Confessions of a Quackbuster

This blog deals with healthcare consumer protection, and is therefore about quackery, healthfraud, chiropractic, and other forms of so-Called "Alternative" Medicine (sCAM).

Saturday, January 08, 2005

"Chiropractic is a new theology" -- Robert Clyde Affolter, DC

Affolter's Chiropractic Comments


If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck – it's a duck.

I've heard that so often, I'm tired of it. Of course it may not be true. It could be an ingenious decoy. However, the statement makes an interesting point.

This week a colleague told me that he practices spinal manipulative therapy based on the best medical evidence. He claims to have a doctor of chiropractic degree from a recognized institution. I maintained that he is practicing physical therapy.

Then I got an email from Chiropractic Economics with an article on a study by physical therapists which supported spinal manipulative therapy for back pain. So, what's the deal? Are P.T.s practicing chiropractic or are chiropractors practicing P.T.?

Some in our profession would like to claim that chiropractic is whatever a chiropractor does. Using that thinking, all they have to do is expand the scope of practice in any given state and suddenly chiropractic grows to include the new scope. Is that type of growth like the normal physiological growth of baby to adult? Or is it an abnormal growth like cancerous metastatic tumors sucking the nutrition and life away from the body with the obvious end result?

If a chiropractor is watching football and sets his D.C. diploma on the television set, does watching football become chiropractic? Of course not.

If the profession of chiropractic is to mean anything, chiropractic must have a definition. The definition must establish the core differences between chiropractic and other branches of "health care."

I maintain that the difference is that chiropractic is a new theology–the theology that God is Life-force. One property of the Life-force is intelligence and therefore, It is the cause of adaptation. It primarily uses the nervous system to control and coordinate function. Therefore, the chiropractic goal is to correct interference to the nervous system due to mis-aligned bones.

If we are to grow the profession, we must determine a natural growth from the above paragraph. If not, the cancers will over take us. We will become physical therapists masquerading as chiropractors.

There is a bright note. There are others willing to become chiropractors and masquerade as something else. Chiropractic will not be lost.

Have a great week!

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