Thursday, May 23, 2013

Chiropractic didn't work

Physiotherapists, Surgeons and General Practitioners often hear this while we (members of the Chiropractic profession) hear the opposite. Who's right?

I suspect that all clinicians are experts at overestimating themselves.  My mentors suggested that 'it's all unreliable' but to remind myself that all health professionals deal with the same thing.  Ironically you begin to get better at it once you accept that you'll never be 100% certain.  Rationally we know this but we constantly entertain the fantasy that we can be certain and deal with 'everything'.  We can't.

Chiropractors in one respect occupy an enviable position.  We deal with and are perceived as dealing with only one 'part' of the body - the spine.  We are well placed to be the 'go to' profession for spine diagnosis and the conservative management of it's related disorders.  Our biggest obstacle isn't how we are perceived but how we view ourselves and our reluctance to accept our position as just one of the many other health professions whose job it is to look after the populations health - if that's what they want.  That role requires self examination, humility and the willingness to communicate with medical professionals about THEIR patients using common language.

Chiropractic doesn't work or not work.  Techniques and treatments come and go depending on development but what we can say is we're a health profession with a long history of relative success in a particular field.  We overrate ourselves and are soundly underrated by the public and other professions.  Whose fault is that?  Ours.

Douglas Scown

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