Chiropractic Effectiveness

There have been numerous formal government inquiries into the chiropractic effectiveness throughout the world. All of these government inquiries found contemporary chiropractic health care safe and effective, and recommended licensure and government funding. They have all criticized the level of conflict and misinformation between chiropractic and the medical professions, and expressly called for cooperation and understanding in the better interest of the patients they serve.

The following is a list of studies and information illustrating the effectiveness of chiropractic care.

An 18-month study conducted in 1979 by the Royal New Zealand Commission of Inquiry on Chiropractic determined the following:

“Doctors of chiropractic have unsurpassed expertise in caring for neuromusculoskeletal conditions. The commission found beyond any reasonable degree of doubt that chiropractors have a more thorough training in spinal mechanics and spinal manual therapy than any other health professional.”

“Chiropractors are the only health practitioners who are necessarily equipped by their education and training to carry out spinal manipulation.”

“Spinal manual therapy in the hands of a registered chiropractor is safe.”

“The responsibility for spinal manual therapy training, because of its specialized nature, should lie with the chiropractic profession. Part-time or vacation courses in spinal manual therapy for other health professionals should not be encouraged.”

In 1956, an analysis was made in Florida of 19,666 worker’s compensation cases. This study revealed that the average number of workdays lost by an injured employee was nine when they were treated by medical doctors, but only three days when the workers were treated by doctors of chiropractic.

A detailed back-injury study was performed in 1971 using the records of the Worker’s Compensation Board of Oregon. According to this study, 82 percent of claimants who were under chiropractic care returned to work after one week of time lost. For workers under care of medical doctors, only 41 percent were able to resume work after one week.

In the Congressional Record of the United States Senate proceedings of May 9, 1979, a study by Dr. C. Richard Wolf, M.D., on back injuries in California was cited with these striking comparisons: the average number of workdays lost by a patient under the care of a medical doctor was 32, compared with an average of only 15.6 workdays lost by patients under the care of a doctor of chiropractic. In the same study, 34.8 percent of the cases under a medical doctor’s care reported complete recovery, compared with reports of complete recovery by 51 percent of those patients under chiropractic care.

In a paper entitled “Health Economics and Chiropractic,” Dillon, a prominent Australian economist, has this to say about the cost effectiveness of chiropractic care …

“Undoubtedly, in terms of economic appraisal of the current health scene … chiropractic is in a very strong position. Compared to medical services, it is an extremely inexpensive avenue of health care for those who seek it. Unlike primary medical practice, it does not spiral costs into the system through ancillary and specialist services, hospitalization and pharmaceuticals. On average, a dollar spent on a chiropractor’s service causes no further costs.”

Numerous other studies have been performed – and continue to be performed – to further prove the tremendous effectiveness of chiropractic health care.