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Do Medical Doctors and Chiropractic Doctors Get Along?

Posted May 06 2009 1:33pm 1 Comment

Although relationships are changing, and I have personally experienced a large number of medical referrals, many of you are aware that MD’s and DC’s have not always seen eye to eye. Have you ever wondered why that is? The history of disagreement and animosity between the medical establishment and the chiropractic community is long and nasty. However, for most, it has become a Hatfield vs. McCoy scenario where the actual participants don’t really know why they’re supposed to hate each other!

Ultimately, the original battle began as… yup, a turf war. As with most conflicts throughout history, it all came down to ‘the almighty dollar.’ No one knows who threw the first punch, but the powers that be have been battling ever since. The emerging medical advancements and pharmaceutical industry of the early 20th century saw chiropractic as a competing faction. Advancements at that time were focused on new drugs and new surgeries… and along came chiropractic whose primary tenet was ‘treatment without drugs and without surgery.’ With diametrically opposed viewpoints, there was bound to be some fireworks.

Individual doctors argued mostly with each other based on their beliefs of what was right for the patient. As time went on, and our country went through the first world war, it became increasingly clear that there was an underlying conflict where doctors were vying for their piece of the health care dollar. Enter… the politicians. Charismatic representatives, and association heads, whose sole purpose was to increase the financial health of one faction at the expense of the other… regardless of patient outcomes. Now the money men were directing and guiding health care opinion.

It’s at this point that I think the chiropractic community started recognizing that the battle was not constructive, and that patient care was suffering because of it. It probably helped that they also realized there was no way they could fight the money that medicine and the pharmaceutical industry could throw at them.

The medical community wasn’t so quick to give up the battle. Instead of backing off, cooperating with, or joining with chiropractors, they chose to go on the offensive. They began a systematic attack on the chiropractic profession designed to ridicule and minimize the safety and effectiveness of chiropractic treatment. This history of attack and false advertisement culminated with the Wilkes case that settled in the Supreme Court in 1992. That case found the AMA guilty of conspiring against chiropractic under anti-trust laws. To this day, most consumers are unaware that the “idea” that chiropractors are quacks was purposefully, illegally, underhandedly, and cleverly crafted and promoted by the AMA.

A good article and detail of the history of the attack on chiropractic by the AMA is located here. Read through that article and learn why your medical doctor has been largely unaware of what chiropractic is and what it is capable of. Evidence of continuing attacks is evident even today. How many of us have heard of the dangers of stroke after chiropractic manipulation? Then ask yourself, how many have heard of the two studies ( here and here ) that proved you are no more at risk to stroke after a chiropractic visit than you are after a medical visit?… or a visit to the beauty salon for that matter?!

7,600 people die each year just from the use of anti-inflammatory drugs (like ibuprofen, naproxen sodium, and aspirin). 32,000 people die each year from adverse reactions to prescription medications. There is a one in 5,585,000 (that’s one for every five million five hundred eighty-five thousand) chance that you’ll have a negative cerebrovascular event after manipulation of the neck. In the past 113 years, there have been thirteen deaths related to manipulation of the neck. Only three… yes, that’s three, 1, 2, 3 have been related to manipulation of the neck by a chiropractor. Yet, the media and the medical industry would have you believe that chiropractic is “too dangerous.”

In short, do medical doctors and chiropractic doctors get along? Yes! I have developed a strong working relationship with many of the local medical doctors, and they refer patients to me regularly. Those doctors who have put politics and money aside, and have chosen instead to focus on the benefits to the patient, have begun to cooperate effectively. Now, you can find medical doctors and chiropractic doctors sharing the same office and working together to give the patient the best possible results with the least cost, time, and side effects.

Yes, individual medical doctors and chiropractic doctors are cooperating for the benefit of the patient. However, the major organizations (including the AMA, the pharmaceutical industry, and some chiropractic organizations) are still loyal to their members, and are focused solely on the financial security of those members. If you experience a chiropractic doctor, or a medical doctor, who is opposed to communicating or cooperating with your other health care professionals, ask yourself what their motivation is for making that decision. If you read a story that gives a negative report about, or raises questions about, either industry, please take the time to find out who wrote the piece and what their motivation was (or who paid them) to write the piece.

Although relationships are changing, and I have personally experienced a large number of medical referrals, many of you are aware that MD’s and DC’s have not always seen eye to eye. Have you ever wondered why that is? The history of disagreement and animosity between the medical establishment and the chiropractic community is long and nasty. However, for most, it has become a Hatfield vs. McCoy scenario where the actual participants don’t really know why they’re supposed to hate each other!

Ultimately, the original battle began as… yup, a turf war. As with most conflicts throughout history, it all came down to ‘the almighty dollar.’ No one knows who threw the first punch, but the powers that be have been battling ever since. The emerging medical advancements and pharmaceutical industry of the early 20th century saw chiropractic as a competing faction. Advancements at that time were focused on new drugs and new surgeries… and along came chiropractic whose primary tenet was ‘treatment without drugs and without surgery.’ With diametrically opposed viewpoints, there was bound to be some fireworks.

Individual doctors argued mostly with each other based on their beliefs of what was right for the patient. As time went on, and our country went through the first world war, it became increasingly clear that there was an underlying conflict where doctors were vying for their piece of the health care dollar. Enter… the politicians. Charismatic representatives, and association heads, whose sole purpose was to increase the financial health of one faction at the expense of the other… regardless of patient outcomes. Now the money men were directing and guiding health care opinion.

It’s at this point that I think the chiropractic community started recognizing that the battle was not constructive, and that patient care was suffering because of it. It probably helped that they also realized there was no way they could fight the money that medicine and the pharmaceutical industry could throw at them.

The medical community wasn’t so quick to give up the battle. Instead of backing off, cooperating with, or joining with chiropractors, they chose to go on the offensive. They began a systematic attack on the chiropractic profession designed to ridicule and minimize the safety and effectiveness of chiropractic treatment. This history of attack and false advertisement culminated with the Wilkes case that settled in the Supreme Court in 1992. That case found the AMA guilty of conspiring against chiropractic under anti-trust laws. To this day, most consumers are unaware that the “idea” that chiropractors are quacks was purposefully, illegally, underhandedly, and cleverly crafted and promoted by the AMA.

A good article and detail of the history of the attack on chiropractic by the AMA is located here. Read through that article and learn why your medical doctor has been largely unaware of what chiropractic is and what it is capable of. Evidence of continuing attacks is evident even today. How many of us have heard of the dangers of stroke after chiropractic manipulation? Then ask yourself, how many have heard of the two studies ( here and here ) that proved you are no more at risk to stroke after a chiropractic visit than you are after a medical visit?… or a visit to the beauty salon for that matter?!

7,600 people die each year just from the use of anti-inflammatory drugs (like ibuprofen, naproxen sodium, and aspirin). 32,000 people die each year from adverse reactions to prescription medications. There is a one in 5,585,000 (that’s one for every five million five hundred eighty-five thousand) chance that you’ll have a negative cerebrovascular event after manipulation of the neck. In the past 113 years, there have been thirteen deaths related to manipulation of the neck. Only three… yes, that’s three, 1, 2, 3 have been related to manipulation of the neck by a chiropractor. Yet, the media and the medical industry would have you believe that chiropractic is “too dangerous.”

In short, do medical doctors and chiropractic doctors get along? Yes! I have developed a strong working relationship with many of the local medical doctors, and they refer patients to me regularly. Those doctors who have put politics and money aside, and have chosen instead to focus on the benefits to the patient, have begun to cooperate effectively. Now, you can find medical doctors and chiropractic doctors sharing the same office and working together to give the patient the best possible results with the least cost, time, and side effects.

Yes, individual medical doctors and chiropractic doctors are cooperating for the benefit of the patient. However, the major organizations (including the AMA, the pharmaceutical industry, and some chiropractic organizations) are still loyal to their members, and are focused solely on the financial security of those members. If you experience a chiropractic doctor, or a medical doctor, who is opposed to communicating or cooperating with your other health care professionals, ask yourself what their motivation is for making that decision. If you read a story that gives a negative report about, or raises questions about, either industry, please take the time to find out who wrote the piece and what their motivation was (or who paid them) to write the piece.

Comments (1)
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This is a great article. You got to the heart of the issue between Medical Doctors and Doctors of Chiropractics. It's great you are getting the word out on the reason Chiropractors are sometimes considered "quacks." I also touched on this subject

Also, it is very important to educate people on the adverse effects of anti-inflammatory drugs. To think that said medication kills as many people as AIDS does per year is alarming. If only we could spend as much money educating the public on preventitive care as Big Pharma does on pushing drugs, we would all be healthier people. 

 Keep charging!

 

- Dr. Bates

 

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