug or undergoing a surgery often works for reasons other than the biological response to the treatment. Most medical studies show positive results from placebo interventions. Sham knee surgery has been shown to be as effective as the real thing. Sugar pills can produce remarkable therapeutic effects. So the benefits of medical interventions have a 1 in 3 chance of having nothing to do with the technology.
    9. If the first treatment doesn’t help you, more treatment probably won’t help either.
    Much of medical practice is based on trial-and-error. Medical doctors take their best diagnostic guess and propose a drug or a surgery based on their specialist training, practice guideline, the newest drug or what will be paid for. The simple approach of “watchful waiting” is usually disregarded in favor of the medical propensity to “do something.” Interventions of behavior or lifestyle change take too much of a doctor’s time. Writing a prescription or doing a procedure are much easier and they are often what the patient expects, regardless of what actually may be the least invasive, the least risky and the lowest cost.
    If the first spinal surgery or epidural steroid injection doesn’t work, the second, third, or forth are equally unlikely to help either.
    10. We take too many x-rays and other imaging studies.
    The use of diagnostic x-rays, especially CT scans, is results in patients developing cancer later in life. Estimates by researchers at the National Cancer Institute found that 29,000 future cancer cases could be attributed to the 72 million CT scans performed in the country in 2007.
    MRIs, while much safer that x-ray radiation, have problems of their own. In a study of 221 patients who had MRIs, the results showed that only 5.9% actually needed to have an MRI done. The remaining 94.1% of the patients sacrificed their time and money. Much overuse of MRI is driven by doctors who view the test as a short cut to a diagnosis. Many patients demand an MRI to know what is “really going on.” A recent published study of MRI for low back pain found only about half of the studies were performed for justifiable reasons. A recent article in Spine concluded that “Early MRI without indication has a strong iatrogenic effect in acute LBP, regardless of radiculopathy status. Providers and patients should be made aware that when early MRI is not indicated, it provides no benefits, and worse outcomes are likely.”

    11. Research on medical practice does not reflect what takes place in most medical facilities.
    Research studies that look at medical interventions are generally done under strict protocols that protect patients from harm. The results reflect what happens when treatments are done on patients who are appropriately screened—usually by medical teams that exclude people with conditions that would make the treatment dangerous. But these results do not reflect what typically happens when patients are treated. The medical marketplace is a mess because many medical doctors ignore research findings and evidence based clinical practice guidelines. Instead they subject their patients to procedures that are based on their own opinions, what is customary in their community or are just plain unnecessary and senseless.
    Researchers at Dartmouth have looked at the use of medical procedures across the US. They have found wide variation in medical practices from on geographic region to another. This variation cannot be explained on the basis of the severity of illnesses suffered by the patients. Rather one community of doctors are likely to use a procedure twice as often as their colleagues somewhere else. But doing twice as much does not translate to better outcomes for patients. They get twice as much care (and we spend twice as much money) for the same results.
    Most medical specialties have evidence based clinical practice guidelines that use the scientific literature to inform clinical practice. Unfortunately these guidelines are frequently not followed and patients do not get the care that science says is best. Some estimates show as little as only 30% of patients in hospital receive care that is recommended by these evidence based guidelines. Treatments for certain conditions are even worse. A recent study found that primary care providers treating garden-variety low back pain followed scientifically based recommendations for first line medication only about 25% of the time.

    12. Medical treatment is potentially dangerous.
    Medical treatment is the third leading cause of death in the US, just behind heart disease and cancer. Up to 400,000 people die each year because of medical care.

    13. Most medical doctors don’t know much about nutrition.
    Medical doctors learn little about clinical nutrition during their schooling. Many offer what they describe as “nutrition counseling.” But this typically consists of superficial advice about eating less fat and various schemes to sell you supplements and prescribe drugs that are high-priced and unnecessary.

    14. Medical doctors who prescribe drugs are influenced by drug companies.
    The relationships between the pharmaceutical industry and the medical doctors who prescribe them is troubled by conflicts of interest, ethical lapses and, of course, money. Recent legislative regulations, ethics statements and professional education reforms have emerged to correct what can only be described as the too-cozy relationship between pharmaceutical manufacturers (“big pharma”) and medicine. While she has her critics, Marcia Angel, MD, the former editor of the mainstream medical journal The New England Journal of Medicine, blows the cover of the relationship between big pharma, the FDA and practicing doctors. She describes a well-oiled industrial machine that has discovered a way to make tons of money in the guise of helping patients. Doctors are all-to-wiling participants in this scheme beginning in medical school and moving into practice with generous perks, free gifts and other incentives to prescribe the newest (and usually most expensive) drug or medical device.
    15. Medical doctors often have no business treating young children.
    Many medical procedures have been studied only in adults. Unfortunately children are just “litte adults.”

    16. The fact that patients swear by us does not mean we are actually helping them.
    Satisfaction is not the same thing as effectiveness. Many people who believe they have been helped had conditions that would have resolved without treatment. Some have had treatment for dangers that did not exist but were said by the chiropractor to be imminent. Many chiropractors actually take courses on how to trick patients to believe in them. (See Chapter 8)

    17. Insurance companies don’t want to pay for many medical services.
    Some medical specialists love to brag that their services are covered by Medicare and most insurance companies. However, this coverage for many procedures has been achieved though political action rather than scientific merit. For example bariatric surgery was developed over the last decade but has not really become common until various states have mandated coverage for the procedure. The evidence that supports these procedures is scant. End-stage renal disease has been enshrined in Medicare coverage since an act of Congress in 1973. The US spent $32.9 billion for treating almost 600,000 patients, a ten-fold increase since 1980. It costs between $60,00 and over $80,000 per patient per year for this treatment. While one can’t argue that this cost is not necessary, after all it keeps these people alive, one can’t help but wonder if that $32 billion might be better spent.
    18. Lots of Medical doctors do really strange things.
    Medical quackery has a long and rich history. It is not confined to the past, but is alive and well, even in the age of modern, evidence based medicine. Contemporary medical education trains doctors to be over-confident in their skills and knowledge. While this sometimes leads to significant innovation,it can also lead to weird medical treatments offered by some medical doctors to willing and gullible patients.
    The medical cosmetic industry is one current “specialty” that offers “treatments” that are only questionably necessary, not without significant risk and delivered for no other reason than patients want it and doctors have figured out how to deliver it. Liposuction, laser face lifts, breast augmentation and, most recently, genital cosmetic surgery (called vaginal rejuvenation), challenge any consideration of these procedures as rational medicine.

    19. Don’t expect medical licensing boards to protect you.
    Many medical doctors who serve on chiropractic licensing boards harbor the same misbeliefs and biases that are rampant among their colleagues. This means, for example, that most boards are unlikely to discipline medical doctors for diagnosing and treating imaginary conditions such as the need for “vaginal rejuvenation.” Medical boards are usually dominated by doctors and representation by lay persons is often discouraged. Even if a licensing board chooses to take action against a rogue doctor, the legal system often moves so slowly that the doctor continues in practice and harms more patients while the board dithers in legal limbo.

    20. The media rarely look at what we do wrong.
    The media rarely if ever address medical nonsense. The medical profession’s hammer lock on the media, while not complete, does have the general public convinced that they are in the business for the benefit of patients and the good of the public. Doctors are usually seen as selfless professional only doing what is right for their patients. They are not businessmen and women who make their decisions based on economics, income and profit.
    Many politicians and media continue the fiction that the US has the best medical care in the world. The outcomes however suggest a much different story. The US spends more than any other developed nation on earth but has outcomes that are not consistent with the 16% of GDP that is medical care. Medical care now exceeds housing costs for the average American family. Recent Federal and state efforts at health care reform are the political and social response to an unsustainable trajectory of rising medical costs.

  • The absolute ignorance of this article is insane. Its almost funny. Most, if not all points are completely biased and manipulated to represent your opinion. Which is all this is. You have 6 references for 20 points. Wow. One reference is from S. Barrett (are you kidding me), another is from Ernst E (once again, are you kidding me). Another two of the references are 15+ years old. Its funny how you only look at research that supports your opinion, and seemingly forget the remainder which debates it.

    Chiropractors are 5 years university trained. Have an enviable safety record (compare it against medicine). Enviable patient satisfaction record. Are registered and regulated by professional bodies nationally. We must continue to improve our self and our skills in order to maintain registered.

    Many of you will be aware that the risk of injury in hospitals and reported adverse drug reactions has escalated over time and it is estimated in the (1) British Medical Journal 2000 (no recent figures available) that as many as 18,000 people die every year as a result of medical error in Australia, while 50,000 people suffer a permanent injury. These figures are estimated to now be significantly higher.

    More recent statistics from the Therapeutic Goods Act of Australia (2) state that there were 233,300 reports ofsuspected adverse drug reactions in 2010. This does not include deaths or injuries attributable to medical care in 2010 nor does it include complaints relating to misconduct, advertising or communication issues.

    In that same year (2010) there were 11 million estimated visits to chiropractors within Australia (3) and a totalof only 41 reported treatment complaints made about chiropractors. (4) (There were no alleged deaths or seriouscomplications in this time frame reported in the Australian literature.)

    1.) Weingart SN, Wilson RM, Gibberd RW, Harrison B.Epidemiology of medical error. BMJ 2000; 320(77): 4-7

    .2.) Adverse Drug Reactions, Australian Statistics on MedicinesV1.0 September 2011 Online.http://www.tga.gov.au/pdf/medicines-statistics-2010.pdf

    3.) Chiropractors Association of Australia (CAA) records (2010)

    Its always funny how certain things can seem “unsafe” when they are compared against nothing.

    Shouldn’t this whole debate not be about shaming any one particular profession and more be about working together to improve patient outcomes? Because believe it or not that’s what its all about at the end of the day…the patient and their improvements. Not your ego.

    People keep reading and researching for yourselves, don’t rely on incredibly biased blogs/articles like this that push a persons opinion on you.

    Finally I leave you with this; Voltaire once wrote in an essay on tolerance: “Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so too.”

    Article did make me laugh though.

  • I love chiropractic care, it helps adjust my hips which are out of alignment and cause me major back issues a few times a year. What I not love it having to go to three-four chiropractic office before I find one that doesn’t want to put some infrared laser on my skin to help “heal my muscle tension” or try and get me to buy their overpriced “homeopathic” sugar pills. Good list, what would be nice to see then is a list of appropriate things it is useful for… Like legit misalignment issues. Good work! I’d go to your office anyday if I could!

    • It would be better and cheaper to do strengthening exercises for your hips. A physio or biokineticist can help with that.

      • Chiropractors can and do teach rehabilitation and strengthening exercises.

      • How can one determine that strengthening exercises for your hips is a more beneficial treatment for Mr. Steen over chiropractic care? Are you Jesus? Do you know everything?

        This man could have lytic metastasis in his appendicular skeleton and once he puts those hips under increased load (by exercising) he could ________ (insert a bad outcome)

        And just some clarification on terminology (the science of terms) because I am not Jesus and I do not know everything (for example your background and it’s competency or lack thereof in diagnosis):

        Metastasis = the spread of neoplasm from one region of the body to another. The defining characteristic of cancer!
        Lytic = destruction, breaking down, etc
        Appendicular = pertaining to bones attached to the trunk

    • Srer you in the UK? If you are, why haven’t yOu asked your GP for free physiotherAPY?

      • Im not about the UK, but I know is Aus you can ask your GP for 5 free chiro visits also.

        • The amount of physiotherapy to which you are enritled in the UK is unlimited – it goes on unitil you are better. I wonder why anyone would choose to pay for something with a less than certain reputation when they can get proper treatment for free. I do not understand the atraction of chiropractic when ther are better and cheaper alternatives to hand. This is I suppose the essential part of the argument – why choose this in the first place? That’a an honest question; I really don’t understand what makes people go for it.

  • Overall, this topic has a lot of exaggerated truth in it relating to the chiropractic profession. As it has been pointed out by previous replies the same could be done regarding medicine, physical therapy, massage, law, accounting, every profession known to the world!

    Everyone guess what! The world of medicine has a term called…wait for it… SUBLUXATION…what?! GTFO!
    Term has different applications and meaning for different professions but that is true for a lot of terms in the english language.
    There are a lot of Medical Doctors in the world that profess the benefits of Doctor of Chiropractic care. There are a lot of Doctors of Chiropractic that profess the benefits of Medical Doctors care.

    Next the author would have you believe he spent his own money writing a book to educate the masses and save the millions of people suffering from a wide array of adverse effects and potential death at the hands of their current Doctor of Chiiropractic. And that any monetary benefits to publishing a book and having 13 people buy it is a necessary evil and that he would “give it away for free if I could”.

    The term Doctor can refer to any 1 of the following (or multiple): 1. Personal title 2. Fictional characters 3. Film and television 4. Music 5. nickname…. etc

    So can someone please explain to me what a “REAL” doctor is?? A physician isn’t a “real” doctor, they are a Medical Doctor. A veterinarian isn’t a “real” doctor, they are a Doctor of Venterinary Medicicine. A dentist isn’t a “real” doctor, they are a Doctor of Dental Medicine. A chiropractic isn’t a “real” doctor, they are a Doctor of Chiropractic. a physical therapist isn’t a “real” doctor, they are a Doctor of Physical Therapy. A surgeon isn’t a “real” doctor, they are a specialized (very specialized albeit) physician with a Medical Doctorate degree.
    I could go on for days! People need to get their facts straight. Your run of the mill GP (general practitioner) is not a “real” doctor, they are an individual with low board scores, entrance exams, etc that did not permit them to specialize in cardiology, gastroenterology, etc and has completed a 1 year residency program (not 3-5) with a Medical Doctorate degree.

    You can read this anti-chiropractic article, book bathroom reader and the many others out there and believe it 10,000%
    You could read an anti-vaccine, anti-pharmaceutical, anti-medicine article, book, bathroom reader and many others that are out there and believe it 10,000%
    You could read a pro-chiropractic article, book, bathroom reader and the many others that are out there and believe it 10,000%
    You could read a pro-vaccine article (such as the one that talks about 100,000 vaccines is perfectly healthy for a child and the subsequent challenge to that CEO to take 1000 vaccines in a 2 week time frame for $1 million if he survived. Needless to say the CEO did not accept the challenge), pro-pharmaceutical, pro-medicine book, bathroom reader and believe it 10,000%

    You could believe that 10,000% is a “real” percentage! Is it? Is it not? Are you even smart enough to know? Have you learnt enough in your unsatisfactory, unimportant, sometimes nonexistent, careers to know much of anything?

    By the way, the answer is that it is a real percentage but used incorrectly (for emphasis purposes) during the examples listed above. You cannot believe in anything more than 100%. For that matter if you only believe in something 50%, 80%, 10%, 99.8% do you really believe in it at all? However, prices, products, values, efficiency, etc can increase 10,000%.
    So yes it is a true percentage.

    What this reply/posting is meant for anyone reading it to discover is that no matter what your making an opinion on, whether it be chiropractic, medicine, vaccine, mortgages, hookers, law, sewing, dog grooming, etc you MUST EDUCATE YOURSELF FIRST! I repeat, EDUCATE YOURSELF! Don’t have this piece of shit chiropractor educate you on chiropractic. Don’t have a Medical Doctor educate you on chiropractic. Educate yourself and then you can make an educated opinion for you, yourself, and you ONLY! That last part is important, for YOU ONLY.

    I wasted far too much of my life that I will never get back writing all this but that was only after I wasted more of my life reading this article and replies. There are far too many patients in acute and chronic pain or suffering from numerous ailments that I need to focus my attention on. Because guess what…this guy’s book solved 0 problems in the world and got that world 0% closer to solving it’s problems. Same goes for this reply and every other reply. I am a chiropractor (not sure what those of you reading this ASSumed about me) and I dont care what “real” doctor gets a patient better as long as that patient becomes healthier, can be an active part in their own lives and the lives of their loved ones and contributes to his/her community in a positive way.
    Do you know how many people suffer from “loneliness”? They (as in big pharma, not physicians) make pills for that, you could probably visit the chiropractor and feel better, or a dentist, or the optometrist. You could also probably pay a prostitute for their “services” and feel better, feel much much better….maybe they are the “real” doctors.

    FYVM

    • No animals were harmed in the making of that post.
      I hope I did not offend anyone personally or any one profession, that was not the intent. I especially want to expand on the comments about a GP…I know many of them personally and some of them are absolutely amazing and CHOSE to be a GP and could talk circles around a more “specialized” physician, me, and other chiros too. I also know some “specialized” physicians who aren’t worth their weight in salt and the same goes for some GPs. I also know chiros who can talk circles around GPs, “specialized” physicians, etc. My comments were just another example (of many) for exaggerated, biased, unnecessary, non-peer reviewed, look hard enough and you’ll find it, waste of my time, quite possibly completely false, I’d rather shoot my dog, comments, truths, facts, lies, etc, etc, etc.

      #hopeyouhaveonlysold13booksmakingmethebestguesserever
      #mywifeishoti’mgoingtobed

    • @JDM

      Don’t have this piece of shit chiropractor educate you on chiropractic. Don’t have a Medical Doctor educate you on chiropractic.

      For your sake I rather hope you were dead drunk when you wrote this, even if it does not seem like you stumbled much on the keyboard? Then you might hav an excuse, albeit partial.
      By this outrageous drivel you managed to terminated any respect for the pseudonym JDM on this blog. Any posts under that pseudonym will not be read by me at least. Your twaddle is not only an insult to your colleague and to Dr. Ernst but to all us readers of this forum.
      At the same time you have put a very deep dent in whatever respect and credibility the proponents of chiropactic have left. Your lame attempt at a retraction in your next post does not help. Be a man and apologize under your real identity.

      • Bjorn…it was not a retraction…it was an expansion because not all GPs are bad or stupid. I used them as an example in the same way DCs were used in the article.

  • In response to Lachlan’s comment to me on Monday 21 October at 23:41:
    I can only conclude that you’re not too keen on the precautionary principle as it applies to chiropractic.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precautionary_principle

    • Now your using Wikipedia as a resource? Hahaha I can see you’ve written a lot of valued researched based papers. Wikipedia is not a source you can use for references. Anyone can make “edits” to any topic presented on Wikipedia. Yes the website is good in taking down nonsense information of someone decides to mess with a certain topic. But if an author can write professionally and intelligently they can author content on that website. Like @Lachlan has stated previously. Go find peer-reviewed sources from major publications. JMPT, JAMA, etc.

  • JDM wrote: “Now your using Wikipedia as a resource? Hahaha”

    I don’t see anything wrong with using it as an introduction to understanding the precautionary principle. As for the rest of your comment, there’s ample scientific evidence in defence of my arguments in the links which I have already provided.

    • I think BW is right: to explain a term, Wiki is fine and certainly more evidence that the average chiro seems to muster.

      • Do you have any evidence for that claim?

      • Wikipedia is not only a good introduction to a topic, links to it are trusted because the website is well known for not having adverts and malware. For science- and evidence-based topics it is at least as accurate as encyclopaedias such as Encyclopaedia Britannica and it is considerably more accurate in many areas, such as optical physics.

        It matters not if the Wikipedia article contains errors because anyone with an inkling to learn the truth can explore the sections towards the end of each articles. In this particular case, the sections are:

        Criticisms (3 subheadings)
        See also (24 links to further reading)
        References (31)
        Other publications (14)
        External links (21)

        One of the most commonly used tricks is to discredit a source because it has at least once contained an error. JDM is an imperfect human being who makes errors therefore, by this principle, JDM’s comments can be equally discredited and laughed at.

  • I have no use for Chiropractor adjustments any more, and it’s not because of this article…this article just confirmed what I have believed for a long time. I had a Chiropractor put a harness around my head with a chin strap , and a wooden handle attached … he used the wooden handle to stretch my neck. But he didn’t just stretch gently. He had another adult hold my legs so I wouldn’t slide. While this adult person was bearing down on my legs, the Chiropractor jerked my neck back so hard that the person holding my legs couldn’t keep me from sliding toward the Chiropractor that was doing the jerking. And I’m a 190 pound man. Talk about QUACKERY. I will never let him put his dangerous hands on me again. I let him do this several times and now my neck is sprained with soft tissue injury…it constantly hurts and there’s nothing I can do about it.

  • Minimum Required Hours

    Chiropractic College Medical School
    456 Anatomy/Embryology. 215
    243 Physiology 174
    296 Pathology 507
    161 Chemistry/Biochemistry 100
    145 Microbiology 145
    408 Diagnosis 113
    149 Neurology 171
    56 Psychology/Psychiatry 323
    66 Obstetrics & Gynecology 284
    271 X-ray 13
    168 Orthopedics 2
    2,419 Total Hours for Degree 2,047

    In the end there are always good doctors and poor doctors regardless of physician designation (MD, DC, DO, DPT). The difference is in the treatment.

    In an ideal world, doctors, regardless of designation, work together for the management of the patient. It appears this profession (physicians) is evolving more and more and care is better co- managed when applicable.

  • Did you forget this Blue wode?

    @ Blue Wode.

    Thank you for engaging in a scientific debate.

    Firstly, several things must be mentioned before continue. I referenced 3 quality references in my first comment. 5 quality references in my second comment. For which you combatted with links to opinion based Websites.

    Any reader reading this comment, must first understand that websites are poor forms of evidence, and any scientist will not hold a website to high credibility or validity. Why? Because very often they are based on that authors opinion and are not assessed or peer reviewed like an article in a reputable journal.

    Now we may continue.

    Secondly, my remaining 7 pieces of peer reviewed literature remain to be critiqued by yourself. Why? Please provide supporting literature for your comments.

    Your first link is to a website (poor level of evidence). This website is clearly biased towards your opinion considering the propaganda and advertising on the site. Which critiques cassidys 2008 paper. Most of which is opinion based via Ernst. If follow the link further to the next page. It leads you to 2 more supporting papers of cassidy et al. One (if you choose to read them) showed a decrease utilization of chiropractic care in certain regions of canada with an increase occurence of VBA stroke in those same regions?
    What is your response to this?

    2.) Your second comment and link talks about No adverse event reporting system. In AUS we have the Chiropractic Board of Australia AND AHPRA who regulate us and take complaints/adverse events. Just the exact same as a medical board and registrational board would. So unsure of your comment there? The link you supplied, once again is a website ( poor form of evidence), which links to the same biased opinion based blog, where several of the stories are quoted by Ernst, who is the direct author of this blog with which we currently reside. Bias once again enters the equation.

    3.) Your third article is I believe an online newspaper link? Which is avery poor source of evidence. Where once again the bottom of the page is littered with links back to Ernst blog and online articles.

    4.) I do believe if Trovaflaxcin was so excellent, then why was it removed from all public use and completely abandoned by the US government for being dangerous?

    I read your final link also, also reading the systematic review hidden in the article. Please let me quote from it: ” CONCLUSION: There is no robust data concerning the incidence or prevalence of adverse reactions after Chiropractic. Further investigations are needed to assess definite conclusions regarding this issue”

    He also states that MOST adverse events were benign and transitory and the rates of serious adverse events were between 5/100,000 adjustments at the absolute worst he could find. Interstingly he found that they were as rare as 1.46/10,000,000 adjustments. Are you serious?

    SO YOU HAVE FAILED TO COMMENT ON MY REMAINING 7 SOURCES OF LITERATURE. YOU CRITIQUED 1 POORLY USING WEBSITES.

    MY FINAL QUESTION IS THUS. PLEASE COMMENT ON MY REFERENCES 1-2 DISCUSSING RATES OF MEDICAL ERROR AND INJURY, INCLUDING DEATHS.

    Please compare these against the rates which you just provided me from your last link.

    Lastly, anyone choosing to read this far. This argument shall not be won on a blog. Please once again read for yourselves, research actual research not opinion based blogs.

    Thank you. My time in my life and with family and my patients is too important to continue here.

    Cheers.

    SPANKED>

  • lol. So you have no answer.You have been shown to be un-Scientific and biased in your answer and have very little in the way of a response.

  • ” I referenced 3 quality references in my first comment. 5 quality references in my second comment. For which you combatted with links to opinion based Websites.

    Any reader reading this comment, must first understand that websites are poor forms of evidence, and any scientist will not hold a website to high credibility or validity. Why? Because very often they are based on that authors opinion and are not assessed or peer reviewed like an article in a reputable journal.”
    Very valid points that you have dodged quite nicely.

    “SO YOU HAVE FAILED TO COMMENT ON MY REMAINING 7 SOURCES OF LITERATURE. YOU CRITIQUED 1 POORLY USING WEBSITES.” The usual Blue wode modus operandi.

    • @ fedup

      If you adhere fully to proper CPD, then you should know that the precautionary principle tells us that the risks of neck manipulation currently outweigh its (perceived) benefits, and that robust scientific data are increasingly revealing that spinal manipulation for low back pain is no better than taking paracetamol and/or doing exercises. Unfortunately, chiropractic cannot be recommended for the latter due to problems with standardisation which encompasses the former – i.e. many chiropractors continue to manipulate their low back patients’ necks based on the (false) belief that such ‘adjustments’ act as a panacea. There is no more to add.

      • Good thing we aren’t taught to manipulate necks. Although I am fully aware that many chiros do that but mostly because they lack the skills and dexterity to adjust the cervical spine. Physical Therapists manipulate. Chiropractors adjust. There is a difference but you have to be educated in this field in order to understand.
        It’s been said before…there are good doctors and poor doctors, good lawyers and poor lawyers, etc. even though they have the same degree and training certain people will always be inferior in skill and knowledge to others. A good chiropractor will not strain muscles of the cervical spine. As far as a VAD is concerned you can cause that yourself by checking your blind spot while driving! Although if you’ve ever driven n America you’d realize not many do that :/
        Find a good chiropractor who ADJUSTS SPECIFICALLY and SKILLFULLY. I wish they were the majority but unfortunately they are not.

        • @ JDM

          Yes, there is a difference JDM, but you’re forgetting to inform readers about its reality:

          QUOTE
          It is important to understand, however, that only chiropractors use spinal manipulation as a form of “adjustment”, that is, as a treatment for “subluxations”. This is never legitimate because the chiropractic subluxation does not exist. This distinction cannot be overemphasized: even if a chiropractor claims to be treating, for example, back pain with spinal manipulation, that use is legitimately indicated only if the diagnosis is supported by evidence-based criteria that indicate that manipulation may help. Subluxation-based diagnoses provide no legitimate basis for manipulating spines.

          Ref: http://www.scienceinmedicine.org/policy/papers/Chiropractic.pdf

          FYI, the paper linked to above is reprinted in full in Preston Long’s book on chiropractic abuse.

        • JDM said:

          Find a good chiropractor who ADJUSTS SPECIFICALLY and SKILLFULLY.

          How would someone do that?

        • That’s EXACTLY what I am looking for after my fabulous chiro retired. He was SKILLED, specific, exact, never made a mistake, never hurt me and ALWAYS improved my health, it’s been a NIGHTMARE trying to find a chiro as good as he was…
          What do I look for??!!

          • @Trik

            Perhaps it is better to approach this task by elimination.

            In the first place you can safely eliminate distance chiropractors. It is self-evident that they must either be out of their mind or totally corrupt… or both.

            I would avoid antivaccinist and germ theory denialist chiropractors (there are many). Such muddled beliefs can hardly be compatible with good therapeutic abilities.

            Eliminate all those chiropractors who advertise adjuvant pseudo-therapies like homeopathy, aromatherapy, ear candling, shiatsu, Ayurveda, flower remedies, gua sha, cupping, reiki, reflexology, visceral manipulation and other magical woo.
            They are unlikely to be good chiropractors if they have to add silly-woo to their manipulative skills in order to attract patients.

            Then eliminate anyone who insists on wringing your neck. Apart from not having been proven to be useful, it is known to be a russian roulette in rare cases able to injure your vertebrobasilar arteries with catastrophic results. It is simply not worth the risk.

            Then eliminate anyone who says that children should be brought to a chiropractor for colic, bedwetting, birth trauma, asthma, tummy aches or whatever. More and more chiropractors are turning to children to fill their practice. Tired toddler-parents are an easy pray for placebo-by-proxy quacks.

            Then eliminate those who say that chiropractic can help with infertility, indigestion, allergies, immune system problems, thyroid dysfunction, bowel dysfunction and other ailments totally unrelated to the state of the spine. These notions are based on the imaginary “subluxation theory”.
            Many chiropractors wisely reject this fallacious theory, which was invented by DD Palmer in 1895.

            And at last you should avoid what I call “serial chiropractors” who try to convince you that even when you are well you should drop by regularly, even weekly! for a 2-minute session of manhandling your spine, just to keep you (and the chiropractors economy) in good shape.

            Now, what does that leave us with?

  • Thats it Blue wode, ignore the evidence put infront of you because you don’t agree with it. Please comment on the “7 SOURCES OF LITERATURE” you have ignored. You constantly go on about providing evidence and like a true “cough” skeptic when given some that is opposite to your views you just ignore it.

  • 21. Chiropractors visit homeopaths for their healthcare, because homeopaths are specialist naturopaths, which can treat any ailment including injuries and shock (website say so!/reciprocating lack of references), without medications, without adverse effects, without contraindications and all without a university degree or a clue. Fortunately, chiropractors understand that homeopaths have a large non-educational-I-bought-this-expensive-magical-crystal-from-a-siberian-shaman debt that they need to pay off.

    (Its dangerous and sad that people in alternative medicine prey on the vulnerabilities of the less educated. Its even sadder that some believe in what they are doing is right. Good on you Ernst Edzard for keeping people honest!)

  • I find this true for lots of the healthcare professions. There are good and bad practitioners everywhere. For example, a doctor misdiagnosed my knee as sprained when really I lost my ACL in my left knee. This is a doctor who is in your beloved medical profession. Afterwards I had problems with my posture and got misdiagnosed by an orthopedic surgeon, got terrible treatment from a chiropractor and some physiotherapists. It’s only now that I’m seeing a friend from high school who’s now a chiropractor that I’m getting slowly better.

    • Yes, Graham, even medical doctors sometimes get it wrong. But no one claimed they were perfect, did they? Do chiros always get it right?

      Then you present unverified and unverifiable anecdotes. What do you think we should make of them?

  • This article makes me furious. Chiropractic is like any other medical treatment. You have good doctors and you have bad. You have some with a gift and others in it for money.
    Not only does he degrade the Chiropractors but the patients! I am a smart, strong, non-nonsense kind of woman. I am not some bubblehead that can be “brainwashed”. I actually went to one of the bad chiropractors he is describing. He wanted me to sign a 3 year contract and he sold everything from vitamins and lotions to vodoo dolls. I left in a hurry. It was a long time before I went again.
    I have herniated disc at L4-5 and C4-5. My lower back hurt so bad I couldnt lift my son, garden or dance. I was having migrains that were increasing in frequency and in pain. My internist did not believe in chiropractic. She gave me strong muscle relaxers and pain pills that left me groggy and confused. I was having rebound headaches for the strong pain medications. I had 3 neurosurgeons who wanted to fuse my vertebrae together. I didnt know anyone that had much success with that one and I said no. A friend kept trying to get me to go to her chiropractor. She was a wackadoo and between her reputation and my 1st experience with the Quack chiropractor, I put it off. My back got to the point that I had nonstop pain even when sleeping and I had migraines at least twice a week. I finally agreed to see him just to get her to leave me alone. I waited 2 weeks for the appointment and 3 days before I got a migrain that took me to the emergency room. They let me come home on strong drugs but it didnt stop the pain…it just made me too drunk to whine about it. I almost cancelled because I was still sick day of the appointment and too drugged to drive. My mother convinced me to go and drove me. 20 minutes after my adjustment, my migraine was gone. A few weeks later, I had the first night sleep where I didnt cry out in pain when I rolled over. Then I gardened without the trade off of excrutiating back pain and migraines. That was 20 years ago. I have never had any spinal fusions, I have a headache…not a migraine maybe twice a year. I dance, garden, ride horses and a motorcycle. My chiropractor allowed me to enjoy life again and that is not brainwashing. You cant argue with that kind of result. My chiropractor doesnt sell vitamins or anything crazy and he has never tried to put me on ANY kind of ongoing plan. In fact he always said, OUR GOAL IS FOR YOU TO SEE ME LESS AND LESS. He did give me back stregthening exercises and relaxation techniques. I am grateful for his conservative, effective treatment that saved me from a painful, unnecessary back surgery that had a very low success rate.

    • Quizative said:

      This article makes me furious.

      Why? Was there something Prof Ernst got wrong? If so, please feel free to point it out so he can correct it.

    • Quizative, I notice that the experience with your chiropractor you related was 20 years ago, but you speak of him in the present tense: “My chiropractor doesnt sell vitamins”. Does that mean that, despite never putting you on an ongoing plan and him stating his goal is for you to see him “less and less”, you have in fact continued to see him regularly for the past 20 years?

  • Hi

    I’m a Chiropractor myself, I do agree with point #13 on your list, I found my self laughing when I read some of your points. But I would dare to argue you on some of them.

    Thank for the informative article either way.

  • Twenty Things Most Medical Doctors Won’t Tell You
    Have you ever consulted a medical doctor? Are you thinking about seeing one? Do you care whether your tax and health-care dollars are spent on worthless medical treatment? If your answer to any of these questions is yes, there are certain things you should know.

    1. Medical theory and practice are often not based on the body of knowledge related to health, disease, and health care that has been widely accepted by the scientific community.
    Most medical doctors believe that the cause of disease is disordered biology that must be corrected chemically with a variety of medications or physically by surgery. MDs often overlook the power of the human body to seek health through physiologic mechanisms of homeostasis. Drugs and surgery would be completely worthless were it not for the human body’s inherent ability to heal itself. Most medical doctors believe that their interventions are the cause of healing. A small percentage of medical doctors realize that health and healing require much more than the correct drug or the best surgical procedure. They are technically very good at curing, but not so good at being healers.

    2. Many medical doctors promise too much.
    While many modern medical interventions are truly life saving, many others contribute little to lengthened life span or improved physical capacity. For example, a recent “breakthrough” in pancreatic cancer treatment has shown improved survival from 4 months to 6 and a t a cost of $6000 to $8000 per month. The most common forms of treatment administered by medical doctors are drugs and surgery. Most drugs have side effects and many surgeries risk serious complications. Medical interventions have recently emerged as the third leading cause of death in the US. Medicine is largely silent with regard to the lethal effect of modern medicine.
    Review of pharmaceutical websites and daily media advertising reveals remarkable claims of benefit for a variety of medications with only minimal discussion of costs, side effects, unintended consequences and problems associated with taking multiple drugs in combinations (polypharmacy). Surgeons routinely downplay risks of the surgeries that they recommend.

    3. Medical education produces highly technically competent doctors who know very little about people.
    Medical education requires dedication to intense study of science-based course work, but little in the way of personal or inter-personal awareness. Medical doctors’ training in academic medical centers focuses almost exclusively on high tech intensive interventions facilitated by ever more sophisticated and complex technology. However many patients and their families are not very satisfied with their care and once they leave the hospital, they fail to carry through with doctors’ orders. Compliance with medical treatment plans is very poor because patients do not or cannot follow through with the recommendations from medical doctors because of cost, lack of social support or the ability to comprehend detailed instructions. Doctors who take the time to understand their patient’s motivations, circumstances and preferences have much better health outcomes and patient satisfaction.
    Unfortunately these doctors are a rare commodity.
    4. A medical specialist’s scope is actually very narrow.
    The health care system in the US encourages increasing specialization by doctors. Payment mechanisms favor care and procedures performed by specialists. Unfortunately increased specialization has led to a loss of a whole person perspective that most patients want and need. It is said that if your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. If you are an orthopedic surgeon, every musculoskeltal ache and pain has a surgical solution.
    Each specialist’s treatment is relevant only to a narrow range of ailments. But some specialists forget that their interventions can influence the course of nearly everything else in their patients life.
    5. Very little of what medical doctors do has been studied.
    Estimates from health policy experts suggest that as little as 15% of medical interventions are fully supported by solid scientific research. Others put that figure much higher, but nobody asserts that all of medicine is based on high quality research. Although modern medicine has been around since about 1925 as a result of the Flexner Report on medical education, only some of what medical doctors do meets the scientific standard through solid high quality research. Medical apologists claim to be the only health profession that is evidence based and they try to sound scientific to counter their detractors, but very little high quality research actually supports what medical doctors do. Review of the evidence for medicine as summarized for example in the Cochrane Collaboration shows that many mainstream and frequently used medical interventions have only fain to poor evidence supporting them.
    6. Unless your diagnosis is obvious, it’s best to get diagnosed elsewhere.
    Misdiagnosis in medicine is common, involves millions of patients and trillions of dollars. Rates of misdiagnosis range from 15-25%. In certain specialties, oncology for example, diagnoses are incorrect over 40% of the time. Some attribute the frequency of misdiagnosis to over-confidence on the part of medical doctors. Medical education only rewards clinical certainty and questioning a diagnosis is resisted. Patients who request a second opinion are often seen as threatening to a medical doctor. From a patient’s perspective any diagnosis and proposed treatment plan should prompt questions to the doctor and unsatisfactory answers should result in seeking another opinion.

    7. We offer lots of unnecessary services.
    Many medical doctors provide unnecessary services. It is estimated that as much as 30% of health care is “waste.” The Institute of Medicine identifies waste as “spending on services that lack evidence of producing better health outcomes compared to less-expensive alternatives; inefficiencies in the provision of health care goods and services; and costs incurred while treating avoidable medical injuries…”

    8. Prescribing a drug or performing a surgery often doesn’t mean much.
    The medical ritual of a doctor visit, taking a drug or undergoing a surgery often works for reasons other than the biological response to the treatment. Most medical studies show positive results from placebo interventions. Sham knee surgery has been shown to be as effective as the real thing. Sugar pills can produce remarkable therapeutic effects. So the benefits of medical interventions have a 1 in 3 chance of having nothing to do with the technology.
    9. If the first treatment doesn’t help you, more treatment probably won’t help either.
    Much of medical practice is based on trial-and-error. Medical doctors take their best diagnostic guess and propose a drug or a surgery based on their specialist training, practice guideline, the newest drug or what will be paid for. The simple approach of “watchful waiting” is usually disregarded in favor of the medical propensity to “do something.” Interventions of behavior or lifestyle change take too much of a doctor’s time. Writing a prescription or doing a procedure are much easier and they are often what the patient expects, regardless of what actually may be the least invasive, the least risky and the lowest cost.
    If the first spinal surgery or epidural steroid injection doesn’t work, the second, third, or forth are equally unlikely to help either.
    10. We take too many x-rays and other imaging studies.
    The use of diagnostic x-rays, especially CT scans, is results in patients developing cancer later in life. Estimates by researchers at the National Cancer Institute found that 29,000 future cancer cases could be attributed to the 72 million CT scans performed in the country in 2007.
    MRIs, while much safer that x-ray radiation, have problems of their own. In a study of 221 patients who had MRIs, the results showed that only 5.9% actually needed to have an MRI done. The remaining 94.1% of the patients sacrificed their time and money. Much overuse of MRI is driven by doctors who view the test as a short cut to a diagnosis. Many patients demand an MRI to know what is “really going on.” A recent published study of MRI for low back pain found only about half of the studies were performed for justifiable reasons. A recent article in Spine concluded that “Early MRI without indication has a strong iatrogenic effect in acute LBP, regardless of radiculopathy status. Providers and patients should be made aware that when early MRI is not indicated, it provides no benefits, and worse outcomes are likely.”

    11. Research on medical practice does not reflect what takes place in most medical facilities.
    Research studies that look at medical interventions are generally done under strict protocols that protect patients from harm. The results reflect what happens when treatments are done on patients who are appropriately screened—usually by medical teams that exclude people with conditions that would make the treatment dangerous. But these results do not reflect what typically happens when patients are treated. The medical marketplace is a mess because many medical doctors ignore research findings and evidence based clinical practice guidelines. Instead they subject their patients to procedures that are based on their own opinions, what is customary in their community or are just plain unnecessary and senseless.
    Researchers at Dartmouth have looked at the use of medical procedures across the US. They have found wide variation in medical practices from on geographic region to another. This variation cannot be explained on the basis of the severity of illnesses suffered by the patients. Rather one community of doctors are likely to use a procedure twice as often as their colleagues somewhere else. But doing twice as much does not translate to better outcomes for patients. They get twice as much care (and we spend twice as much money) for the same results.
    Most medical specialties have evidence based clinical practice guidelines that use the scientific literature to inform clinical practice. Unfortunately these guidelines are frequently not followed and patients do not get the care that science says is best. Some estimates show as little as only 30% of patients in hospital receive care that is recommended by these evidence based guidelines. Treatments for certain conditions are even worse. A recent study found that primary care providers treating garden-variety low back pain followed scientifically based recommendations for first line medication only about 25% of the time.

    12. Medical treatment is potentially dangerous.
    Medical treatment is the third leading cause of death in the US, just behind heart disease and cancer. Up to 400,000 people die each year because of medical care.

    13. Most medical doctors don’t know much about nutrition.
    Medical doctors learn little about clinical nutrition during their schooling. Many offer what they describe as “nutrition counseling.” But this typically consists of superficial advice about eating less fat and various schemes to sell you supplements and prescribe drugs that are high-priced and unnecessary.

    14. Medical doctors who prescribe drugs are influenced by drug companies.
    The relationships between the pharmaceutical industry and the medical doctors who prescribe them is troubled by conflicts of interest, ethical lapses and, of course, money. Recent legislative regulations, ethics statements and professional education reforms have emerged to correct what can only be described as the too-cozy relationship between pharmaceutical manufacturers (“big pharma”) and medicine. While she has her critics, Marcia Angel, MD, the former editor of the mainstream medical journal The New England Journal of Medicine, blows the cover of the relationship between big pharma, the FDA and practicing doctors. She describes a well-oiled industrial machine that has discovered a way to make tons of money in the guise of helping patients. Doctors are all-to-wiling participants in this scheme beginning in medical school and moving into practice with generous perks, free gifts and other incentives to prescribe the newest (and usually most expensive) drug or medical device.
    15. Medical doctors often have no business treating young children.
    Many medical procedures have been studied only in adults. Unfortunately children are just “litte adults.”

    16. The fact that patients swear by us does not mean we are actually helping them.
    Satisfaction is not the same thing as effectiveness. Many people who believe they have been helped had conditions that would have resolved without treatment. Some have had treatment for dangers that did not exist but were said by the chiropractor to be imminent. Many chiropractors actually take courses on how to trick patients to believe in them. (See Chapter 8)

    17. Insurance companies don’t want to pay for many medical services.
    Some medical specialists love to brag that their services are covered by Medicare and most insurance companies. However, this coverage for many procedures has been achieved though political action rather than scientific merit. For example bariatric surgery was developed over the last decade but has not really become common until various states have mandated coverage for the procedure. The evidence that supports these procedures is scant. End-stage renal disease has been enshrined in Medicare coverage since an act of Congress in 1973. The US spent $32.9 billion for treating almost 600,000 patients, a ten-fold increase since 1980. It costs between $60,00 and over $80,000 per patient per year for this treatment. While one can’t argue that this cost is not necessary, after all it keeps these people alive, one can’t help but wonder if that $32 billion might be better spent.
    18. Lots of Medical doctors do really strange things.
    Medical quackery has a long and rich history. It is not confined to the past, but is alive and well, even in the age of modern, evidence based medicine. Contemporary medical education trains doctors to be over-confident in their skills and knowledge. While this sometimes leads to significant innovation,it can also lead to weird medical treatments offered by some medical doctors to willing and gullible patients.
    The medical cosmetic industry is one current “specialty” that offers “treatments” that are only questionably necessary, not without significant risk and delivered for no other reason than patients want it and doctors have figured out how to deliver it. Liposuction, laser face lifts, breast augmentation and, most recently, genital cosmetic surgery (called vaginal rejuvenation), challenge any consideration of these procedures as rational medicine.

    19. Don’t expect medical licensing boards to protect you.
    Many medical doctors who serve on chiropractic licensing boards harbor the same misbeliefs and biases that are rampant among their colleagues. This means, for example, that most boards are unlikely to discipline medical doctors for diagnosing and treating imaginary conditions such as the need for “vaginal rejuvenation.” Medical boards are usually dominated by doctors and representation by lay persons is often discouraged. Even if a licensing board chooses to take action against a rogue doctor, the legal system often moves so slowly that the doctor continues in practice and harms more patients while the board dithers in legal limbo.

    20. The media rarely look at what we do wrong.
    The media rarely if ever address medical nonsense. The medical profession’s hammer lock on the media, while not complete, does have the general public convinced that they are in the business for the benefit of patients and the good of the public. Doctors are usually seen as selfless professional only doing what is right for their patients. They are not businessmen and women who make their decisions based on economics, income and profit.
    Many politicians and media continue the fiction that the US has the best medical care in the world. The outcomes however suggest a much different story. The US spends more than any other developed nation on earth but has outcomes that are not consistent with the 16% of GDP that is medical care. Medical care now exceeds housing costs for the average American family. Recent Federal and state efforts at health care reform are the political and social response to an unsustainable trajectory of rising medical costs.

  • Someone already said that – perhaps you didn’t read the comments? Anyway, it is as irrelevant to the subject of this blog post now as it was then.

  • TBH I haven’t read the book and don’t intend to, but after reading this website that describes it, just basically bashes Chiro’s as a selling point for the book, in other words like many fashion magazines do to get people to buy their crap.

    Look I’m not saying there are no bad Chiropractors out there, I’m 100% sure there are cause I’ve been to some JUST like I’ve been to some TERRIBLE Medical Dr’s (even worse than the bad Chiro’s I’ve been to) but the Chiro I normally visit actually tells me exactly the same thing which we agreed on and people should stick to within their scope of what they are taught and specialise in which MANY Chiro’s do not (even Physio’s and Naturopaths do not also, a lot are guilty of this not just Chiro’s) so the ones that do not give the others a bad name (again like other fields)

    I’m not sure why you chose to point out Chiro’s, maybe just because it is the one you’ve come across as dodgy and maybe you need more life experience and you will find this is just HUMANS in general, no particular field…. but I’ve personally had more success with a Chiropractor than any other Dr. I could give you my whole medical history which I will not but it is not a another case of oh he cracks my neck to release the nitric oxide and makes me feel good case, far from it.

    Safe to say when you go to a GOOD if not GREAT Chiropractor you will be able to tell the WORLD of difference between a what you think to be good one, like I have in the past which turns out to be just awful.

    Either way I’m looking at practising Chiropractic and would never cheat on any of my tests as I want to became a great Chiropractor and take zero shortcuts as I’ve said to heal and help people like the great ones (I’ve been to some 10 in my life? I’ve met about 4 great ones out of those) helped me.

    Also your part of this blog where it states “3. Our education is vastly inferior to that of medical doctors.” is just quite simply untrue, I’m not sure what it is like in some countries but we actually put in MORE hours in the years we study than Medical Doctors and by the end of the 2 years we have seen hundreds of patients….. with it constantly being monitored by a fully qualified DC (Dr of Chiropractic) , that is just in Australia either way from what I got told due to my partner being specifically scared of being under trained so rest assured this is not the case, at least here.

    Also in America

    http://www.yourmedicaldetective.com/drgrisanti/mddc.htm

    So I’m guessing it is the same there? Plus looking at that is pretty disturbing when it comes to some numbers of hours only that Medical Dr’s are putting in….. and where, it seems like they are basically just being trained up to prescribe drugs (which most people actually are finding out when they research THAT side of things) but you can see it clearly, lack of Diagnosis and even the human body in general with Anatomy/Embryology and Physiology….

    Anyways as I said above (and from personal experience) I would put my faith in a Chiropractor anyday, I am glad I NOW know how to look for a good one, I’m sorry you’ve had a bad experience with yours.

    Also PS all of the ones I’ve been to have never EVER preached to me all diseases etc etc come from the spine or can be cured through adjustments like this at all, ever, period. So again I’m guessing we have dealt with a different bunch? I really do have to agree with one of the comments above where you have seem to pick a few bad apples and labeled it across all Chiro’s which AGAIN I have to say you can say that about ANY field, so do yourself a favour if you are a TRUE skeptic AND researcher and find a GOOD one?

    Also might put you at ease…. NZ (New Zealand) did the biggest research in the WORLD before approving Chiropractic (Australia took this research on board also and used it to approve their field) took years and the most thorough research to date, dug EXTREMELY deep getting ALL the hard facts out, so I think people should look at that and believe what they will over such a deeply funded and well researched past time on the subject before taking account one persons opinion with their book and blog.

    • Vaughan Elphick “TBH I haven’t read the book and don’t intend to, but after reading this website that describes it, just basically bashes Chiro’s as a selling point for the book, in other words like many fashion magazines do to get people to buy their crap. I’m not sure why you chose to point out Chiro’s…”

      If you read the book you’d fully understand why.

      • Have to agree with Well and Vaughan, blunty just going on about nonsense in order to sell a book. I like the points Vaughan also brought up. Alot of good facts right there, love the reply that it got also, another response in order to buy a book, who would have guessed!

  • What’s the point to this blog? It’s the least scientific thing I’ve ever read. Has everyone one here forgotten what science is? Where’s the detachment of bias and use of objectivity? Especially you Edzard Ernst. You are well known for being the biggest, most biased cherry picker of them all. Ok, you’re on a personal mission to discredit Chiropractic, you have been for years, but because it’s so personal to you, your bias leads you to the point you can no longer be regarded as a scientist. Bad science is no science.

    • jonjay5
      Ernst is not alone. He is joined by many who care to have a look at the problem. Modern communication and liberal attitude is making it easy for any kind of wannabe healers and make-believe doctors to sell their services to an ignorant public.

      It is quite easy for someone with basic medical knowledge and understanding of anatomy and physiology to see through the nonsense of Chiropractics if they just care. It is especially easy once you have tried their services as I did once. I honestly believed the man would do me good as I read that the americans had found chiropractic helpful in uncomplicated lower back pain. But the only thing that improved was his bank account. I even, as he was so insistent on it, listened to an evening lecture and learned about the magical subluxation that he claimed could help with anything from infertility to appendicitis and I have studied their promotional material in detail and everything there is to find as far as research.

      Since then I have cured my lumbago bouts myself for free and in much less time than it took when the chiro was calling the shots. The man even insisted on manhandling my neck even if I never had any problems from that region! Thank god I did not win the one in a million or two lottery for a life with locked-in syndrome.

      They also do a fine job of discrediting themselves in public as we have seen many examples of here.

      The real problem is that authorities are not even aware there is a problem and so many people get hooked by their “practice-building techniques” and start to believe that they are being helped by the manhandling.

      What I resent most in their devious marketing is the way they lie and cheat about their abilities to help children with anything between bedwetting and asthma. An advertisement I saw recently stated that 95% [sic!] of neonates have spinal misalignment due to birth trauma(!!!) that should be corrected ASAP by a chiropractor. This is plain and simple fabrication and fraud.

      I started to suspect things were not alright with the practice of chiropractics already at the first visit when he took extensive x-rays of my spine that were of excessively poor quality. You saw very little detail. Being trained in general and trauma surgery you know what is an acceptable quality x-ray picture.

      People are coming to real doctors I know, with fogged whole-body x-rays, unduly terrified because chiropractors thought they saw something that should be checked. One radiologist friend told me a few days ago that a woman had brought her total body x-rays of her young child because the chiropractor had said the child’s pelvis was in many pieces adn this was a terrible thing!!!!! The child was absolutely normal of course. This chiro has the most modern digital equipment in town but he did not know how to read the unnecessary x-rays that gave a healthy child a wicked dose of ionizing radiation to add to its lifetime risk of cancer.

  • I am so perplexed by this article, blog, book and lie. There are people in the USA that die from Medical Doctors and Hospitals in the hundreds of thousands, JAMA said more than 300,000 patients die at there hands. Every medication has a side effect, which most times are worst than the condition being treated. M.D’s being paid to give medications that has never cured a disease. Actually, can anyone tell me the last cure we have had since small pox. Cancer? Nope, we are still running races to make more money for Susie K. foundation, Diabetes? Heart Disease? Lupus? hell the common cold? Oh yeah, there is no money in cures only maintaining people in a sick state. Yet we have a article the goes in length to bash a profession that doesn’t harm 1 soul, just because the person writing the article is either a chiropractor who either failed out of school, failed in business, is a MD that is loosing face in his community to chiropractors making a difference, disgruntled medical doctor or med school administrator who is seeing a decline in enrollment in there “unscientific medical schools”.

    Food for thought if, an airline which has similar number of customers as hospitals with patients had over 300,000 killed in plane crashes each year, NO ONE WOULD FLY.

    300,000 people a year in the US killed by guns, there would probably be a nation wide ban on guns,

    300,000 people killed by any profession who definitely lead to alot of people going to jail.

    WHY, because in other countries around the world we would call that, Genocide, not health care, not scientific evidence, not “real doctors”, just plane murderers. or in this case the cost of doing business.

    • Abdul

      Oh dear.

      I’ve no idea why you use the title doctor, but it would appear you didn’t earn it for critical thinking or research skills.

    • Abdul

      You are parroting a nonsense mantra of altmed propaganda. You never even read the article in JAMA from 2000 which is talking about the poor state of health service in the us, not the state of medical science. It certainly says nothing about the usefulness of whatever you choose instead of real medicine, including chiropractics. The figures are pure speculation and saying that doctors are killing patients in such numbers is pain insolence.
      Your comments on the progress of medicine only illustrates your ignorance. Cancer is for example not a disease. It is a class of hundreds of different diseases.

  • Simple. Md students have more patient during their clinical years due to any Joe Shmoe complaining of pain and easily getting a prescription in ANY ER in America, besides the fact there’s a huge epidemic of teenagers claiming they can’t focus and immediately get prescribed aderal. It’s easy for doctors to come across patients, besides the fact you have every other commercial describing symptoms that could apply to a 6 month old and a 60 yr old. People be AWARE!!!!! Md students have more school/clinical hours in perscription drugs then the study of the human nervous system!!!! The “father” of modern medicine believed In proper education and health and spreading that to the masses! Not you script happy opinion. There will always be someone on the other side of the table…. But you can’t argue the fact that studies are showing a huge decrease of md doctors, of nearly 100,000 in the next decade. Our health care system has made America fat lazy sick manipulated…. And the ppl are seeing it. Chiropractic isn’t for everyone, that’s fair to say, but modern medicine is killing. The ppl are seeing it now. Whole health is what is important. I don’t see how it’s possible to fully promote “medical” doctors and absolutely have others ppls best interest at heart. There’s more studies to show and prove it’s downfall verses it’s positive uprise. Chiropractic is not a job! It’s a life style! It’s not something to trick ppl steal manipulate… Most offices have no advertising. It’s about spreading healthy options of how to maintain optimal health. Helping those who had no other options, and most of those people wish it was their first but just didn’t have proper education or knowledge on the positive effects of chiropractic. Also there are thousand of offices that are cash not insurance run, unlike most MD’s, chiropractors don’t need to rely on health insurance companies for a paycheck. I see all the doctorates you have obtained and realize that you most likely find yourself more highly qualified than any other person here, and that right there will eventually be your downfall. To those of you who are wondering, I am NOT a chiropractor. I am not a chiropractor student. And my influence on this subject comes from a more powerful and smarter individual then who wrote this post. My love for truth and pointing out the mass manipulators is what drives me. You are wrong to attempt to exploit chiropractic. I am a person of complete rational thinking. You mention how chiropractors use politics for Medicare verses medical merit…. How did you not laugh and fall off your chair with that one??? The medical field is not only friends with but they are dick suckers to the politicians of this country. Big pharma owns your ass. There’s no merit in that. Chiropractors don’t say that regular medical care is never useful, in fact I have been to many important seminars that claim that chiropractors can’t heal bones or apply stitches, they don’t aim to be the worlds next greatest healer. They aim to help people obtain positive health through knowledge and regular chiro care. They believe in your body reaching its maximum Potential on a DAILY basis! Why would someone not want that? Why would someone not want to hear that the drugs their doctor is giving them is actually making them sick. Why would ppl not want to know of alternatives to fix the mistakes big pharma has caused. You say chiropractic isn’t for children?!?! I say VACCINES are NOT for children! Especially NEW BORNS! I say prescriptions are NOT meant for 5 year olds. I say that AUTISM is a NEW!! Disease in our human life span! Really look at everything people, don’t take one doctors opinion. Don’t take 12 doctors opinion. You believe what they want you to believe. Manipulated creatures. That’s the biggest illness epidemic now, ignorant manipulation. And then those same ppl feel qualified to defend a side they have never even fully understood. I hope you sleep well at night knowing you’ve influenced with the wrong information.

  • 1 hour deep tissue myofacial massage $70:00, always makes you feel good.

    Three minutes on a chiropractors table $65:00, dubious results at best.

    You do the math.

  • Erin,
    If you are going to say stupid things, please try to avoid saying them stupidly. The medication is spelled Adderall. ‘Newborns’ is one word. The grammatically correct phrase would be “There [are] more studies to show and prove its [no apostrophe] downfall verses its [no apostrophe] positive uprising.” Just to name a few. And until you are a medical professional, I would prefer it if you did not comment on things you have no education about, including the benefit of vaccines and the causes of obesity and laziness; please avoid defending a side you have very obviously never understood. I am glad that you have not been even slightly manipulated by this nameless “more powerful and smarter individual than who wrote this post.”

  • S246 wrote: “His book is garbage”

    I’m interested to know what you make of the third paragraph on page 109 of Preston Long’s book, and also what important papers (according to you) he has *excluded* from his references at the end of each chapter. Thanks.

  • I think you are not really a Chiropractor and whatever you are it is obvious that you totally are trying to sabotage Chiropractors and Chiroractic, without having a real accurate knowledge about them and their education. You totally have exaggerated about the negative points you have mentioned and many things you have said are totally biased.

  • Amy said:

    I think you are not really a Chiropractor

    I sincerely hope that Prof Ernst isn’t moonlighting as a chiro! The shame!

    But as he asked, do you have any evidence to substantiate what you say?

  • No one needs to read the book to understand he is right. MD’s see Chiropractors as their biggest threat to lose money. Although this is changing and a lot of MD’s are referring patients to DC’s and vice versa. You can see clearly you are just trying to sell a book here and nothing more, it is sad and pathetic really.

    • ad hominem attacks are the norm when there are no real arguments!?!

    • Well said:

      MD’s see Chiropractors as their biggest threat to lose money. Although this is changing and a lot of MD’s are referring patients to DC’s and vice versa.

      Two very clear assertions. Care to try to back them up with evidence?

      • Did you want MD names that refer patients to DCs? I get several referrals a week, what year are you living in to think MDs and DCs are against each other? Obviously some are but many work together, even professional sports teams and the Olympic medical team have DCs on staff? Want to explain that then?

    • Hi ‘Well’.

      Since you’ve posted here previously, would you like to tell everyone else your real name?

  • This is the biggest balogne I have ever seen and highly doubt this guy would bad-mouth his own profession (I guess he wanted to sell a bunch of books by rejecting his own business). There are a lot of chiropractic colleges, just like there are LOT of undergraduate universites. The quality of your education from a state school isn’t going to be nearly as good as a Harvard education. The only reason people in the medical community want to get rid of chiropractic is because it is a threat to their monopoly on medical care. DONE

    • do you have any real arguments?

      • Edzard said:

        do you have any real arguments?

        I somehow doubt it…

        • Lets report the damage done by prescriptions medications each day if you want to help people out. There will be bad and good in every profession but to just bad mouth one, shows you have an agenda against it and are not really trying to help anyone other then your injured ego. There are plenty of legitimate studies out showing chiropractic being the proper route of action before medicine/surgery. To disagree is to be blind and intentionally ignorant on the topic.

          I agree that chiropractic can not cure everything and that docs that say it can are a black eye to the entire profession.

          Keep in mind that I also believe medicine can’t cure everything and you should understand that also.

  • As a Chiropractic graduate from Logan College, I could not agree more. It is such a quessing game. In retrospect I would have been better off telling patients that I would hit them in the “ass” with a shovel once a week and take their money. Then send them on their way. Tis would have done about the same thing as the bull I promulated for years, trying to sound scientific when in the end I was cheating the patient and lying to myself. How long can the public be deceived.

  • Test

  • I admit, I have not read the book. I simply read the excerpt from above. However, I am a current graduate of a Canadian Chiropractic College and I have a much different view than the author.

    1)Cheating. There was little to no cheating by anyone I knew in my program; 2 students were expelled throughout my degree and the class was largely supportive of this action.

    2)Education. I was required to see 35 patients, with a minimum of 350 subsequent treatments. A maximum of 7 could be students or family, and all were required to be alive. This was a minimum and many of us treated upwards of 50;500. I would agree that this should be more, however, this happens to be a logistic issue and rounds and outside learning/observing were stressed and encouraged.

    3)”Subluxation” with a non-medical (partial dislocation) definition was a taboo word during school. I have yet to say it to a patient (or think it, for that matter).

    4) Scope: Neuromusculoskeletal conditions. Any nerve, muscle or joint… I am proud of this because I do it well. I cannot cure AIDS & I know this. However, I can help with back, neck, shoulder, etc. pain.

    5) Research: touche’, here is a valid point. RCT’s are the gold standard for empirical evidence and manual medicine is more difficult to study via RCT than prescription medication. This makes the studies longer, more rigorous, with a lot more ethical considerations and confounding variables to consider. Additionally, the profession is quite young in relation to medicine. Therefore, yes, chiropractic (and other manual therapy) evidence is lacking. In rebuttal to this comment, I will note that in order to graduate I was required to complete either a literature review or an approved undergraduate research project… the profession has taken note and is taking steps to rectify this (post-graduate work included).

    6) X-rays: I have learned and follow the same imaging guidelines medical doctors follow, as do most of my colleagues.

    I would just like to say that reading this post made my heart break a little. This gentleman clearly had a terrible time in school & just like picking a medical college (or any college for that matter), he should have researched a bit more. I attended my chiropractic college specifically because of an upstanding scientific reputation based solely on evidence-based medicine. I hope that people understand the way doctors of chiropractic practice varies widely, and searching out the best chiropractor for you is important & worthwhile. Ask friends, family or colleagues what has worked for them: personal referrals are the best source.

    • Totally agree with CanadaDC…. what was taught at the university I studied in Australia seems quite similar to that of Canada…. no pseudoscience, only MSK conditions

  • wow..your website is so PRO-medical..do you work for the government or simply wish people to stay drugged..

    I am so disappointed in your ability to tell the truth.

    P.S. I know more about health than you

    • so, tell us what you know about health. do you mean the nonsense you learnt in chiro-college?

    • Pro medical or pro evidence? Can you see a difference? That subtle difference in perception is what makes you think you know more about health. In fact its not that subtle a difference.

      I hope you aren’t as arrogant in other aspects of your life.

  • Whose turn is it for the popcorn?

  • My infant daughter was in excruciating pain following an emergency c-section. Her neck was pulled out of alignment by the cord, which was around her neck. After one adjustment she showed visible improvement. I believe in the benefits of proper alignment, particularly when the misalignment is causing pain. I have been to several chiropractors who spent anywhere from 5 minutes ( or less) to 45 minutes adjusting me. I have gotten great relief from being adjusted properly. I have encouraged my kids to become chiropractors. When state medicaid will cover it, it has made giant leaps in being recognized as beneficial.

    • …and what tells you that, without ‘adjustments’, your daughter would not have improved to – or perhaps even faster?

    • @Christina

      I am curious.
      Why did you not sue the obstetrician who mishandled your infant? !

      Why do I say this?
      The neck of your daughter cannot have been pulled “out of alignment” in any other way than by the obstetrician as she was delivered by C-section. An emergency C-section was performed because there were signs on the fetal monitoring of intermittently decreased blood flow in the cord during labour. Had there been such a pull on the cord to have sufficed to pull the neck out of alignment, the blood flow in the cord would have had to stop for a good while and your daughter would have been dead some time before the operation could commence. That is why fetal monitoring has been devised, to save the child’s life before it is too late and the blood flow has stopped in the cord.
      What is more, for this to happen (blood flow being affected in the cord) the head will have to be normally fixed in the pelvis thereby not being able to move in relation to the body. So the pull on the cord would have to be extreme in order to have an untoward effect on the unborn childs neck.
      (How do I know? Well, I should know these things being a surgeon myself and having shared my life with an obstetrician wife for almost 30 years.)
      Therefore, if your chiropractor is right about the neck having been misaligned, it must have happened when the obstetrician was handling the child at or after the Cesarean section.

      So maybe you should confront the obstetrician (with your chiropractor and a lawyer present) with the fact that the child was in pain from a neck misalignment after the C-section, which the chiropractor successfully fixed. It will be interesting to hear what the obstetrician and her/his lawyer say.

      Or…
      Let’s say your daughter had been very unlucky and ended up in a wheelchair. Who would have been to blame, the obstetrician or the chiropractor?

      No I don’t think so.

      The truth is that the chiropractor community have made up these problems as a part of their “practice building”. Based on flawed and exagerated research about spinal problems from (even normal) delivery they have somewhat successfully expanded their customer base (and thereby income) to infants and children. They are in effect pretending to treat non-existent conditions using fictional methods.

      Your daughter was presumably simply unhappy as she felt how you were upset after the chiropractor told you tall tales about an imaginary problem. Then when the chiropractor fondled and manipulated the child (gently of course) the child was, as expected, soothed and the charla… eh, chiropractor assured you that his/her magic had worked.

      In the old days impostors were tarred and feathered. Now they are glorified on facebook.

      Did you remember to thank the obstetric team for saving your daughters life.

  • As a second-generation chiropractor myself, I can tell you that much of what we learn in school is absolute nonsense. Chiropractors, at their best, can only provide temporary palliative relief to some types of musculoskeletal pain. At worst, we delay needed medical treatment by telling our patients lies. We have almost no critical thinking skills as well as a complete lack of understanding of the scientific method. This is best demonstrated by the vast number of chiropractors who (at least here in the US) still believe in the “subluxation theory”. There is really no reason for the chiropractic profession to exist at all. If one “needs” to have some manipulative therapy performed (adjustment), it can now (again at least in the US) be done by a doctor of physical therapy who in over half the states now have the right to manipulate. They can now also see patients without a referral, just like a chiro. Most chiros are unaware of this and I love hearing them say, “well our education/degree/title is superior to a PT, that is why we are considered to be portal of entry healthcare providers and PT’s are not…they need a referral from an MD” I have personally seen and heard other chiropractors tell their patients the most insane things and people lap it up- never underestimate how powerful it is to Mr. John Doe to hear the “doctor” take time to listen to his compaints and agree with him. The placebo effect is quite powerful and chiropractors use it to the fullest.

    • Evan Dadas wrote: “There is really no reason for the chiropractic profession to exist at all. If one “needs” to have some manipulative therapy performed (adjustment), it can now (again at least in the US) be done by a doctor of physical therapy who in over half the states now have the right to manipulate. They can now also see patients without a referral, just like a chiro.”

      Interesting comment. The reformist, veteran chiropractor, Samuel Homola, signalled the following eight years ago:

      QUOTE
      “As I warned in Bonesetting, Chiropractic and Cultism, if chiropractic fails to specialize in an appropriate manner, there may be no justification for the existence of chiropractic when there are an adequate number of physical therapists providing manipulative therapy. Many physical therapists are now using manipulation/mobilization techniques. Of the 209 physical therapy programs in the US, 111 now offer Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degrees. Some of these programs have been opened to qualified chiropractors. According to the American Physical Therapy Association,

      “…Physical therapy, by 2020, will be provided by
      physical therapists who are doctors of physical therapy
      and who may be board-certified specialists. Consumers
      will have direct access to physical therapists in all environments
      for patient/client management, prevention, and
      wellness services. Physical therapists will be practitioners
      of choice in patients’/clients’ health networks and will
      hold all privileges of autonomous practice…”

      It matters little who does spinal manipulative therapy as long as it is appropriate and evidence-based.”

      Ref. The Journal of Manual & Manipulative Therapy
      Vol. 14 No. 2 (2006), E14 – E18
      http://jmmtonline.com/documents/HomolaV14N2E.pdf

  • The last line of Sam Homola’s article:
    In reply to Blue:
    “For those researchers striving to develop an inter-professional research agenda on the therapeutic use of manipulation,
    it would be necessary to seek out evidence-based chiropractors, who can participate in joint-manipulation research that is free of bias and dogma.”
    COCA already there! Support!
    Craig Liebenson already there! Support!
    Murdock University already there! Support!
    Macquarie University already there! Support!
    The momentum for change has gathered momentum here and the subbies are becoming worried and vocal!
    Support the reformers and speed up the process!

  • Very odd. I can’t find a single statement above that is true of my chiropractor and trust me….I did insane amounts of research. I have been a poo-pooer of chiropractors my whole life. After spending literally thousand of dollars in neurologists and cardiologists, pain meds and cholesterol meds, I finally did the research and found a chiro. I go every other month at most, my insurance covers it, I get vitamins for half the cost of target or cub and I have been migraine free with a healthy cholesterol for years.

    • @ Laura

      It’s good to hear that you are feeling better. However, when it comes to scientific medicine, personal anecdotes regarding benefit from a therapy have to be discarded. Here’s why:

      QUOTE
      “One of the hard won lessons of the process of scientific discovery is that anecdotal evidence is very unreliable. Psychologist Barry Beyerstein summarized it well when he wrote, “anecdotal evidence leads us to conclusions that we wish to be true, not conclusions that actually are true.” So anecdotes can be worse than worthless, they can be misleading. This conclusion was arrived at after centuries of being misled by anecdotes…What we mean, exactly, by anecdotal evidence is the report of an experience by one or more persons that is not objectively documented or an experience or outcome that occurred outside of a controlled environment. Such evidence is unreliable because it depends upon the accurate perception of the witness(es), often in a situation where the event was unexpected or unusual; it is dependent upon subjective memory, which has been overwhelmingly demonstrated to be extremely error prone and subject to a host of flaws; and it cannot account for the random vagaries of a chaotic world…the bottom line is this – we know for certain from countless historical examples that even people who have all the traits of a reliable witness can be profoundly mistaken.”

      Ref: http://theness.com/neurologicablog/index.php/no-love-for-anecdotal-evidence/

      I also suggest that you have a slow read through Barry Beyerstein’s classic essay, Social and Judgmental Biases That Seem to Make Inert Treatments Work. It’s a thorough analysis of alternative medicine and common errors of reasoning:
      http://web.archive.org/web/20050329093720/http://www.sram.org/0302/bias.html

      • Yup, Laura’s post is anecdotal.

        Edzard’s recent post: acupuncture didn’t work for someone – anecdotal. And his chiro story – anecdotal. Bjorn has posted about about a patient who tried gua sha for appendicitis – anecdotal. A friend of mine had a bad reaction to cipro causing her liver to fail – anecdotal.

        Probably none of them will be trying those specific therapies again, based on personal experience or anecdotal evidence. Bjorn will probably not try gua sha for his arthritis, based on the patient’s experience. Even though I can rattle off 50 patients off the top of my head that effectively manage arthritis in their hands with gua sha. And fair enough – his experience would be enough to put anyone off gua sha. I’ll never take cipro, based on anecdotal evidence. Even though I know people who have gotten benefit from it. Even though her experience is anecdotal, I know that my friend will never take cipro for a UTI again.

        On the other hand, Laura found success with chiro – anecdotal. I know hundreds of people personally, and know of many many more who get great results from gua sha – anecdotal. I know people who have gotten benefit from cipro – anecdotal. I hear great stories every day about acupuncture, gua sha, cupping, moxa, massage, and qigong working where nothing else did – anecdotal.

        So while Laura reads the links you provided…you should learn from her experience and follow her example. Do your own research, find your own answers.

        In the end, the only evidence that really matters is the evidence you collect for yourself.

  • Yes, Laura. Happy to hear that you are healthier now and another of the millions of satisfied people of all ages around the world who have been helped with their migraines with natural, non-drug chiropractic health care.

    But, I would have to agree with Blue Wode on this one. You apparently don’t know truth from reality, right from wrong, fact from fantasy. You certainly don’t know what helped you. Blue Wode does, though. And if you read his recommendations, I am confident your migraines will return and you can then go get some “scientific” medical help and drugs again and see a real doctor for sick care not health care — who, BTW, can’t help migraines. Just sayin’.

    Congrats again.

  • Hi everyone! well this has been a heated discussion hasn’t it?

    Well if one was to look into the history of chiropractic medicine it is rubbish. Being a graduate from a UC with a degree in Biology and emphasis in neuroscience, volunteering 400 hours in a ER, working as a EMT, working in many different dental offices, receiving acupuncture and chiropractic healthcare, I can honestly say there is an absolute need for both!

    I broke the growth plate in my knee at a very young age. My right leg is a quarter inch shorter than my left. I was a runner growing up and that quarter inch has thrown off my pelvic height and thus my spine is tilted. I have more pressure on one side of my body than the other and my discs have been greatly damaged. I have been seeing doctors, neurologists my entire life. I have had taken massive amounts of pain killers which have caused more problems than than they helped. I have worn a back brace most of my life. I have 4 bulged discs and spondilo. Anyways, bottom line is I am in pain.

    What finally resolved my back pain. I went and found an EVIDENCE based chiropractor after my SURGEON told me that CHIROPRACTOR would manually adjust my back and bring blood flow and nutrients to my herniated discs. My chiro adjusted me twice a week. He also made sure to se my x-rays and mri before he adjusted me. After two weeks I have had a massive decrease in pain. More mobility than I have ever experienced in my life. He recommended I read the book Foundation which was written by a DC and a PT and has helped athletes such as Lance Armstrong. This book has taught me back workouts that strengthened my back and changed my life.

    I start chiro school next week. I understand that MD’s and DC’s are two completely different fields!!! I have needed both to help. The pain meds were rough, the anti-inflammatory’s meds helped, as well as the corizone shots into my back. But if it wasn’t for my chiro, my discs would have never regenerated as well as they did. If it wasn’t for my chiro I would have had surgery and spent SOOOO much money! My mobility is back and I live a healthy lifestyle now that strengthens my back rather than just guarding it from pain. My DC advises me to go to my primary care physician for some things regarding my back, and my MD advises me to go to my DC for others. They need to work in a synergistic relationship people! There are chiro schools such as my own that have been accredited by associations that are scientifically proven evidence based thought.

    I like to think of my future practice someday as similar to that of a yoga practice. In fact, I believe both yoga and chiropractic are extremely healthy for the back and body. Going to a chiropractor has taught me to always be conscious of back and learn new movements, nutrition and exercises to make my back feel amazing. And when I have full restored mobility to my spine, my entire life and well being are energized. Chiropractic healthcare is becoming more and more evidence based by nature, because of the doubt many people have with the old teachings of “subluxations”, those chiropractors are being phased out. By the way, subluxations are functional not structural.

    Anyways, I just wanted to chime in because I have spoke for many hours to my DC about the efficacy of chiropractic healthcare and what type of scam many DC’s are running out there. Sure, the vitamins DC’s are selling may be overpriced, and most will try to sell you things you dont need. But some DC’s will have vitamins that are excellent for anti-inflammatory purposes and wont damage your organs like most prescription grade AI’s. Being someone that has had damage from AI’s and painkillers I can attest that vitamins are the way to go. Anyone who has taken biochemistry knows that vitamins allow for processes to occur in the body that are natural. Prescription grade AI’s forces these processes to occur and damage organs.

    Point being, there are phony’s out there, DC’s MD’s dentists, even PT! Some chiro’s out there may have not had an evidence based curriculum, which is extremely problematic and can give a horrible name to DC’s everywhere. As someone who has studied neuroscience in school, I can say that we are soooo advanced in this field. Also, the amount of information we have left to learn is compared to exploring the ocean. My mom has Multiple Sclerosis and I hope neuroscience one day figures out why her autoimmune system is being triggered to attack itself. We dont have the technology yet to study everything. Chiropractic medicine has everything to do with the nervous system and more information is constantly being published about the positive use of adjustments to help the nervous system in one way or another. Read articles on Pubmed.com for anything and everything!
    There is a reason most adjustments by a reputable DC makes someone who has back problems feel better. Internally, at the cellular level, at the cellular communication level.

    We need medical doctors dear god! and chiropractic doctors are more of a specialty that help people like me when all my other options in western medicine have been tried. Back pain is still and always will be a major complaint with more and more people sitting down, in doors, on social media and desk jobs eating crap, gaining weight throwing off their spinal alignment and pinching nerves. Thank god for chiropractic medicine

    • “Thank god for chiropractic medicine”

      What a truly profound concluding statement! Neither gods nor chiropractors have yet managed to provide any solid empirical evidence for their efficacy beyond placebo. However, the similarity between gods and chiropractors hasn’t escaped the notice of those who understand the findings of science- and evidence-based medicine.

      • OK so I thought I would update my post.

        “thank god for chiropractic medicine”~ I may have been a little overly excited. I am a Protestant Christian and this statement was pre-mature of me to say. But what I found yesterday did relate God to Chiro work and I must say, this disturbing similarity Pete 628 describes between God and chiros is NOT ok.

        I went to orientation at chiro school yesterday. It was not all it was “cracked up” to be lol!!!!
        I am so thankful I read this blog before I attended it. I tried to prove my point in the blog because, lets face it, a chiro did help my pain with bulged discs, but ultimately, my pain has come back.

        I was disturbed at chiro school orientation by the “gimmick” feeling that was present. I was disturbed when a chiro told me we needed to learn 2,419 hours classwork so we could speak to MD’s on their level. That is on average 400 more hours of classwork than medical schools and for what? So chiro’s can just PROVE thier POINT? There seems to be a reason Chiro’s have to Argue how evidence-based their work really is. I was disturbed by the fact that for many, chiro school was a last resort. I was disturbed when I heard, “im just happy i FINALLY know what to do!” uttered for a students mouth. I was disturbed because I related and this was my last choice too….

        I am getting out of chiro school as soon as possible. I am going to immediately take the 2 remaining classes I need to take to get into PA school and get my pre-reqs in order. I have always wanted to become a PA, I just never had the balls to do it. UNTIL NOW.

        I will conclude with this.
        quote me please…
        Thank GOD I found out the quakery that takes place in even the best Chiropractic schools, and am now mentally prepared to do what I have to do to actually help people with medical problems!!!!!
        HORAY for this blog, and thank you to the man that started writing it! He really did help the chiropractic community by giving a warning out to any of us that might be tricked into joining it!

        • I like that you updated your post. Definitely food for thought.

          I did have one question though (and it’s an honest question.) Could you elaborate on why a student saying “I’m glad I finally know what to do!” disturbed you? That was the part that I didn’t understand, and I’m guessing there’s more to that part of the story. Everything else made sense to me (in context) except that part.

  • I don’t know, Bob. Your whole story sounds “gimmicky” to me. On the internet, anyone can write anything and be anyone they pretend to be. Your whole story sounds fishy at best. IOW, it fails the smell test, IMO.

    If you are really a soon-to-be former chiropractic college student, you will be missing out on helping others with drug-free approaches to health care. But if drugs is your thing, go ahead and enjoy. Best you get out now. PA skool sounds nice. You can do all the things that real MDs do like examine, write scripts for drugs, jab people with needles, poke your finger in various holes, have people cough on you — all with just a couple of years of PA school. And, also without the title of doctor and without getting a cut of the pie.

    So, get ready for long hours and plenty of work, making the MDs job easier since no one seems to get to see them anymore, you mostly see a PA now, and also no benefits an MD/partner would get. Bringing less MDs into the practice, means less partners, which means they don’t have to divide up the pie into ever smaller pieces. You just get a salary tjat upi will be happy to get since you will need a job and you will hope they will be in a good mood and give you a raise every few years. Otherwise you will leave after a few years like many do, seeking better wages.

    But if you are getting out of chiropractic college now, it is good that you listened to your inner voice and saved you and the college four years of aggravation. I am sure they will be sending you a thank you note shortly after your disappearance.

    Best of luck, Bob. Hope the grass is greener in PA land … (translation – It’s never greener in the other fellows yard.)

  • HA it is so much greener over here!!!

    Ahh I was so afraid the school would try and keep my FASFA money, being that more research I do I see now that after Palmer invented his “subluxation” THEORY in 1885 it was just that a THEORY, and chiropractic is just a business model to make money teaching other chiropractors!

    I am so relieved I dodged that bullet. My sister is a nurse and she loves it, I have friends that are PA’s a Love it. I wanted to go into chiropractic originally to help others with a more naturopathic outlook. But i realized, I can do that in the medical field! I dont have to recommend tons of drugs that cover up the symptoms and don treat the real problem.

    FYI- just because nerves in the spine run to different areas of the body does mean “cracking” an area of bone around them will heal anything! But lets face it, placebo affect is still very important to those that are giving up hope and are willing to spend money and try anything.

    Anyways, comment how you like about me, I just wanted to tell my story. Last time I ever look at this blog.

    I am so happy I didnt sell out and give up on medicine and turn to something I thought would sound prestigious and make money. CHiropractic????!!! LOL Its the blind leading the blind!!!

  • Hey btw,

    Skepdoc, when you get the flu do you take medication or get adjusted LOL

    Dont answer that, the correct answer is medication. But I know you will say adjustment :)

  • I am personally disgusted with this article, this book, this thread.
    Chiropractic correction has changed my life.
    Medication nearly killed me.
    “REAL DOCTORS”? Seriously?
    Please…keep going to the drug pushers and “death prolongers”. I will stick with what has worked for me. What has worked for the thousands of patients I have seen over the last 20 years…..
    We need to thin the herd anyway.
    Shelly
    shellyamberstone@yahoo.com

  • For all you who say chiropractic does not work to fix back and neck pain: You could be right that for some reasons getting adjusted does not work but here is my testimonials for times in which I received some sort of chiropractic and how it helped me. At Ft. Hood Texas, I used to get my neck adjusted by Korean barbers who I would get an extra hair cut from later on in the week so I could tip and get the awesome massage after work because they would crack your upper neck just right to eliminate any pain, allowing a good sleep. I now see a chiropractor and get my lower back adjusted after getting slammed in the back of a HMMWV in OIF II and I feel pain relief, so if this is the goal, then it does work for that in my opinion. I know that this will never solve the debate, but thought I would add my observances so that it may help someone in the future.

  • It took me a very, very long time to get through all this but I wanted to make sure that I had read everything before I comment. I am originally from Germany and chiropractors are definitely not as popular over there as they seem to be in the USA or Canada. A lot of people don’t even know about this field.
    I have had my first experience with a chiropractor in NZ in 2009 after I experienced acute pain in my lower back that rsulted in me not being able to get up or move anymore. I have never felt that helpless in my life before. my former boss recommended I should see a Chiro so I did and I felt a lot better afterwards. When I discontinued my sessions due to me moving back to Germany my back problems came back on a regular basis and more and more frequent. I have consulted doctors, orthopedists, osteopaths as well as physio therapists and nothing seems to be THE right thing for me. Which is really frustrating. I now live in Canada and the two doctors I went to (both emergency doctors) have done little to nothing to examine me, tried to sell me on the idea that the back pain I experience might be due to problems with my kidneys and all they did was prescribe Tylenol and diclofenac. Needles to say they did jack squat in my case. Well, the diclo gave me stomach cramps after a while even though I took them with a meal. I have now started seeing a chiro again and at first I was quite optimistic. But now after having read all this I am doubting my desicion. I have had three consecutive sessions with him. He took a lot of time examining me, taking four x rays, explaining the procedures and adjusting me. I liked the fact that I wasn’t rushed through. But so far I have not felt an improvement yet. I know that people re very sore after their first adjustments but I can hardly move. That’s how sore I am. Basically, I only have one question. What could an MD do for me in this case? What would they do differently? I am quite certain that my pain is due to my hip displasia and the fact that one of my legs is 14mm (a little more than half an inch) longer than the other. Can that be regulated through adjustments?

  • Hi Astrid, you need chiropractic adjustments followed by some form of orthotic to address the leg length difference. If you do not do something to counter the drop on the short side you will get no long term benefit from any therapy. You will not need 14mm the possible actual difference but 5-7mm will more than enough to have a positive effect on pelvic alignment.

  • The fact that the NHS don’t refer is enough for me to be suspicious. That and the Chiropractor I saw told me I have flat feet when I know full well I don’t. So yes, let’s expose some of the less good things so that people aren’t diddled.

  • The “chiropractor” who started this thread is questionable. He illustrates the gullibility of many people. Does anyone really believe the a man would bash his own professions to such a degree. This foolishness confirms the extent to which the medical “profession” will reach to bash anything and anyone who competes with their dismal failure to cure disease and injury. How many people every year die at the hands of a chiropractor? How many die at the hands of a medical so-called professional? Over 250,000. In fact, there are a myriad of treatments with which chiropractors are very familiar that are successful at treating diseases at which the medical community is an abysmal failure. Cancer for just one example. Millions have died under the care of so called medical “doctors”, not from the cancer, but from the treatment. There have been cures for cancer for over 200 years. Chiropractors know about many of these but are not allowed to mention them because of the tyranny of the medical racket and the pharmaceutical industry, the most diabolical crime syndicate on the planet. You have to leave the U.S. to get treatment for cancer if you want to live and then pay for it out of you own pocket because the pharmaceutical industry and the medical racket have a stranglehold on so called “healthcare”. If the medical community is so successful at treating disease and injury, why have they moved heaven and earth to crush their competition? If a doctor of medicine OR chiropractic published a book about curing cancer, they will not only be put out of business, but many times have been mysteriously killed in one car “accidents”. The cancer industry is a racket and if we truly had an honest health care industry and an honest legal system with all modalities published and available, thousands of the chemotherapy and radiation pushers would be executed for murder. Check out all the books written about the Cancer racket by Ralph Moss and how the cures have been suppressed. And this is just ONE disease. There are many at which the medical community are a complete failure. I believe this guy who started this absurd thread is a plant. How much do you suppose they paid him to print this ridiculous nonsense?

    • “There have been cures for cancer for over 200 years. Chiropractors know about many of these but are not allowed to mention them because of the tyranny of the medical racket and the pharmaceutical industry, the most diabolical crime syndicate on the planet.”
      YOU ARE ALLOWED TO MENTION THEM HERE. WHAT ARE THEY? LET US ALL BENEFIT FROM YOUR KNOWLEDGE, PLEASE.
      oh, by the way: cancer is not just “ONE disease”.

  • Here’s the way I see it. Chiropractors are like automotive mechanics. A good one will look at the problems you describe, diagnose the issue in terms of their ability to repair, and work to fix the issue. A bad one will try and tell you that you are low on headlight fluid and that your flux capacitor is broken.

    Chiropractors are a very specialized form of medical professional who have a specific field of study. I personally would not trust a chiropractor who said they could aid with anything non-musculoskeletal, because that is what they are supposed to do. Likewise, I would not trust a dentist who said he could cure my impotence by removing my right bicuspid (I’ve actually had this happen).

    Chiropractors are considered pseudoscience hacks by the community at large because of a loud group who feel the need to take advantage of unsuspecting dolts. I have gone to chiropractors multiple times for minor adjustments due to my lifestyle as a martial artist. I have never once had a chiropractor suggest that I come in for 50-100 sittings. The most I have ever had for sessions for a single issue was about 7. That was because the pain, while slowly lessening, didn’t go away after three visits.

    I guess what I’m trying to say here is that you need to do your research before approaching any medical professional. Make sure they have training from a reputable school. If they offer services outside the realm of musculoskeletal then look somewhere else, and if they try and sell you some grossly large number of treatments then walk away.

    • Well I AM an automotive technician and I can assure you that chiropractors are *nothing* like me. What I do cures the problem in question and has guaranteed and proven results. Neither good nor bad automotive mechanics would enter into discussions about flux capacitors (like chiropractic subluxations, they belong in the world of fiction). Even the worst ones won’t offer to manipulate your chassis subframe in order to cure a misfire from the engine.
      Strangely enough there are a whole load of people out there who are incapable of assimilating simple facts about very simple machines such as are automobiles: yes you can buy snake oil for cars too, and there is a whole industry living off that very fact…. oil additives….. fuel additives… silly magnets to go around your fuel pipes….. no need to constrain your pre-enlightenment, pre-luddite predilections to the doctor’s surgery: They can prevail throughout all of your life.

  • I have read this list of 20 objections to chiropractic and I want to tell you that chiropractic has changed my life. When I started serious chiropractic – 3x a week for a year, 2x a week for a year, then 1x a week for a year, now I go every month – I was seriously subluxated, and I was physically and psychologically impaired. Chiropractic has opened u my nervous system, improved my immune system, and improved my sleep and overall feeling of wellbeing. All a medical would have done for me is give me drugs. If I dont go to the chiropractor, my body begins to stiffen up and I develop problems in my knees, which are immediately resolved by chiropractic. I dont believe chiropractor is good for specific diseases, nor do I want or need this. Chiropractic improves my overall level of health, wellbeing, and functioning, and that is what I need and want. I suppose there is some risk with anything, but I have never had an adverse reaction to chiropractic and I get this benefit without the use of powerful drugs that weaken the body and increase the body’s susceptibility to disease by weaking the natural capacity of the body to heal itself. thank you

    • I am so glad for you – have you tried faith healing yet?

      • @Edzard.
        Alexander is already receiving faith healing. The faith is his. His faith in the chiropractor.
         
        @Alexander
        You know what? When I tried this kind of faith healing for my lumbago many years ago, my knowledge of anatomy, physiology and neurology soon had me lose faith in the chiropractor. A friend who, like you, spent regular money on the bloke just in case, had recommended this to me and I was in really bad shape so I was ready to believe anything. My faith started dwindling fast when the chiro tried to tell me they could heal everything from Appendicitis to Zoster by thumping the spine. But I kept going because I wasn’t really recuperating and the literature said chiropractic could help with uncomplicated LBP, which was what I had.
        I quit when the bl…y bunco artist stopped being all friendly and relaxed and forthcoming and started his weekly 2-minute money-making repetitions on me. Then I realized at last that he was only in it for the money. The only thing that really improved during these months was his bank balance.
        I look back on this time with horror because the bloke insisted on wringing my neck every other session even if I have never had problems with it. He said it was a preventive measure.
        He could have torn my VBA’s and I could have ended up worse than dead, for Christ’s sake!!! :/
         
        Did your chiro warn you about the possible but rare complications?

    • Alexander Duncan said:

      When I started serious chiropractic … I was seriously subluxated…

      Oh?! Did your chiropractor tell you that?

  • I have not read the book, but want to contribute my experience with GP and DC’s for its anecdotal worth.

    In attempting to treat lower back pain and sciatica which was impacting my ability to work significantly, I went the GP route. The GP’s offered me drugs, some of which were later pulled by the FDA for causing damage to heart and digestive areas. I took myself off the drugs before these were pulled as I observed symptoms/side affects. I also saw various types of specialists from othopedics to rheumatologists. I was offered a surgery which would have quite certainly had devastating long term impacts on my mobility (offered to fuse my hypermobile SI joint), I declined. I was offered drugs which would seriously diminish my immune system (on purpose to lower inflammation) and I declined over my concerns for increased risk of cancer (statistically significant). In short, the GP’s offered short term relief which all but guaranteed serious long term complications. Pass. Mind you, my pain was so bad that I was on crutches most days as a young man in my mid twenties.

    I had been simultaneously seeing a few DC’s to see if I could get some relief. I ran across many quacks but then got a referral to a DC that was trained in Atlas Orthogonal methodology. Within two weeks I was feeling much better. The acute phase was past and I was able to patiently continue to research and try to find non-invasive ways to manage my health (dietary changes, supplements, and physical therapy). Within 6 months I was back to surfing, climbing trees and carrying my children and oh yeah, working.

    Fast forward almost twenty years, I live in area without an atlas orthogonal DC. I CAREFULLY selected a chiro and they know not to manually adjust my neck. I call when I feel I need a visit and they don’t pressure me into signing up for a plan. I am on no prescriptions.

    There are lots of quacks out there in both GP and DC practice. Some will take your money. Some will compromise your future health. I have found that you have to take the mindset that you are the contractor and they are the subs. Know what you want done. Choose them carefully. Watch them closely. Fire them quickly if needed.

    For what its worth, both DC’s that I have respect for have graduated from LIFE and are within the Upper Cervical Specialty class of DC’s.

    • @Jamie Davis
      Your story is a positive one and it is shared by many. The problem is, no one adds up all the negative anecdotes to detract from the positives. My anecdote (previously recounted a few times here on the blog) for example, nullifies yours, using simple arithmetic: One minus one is zero. We have no idea how many negatives there are. We also know that there are millions who get better who never went to a chiropractor. Shouldn’t we detract them also?
      I have a longer part of my life than I care to recall, working in ER’s. I have frequently discussed this with active ER physicians who sigh and tell of all the cases who come crawling in or rolling in on stretchers in desperate pain after an unsuccessful visit or two at the chiropractor’s. There is no system of reporting and auditing these cases and most colleagues just shrug their shoulders and tend to more important business. There are not many who are prepared to take up a fight against the chiropractic community, driven by a “mother’s instinct” of protecting the livelihood of a large professional body.
       
      I am sure there are a lot of chiropractors, like the one you tell us about Jamie, who have a large uptake area and an attractive modus operandi, who do not need to apply many of the devious “practice building” methods to make an acceptable income. Like having people come for weekly “preventive adjustments” or the more despicable ones like lying to parents that 95% of infants have misalignments after birth that should be attended to by chiropractic care.
      That there are people out there calling themselves chiropractors or even “Doctors” of chiropractic who are adept at getting the odd case of acute lumbago out of bed, is no proof that the long dead, halfwit magnetic healer D.D. Palmer, invented a useful medical system.
       
      Chiropractors rely heavily, albeit unknowingly, on a system of delusion, suggestion and conjuring to mislead their clients into believing that the peculiar demonstration of “adjusting the spine” cures whatever ails them.
      I think this video illustrates extremely well the deep deception of chiropractic care. A teenaged, obviously very ambitious dancer hurts her knee and is devastated about it. Mother rushes her to the chiropractor. The chiro examines the knee to rule out serious injury (straightforward if you know how to) Then he starts the hour long show of make-believe and pretends to do magic medicine by “adjusting” the girls spine!! In reality the chiro has done nothing but soothe and reassure and get the girl to go up and move about as time works its wonders. Notice then how the chiro uses reinforcement to make sure the child and her mother are in complete awe at the apparent miracle. “Can’t believe it can you?” and then he tells her it will take some days to get even better. How many times do you think I have done similar therapy myself in the ER or at home or anywhere for that matter, in my decades of genuine doctor work? But maybe I failed to make a big show of it, pull rabbits out of my cap and tell the moms in so many words how extremely lucky their child was to have come to me instead of the useless chiropractor and so on.
      What would have happened if the girl had a torn ligament for real? The chiro would have had to refer her to the ER wouldn’t he?
      Why did the mother rush her daughter to the chiropractor? Because he has previously lied[sic] to them that he can fix anything and they should come to him first for any ailment or injury. The problem with chiropractic is that they have in fact delusions of grandeur. Otherwise they do not stay in business, as we have seen.
       
      It is the “spinal adjustment” theatrical placebo that is the fraud and swindle part of the whole racket of chiropractic care.

  • I have 6 brothers and I am the only one who receives chiropractic treatment in last 15 years, my brothers tend to age more and have stiffer backs , they don’t sit down like me 8 hours a day. I have been remarked as fittest , more active in the family and have best posture. So I believe chiropractic treatment keeps the spine subtle and enhances good posture. Perhaps the disease part prevention is exaggerated with chiro treatment but overall nearly ans Skelton structural health , chiro is the way to go for middle aged people.

  • My spine is obviously out-( chiropractor sent for X rays)
    If chiropratic cannot straighten my head and neck, who can ? What else can I do?

  • Had bypass heart surgery. Getting my chest split and wired back together left me with a “caved – in” situation, I guess my body’s attempt to minimize the pain. Four months after surgery, I went to my primary care doctor, the best doctor I’ve ever seen. When she went through my list of issues, the final one was my back. Because I’d become hunched over, my back was completely out of whack compared to what it was before the surgery. She said I needed come chiroptory, but, at 65, I’d never been to one, and was extremely leary of the standard anecdotal evidence of the profession’s methods. What I was afraid of was:
    1. Let’s take an x-ray;
    2. These are the seven places your are non-aligned;
    3. We can do something today to make you feel better, but this is the 83-visit schedule for us to cure you;
    4. Much of your problems are diet/sleep position/exercise method/”aura” etc. related and here are the 19 things we need to repair those conditions;
    5. You came to me just in time and you really don’t, in fact shouldn’t be taking those drugs for condition x and over the next ~~ months we’ll heal those conditions as well.

    When I told my doctor about my reservations, she snorted a little, and recommended a local chiropractor who was none of those things. I went to his office, did some paperwork, went with him to the table room, and we talked. He had a spine model, and I showed him where the pain concentration was on the model, he put me on his table and finished his initial evaluation. One leg was ridding a little shorter than the other, and from looking at my posture and where I indicated on the model my pain was, he explained what he was going to do, how he was going to do it, what to expect during the manipulation. He manipulated my mid-thorax and my sacril/hip area, one with a pop and one without.

    The pain relief was immediate, the posture (long/short leg) not really evident. He took me out to his self-help room and demonstrated and explained both a large ball and a long hard foam tube use. He told me I could get them both at Walmart, and didn’t even offer to sell me anything.

    He also told me that I was my best detective. I should memorize how I felt after the treatment, and when I started to feel more like the before than the after, it was time to come see him again. He said he expected one more visit, and on the outside, two more visits, but I would be the judge on how much and how frequent the visits were.

    I did go back one more time, about 6 weeks later. During that time, I found that my insurance would cover 30 visits, but I had to pay the first $60 of each visit, and the chiropractic fees were $50/visit, both initial and follow-up.

    I haven’t had to go back again. A friend at work, who played defensive tackle on a college national-championship team, when I told him about the hard foam roll, remarked “Hell, yeah. That’s one of the dirty little secrets big-time athletic trainers know all about. Everyone on the team was on that roll every day.”

    This sounds much more in line with Preston Long’s general thrust. Treat what your experience and schooling tell you can be treated. Don’t do bunches of extras. Don’t try and sell add-ons. Minimize the client’s interactions, expenses, and dependence. Provide self-help and coaching. All these characteristics are shared with my primary care doctor. In fact, the chiropractor told me he had to apologize for most in his profession who tried to do too much, treat too much, sell too much, and become involved in too much, and he really didn’t go down that road himself.

    As a sidelight, because of his approach, I think, he is the busiest chiropractor in town. The schools use him, doctors regularly send necessary cases to him, and getting an appointment is sometimes tough.

    I know this is all anecdotal, and a single data point, but there are chiropractors that do more with less and help tons. I was lucky to be where he was available.

  • Dr. Long, if you feel this way about the chiropractic profession then why did you stay in practice for as long as you did? These “things” that “most” chiropractors won’t tell the public may be true about the chiropractors that graduated decades ago, but as the profession grows and becomes more integrative, these claims do not hold much truth. Many of these claims are also reflective of one’s own character and integrity as a professional such as “promising too much”, “offering unnecessary services”, “taking too many x-rays”, and charging vitamins “much more than it costs”. These are not valid claims that represent the entire chiropractic profession as a whole. There are plenty of chiropractors who put the patient first and do not promise what they are unsure of, take unwarranted radiographs, and take advantage of patients by overcharge them for supplements. Our title of Doctor of Chiropractic should not be devalued by comparing our education to that of a medical doctor. Of course our education has a different focus than the medical profession. Student interns will see patients with complaints of aches and pains because those are the people that seek chiropractic care. Medical students will have experience with a vast variety of pathologies because those are the patients that the medical profession deals with. In the chiropractic education, students learn of the red flags or signs that indicate a much more serious condition that needs medical attention. An educated chiropractor would and should refer out that patient immediately. Chiropractic manipulations have always been under scrutiny about its association with dangerous consequences such as stroke, but patients should always be educated about these risks beforehand. What medical procedure out there today does not have a potential dangerous risk to it? Research in the chiropractic seems hard to come by but there is research out there done by other professions who use manipulative therapy as part of their treatment, such as osteopaths and physical therapists. Why are chiropractors so heavily criticized for manipulative therapy when there are other professions who use it as treatment for the same effects? It is disappointing to see posts like this in a time where chiropractic is growing more popular and becoming more of an integral part in the health care system.

  • I only skimmed thru the comments and haven’t read your book. But you seem like a total douche with a name like Preston.

    • Fernando said:

      I only skimmed thru the comments and haven’t read your book. But you seem like a total douche with a name like Preston.

      Thanks for your opinion, but I think we know what to do with it.

  • Well he correct on a few points but wrong on most. Being a Chiropractor myself I tend to warn patients about the unethical practices of the Chiropractic Profession. It takes skill to be a good Doctor. I’ve been practicing for over 15 years and my Father and Uncle over 40 and I have met few Chiropractors who I’d actually see.

    Stay away from a Chiropractor who wants X-rays off the bat without doing a physical exam and patient History.
    Stay away from a Chiropractor that uses the Term “Subluxation” which is a made up term meaning joint dysfunction.
    Stay away from a Chiropractor that wants you to invest in long term care on your 1st visit. Any good Doctor can’t guarantee results or know how a patient will respond. I realize i have only a two week window to help a patient correct their problem.

    True most Chiropractors know little about Nutrition but it’s far more than most medical Doctors.
    In many ways Chiropractors have a far superior schooling at least as far as being a Health professional instead of a Drug pusher. Chiropractors must receive a minimum of 6-8 years of college education.

    A Chiropractor Get TWICE as many hours in anatomy and physiology,
    pathology, diagnosis and more that 3 times the amountof X-rays.
    Surprised!

  • If you’re a chiropractor and it is a shady profession by your own confession, why would you harm your peers with an article like this? What conditions DO reputable chiropractors treat? I’m curious.

    • Chiropractors can help with issues regarding the Neck & Back.
      Look for a reputable clinic that supplies all around care or personal referrals by others in your community.

  • To put it bluntly, This skeptic view is severely biased, not to mention as unfounded as they claim the opposite to be so.

    Those of us that actually physically work for a living and have a good relationship with our DC can attest to the validity of the treatments for back and neck issues including scoliosis, after 35 years of treatment, I am still standing straighter and definitely still stronger than most.

    Chiro had done me a world of good for what it was meant for, Back and neck pain. And of course there are side effects like less stress on other body systems because there is less stress over all, no severe headaches due to my neck being out, no restricted movement because my back is out.

    Chiro is not quackery!
    It helps keep the body, (bones & Joints) in “Alignment” allowing your bodies natural healing process to work a lot more effectively by not having to work around an adjustable issue.

    Anything beyond that, is out of range of my comment as I do not subscribe to healing crystals or other snake oil.

    The Choice is yours to make. You do not have to like or subject your self to any treatment, but I have and will continue to recommend chiropractic care by a good DC to anyone that wants to keep themselves in a healthy state rather than in Physio for extended periods of time.
    Regard,
    Darrell

    • @Darrell
      You have obviously listened very well to your chiropractor and not much else.
      – Have you ever wondered why you are so convinced that the chiropractor has been instrumental in your well-being?
      – Have you ever wondered who it was that told you regular “adjustments” were necessary for all those years?
      – Have you ever wondered how many thousand millions manage to get through life without ever being “adjusted”? Even those with scoliosis. Millions of them never get chiropractic and do fine. People with scoliosis are normally not seeing a physiotherapist regularly for decades, unless of course the physio is lying to them that frequent ministrations are necessary.
      – Have you ever wondered why the chiropractor insists on repeat “preventive” adjustments, even in periods when you are feeling well?
      – Have you ever added up the amount of money you (your insurance?) paid for “adjustments” these 35 years?
      – Have you ever wondered what your life would have been like had you never gone to a chiropractor but kept yourself in shape with physical activity, exercise and the odd visit with a physiotherapist?
      – Have you ever read up on the history of chiropractic and how it was invented[sic] and established by an uneducated magnetic healer who was demonstrably not altogether in possession of his faculties?
      – Have you ever wondered what your chiropractor means when he says your neck or back is “out”?
      – Have you ever checked whether anyone other than chiropractors, has been able to find and confirm the “misalignments” that chiropractors claim to be “adjusting” ?
      – Have you ever wondered why many chiropractors say that “adjustments” strengthen the immune system and if this is even possible? (it is not)
      – Have you ever wondered why chiropractors claim that 95% of infants have spinal “misalignments” caused by the birth process that require chiropractic care? Hundreds of millions who do not get such care grow up to be fine anyway. How come?
       
      Well, I could go on for a long time.
      Of course the choice is yours, whether you continue to support your chiropractor but the totality of knowledge and evidence adds up to say you have been misled and are wasting both time and money.
      Before you reply, read up on the matter, try to find answers that not only support your preconceived faith in the chiropractor.
      Maybe even test the assumption that your chiropractor has been pulling your leg, so to speak, for 35 years?

  • @Björn
    Yes I have wondered numerous things,
    Like:
    Why are there so many of you well read, Professionals out there that have such a closed mind that you can not accept that another profession may be able to do some good for people?
    Why are you so adamantly against something that has worked for Millions of people?
    Why has there been so many people that have not looked at Chiropractic care as a relief to neck & back pain?
    Why do some MD’s refuse to consider that there may be some validity to other forms of treatment?
    Why does the medical and pharmaceutical interests lobby so hard against the Chiropractic field, What are they and you afraid of?

    I have never been instructed by a chiropractor on anything that is not related to bones, muscles and nerves.

    FYI,
    My first treatment was 30 years ago @ 18, after a skiing accident where my shoulders were introduced to a 5″ poplar trunk at about 15 mph. I had lived with 5 weeks of Dr. prescribed muscle relaxants along with 4 weeks of physio. Both were unsuccessful in alleviating the pain and stiffness in my back. Both the attending Dr, and Physiotherapist could see and feel the lump, (out of place vertebrae). Both said it will fall back into place, just give it time and make sure you come back 3 times a week until it does. Sound Familiar?

    Before the injury, I was very active and very healthy. I participated in every sport I could from golf to football.
    A team-mates grandfather noticed my condition at a school sports event. I was benched because I couldn’t hardly move. He was the local Chiropractor and gave me a brief exam followed by a mild “adjustment” right there in the locker room. I heard the pop felt something move. All he said was to ice it for a day or so and then come see him.
    Less than 3 hours later I felt a huge relief in the stiffness and pressure, and even more relief and improvement in the next couple of days.

    I did go to his office on that 3rd day and he did provide a full treatment on my back & neck. He said, “See how that feels and come back if you need to”, Within 3 days I was without pain and back in the game. I had only seen him 1 other time, after another sports injury and to the same result, Pressure and tension started to be released within hours of the adjustment, and was completely gone within a couple of days.

    Since then, I am still quite active, in good shape and healthier and stronger than 80% of the population. I have had only occasional issues and when I feel something “out”, I go for a treatment, He adjusts it and rarely do I have to go back for follow up visits.

    Note:
    -I have been told more often by MD’s to make another appointment than by a DC.
    -I have never had a DC tell me that anything about other illness cures or about how babies require treatments? That must be a USA thing.

    But It does stand to reason that if your body has less issues to deal with that it can apply its built in healing characteristics to other issues that may be within.

    I have only posted my experience, which one can take or leave for what it is.
    But I do wonder why you feel that you have to defend your position so venomously?
    Why are you are so against something that you obviously have not tried nor ever will.
    Why do you feel that you have to spout such rhetoric that has no place in the current profession?

    Chiropractic treatments, have enabled me live without pain, invasive surgery or countless hours in physio.

    I will continue to gladly share my experience with anyone.

    • One time I got stuck on traffic and I imagined that I got super power to make all people drive. Guess what, all people began to drive !
      I must have super power.
      Or maybe, just maybe, anecdote doesn’t count as a proof of anything ?
      The fact is that you wanted, like many people, a treatement because you were persuaded that you needed one. And the chiro, a clever man for sure, tell you that, of course you need one, using your confirmation bias to make money. In fact, you don’t need anything more than a little exercising (for free), like, well, all the people in the world to stay in shape !

      • Darrell said “I have only posted my experience, which one can take or leave for what it is.”

        Quark said “Or maybe, just maybe, anecdote doesn’t count as a proof of anything ?”

        Where was the part where Darrell was saying his experience qualified as proof?

        • jm, i guess you are very bad at the inference thing.
          The fact is that Darrell post his personnal story to argue that chiro may be useful. For him, clearly, his personnal experience is a proof that chiro maybe useful, otherwise he wouldn’t even talk about it this way (exemple : ‘Why are there so many of you well read, Professionals out there that have such a closed mind that you can not accept that another profession may be able to do some good for people?’, in fact I could just quote his entire post).
          Please jm, make an effort to read the whole exchange, it’s pretty OBVIOUS that Darrell believe that chiro have done something for him, and that he ‘tell his story’ trying to be convincing, and i guess this kind of story is pretty convincing for many people. So I underline the fact that he is irrelevent in case those people read him, because you know, it’s a public blog.

          • Quark – Yup, it’s pretty obvious that Darrell believes that chiro has done something for him. It’s equally obvious he’s aware that his experience is anecdotal.

    • Both the attending Dr, and Physiotherapist could see and feel the lump, (out of place vertebrae)…

      Well, well, Darrell… You certainly got duped by your chiropractor.
      I am a surgeon with a couple of decades of trauma experience in the US and Europe so I should know a bit about these things.
      I assume of course that your spine was X-rayed. It is practically impossible to leave a North American ER after an injury without a hearty dose of the revealing rays. I doubt it is any different in Canada than in the US.
      Especially if there are clinical findings it is obligatory to take proper X-rays. If a displacement of a vertebra was visible/palpable clinically it would certainly have been associated with a fracture (albeit small) and detectable on x-ray. Remember who it was that told you it was an “out of place vertebra”? Maybe it is hard to recall after 30+ years of repetitive chiropractic “faith-induction” but it most certainly wasn’t the ER attending who would have seen a displacement on x-ray. They actually look minutely for that.
      No I bet it was the chiro, as part of his technique of making sure you become a prime customer. The pop you heard/felt was one of the tricks of the trade. It is not the vertebra falling in place. It comes from cavitation of fluid in the small synovial joints on either side. Same phenomenon as cracking knuckles. Doesn’t happen every time but when it does it is an extra rabit from the conjurers hat, so to speak.
      If your vertebra had really been recently dislocated by trauma, such a manipulation would most certainly have caused agonising pain right there because it stretched/moved traumatised tissue or bone.
      The chiropractor would not have been able to work his rapid “wonders” on such an injury.
      A visible/palpable deformity in the spinal area after trauma without an x-ray detectable fracture dislocation is certainly nothing other than a hematoma and spasm in a paravertebral muscle.
      What the chiro did was suggest you into getting moving, which is what you needed. Ice packs probably helped too and I wonder if you didn’t take some pain killers as well? I would have.
       
      You were actually tricked. Just like the little girl and her mother in this revealing video, who got a minor injury of her knee. Being an ambitious dancer she is of course terrified and her mother too. The chiropractor, who has taught the family to come running to him every time a health problem occurs (I believe the chiro-technical phrase for this is “practice building”) makes sure with simple examination (easy) that there is no significant trauma and then starts a big theatre of his awe-inspiring manipulation skills. He doesn’t do anything really to the injured part but performs a theatrical spinal “adjustment” and convinces mom and child that this will help cure the knee, which is of course an anatomical and physiological impossibility. With this make-believe therapy and the simple power of verbal suggestion (notice how he repeats suggestive questions) and reassurance he gets her up and moving which of course “dramatically” relieves much of the spasm and pain, just like with your back. I have done this hundreds of times with all kinds of minor injuries, even of the back. It is rather fun playing the hero doctor who makes small miracles like this happen in the ER just by suggestion and reassurance but without silly manipulations.
      A skillful ER-physician is even better at this game than the chiros because they can also give effective fast working pain killers and relaxants (if needed). Ask any ER attending how often they get people crawling or stretchered in with severe spasmodic lumbago, who have been at the chiropractor’s who effected only temporary relief but it all came back as it often does. Such cases usually do not return to the chiro who remains blissfully biased by the subset of thankful, returning patients like Darrell.

  • Enlightening information, I did not know that the sounds that are made but the adjustment of the back and neck have no therapeutic effect. I did hurt my back several years ago while lifting boxes at work and went to a chiropractor to get some relief. I really felt that it made a big difference for me with my pain level. http://www,transformationchiropractic,com/unique-approach/

  • @ Sara Stout

    After a brief exercise with Google using details from this comment, a pungent stench of pathetic spamming pervades my senses!

    • Thanks, Björn. I did check her comment at the time and removed the link to the website, but after a quick check, I couldn’t find the text repeated anywhere so I gave her the benefit of the doubt. But, you’re right, it does look similar to a lot of other chiro spam Prof Ernst gets.

  • After reading some of the comments here I cannot but help to be continually astounded by the blanket prejudiced which some people hold against an entire professional class. Prejudice is wrong, whether it’s directed against ethnicity, or licensed professionals. The fact is, as a DC I go to work every day to work with my hands, applying manual therapies to help increase the function and decrease suffering that people present to me for. I have provided a valuable service to peoples from all walks of life, from scientists to plumbers. No matter how many people we help, those who prejudice against us do not care, because it will only amount to “anecdotal .” However, if they here someone gets hurt from a DC, now that anecdote becomes “proof” of some failure of chiropractic. I know that I, and many thousands of other DC’s do not engage in all of these horrific practices that these chiro hater people here say we do. Rather, we use our hands and brains, to apply some form of correction to the human tissue — without drugs or surgery.
    Now how can that be bad? I actually studied philosophy and received a BA in that prior to studying science and going on to studying chiropractic. A renown man by the name of Bernard Longergan described a “dark room” that exists in many peoples minds, a place where ones intellect will fail to reasonably explore, and will always deny. This is what I see here with the blanket prejudiced thrown out against our professional class. It’s something worse than anti-intellectual because its in the realm of sheer prejudiced and hate. I see people like Bjorn G an intellect less than close minded, rather
    its arrogance duped by convalescent ignorance. Bjorn, and people like you are pathetically primitive, because you arrogantly criticize what you do not know, and cannot recognize your own intellectual limitations. And one last thing, I am pretty sure the market would have weeded chiropractic out were it no efficacious. Go ahead and see what some people are saying about their chiropractors on Yelp. I can cut and past some if you like.

    • nicholas said:

      After reading some of the comments here I cannot but help to be continually astounded by the blanket prejudiced which some people hold against an entire professional class. Prejudice is wrong, whether it’s directed against ethnicity, or licensed professionals. The fact is, as a DC I go to work every day to work…

      Ah! I think I see your problem.

    • @nicholas
      I usually do not address ‘ad hominem’-attackers and bigot commenters, at least not in first person. But I will make one exception here, as you are obviously naive to the issue, and respectfully address some of what you write.
       
      The physicians who “treated” George Washington for his upper respiratory infection in 1799, also held the strong belief that the methods they had learned were helping their clients.
      It was not until later the medical community realised how easy it is to fool and the easiest one to fool was yourself. When physicians learned how to count and calculate proportions, they found that if you not only counted the satisfied customers but also divided by all[sic] the dissatisfied (and dead and non-healed) customers, the result told them that bloodletting and other nonsense methodology wasn’t all that great.
      The accumulated evidence for the efficacy of chiropractic methodology produces the same result.
       
      Notwithstanding your understandable chagrin as a scholar of chiropractic and reliant on its practice for your income, ‘prejudice’ is not the correct term to use for our attitude towards your profession and calling. Critique — based on rational analysis of facts, established scientific knowledge and credible research — is more fitting.
       I have to remind that I did try chiropractic for LBP and the only improvement from those ministrations was in his income. I did honestly believe that it could help me and gave it a good chance to do so. This was before I studied what chiropractic really stands for. This experience was part of the reason I turned seriously skeptic towards make-believe medicine of any type.
       
      The discipline of chiropractic, is a singular invention by one man, a spiritualist and magnetic healer completely lacking medical or physiological knowledge. It was not developed from experience and research. Practically none of the original ideas have been rejected by its disciples. Its theoretical basis flies in the face of confirmed facts. The fundamental spinal problem the discipline bases all its pathognomonic theories on, the subluxations can not be confirmed with modern imaging or other techniques. It is still practised today, in approximately the manner it was originally conjured, with only minor modifications if any. The accumulated evidence does not support more than very minor efficacy in uncomplicated LBP. Otherwise the effect is not more than as expected from a theatrical placebo therapy. It is not without harm, albeit luckily not so frequent but potentially serious. As a consequence the discipline of chiropractic is the modern equivalent (albeit less injurious) of bloodletting.
       
      I have in some of my prior comments demonstrated how chiropractors fool the patients and themselves at the same time. I gave as a graphic example a link to a video (see recent comment of mine above) showing a chiropractor fooling himself and the patient into thinking a minor knee injury could be treated by manipulation of the spinal column. If I were rude and a fool I would call him an improper name or two but he is blatantly unknowing about the cognitive errors he is using to confirm his erroneous inference from his counting of ‘satisfied customers’.
      The “lucky strike” patient’s praise and public declarations of support for the skills and magic of their chiropractor of course do wonders to avert his cognitive dissonance.
      A chiropractor performs a series of seemingly skillful examinations, takes fancy x-rays and performs impressive manual maneuvers. A proportion of “lucky strike”-patients who happen to get better comes back and asks for more, the rest either loses faith despite spontaneous improvement or comes crawling into the ER for genuine medical attention as I previously described. There will always be a number of patients who can tell the story of how the pain diminished soon after an “adjustment” but where are the counts of ‘failed’ adjustments to use as a divider?
       
      I could go on but my brother just called. He needs me to bring out the truck because he is snowed in.
      You will also have to make do with fewer informative and supporting reference links than I had planned.
       
      Please feel free nicholas, to bring to the field your opinions and any evidence you have. Perhaps you have done an audit and can show us results from properly performed outcome studies of your own patients? That is what we doctors do all the time and use to find out what works and what not.
       
      But please refrain from bigotry and attempts at belittling your adversaries. Such behaviour is reserved for the resident trolls.
       
      Cheers
      Björn

  • “Bjorn G an intellect less than close minded, rather
    its arrogance duped by convalescent ignorance. Bjorn, and people like you are pathetically primitive, because you arrogantly criticize what you do not know, and cannot recognize your own intellectual limitations. And one last thing, I am pretty sure the market would have weeded chiropractic out were it no efficacious. Go ahead and see what some people are saying about their chiropractors on Yelp. I can cut and past some if you like.”

    Really, you are calling other people arrogant with this kind of behavior ? How hard is your cognitive dissonance today ?

  • Thanks Edz for censoring my posts. you must feel like a big man here able to do that, cherry pick like that.

    I cannot but help to think that this obsession people have trying to denigrate an honorable profession somehow reflects some anti-social behavior. Bjorn, if you are a physician, you are that because it gives you a sense of power, not because you care about humanity. People that care about humanity, doctors that care about humanity, do their best to learn from other sources outside their sphere. I am just curious Bjorn, when you were a kid, do you remember yourself needlessly torturing small animals, like frogs, just for the fun of it? Did you help your brother out of the snow to make yourself feel more important. Oh, maybe you are a good person, and I got it all wrong, but usually humanitarians do not deprecate entire classes of people.

    • thanks for this – I think people will get a fairly good idea why I did not post your other comments.

      • Let’s be clear about one thing. I have deep respect for my fellow human beings. I have no respect however for make-believe pseudomedicine and I express my views on such matters in no uncertain words.
         
        When a practitioner of curious manipulations that I upon recommendation trusted with helping me treat my own acute lumbago, tries to convince me, a trauma- and general surgeon, that he can induce healing of asthma and allergy, ulcers and ADHD and whatnot, simply by thumping the spine — then I got seriously suspicious. Such claims do not make any sense. Our knowledge of anatomy and physiology would have to be extensively rewritten if this were true.
        This suspicion was further reinforced by the unmistakable futility of his ministrations and the blatant money-making tactics that emerged when he thought I had become a loyal customer.
        I am not one to form a frivolous opinion when it comes to clinical importance. A physician cannot allow himself to draw professional conclusions from emotion or conjecture only.
        I read up on the matter. I read studies and reviews and I engage in online discussions. I discuss the matter with colleagues and I inquire in the ER about their experience with back-patients previously attended to by chiropractors.
        The resulting opinion is expressed in my comments here.
        It has nothing to do with the persons involved. I am not so simple as to think they are willfully and consciously defrauding their customers.
        If chiropractors take my critique of their discipline and livelihood personally it is an unfortunate but unsurprising reaction.
         
        It is short of ridiculous to think that I or other doctors would not be thrilled and eager to learn that there is a genuine way of treating difficult back problems. We also get such problems and we have relatives with them.
        I have tried chiropractic myself and I have previously sent a number of patients, mostly relatives, to chiropractors. The results only confirmed my suspicions. When I discovered that it not only has a clinically insignificant, almost undetectable effect but can be seriously perilous in the case of vertebral artery injury, I became an outspoken critic of it.
         
        Call me outspoken and harsh but in my comments above I certainly did not make fallacious ‘ad hominem’ remarks. I put forth known, documented facts about the origins, nature and development of the discipline known as chiropractic. My outspoken and admittedly somewhat caustic description is ‘ad disciplinam’ not ‘ad hominem’ ( ‘at the discipline’, not ‘at the man’).
         
        I do make an effort to substantiate my arguments and I welcome an honest debate. If someone proves me wrong in any detail, by fact, figures and reason, I gladly change my views and opinion and I will officially thank and praise those who enlighten us and thereby contribute to a better world. I would, as anyone else, welcome an effective therapy for back and neck problems, especially the more difficult ones. I have near and dear who certainly need it.

        As I stand today, I do not see that the world would miss chiropractic should it magically disappear. It is hopeful though that there are chiropractors who do not subscribe to the original, fabricated subluxation-nonsense and propose that they can offer a therapy modality that purportedly works and could make chiropractic a clinically viable practice.
        This is absolutely fine. Let them then get their act together and demonstrate and prove in a credible and sound way (i.e. by data and scientific analysis) that they have a modality that offers real, clinically relevant effects and gives the patients more value for the money than the short-lived, mesmerising effects of a theatrical placebo.
        I am all for it because there is a great need for such an addition to health-care.
         
        I did invite the incognito chiropractic-supporter in question to counter my critical comments with data and facts. Instead he chooses to eject a stream of immature denigrations, which only serve to belittle himself and his colleagues and demonstrate graphically his misery of being stranded in a quagmire of cognitive dissonance between reason and vocation.

  • Regarding my last post: it doesn’t settle well when people make slanderous, sweeping and unfounded assertions right?
    I have no way of knowing whether Bjorg hurt animals when he was a kid; but now you know how unsettling it is to have false accusations thrown against you.

    Ed, I understand why you deleted the second post, but the first of the two posts I put up should not have been deleted.

    And I understand you deleted the chiropractic reviews because you have no way to rebut the tens of thousands of positive chiropractic reviews that exist on the internet.

    So I am going to post the link.
    There are thousands more like that. Chiropractic survived the war AMA waged against it in from 1960 to 1985, for many reasons. We have survived for one reason is that we live in a free market economy, and supply and demand has afforded a awesome position for chiropractors who are ethical, follow principle, learn how to help people with their hands. We do not compete with MD’s, and I work with MD’s, one comes in my office and there are no issues between us. I happen to believe I practice a more outcome based methodology, as I have seen many surgeries with poor outcomes. But that’s okay with you guys right?

    So much double standard with you Edzard. I always applaud a desire to be analytic. But you guys have that black empty space in your intellect when it comes to health and healing. — no way around that fact.

    Let me guess, are going to delete my posts because you do not like them. Must be nice to run biased website forum and
    “play God” like that Edz.

  • How would you rebut these, and thousands of reviews like them? you cannot escape the information age and what people say on social media.

    http://www.yelp.com/biz/adio-chiropractic-los-angeles

    Anecdotal? yes, but a mountain of testimony = conviction.

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