MD, PhD, FMedSci, FSB, FRCP, FRCPEd

This recent report is worth a mention, I think:

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG) is aware that some chiropractors are advertising and attempting to turn breech babies in utero using the “Webster Technique”.

On 7 March 2016, the Chiropractic Board of Australia released the following statement in relation to chiropractic care of pregnant women and their unborn child:

“Care of pregnant patients

Chiropractors are not trained to apply any direct treatment to an unborn child and should not deliver any treatment to the unborn child. Chiropractic care must not be represented or provided as treatment to the unborn child as an obstetric breech correction technique.

RANZCOG supports the Chiropractic Board of Australia in its clear position that chiropractic care must not be represented or provided as a treatment to the unborn child as an obstetric breech correction technique. Chiropractors should not be using the “Webster Technique” or any other inappropriate breech correction technique to facilitate breech version as there is insufficient scientific evidence to support this practice.

In addition, RANZCOG does not support chiropractors treating pregnant women to reduce their risk of caesarean delivery. There is insufficient evidence to make any claims to consumers regarding the benefits of chiropractic treatment to reduce the risk of caesarean delivery. We commend the Chiropractic Board on their statement that:

“Advertisers must ensure that any statements and claims made in relation to chiropractic care are not false, misleading or deceptive or create an unreasonable expectation of beneficial treatment.”1

Recommendations for the management of a breech baby at term are outlined in the RANZCOG statement, Management of breech presentation at term

External Cephalic Version (ECV) is a procedure where a care provider puts his or her hands on the outside of the mother’s belly and attempts to turn the baby from breech to cephalic presentation. It is recommended that women with a breech presentation at or near term should be informed about external cephalic version (ECV) and offered it if clinically appropriate. Attempting cephalic version at term reduces the chance of non-cephalic presentation at birth, vaginal cephalic birth not achieved and caesarean section. There is not enough evidence from randomised trials to assess complications of ECV at term. Large observational studies suggest that complications are rare. ECV should only be performed by suitably trained health professionals where there is facility for emergency caesarean section. Each institution should have its own documented protocol for offering and performing ECVs.

This communiqué highlights the need for patients to be adequately informed when making health care choices.

END OF QUOTE

These are clear and badly needed words. As we have discussed often on this blog, chiropractors make all sorts of bogus claims. Those directed at children and unborn babies are perhaps the most nonsensical of them all. I applaud the College for their clear statements and hope that other institutions follow this example.

5 Responses to Delivery of Chiropractic Therapies to the Unborn Child

  • I agree completely with the statement released by RANZCOG and the Chiropractic Board of Australia – shouldn’t attempt to use a technique when there is insufficient scientific evidence to support this practice.

  • @Blue Wode

    Oh my!!
    I looked up a couple of the items that pregnant pelvis course purports to teach. It was a frightening revelation of chiropractic craziness. How are we to influence this nonsenseification if they keep inventing new theatrical acts all the time? It’s a veritable game of Whack-the-mole 🙂

    First the “Webster Technique”, which seems to involve “adjusting” the pelvis and sacrum and thereby correcting fetal malpresentation. These nincompoops, like the acupuncture and moxibustion crowd, count the rather frequent spontaneous cephalic versions as successes and thereby convince themselves their ministrations really work when its actually nature doing its thing.

    Then I looked up something called the “Logan basic Technique” and <a href="http://www.canadianchiropractor.ca/techniques/technique-toolbox-september-2009-1573"found that the fools using that particular circus act have joined folly with the craniosacral gang and believe in ernest they are palpating a (nonexistent) CS-fluid pulse.

    Frightening delusions.

    Here's and example of instructions for the "Logan basic technique" (from the above source):

    While on the atlas contact with the scanning hand, a pulse will eventually be palpated.
    Therefore, the doctor will palpate a pulsation at both the atlas and the sacrotuberous contacts simultaneously.
    This pulsation is defined as the cranial-rhythmic impulse, which is cerebral spinal fluid pulsating from the sacrum to the occiput.
    Once pulsations on both contacts are palpated, the doctor will change his scanning hand’s bilateral contact on the atlas, to a unilateral atlas contact on the ipsilateral side of the sacrotuberous contact.
    The doctor will then remove the remaining contact from the atlas, and will “set” the sacrotuberous contact by increasing the pressure to 10 to12 ounces, and releasing the contact during an exhalation from the patient.
    The adjustment is now completed.

    (For those not familiar with “craniosacral therapy” it is based on imaginary “rythmic pulsations” of the cerebrospinal fluid system, which is supposed to be both detectable and adjustible by very light touch. This nonexistent phenomenon and useless “therapy system” was invented out of fantasies by an osteopath called Sutherland and made into a financially successful commercial product by Upledger in the seventies.
    What the CST-quacks think they are feeling is either their own pulse or false sensations based on a sensorimotor phenomenon called the ideomotor effect.)

    • Björn Geir wrote: “Oh my!! I looked up a couple of the items that pregnant pelvis course purports to teach. It was a frightening revelation of chiropractic craziness.”

      Even more frightening is that the presenter of that course, Elisabeth Davidson DC, will be hosting another course at the end of October – this time a Pregnancy and Paediatrics CPD event for the Royal College of Chiropractors’ Pregnancy & Paediatrics Faculty:
      http://rcc-uk.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Flyer-NOR-Neonate.pdf

      How that Faculty thinks that it’s defining and upholding “competencies of Specialist Faculty members as they pertain to each subject area” is anyone’s guess (ref http://rcc-uk.org/paediatrics-faculty/ ).

      IMO, ‘incompetencies’ would be a far better description.

  • Do these idiots actually think they are doing something (positive I mean)? If so, there is probably a category in ICD-10 that covers them.

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