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What is Chiropractic?

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Books about Chiropractic:
Controversy and Scepticism

  1. Chiropractic the Greatest Hoax of the Century? (2002) UK NA
  2. Chiropractic: The Victim's Perspective (Consumer Health Library) (1995)
  3. Spin Doctors: The Chiropractic Industry Under Examination (2003)

Chiropractic the Greatest Hoax of the Century?
by Ludmil A. Chotkowski, Stephen Barrett (Editor)

Paperback: 202 pages ; 2nd edition (January 1, 2002)
New England Novelty Books; ISBN: 0965785521

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Book Description
This is the revised second edition, edited with the help of Dr Stephen Barrett, and contains much new informative documentation.
Of particular interest is a revealing dialogue- debate on the internet between the author and the chirpractic community.
It is the only such book on chiropractic ever written by a medical doctor from the standpoint of scientific medicine, a viewpoint that every chiropractor and client should read.

About the Author
Graduate of Trinity College, Yale Medical School, Residency Hartford Hospital, Board Certified and Recertified by the American Board of Internal Medicine, and a Fellow of the American College of Physicians. Former Health Director, Medical Examiner, School Physician, Chief of Medicine at Rocky Hill Veterans Home and Hospital; Medical Director Connecticut Valley Mental Hospital. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Connecticut Medicine, the Journal of the Connecticut State Medical Society
The journal of the Connecticut State Medical Society: "Dr Chotkowski has successfully approached the chiropractic arena medically, legally, congressionally, personally"

Legitimate support for Chiropractic
A reader from Northern California , 24 August, 1999
First of all concerning the "young woman completely paralyzed from a chiropractic stroke induced by a neck twisting treatment," according to the author, I would like to address this with "scientific evidence." In a study done by Coulter, PhD et al, The Appropriateness of Manipulation & Mobilization of the Cervical Spine. "Risk of cervical spinal manipulation causing a CVA (cervical vascular accident) & other complications: 1.46/million. Risk of cervical spinal surgery, neurologic complications 15,600, death 6,900. Risk of NSAIDs: serious GI complications 3,200 >65 yrs,390 < 65 yrs, 1000 all ages." Hansen JP,MD,MSPH,Futch DB,DC,MPS.HMO practice 1997. Utilization of chiropractic services was assessed in the membership of Group Health Cooperative of South Central Wisconsin in 1993 & 1994. "A sample of 500 members using chiro services (38.2% responded) was surveyed about satisfaction. Highest utilization was among women aged 35 to 49, satisfaction levels were high in all areas with a 95.8% indicating overall satisfaction with chiro care and services." Leape.MD. JAMA 1994; Dec. 21,"20% of patients admitted to UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL MEDICAL SERVICE suffered iatrogenic injury and that 20% of those injuries were serious or fatal. If these rates are typical of the US then 180,000 people die a year partly as a result of iatrogenic injury, the equivalent of 3 jumbo jet crashes every 2 days!" Now I don't know where the author compiled his scientific literture to falsely state that there is no evidence to support chiropractic, but according to my literture, chiropractic wins and the medical approach loses! Case closed. I would tell others to really look at the studies done to support chiropractic before making ignorant opinions against chiropractic.

Finally the truth is revealed!!!!
A reader from South Carolina , 8 July, 1999
This author has the courage and dignity to face the public and expose this practice. D.C.'s simply have to face the fact that this practice is not productive in the manner that it is being marketed. The author outlines this aspect clearly, articulately and wisely. For good measure and interest some choice examples have been provided (Andy Warhol).
The most important area of the book is that it is a warning to all, here's a MD with obvious credentials, seeking to protect unwary potential victims of this "practice".

More than identifying it as a "hoax" a solution is offered!! That is honest and fair. The book discusses the concept of chirporactic care, and it is interesting to learn that this philosophy is basically as "belief", which is about as unproven as alien visitors.

Even pro-chiropractic books cannot and DO NOT identify how this "sublexsation" is biologically or physiologically related to the twisting and cracking that the D.C.s do.

The distressing part is that instead of helping their patients, they may be hurting them. They have played a psychological trick in making these people beleive that this twisting and cracking is healthy, when in fact it can be quite dangerous. (How is twisting a back going to heal a herneiated disk????) Some of this care requires that a patient see their D.C. weekly, even bi-weekly. If a person needs that many "adjustments", then something is seriously wrong!! Modern medicine is not perfect, but it at least rests on an identifiable theory and belief - which is to cure disease, and to heal the body. This is accomplished through scientific, means; medicine, therapy, etc. Again, while not perfect the principal is sound. Take Andy Warhol, his D.C. tried massaging an internal organ to "heal" it - that failed and he died. A surgical procedure would have had a greater than 90% chance of success to save his life.

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Chiropractic: The Victim's Perspective (Consumer Health Library)
by George Magner, Stephen, M.D. Barrett (Editor), William T. Jarvis

Hardcover: 252 pages (November 1995)
Prometheus Books; ISBN: 157392041X Price - Quick Click Buying

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Reader Reviews
Critical reviews from uninformed chiropractic believers, November 3, 2002
Reviewer: Dr Ludmil A Chotkowski (see more about me at from Kensington, Connecticut USA. Author of Chiropractic the Greatest Hoax of the Century?.
Criticisms of this book by "believers" in chiropractic calls for more information on the subject on their part. Do all these believers know that the subluxation, spinal adjustment theory of chiropractic, as stated in the 1996 consensus declaration of 16 chiropractic colleges, is false, and that no such lesion as a vertebral subluxation has ever been demonstrated in over a hundred year? Twenty seven surveyed medical college deans unanimously declared it to be false.
One critic claimed that he had sciatica cured by adjustments, while manipulation for sciatica was found ineffective by the NIH study setting guidelines for low back pain and a contradiction to manipulation.
The last two NIH studies found little benefit from manipulation, and we know that chiropractic cervical manipulation can be crippling or even fatal.
As for treating low back pain, most cases recover within a few days to 4 or so weeks with treatment and the same time without any.
Chiropractic has not been able to name one single disease with scientific proof, that spinal manipulation can effective treat prevent or cure. IF so will any critics of this book please do so. I have challenged the chiropractic community to name such a disease in my book that quoted some of the findings in Magner's.

I thought a doctor lived by the expression "First do no harm", March 17, 2001
Reviewer: A reader from Los Angeles, Ca
A very silly book, obvious propaganda, Manger certainly has an agenda. I'm very aware that medicine has a dismal record when it comes to back problems (I know..I'm an Internist). I've referred many to chiropractors and have received marvelous feedback. Pain which had been present for years had resolved in a relatively short time. This is after the patient (or insurance) spent countless thousands on PT, MRI's, Cat Scans etc. If this book keeps potential patients away from a very probable method to relieve symptoms, then Manger is "Doing Harm" Isn't the patients welfare the primary concern? Not with Manger, and his buddies..especially Barrett and Hamola. Lastly..a suggestion to these "quackwatch" people: Learn to write intellegently, the public are not fools!.


Spin Doctors: The Chiropractic Industry Under Examination
by Paul Benedetti, Wayne Macphail

Paperback: 296 pages (February 1, 2003)
Dundurn Press, Ltd.; ISBN: 155002406X Price - Quick Click Buying

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Book Description
This is the book you won't find in your chiropractor's waiting room!
Canadians visit chiropractors about thirty million times a year, and surveys show that patients are generally satisfied with their treatment. But studies also show that as many as two hundred Canadians a year suffer strokes brought on by neck manipulation. Spin Doctors takes a hard, dramatic, and spine-chilling look into the world of chiropractic medicine. You will be surprised to learn what chiropractors treat and why - and how much it costs you as a taxpayer. Most importantly, you'll learn how to protect yourself and your family from dangerous adjustments, practice-building tactics, bogus treatments, and misleading information.

Reader Reviews
What Chiro's Don't Want You To Know!, March 19, 2003
Reviewer: A reader from Slidell, LA United States
Me thinks thou protests too much! Chiropractors claim that thier treatments are safe, however this book exposes the real dangers of manipulation. It is not a treatment which should be consented to without full knowledge of the risks. The consumer has the right to be informed and this book does a good job of exposing the BUSINESS of chiropractic "medicine". Manipulation has a definate purpose and value, but the risks should not be swept under the rug.

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