Chiropractor Quack: Uncovering The Truth About Fake Practices

Chiropractic care, founded by D.D. Palmer in the 1890s, focuses on spinal adjustments to treat ailments by realigning vertebral subluxations.

Understanding Chiropractic Care

Origins and Philosophy of Chiropractic

Chiropractic care originated in the late 19th century, when Daniel David Palmer discovered the concept of “vertebral subluxation,” which he believed was the cause of many diseases.

The philosophy behind chiropractic care asserts that using spinal adjustments can ease this misalignment called subluxation, and improve overall health by restoring the body’s “innate intelligence” to communicate with the nervous system without interference.

Chiropractic techniques have evolved from traditional bonesetting practices to include a wide range of spinal adjustment approaches and therapies.

Some chiropractors rely on rational scientific principles while others follow beliefs that are considered pseudoscience.

Chiropractic Adjustments and Techniques

Chiropractors use various methods to manipulate the spine and other joints, ranging from hands-on manipulation to using specialized instruments.

One common technique is the high-velocity low-amplitude (HLVA) thrust, which involves applying a sudden and controlled force to a joint to improve its range of motion.

Chiropractors also employ a variety of diagnostic tools such as X-rays and MRIs to assess patients and determine suitable treatment plans.

Some of the conditions they aim to treat include lower back pain, neck pain, headaches, joint pain, and some neurological symptoms.

However, the effectiveness of chiropractic care for non-musculoskeletal conditions remains a subject of debate and research.

Regulation and Licensing of Chiropractors

Chiropractors receive specialized education at accredited chiropractic schools, and they must pass national board exams to become licensed practitioners.

In the United States, licensing boards regulate their practice, requirements, and continuing education, ensuring they adhere to the industry’s standards.

Over the years, the chiropractic profession has gained recognition and integration with mainstream healthcare services.

Today, a significant number of chiropractors work within hospitals or with conventional health practitioners.

However, despite these advancements, controversies persist, and the field remains a topic of scientific discussion and evaluation.

By learning more about the origins, techniques, and regulation of chiropractic care, one can be better equipped to understand the ongoing debates and form a more informed opinion on this subject.

Critiques and Controversies in Chiropractic

Chiropractor in a heated debate with skeptics, surrounded by controversial literature and conflicting opinions

Chiropractic as Pseudoscience or Quackery

Chiropractic has been the subject of internal and external controversies since its inception in 18951.

It was founded by magnetic healer Daniel D. Palmer, who claimed that “vertebral subluxation” was the sole cause of all diseases and manipulation was the cure2.

The chiropractic profession has been divided into two main groups: “straights” and “mixers”3.

Strights adhere to the original chiropractic philosophy, while mixers combine chiropractic with other forms of physical therapy.

Nevertheless, the scientific validity of chiropractic remains questionable, as much of its philosophy is based on vitalistic and spiritualist ideas that are difficult to support with empirical evidence.

Challenges with Evidence and Efficacy

The chiropractic profession has faced criticism for the lack of scientific studies to support its claims4.

In particular, there is limited evidence for the effectiveness of spinal adjustments in treating non-musculoskeletal conditions5.

Overall, spinal manipulation has been shown to be effective in treating certain musculoskeletal disorders, such as lower back pain, but the treatment effect might be similar to that of a placebo for other conditions6.

Moreover, there is a lack of consensus on the diagnostics and management guidelines for subluxations, which further complicates the chiropractic’s integration with public health policies.

A quick look at some key numbers:

Entity >Description Source
Subluxations Misalignments of the spine that chiropractors believe can cause health problems Quackwatch
Adjustments Chiropractic treatments that involve spinal manipulation to address subluxations Wikipedia
Placebo A treatment that has no therapeutic effect in itself but causes clients to perceive an improvement because they believe it does Reddit

Interactions with Medicine and Public Health

The interactions between chiropractic and the medical community have been historically characterized by tension and distrust7.

Medical doctors often criticize chiropractors for the lack of a scientific basis in their practices and for promoting potentially harmful misinformation, such as anti-vaccine beliefs8.

In response to these criticisms, some chiropractic associations have attempted to distance themselves from unfounded claims and focus on evidence-based practices9.

However, there is still an ongoing debate among medical professionals and chiropractors regarding the appropriate role of chiropractic within public health systems.

Footnotes

  1. https://quackwatch.org/chiropractic/qa/controversy/

  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chiropractic_controversy_and_criticism

  3. https://www.reddit.com/r/askscience/comments/idl9h4/why_is_chiropractic_considered_pseudoscience_and/

  4. https://www.medpagetoday.com/primarycare/alternativemedicine/90737

  5. https://quackwatch.org/chiropractic/misc/meeker/

  6. https://www.reddit.com/r/askscience/comments/idl9h4/why_is_chiropractic_considered_pseudoscience_and/

  7. https://www.medpagetoday.com/primarycare/alternativemedicine/90737

  8. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chiropractic_controversy_and_criticism

  9. https://quackwatch.org/chiropractic/qa/controversy/