The most regularly reported serious complication of chiropractic neck manipulation is a stroke due to arterial dissection. Atlantoaxial dislocation (a dislocations of the first and second vertebrae which means that the spinal cord is in danger of being compressed which, in turn, would have devastating consequences) has not been previously reported, but is just as serious.

This new case-report described an 83-year-old man with a history of old cerebellar infarction who presented to the emergency department with acute left hemiplegia after a chiropractic manipulation of the neck and back several hours before symptom onset. Mild hypoesthesia was observed on his left limbs. No speech disturbance, facial palsy, or neck or shoulder pain was observed.

Intravenous thrombolytic treatment was given 238 min after symptom onset. Brown-Sequard syndrome (damage to one side of the spinal cord causing paralysis and loss of feeling on one side) subsequently developed 6 h after thrombolysis with a hypo-aesthetic sensory level below the right C5 dermatome. An emergent brain magnetic resonance angiography did not reveal an acute cerebral infarct but rather an atlantoaxial dislocation causing upper cervical spinal cord compression.

Clinical symptoms did not deteriorate after thrombolysis. He received successful decompressive surgery 1 week later, and his muscle power gradually improved, with partial dependency when performing daily living activities two months later.

A literature review revealed that only 15 patients (including the patient mentioned here) with spinal disorder mimicking acute stroke who received thrombolytic therapy have been reported. Atlantoaxial dislocation may present as acute hemiplegia mimicking acute stroke, followed by Brown-Sequard syndrome. Inadvertent thrombolytic therapy is likely not harmful for patients with atlantoaxial dislocation-induced cervical myelopathy. The neurological deficits of patients should be carefully and continuously evaluated to differentiate between stroke and myelopathy.

The authors of this case report provide no detail about the exact treatment that caused this complication, nor do they elaborate on the type of healthcare professional who administered the cervical manipulation (they focus on the issue of non-indicated thrombolytic therapy). We also do not learn why the patient had neck manipulations in the first place. However, the authors seem confident that the ‘chiropractic manipulation’ was the cause of this atlantoaxial dislocation causing severe upper cervical spinal cord compression.

The patient was treated surgically, with corticosteroids and subsequent rehabilitation. Two months later, his neurological deficits were much improved.

85 Responses to Another serious complication after chiropractic neck manipulation

  • So, apparently we have a case report where…

    1. We don’t have a detailed health history
    2. We don’t know who did the manipulation
    3. We don’t know what type of manipulation was done
    4. Done in a country where chiropractic is not given legal status

    Sounds more like a case where improperly, or untrained lay people, shouldn’t be doing neck manipulations.
    Sounds like the authors shouldn’t have called it a chiropractic manipulation.

    • @ DC

      Agree with your statement that the authors shouldn’t have called it chiropractic manipulation – it was some form of spinal manipulation done by a practitioner of something not specified

      • Last I saw, in Taiwan they don’t even recognize chiropractic as a health profession.

        • That’s good news!

          • Really? That means anyone can call themselves a chiropractor and do spinal manipulation without doing a proper history and exam. You may want to rethink your position.

          • @DC

            How does taking a proper history and exam make chiropractic safer? Noting that (most?) chiropractors do not have medical training necessary to know what to do with many of the the results. From what I have experienced and seen, chiropractors do not take history and physical examination to medical standards, far from it. Much of the chiropractic examination seems more suited to impress than discover clinically significant findings. Use of in office x-ray, “Subluxation Station”, “Nervoscope” and other gimmicks seems standard and we even have chiropractors using applied kinesiology and fake gizmo’s with blinking lights and fancy screen images, pretending to measure food sensitivity and similarly fraudulent pseudodiagnostics.
            Chiropractors regularly ignore clear signs of osteopenia, disregard age-related risks (like we see in the case being discussed) and if you know a chiro who measures blood pressure, listens to heart-sounds or does a proper neurological examination he is may very likely be faking it?

          • Bjorn…How does taking a proper history and exam make chiropractic safer?

            Do you mean spinal manipulation?

            Bjorn…From what I have experienced and seen…

            So now we are swamping personal experiences?

            Bjorn…Use of in office x-ray, “Subluxation Station”, “Nervoscope” and other gimmicks seems standard…

            Evidence that these are “standard”?

            Bjorn…Chiropractors regularly ignore clear signs of osteopenia, disregard age-related risks


          • Come on, DC. You asking for evidence made me spit out my tea. Now, the whole table’s a mess!

    • Thank you very much for your intelectual and ethical response. I still do not undrestand why such MD’s do not report complications after taking aspirin and statin drugs regularly. Or post surgical hospital infections which in all these cases the number of mortality is much higher than chiropractic adjustment/inter segmental manipulation.

    • Most chiropractors are open to any new evidence, but one can’t help but notice the underlying agenda of smearing legitimate chiropractic. Why not word it better and use manual adjusting, and not use a blanket term to stigmatize an entire profession.

      • I used the exact terminology as the authors of the case report.
        it seems that chiropractors have a tendency to mistake criticism for ‘smearing’.
        I wonder why!

      • That’s a very legitimate comment.

      • Fwiw…that was a different “DC” posting than the regular contributor to this blog.

        There is no such thing as “chiropractic manipulation”.

        It should be worded as “spinal manipulation performed by a chiropractor (or PT, DO, layperson, unknown, etc)”.

        That is the responsibility of the authors. However, in a country that doesn’t recognize chiropractic as a health profession i can see them using the broader term…but they shouldn’t in an effort of clarity.

      • If chiropractors were open to new evidence, they would stop being chiropractors.

    • “Sounds more like a case where improperly, or untrained lay people, shouldn’t be doing neck manipulations.”

      Very true. The only people properly qualified to perform neck manipulations are Registered Physiotherapists and British Royal Marines.

    • This doesnt mean it wasnt done by a DC who should have known better. There are DCs trained in Canada and the US who relicate…so legal status…or who did the adjustment has little teeth unless we know for sure it was a street barber etc. That said…agreed…the author should have been clear, or not written this at all. BTW…i practiced as a DC for 15 years and finally dropped it like a hot potatoe. Should have done it sooner. Even when its regulated…its questionable.

  • i actually went and read the paper and since we have no clue as to what was done i contacted the people who actually published the paper… i find their reply very intresting

    ” Dear Dr. G. Almog,

    Thank you for your interest in our case report. According to description of the patient, the chiropractic manipulation was performed by a local practitioner who was unaware of patient’s history of atlantoaxial dislocation. We are sorry that we were not able to learn the method of manipulation.
    Best Regards!

    Sincerely yours
    Shinn-Kuang Lin”

    so was that a pre-existing condition? i can not say but the authors definately dont claim that this is “Another serious complication after chiropractic neck manipulation”

    • yes, it sounds like the patient had a history of “atlantoaxial dislocation”.

    • I would agree, referring to it as “chiropractic” is not helpful. However I would argue, having been to many “chiropractic” seminars where the instructors and observers were randomly cranking on each other’s necks, I’d deduce there are 4 “standard”, typical means of getting a neck to cavitate (excluding the insane strap-around-the skull and yank really fu$&ing hard, technique). So whether “chiropractic” or not I’d assume there are not infinite ways to get a neck to crack. And they ALL apparently carry a risk which can’t be systematically eliminated whether you attended clown college or learned from your grandmother.

  • Excuse me for suggesting what, to a layperson like me, seems obvious, but who would think spinal manipulations on an 83-year-old man would be a good idea?

  • Dear all,
    I agree that this case report is addressing the unusual presentations of acute cervical myelopathy mimicking stroke, but not the complication of chiropractic manipulation. In the full text of case report, we started with a brief history of the patient as below: “An 83-year-old man with a history of hypertension and old left cerebellar infarction was found to have atlantoaxial dislocation owing to limited neck extension ability approximately 6 months prior.” In response to your concern, perhaps it’s better to use “traditional chiropractic manipulation” instead of just “chiropractic manipulation”. Traditional chiropractic manipulation, which is different for modern chiropractic manipulation, is common in Chinese community.
    Shinn-Kuang Lin

  • This is definitely an interesting case. Hopefully the laypeople reading this article research what a cerebellar infarction is. It means death of brain tissue due to lack of blood (oxygen) supply. If the patient had this prior to being seen by that provider, doesn’t it seem logically plausible to suggest more was going on with that person than what this article suggests? If someone seeks healthcare it is usually for a reason. If a person seeks physical health care, it usually means they are in discomfort…if that’s the case….the problem likely was already started prior to getting this neck manipulation. This article seems like a call for people to pick up a torch or a pitchfork and join a lynch mob than an honest effort to share a case report.

  • Let’s talk about the #PSEUDOSCIENCE of vaccines and how many people have been harmed by medicine.

  • Is it fair to say this man had a pre-existing dislocation of C1 on C2 and that any motion induced into his upper cervical spine could have created spinal cord compression? I don’t think this should be an indictment of spinal manipulation, but more a reminder of performing a proper history and examination prior to initiating any form of treatment.

    • good point

    • indeed… if anyone should be alarmed is the local health authority for lack of regulation. who is performing manipulation in Taiwan? with what training? under which protocols? with what rational? with what kind of insurance? are there any proper record of treatments? if a patient is hurt or mis-treated who should he turn to?

      taking care of the public health and safety is first of all the Ministry of Health responsibility. of course each profession has H&S issues at its core but this cannot replace legislation and regulation by the state.

      one last comment for previous remarks… although some may wish it was so Chiropractic is NOT ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE.

      • “one last comment for previous remarks… although some may wish it was so Chiropractic is NOT ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE.”
        do you wish to say it is worse – IT IS PURE QUACKERY?

        • “A health care profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disorders of the neuromusculoskeletal system and the effects of these disorders on general health. There is an emphasis on manual techniques, including joint adjustment and/or manipulation with a particular focus on subluxations”

          The WHO definition
          World Health Organization, Guidelines on Chiropractic, 2005

          excuse me for troubeling you with the FACTS!!!

          • the WHO is a joke when it comes to alternative medicine, you know that, don’t you?

          • “the WHO is a joke when it comes to alternative medicine, you know that, don’t you?”

            Since Chiropractic is not an alternative medicine the WHO position on that matter is irrelevant.

            I guess you have difficulties with the definition of Chiropractic as a health care profession and its OK… you are entitled to your own personal thoughts and believes.

          • too generous!

          • Excuse with for troubling YOU with the fact that subluxations don’t exist, no matter how successful you’ve been at convincing WHO they do. It’s wonderful what science can teach us!.

  • Neck manipulation for a 83 yr old patient was not a great idea!

  • Who is doing adjustment before no cheak osteo or Neurological examination for neck??

    I do not understand. hum…

  • Entrepreneurial theatrics masquerading as healthcare. Since 70% of chiroquackers use Activators and other “adjusting guns” claiming equal or superior efficacy to manual methods….I’m not sure chiroquackers can be left to their own devices as to what constitutes evidence, efficacy and healthcare. “Adjusting the spinal bones as a healthcare method” really shouldn’t be allowed to perpetuate as a “doctor” profession. It certainly shouldn’t be allowed to bilk insurance. It should be recognized on a par with fortune tellers and dowsers….pay cash knowing there’s more doubt than proof.

    • Hey! Let’s leave fortune tellers out of this, okay? I think they deserve better than to be compared with the quackery of chiropractic. At least they have really cool outfits.

  • Ron. The new header here says…if you make a claim in a comment, support it with evidence.

  • @D(ialate) & C(urettage): many of us are still waiting for you to tell us what valid-and-reliable tests you and your 15,000 close friends use to determine which “intervertebral segment” you intend to pop? And is it based on “misalignment”? “Fixation”? “Hyopomobility”? Or some other, as of yet indeterminate arcane judgement? And if it is simply desultory and generates non-specific effects do you really believe you need to be in a “doctor profession” soliciting people with REAL health issues? And how do YOU make sure the segment you crack IS indeed the problem…vs the one 1” above or below it? Palpation? X-Ray glasses? The book of Revelations? And do you have really, really tiny fingers that can grab onto a fixated 3rd cervical vertebrae in a 100 pound girl? Or do you just crank-the-spine and take your chances? Or do you simply prescribe exercises like a wannabe PT or exercise physiologist without the proper license?
    Always interested in the science behind quackery.

  • As stated before, I was married to one for a decade and intimately involved in the practice as well as seminars and conventions. I learned the profession is a sham first-hand…wannabe doctors telling themselves how profound and important they are…when in fact their “profession” has never cured anything in anyone. And any advancements are simply lifted from others research. The vast majority tell their patients they have insights and knowledge they simple do not…all based on trying to get as many expensive “visits” out of the patient they can. If YOU spent a decade immersed in, let’s say Scientology (assuming your intellect in sufficient to actually recognize another scam) you too may use opprobrious language and remarks when being subjected to the nonsensical “defenses” the believers hurl at the apostates. It angers me that a profession dispensing random “pushing, pulling and twisting” trying to move-something that needs not be moved, and can’t be deduced anyway…in order to make an income from gullible and injured people is given any approbation at all. When DCs suggest that there is a “wholistic principal” at work involving the essence of “true health” and the “source” of illness it isn’t tantamount to fraud, it is fraud. You faux-doctors sell transient, non-specific effects, coincidence and gypsy tricks packaged as a profound healthcare-method supremely valuable to mankind. It is nuttzzzzz. In my estimation that should make EVERYONE very angry.

    • Well said! Im an escaped chiropractor. The whole time I spent in the ‘profession’ I was convincing myself or others of something that I did not and could not have a handle on…because it does not exist..or at best, exists as some top-down bottom-up pseudo-quasi-alternative concept that the chiro has fallen religiously for. I wish it could be legislated away but for some reason there are just enough supporters to keep it on life support. I truly believe chiros are hanging on until they can find medical evidence for the ‘disease’ they have been treating.

  • So you are not a health care clinician ? You were involved in one clinic managment? That is your background?

  • @“Dr Almog”: And are you are a dogmatic, financially entrenched follower-of-the Big Idea….? Does that give your insights credibility? “Healthcare”…is that what you are implying a Chiroquacker dabbles in? You should rethink that. Scientologists think they are purveyors of mental-healthcare. And the Catholic Church thinks they are into soul salvation. There are many suffering delusions. My 10-year-experience rectified mine regarding chiroquackery. You clearly haven’t been so fortunate, irrespective of your suggestion you are a “healthcare clinician” and somehow have “clearer insight”?

  • Dear Michael
    I have been practicing Chiropractic within a governmental hospital for the past 15 years. My unit is regularly audited by the Israeli MOH and i have never been accused of “quackery”.

    I do not treat subluxation nor do i cure diseases. Myself and my associates are perfectly happy as health clinicians (by our definition in Israeli law) treating neuro-musculo-skeletal problems. my practice is run in an ethical professional manners and has earned the respect of many fellow GP’s, Orthopedic Surgeons and other health care providers. I do not advertise, I do not Charge in advance, I do not book long treatments series (average of 7.3 visits/ patient) , I do not keep patients for maintenance care unless absolutely necessary (less than 3% of practice are maintenance patients).

    I don’t do all that and still my waiting list is long and buisy. All these dodgy practices you describe are indeed wrong but if the truth is to be said it happens in many different practices including physios and dentists and speech therapists and surgeons etc. and it is wrong wherever it happens!!!

    I understand you have an issue with Chiropractic, that is OK and it is up to you whether you insist on keeping that opinion despite ample evidence suggesting otherwise.

    • @G. Almog

      If you do not treat subluxations, what are you then doing that justifies the title “chiropractor”?
      Please help me/us understand why it is that practitioners of musculoskeletal manipulations, who would like to distance their vocation from the set of credulous tricks devised by DD Palmer, find it necessary to carry this title and thereby identify with his legacy?

      • Do you see neurologists take out ” brain stones” to treat headaches??? Because that used to be an acceptable practice for decades…

        Chiropractic is an evolving profession that has much more to offer than just manipulations… SMT is just one tool to use or not to use in diffrent stages of a treatment protocol. And of course part of the job is to go to seminars, confrences, read litriture, learn new techniques, inteoduce new equipment and constantly improve so not to look for ” brain stones” for headaches…

        • @not-a-Dr. Guy Almog on Wednesday 24 April 2019 at 08:34

          “SMT is just one tool to use or not to use in *diffrent* stages of a treatment protocol. And of course part of the job is to go to seminars, *confrences*, read *litriture*, learn new techniques, *nteoduce* new equipment and constantly improve so not to look for ” brain stones” for headaches…”

          … incapable of understanding the fallacy of their religion, as Palmer called it in a letter held on the public record. Charlatans, all chiros, persist with this nonsense for, at least three reasons (stupidity, ego, and money) while the rest of rational humanity laughs at their pathetic attempts to legitimise witchcraft.

          Obvious (and rhetorical) question; why are there not chiro clinics in every hospital? lol

          • I did erase the personal insults from this comment

          • Good day to you Sir
            When you have a scientific point to argue i will be happy to debate.

          • Dr Almog. I have been exchanging on this blog for awhile. You will find there are only a few people in here who can, or are willing, to have a reasonable and somewhat informed discussion and/or debate (Bjorn, Blue Wode, Julian come to mind). The rest, not so much, and some are a complete waste of time.

        • @Guy Almog

          Your analogy to archaic practices missed the mark.

          A few words about myself might be in order in light of the ensuing discourse.
          I do respect anyone who appears earnest and honest but I do not respect practices that I consider unacceptable. I have been a surgeon for three decades and my dedication is to those who need the services of genuine health care not someone who is more or less playing doctor. I am often blunt and sometimes sarcastic when I am addressing those that I consider disrespectful. I believe I have some right to be harsh and outspoken when appropriate and I appreciate if someone corrects me with adequate reason and evidence.
          As to my interest in chiropractic.
          After briefly reading on chiropractic and finding that it was considered having shown some efficacy for uncomplicated LBP, I sought the services of a chiropractor many years ago. The results were, to put it mildly, underwhelming. With an accumulating feeling of bewilderment from experiences such as having a whole-body X-ray that was so poor it would have been thrown in a hospital dustbin and having attended a lecture about bizarre, unrealistic claims of panacea like effects of adjusting subluxations, I slowly began realising that the only thing that had been improved by his services were his finances. I finally tore myself free from the strange attachment he had established in me. I felt a strange feeling , like I was betraying him, when I stopped coming for the frequent 2-3 minute adjustments he had told me were necessary for maintenance. After being released from this “spell” I realised that the adjustments and wide claims of effect were completely unrealistic. I later read all I could get my hands on about chiropractic and spinal pathophysiolgoy and therapy.
          This experience was one of several reasons I started developing an interest in alternative medicine, namely why sensible educated people and even health care professionals can fall for fantasy, nonsense and fake.

          I have realised that many chiropractors practice as some sort of spine specialists and it may thankfully be a rising trend, at least in some parts of the world. My view is that the term “chiropractic” should be reserved and conserved as a term for the pseudo-medicine that DD Palmer made up. I have absolutely no objections to, I actually welcome it, an evolving corp of science based spine-specialised physiotherapists[sic] but I am at a loss to understand why those who wish to be seen as evidence based practitioners, still identify with quasi-religious, subluxation-adjusters wielding silly click-sticks and pretending to cure anything from non-existent birth-trauma, through infertility[sic] to seriously osteopenic octogenarians.

          I may add that me not addressing any chiropractor as Dr. this and that, is simply a policy decision I have made in order to protest the misuse of the honorific by more business- than clinical minded practitioners. I only occasionally use this titulature myself e.g. if I find myself in an American hotel urgently needing a cab or some other minor service, the effect is almost magical. Perhaps that is why American chiropractors like to flaunt the title, don’t you think? 😉

          Apropos that, what does a chiropractor do if a stewardess screams: “Is there a DOCTOR on the plane!!”?

          • Hi Bjorn,

            Indeed I would agree with most of what you wrote, your experience with Chiropractic was a bad one. I myself experienced Chiropractic as a patient when I was 21 yoa and if I had your kind of experience I would probably been doing something completely different these days.

            It is true that sensible chiropractors, osteopaths and physiotherapists are converging to somewhat similar practices these days because we all read the same literature. And still there are significant differences for which my fellow physio succeeds in cases where I fail and visa versa… and that is OK.

            my decision to go and study Chiropractic was based on the curriculum itself. The extensive volume of basic life science and the in-depth clinical studies were the things that had me convinced. My first intake involves extensive questioning, physical , orthopedic, neurological exams, laboratory and radiological studies. I don’t know of any other therapeutic profession that has the knowledge and training to do that and I find it crucial.

            As to the “Doctor” issue that has been discussed and challenged in the Israeli Supreme Court (long before my time) and it is the professional title of Chiropractors and some Osteopaths and Podiatrists etc. Obviously you need to attach your profession to your title to make sure the public is not mistaken you for an MD.

            I am not saying Chiropractic is perfect but I am saying that it is getting better by integration and cooperation with other professionals. Eventually working in a team of spine professionals requires one to have an Ego-Ectomy and put the patient’s intrests first… i think we can all agree on that.

          • Dr Almog.

            I associate with several thousand chiropractors (estimate around 15,000) via social media who identify as evidence based chiropractors (EBC). Around 200 are researchers and some may be interested in contacting you. I’ll see if I can add you to the group, I think you will find it of value.

            Some in here find EBC somewhat of an enigma considering the professions history. Sobeit. We have moved past our past.

            I have no issue referring a patient to a PT when warranted. I run about 40% Medicare in my clinic and in the states Medicare won’t cover “physical therapy” services if performed by a chiropractor. I have some very good PTs in my area (even went to one myself after I fractured my leg). Most of the MDs and DOs in my area have no issue with our local chiropractors as most of us stay in our lane (MSK issues).

            As a general rule we have a window to see if we can help patients…research indicates around 4 treatments or up to 4 to 6 weeks. My clinical experience seems to support that. I’ll share that research below.

            I have no issue with those who have questions or concerns about our profession…I have many myself. I do not have time for those who have passed judgement based upon their own biased agenda and cherry picking of facts. I’ve been debating with skeptics and pseudoskeptics for 20 years…the later, IMO, are a waste of time.

            Pain collected shortly after completion of 6 weeks of study intervention predicted future pain the best.

            Being low-back pain free at the fourth visit was a strong predictor for being low-back pain free both at 3 months and 12 months.

            Improvement at the fourth visit is a predictor of long-term outcome.

            The results suggest there is a significant association between a within/between-session change after the second physiotherapy visit and discharge outcomes for pain and ODI in this sample of patients who received a manual therapy intervention.

            Of the 115 patients in the most favorable prognostic group, 84% (95% confidence interval, 77-91) reported to be “definitely improved” by the 4th visit…

            Those who experienced a ≥33% pain reduction by 2 weeks had 6.98 (95% CI = 1.29, 37.53) times higher odds of 50% improvement on the GRoC and 4.74 (95% CI = 1.31, 17.17) times higher odds of 50% improvement on the ODI (at 6 months). Subjects who reported a ≥50% pain reduction at 2 weeks had 5.98 (95% CI = 1.56, 22.88) times higher odds of a 50% improvement in the GRoC and 3.99 (95% CI = 1.23, 12.88) times higher odds of a 50% improvement in the ODI (at 6 months).

      • Bjorn, perhaps this compilation will interest you. Granted the main page is ran by so called vitalists, but the qoutes are from the more evidence based/researchers (subluxation-deniers as they are called).

        • Thank you for this link to an interesting, albeit (at first glance) somewhat bewildering website. I will have to have a closer look at it later.

          The first quote that popped up was from none other than our good professor:

          Chiropractic is a belief system. We must not expect rational thoughts or facts from what, in effect, is a religion for many. I can understand this in a way: belief can be a cosy shelter from the truth; it does not require much thinking; it hardly needs any learning, no changing of minds, etc. However, belief can never be a basis for good healthcare.”

          After trying for years to figure out the enigma of why “chiropractic” (the classical setup, involving DD Palmer’s tricks and fantasies) has survived modern science and regulatory efforts, I have to agree with the professor that this must be the root cause of the problem.

          Tell me “DC”, are we to understand that you identify with the “subluxation deniers”?
          If so, then why call yourself “chiropractor”??

          • Bjorn…Tell me “DC”, are we to understand that you identify with the “subluxation deniers”?

            Yes, i would be classified as a subluxation denier.

            Bjorn…If so, then why call yourself “chiropractor”??

            I call myself a chiropractor because I graduated from chiropractic college. My state requires me to identify myself as a chiropractor. However, my state does not require me to practice or believe like it is still 1895.

        • Dr Almog – I have enjoyed your posts,thank you. Sadly, some posters vociferously against everything they disagree with do not have your good manners and respect for others. It is oftentimes difficult to see this blog as serious with regard to health.

          I have been seeing my chiropractor for several years, have made many recommendations and he is extremely busy; we all experience benefits and we can’t all be misguided, gullible etc which we are accused of.

          My local GP refers to a chiropractor and we have acupuncturists in some GP centres. So all is not lost. However, there does seem a trend now for GP’s to refer to physiotherapists as first point of contact before consultants’ appointments. This sometimes creates a lengthy process for those in pain. But understandable in this climate of underfunding in the NHS.

          It sounds like you help a lot of patients, may you continue to do so.

          Before the Mr Geirs and Odds jump in, I haven’t forgotten my response to Dr Julian: it just requires a little more time and consideration than this post. Hope everyone has a good day.

          • Angela said:

            some posters vociferously against everything they disagree with do not have your good manners and respect for others.

            It is bad manners and disrespect to come here and fail to provide robust evidence to back up claims made. If they were serious with regard to health, the supporters of whatever is being discussed should be open to the criticism of whatever they say and the evidence they provide and should see that as helpful and constructive. Frequently, though, as has been pointed out on many occasions, proponents frequently simply hurl abuse when their cherished practice is questioned or exposed.

          • Thanks Angela, have a good day

        • Hi DC… sure i’ll be happy to join

  • @Not-Doc-Guy: Here’s a scientific-point: since a DCs schtick is, and has always been; deducing “intersegmental-motion” of the spines vertebrae…AND fixing it…..when one of you DCs declare you do NOT hunt-and-eliminate “intervertebral subluxations” (or one of the 356 varied pseudo-descriptors you use to avoid being “pinned down”) then the question IS (asked here 1000 times over) WTF DO YOU DO?!?!?
    You ain’t a PT, you ain’t a kinesiologist, you ain’t a biomechanist, you ain’t an exercise physiologist and you ain’t a psychiatrist……?
    So WHY were YOU hired by a hospital???? Can no one else manipulate-a-spine? And WHY pray tell ARE you manipulating-a-spine, if in fact that’s why they hired you?????

    • Alan – I am making s comment. I have no problem with healthy debate – in fact, it is to be encouraged. The fact that I have asked for that previously and it evoked the response ‘ what’s the point of debating with the equivalent of a unicorn i(or tooth fairy, can’t recall) ‘ illustrates the problem.

      Any which way and whatever your thoughts does not permit nasty comments towards fellow human beings with a different view. If people want to critique, great, that’s what makes the blog after all, but respectfully my view is it can be done politely.

      It carries no water any more to say CAM supporters don’t take kindly to criticism: take an overview sometime of this blog. It suits the skeptics to accuse us off running off, tail between our legs. Truthfully that is hardly the case. Although I must say I miss Logos Bios ( where are you?) as he had something interesting to say.

  • thank you, DC, i am trying to be respectful to every person that has nothing to do with Chiropractic that is just how i was raised… to your question Kenny…

    I am not unique or special you have Chiropractors working in other hospitals in Israel such as Rambam, Shiba, Tel Aviv M.C, Hadassa and I probably left some out. The reason I am needed there is because I help patients.
    In real clinical life you often realize how little do we know and understand. We have spine surgeons, physios, chiropractors, pain specialists and still in many cases we are left helpless.

    If you are interested in my clinical protocols, I will be glad to discuss this with you although I am not sure this is the place for that. You are more than welcome to write to me privately and I will be happy to go into details with you

  • @Guy: So your explanation of “why” a chiropractor is practicing in a hospital…who isn’t a biomechanist, kinesiologist, psychologist, physical therapist or exercise physiologist (yet perhaps fancy’s himself as equivalent to them all ?) is because “I help patients”? Does that explain anything? “Chiropractic” and “ hospitals” are incongruous to the premise of both.
    Is it your unique “skills” such as (invalid) motion palpation techniques, leg-length analysis, upper-cervical or AS/PI assessments etc etc that affords you the unique advantage of “helping patients” vs these other professionals? Or just that you can make a hyper-mobile intervertebral joint “crack” quicker? Does a DC education sufficiently encompass ALL the other educations? Or is it capacious oddles of dogmatic “big ideas”? Which of these garners the greatest level of “help” would you suggest? Science or trickery? IF science….why focus on being a chiroproctor???
    Do you not imagine EVERY innane and arcane quackery-practitioner from Rekki to exorcists proclaim THEY help patients? And their help ISN’T mere placebo or non-specific trickery.
    Is that not the purpose of this blog….to create a recognition that “helping” patients is the shroud of eons of Tom foolery, malarkey and snake-oil sales? Non-specific, placebo and transient “help” to patients really needn’t require a hospital or a faux-doctor degree. And taking credit for such “help” is tantamount to malpractice. That’s just an enhancement of the fraud and a means to beguile the gullible. Which should remain the territory of religion.

    • Michael Kenny – you say ……EVERY …. quackery-practitioner from Rekki (sic)…..proclaim THEY help patients?’

      If you are referring to Reiki, we don’t have patients. If you are interested in the correct terms you could always check out the Reiki organisations’ Codes of Conduct. Heads up on two rules – Reiki Practitioners cannot claim to cure anything and must not present as medical professionals, ie wear a white coat.

      • Angela, try this website. OK, it doesn’t say the patients are patients of reiki — they’re cancer patients — but even the title of the web page confirms Michael Kenny’s basic point.

        • Frank 0 – the website USA?) confirms nothing of MK’s post. It concurs with the fact that most Cancer units in UK have complementary therapy centres supporting patients to offer ‘alongside’ support . These Support centres are rigorously regulated: Dr Julian’s practising hospital has one and I know how it works.

          Now I understand you like to be correct, but I will have to leave you to it, Frank: I am busy teaching Reiki for a few days: please be reassured top of the list is: we can’t claim cure, and we are not medical professionals. Reiki speaks for itself: it is undoubtedly effective : you should give it a whirl one day: you may feel very chilled.

          Oh and in your search to corroborate your friend’s comments, should you find a website with false claims, you have Alan and NC to deal with it. So win win for you. Meanwhile I shall go about teaching something I know does no harm, but a great deal of good. Have s good day.

          • Angela, if a website entitled “How reiki helps cancer patients” does not support Michael Kenny’s point that “……EVERY …. quackery-practitioner from Rekki (sic)…..proclaim THEY help patients” [this was your cut-back version of his comment] then one of us needs to undergo a crash course in understanding the English language.

            If you object to the relevance of US websites, then perhaps this one, from Cancer Research UK, will suit you better. It says “A Reiki practitioner aims to change and balance the energy fields in and around your body to help on a physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual level.” [my italics]

            BTW, please don’t refer to Mr Kenny as my friend. I don’t know him at all. From his comments we’re clearly on the same side concerning some people’s tendency to delude themselves about their dotty concepts of helping others, but that doesn’t even make us pals.

  • Dr. Almog…Need to sign up on FaceBook.

    • Frank -this my final comment on this thread. The Cancer research website sums it all up doesn’t it? The original MK post was derisory towards someone who helps/treats/cures patients and then Rekki((sic) was raised and here I am.

      Within the hospital environment there are patients and Reiki Practioners ‘help’ those patients, regulated by the fact they are CHNC members and work from the complementary support centre attached to the hospital. They are not Medical Professionals and cannot claim cure.

      In private practice Reiki Practitioners do
      not have patients, are not medical professionals and cannot claim cures.

      The word ‘help’is many faceted: a GP will greet you ‘with how can I help?’, emergency services are asked for help: the list is endless; and the plea for ‘help’ often means ‘please make me better’ And there are many practitioners who can effect that.

      Many years ago I was asked to treat a patient by a relative in a High dependency unit of a specialist and highly regarded hospital. I was unwelcomed to the degree of animosity. It was difficult: I did my best in an environment of deliberate obstruction; there were many medical professionals in and out: and I was impressed: it was a gift because I saw first hand the calibre of the staff : the care and protection towards their patient was awe inspiring. It is always a reminder for me how fortunate we are to have these wonderful medical professionals in the NHS . The director of that hospital fed back the most sarcastic comments to the patient’s relative: it was clear they were relieved at my departure.

      We have come a long way since then: some doctors and surgeons train in Reiki, there are many volunteers and a small number of paid Reiki practitioners within hospitals. And one leading London hospital is working hand in hand with a Reiki organisation to learn how and why Reiki is ‘helping’ seriously ill patients.

      Forgive me if reading that original post evoked a feeling of despair at the blanket denigration of complementary practice that undoubtedly ‘helps’ many people in hospital and out. Feel free to delve and be right : I would expect nothing less from this blog, but hopefully any readers who are interested are a little more enlightened.

      • So, what is the latest thing that bores me to death about practitioners of woo? Their assertion that the only way to be “enlightened” is to have the kind of mind that will stretch reality enough to allow you believe in wackiness.


        I prefer to believe that being enlightened is somehow related to turning the lights on. That means you can now see everything, not just what you want to see. When you see everything, you see the science. So, I would argue, if you are enlightened, you would toss woo aside like the rubbish it is.

  • Hi thanks DC I will

    With regard to Reiki I admit my lack of knowledge on that matter is profound.

    However I do think when it comes to oncology patients and as long as their palliative care does not interfere with their regular treatments we should be more tolerable.

    If a cancer patient finds comfort in consulting a Rabi or a spiritual healer of some sort who are we to say NO??? Again this does not include charlatans telling patients to stop or intervene with their regular ontological care.

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