opioid epidemic

Opioid Epidemic

Opioid Epidemic

Who’s a quack?

It’s not uncommon for chiropractors to be called quacks.

It’s more a matter of when, not if you’re going to be called a quack if you’re a chiropractor. Sadly, there are some chiropractors, just like medical doctors, that have earned this label. However, the chiropractic profession as a whole is far from being rooted in quackery. Why is it that so many people, particularly medical doctors, have such a negative stigma attached to chiropractic?


First, let’s look at the facts.

The definition of a “quack” is a person who dishonestly claims to have special knowledge or skill in some field, typically medicine.

Right from the start, it’s easy to see that this does not pertain to the profession of chiropractic. As a whole chiropractic does not profess to have or even want to have “skill” as a medical doctor. The entire profession of chiropractic is governed by the concept that the body functions best without chemical or surgical intervention unless it is an immediate life or death emergency. This means that the vast majority of medical care being used to drug and cut for degenerative conditions serve only to rid the body of symptoms and ignore the underlying problem. The most common example of this is the excessive use of pain meds, specifically opioids, for back pain.

The opioid epidemic is at an all-time high in the United States solely as a response to medical treatments. It’s so common to see overdoses that police, who are not medical providers, are carrying Narcan in their squad cars. Narcan is a nasal spray that is used in the block and reverses the effects of opioid overdose.

The sad reality of this opioid epidemic is that most of the people are patients, not criminals.

opioid epidemicMany of them have chronic pain from degenerative spinal conditions like degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis, degenerative joint disease, spinal arthritis, bulging discs, herniated discs, failed low back surgery. Unfortunately, they suffer needlessly because the medical model has failed them. Why? Because drugs and surgery cannot correct the cause of these and other degenerative conditions. Medicine is only capable of covering up the symptoms that result from these conditions. This typically continues until the condition is so bad that the symptoms cannot be ignored with even the strongest painkillers, like opioids.

At this point, it is common for the patient’s medical doctor to refuse to prescribe them more opioids to prevent damage or addition to the drugs. The problem is that the patients back pain or neck pain has only gotten worse and now they need more opioid painkillers to function or they are already addicted. At this point, they often turn to illegal means to deal with the symptoms the only way they’ve even been told could help, opioids and painkillers.

This may seem like I’ve gone off on quite an unrelated tangent but I haven’t. The FACT remains that chiropractic can often help many of these patients because a vast majority of patients suffering from chronic pain, do so because of a spinal condition. Chiropractors are doctors who specialize in the treatment of the spine, without drugs or surgery. True structurally focused chiropractors are trained and capable of preventing and often correcting the cause of many degenerative spinal conditions because they understand how to change the structure of the spine with chiropractic adjustments, spinal remodeling traction and specific exercises and physical therapy.

This brings me back to our original questions.

Consider the definition of a quack. A quack is someone who falsely claims to have and special understanding or expertise in a specific field, typically medicine. However, in the case of chronic and degenerative conditions of the spine, it is clear that the medical profession, who is the root cause of our current opioid epidemic, are the quacks. When you claim to know that chiropractic is ineffective and itself quackery despite the science and the evidence, you are in fact claiming to know or understanding something (chiropractic) dishonestly.

I don’t use that term lightly or simply to “name call”.

I use it to accurately describe a profession who is failing miserably to effectively treat patients with low back pain, neck pain, headaches, etc. using only opioids and surgery. If these methods were so effective then why are we seeing an unprecedented increase in their use with so little improvement in the health and well-being of their patients? The failure is so bad that many of the medical doctor’s patients are becoming addicted to the very treatments they are prescribing.

It is true that there are some chiropractors that are quacks. However, to claim that an entire profession is a quackery while simultaneously not understanding its science and treatments is, at best, quackery and at worse bigotry.


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