As I mentioned in another post, the autonomy of Physical Therapists is under heavy attack from those practitioners who desire to fill their own pockets and disguise it as quality care. Yes, chiropractors fit in this group.
For years, chiros have spread mystical theories about vertebral subluxation and how the minor changes in alignment can cause all the world’s problems. By cracking your neck or back, they can cure all your pain, organ diseases, and my personal favorite – childhood bed wetting. Patients walk into their offices, are exposed to unnecessary radiation, then told that it will take 85 visits to fix their problems.
Chiros even offer a little “physical therapy” too! WAIT – only licensed PT’s can do real Physical Therapy. Not according to chiros. They claim they are trained to provide rehabilitation. That’s a laugher. Most chiros offer some nutritional supplements, some e-stim, maybe heat and ultrasound. This is Physical Therapy? Of course not, see the previous posts here.
So what’s the difference? Despite the effectiveness of spinal manipulation in some subgroups of patients, it is not the treatment for EVERY problem. Electrical stimulation, ultrasound, and a hot pack aren’t either. Physical Therapists are trained to provide manipulation to patients. In fact, it’s Physical Therapists who are putting out the research to identify the patients who are likely to benefit from thrust manipulation – funny that chiros aren’t leading the push huh? We (PT’s) also provide thorough therapeutic exercise to ensure you don’t have to come see us 85 times to get better.
Let me end with this, chiropractors hang their hat on the bogus theories of vertebral subluxation when the evidence clearly shows otherwise. They survive on one treatment (spinal manipulation) that they believe NO ONE but chiros should perform. There are many professionals that have been performing spinal manipulation for a long time and doing it well. More and more, it looks like Physical Therapists are able to combine quality therapeutic exercise with manual techniques such as manipulation to provide the BEST care for many musculoskeletal problems. Remember, only licensed PT’s provide Physical Therapy and chiropractors aren’t the only providers skilled and trained to perform spinal manipulation.