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CHIROPRACTIC

Other Names:

Chiro Therapy, Chirotherapy, Chiropractic Physician, Chiropraticien, Chiropractie, Chiropractors, Chiropratique, Chiropraxie, Manipulation Rachidienne, Manipulation Vertébrale, Manipulative Therapy, Physical Medicine, Quiropráctica, SMT, Spinal ...
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CHIROPRACTIC Overview
CHIROPRACTIC Uses
CHIROPRACTIC Side Effects
CHIROPRACTIC Interactions
CHIROPRACTIC Dosing
CHIROPRACTIC Overview Information

Chiropractic is an alternative technique that mainly uses spinal manipulation to treat a wide range of medical conditions.

Chiropractic is used for painful conditions including tension headache, carpal tunnel syndrome, fibromyalgia, back pain, neck pain, migraine, nerve pain, and whiplash. It is also used for high blood pressure, heart failure, scoliosis, colic, epilepsy, trouble sleeping (insomnia), bed-wetting, asthma, jet lag, ear infections, and many other conditions. Women see chiropractors for heavy menstrual periods and premenstrual syndrome (PMS).

Chiropractic originated in the US in 1895. It was developed by Daniel David Palmer. Since then, it has grown to be one of the most popular alternative medicines. In fact, many believe it is so popular that it should no longer be considered “alternative” medicine. In the US, chiropractors complete 4 academic years of professional training. Licensure of chiropractors is available in 46 states.

How does it work?

Chiropractors believe that disease is caused by pinched nerves (subluxations) in the spine. Manipulating or adjusting the spine is thought to remove the subluxations and allow the body to heal.

CHIROPRACTIC Uses & Effectiveness What is this?

Possibly Effective for:

  • Back pain. Chiropractic manipulation seems to significantly reduce low back pain. However, chiropractic care is not significantly more effective than conventional medical care for low back pain.

Insufficient Evidence for:

  • Asthma. Some research shows that chiropractic manipulation alone doesn’t seem to help asthma symptoms. However, other research suggests that adding chiropractic spinal manipulation to standard care for children with asthma might help them feel better, even though lung function tests don’t show an improvement.
  • Bed-wetting. Some research suggests that chiropractic manipulation might decrease bed-wetting. But this research was of poor quality, so some experts don’t trust its findings.
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome. Developing research suggests that chiropractic care does not significantly improve symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.
  • Colic. There is some evidence that chiropractic spinal manipulation is more effective than giving a medication called dimethicone for reducing crying in infants with colic.
  • Epilepsy. There are reports that some children with epilepsy have fewer seizures after chiropractic manipulation of the upper spine.
  • Jet lag. There is some evidence that chiropractic care does not significantly reduce symptoms of jet lag during trans-Atlantic travel.
  • Menstrual pain. Developing research suggests chiropractic spinal manipulation doesn’t significantly reduce menstrual pain.
  • Migraine. Some early research suggests that chiropractic spinal manipulation therapy might provide short-term protection against developing migraine headaches. But the quality of this research has been criticized, so experts question its findings. The long-term effect of chiropractic on migraine headache really isn’t known.
  • Neck pain. There is conflicting information about the effectiveness of chiropractic care for neck pain.
  • Tension headache. There is some evidence that chiropractic spinal manipulation therapy might provide short-term protection against tension-type headaches. But some experts believe this study was poorly designed, so its results aren’t reliable. The long-term effect of chiropractic on tension headache really isn’t known.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Heart failure.
  • High blood pressure.
  • Nerve pain.
  • Scoliosis.
  • Trouble sleeping (insomnia).
  • Whiplash.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of chiropractic for these uses.

CHIROPRACTIC Side Effects & Safety

Chiropractic procedures are safe for most people when done correctly. However, procedures on the neck can cause many side effects including headache, neck pain, and neck stiffness. Some side effects have been severe including bleeding around the spine and stroke; however, this appears to be very rare.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of chiropractic manipulation during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Children: Chiropractic procedures might be UNSAFE in children. Bleeding in the brain has been reported. There have also been reports of less severe side effects including headache and back pain.

CHIROPRACTIC Interactions What is this?

Moderate Interaction Be cautious with this combination

  • Warfarin (Coumadin) interacts with CHIROPRACTIC

    Warfarin (Coumadin) thins the blood and can cause excessive bleeding. There is some concern that people taking warfarin might be more likely to experience bleeding around the spine after receiving chiropractic neck treatments. If you are taking warfarin, avoid getting chiropractic neck treatments.


CHIROPRACTIC Dosing

The appropriate or safe use of chiropractic depends on several factors such as the condition being treated or the person administering the treatment. Be sure to seek and follow relevant directions from your physician or other healthcare professional before using this treatment.

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Conditions of Use and Important Information: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

This copyrighted material is provided by Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Consumer Version. Information from this source is evidence-based and objective, and without commercial influence. For professional medical information on natural medicines, see Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Professional Version. © Therapeutic Research Faculty 2009.

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