Respectful Insolence

Every so often I come across a post by quacks or supporters of quackery that make me wish that we as skeptics and supporters of science-based medicine actually had the abilities and powers attributed to us. I mean, what’s the good of being accused of running a conspiracy to crush any sort of “unconventional” or “alternative” medicine if we don’t actually have the power to crush unconventional and alternative medicine? Then, sometimes, there are posts that make me really wish that my bloggy skeptic friends and the skeptic organizations to which I belong actually had the power to do the things we’re accused of. Sadly, we don’t. But a guy can fantasize can’t he?

Certainly, that’s what I was thinking when I came across a hilariously paranoid post by a a chiropractor calling himself J. C. Smith (JCS), who runs a website called Chiropractors for Fair Journalism. The post is about a policy institute to which I belong, the Institute for Science in Medicine, and refers to ISM as The Medical GoodFellas. Before I respond, please take note of this disclaimer. In this post, I am not speaking for ISM in any capacity. I do not speak for ISM, nor am I authorized to speak on behalf of ISM. As a snarky blogger, I speak for no one but myself, and that is enough.

The article starts with the typical canards laid down by chiropractors about how horrible the American Medical Association is and how it supposedly tried to shut down chiropractic (as though that were a bad thing), referring to the AMA as a “medical mob” and to Morris Fishbein, MD, former director of the AMA as a “longtime medical godfather” and the “medical Mussolini.” JCS then equates opposition to the pseudoscience and quackery that underlie chiropractic with “bigotry”:

His intolerant quasi-KKK attitude about all non-allopathic CAM professions set the tone for the Jim Crow, MD, bias we see in many members in the medical profession today.

Without question, the medical bigotry fomented by Fishbein’s medical mob mindset remains steadfast in some quarters and is quite possibly the last bastion of acceptable prejudice in America. Clearly the “n-word” is unacceptable today in our general society, and the “b-word” is certainly an epithet offensive to women, but the “q-word” is still openly used by many biased MDs even though it was found to be a baseless charge back in the 1970s.

Because calling quackery quackery is exactly like using the n-word to describe African-Americans or calling a woman a “bitch.” Leave it to quacks to mistake criticism of what they have chosen to do for a living with criticism of what they inherently are because they were born that way and had no choice in the matter. There is a difference. African-Americans can’t help being an African-American, and women can’t help being women, which is a major part of the reason why slurs based on their being African-American or a woman are slurs constituting bigotry. In marked contrast, a chiropractor chooses to be a chiropractor. To become a chiropractor requires making a conscious decision to go to a school of chiropractic, to study the system of quackery that is so much of chiropractic, and then to put out a shingle and practice chiropractic. Let’s put it this way: If I decided to become a homeopath, would it be “bigotry” to say that I’ve become a quack? No! It would be a statement of fact, and, as we all know from the tagline of this blog, a statement of fact can’t be insolent. It also can’t really be bigotry, either, when it is a statement about a conscious personal career choice. None of this stops JCS from referring to valid scientific criticisms of chiropractic as the power of prejudice:

Although it is politically incorrect nowadays to be racist, sexist, anti-Semitic or homophobic, I have never heard any news pundit speak out against chiropractors being called “quacks” by chauvinistic medical professionals. While you may not read it in articles once seen in the era of the Committee on Quackery, their “everybody knows chiropractic is an unscientific cult” belief remains a wink-wink attitude among medical bigots although, ironically, research shows that chiropractic care is superior to medical care for most spine-related disorders, a fact untold by the media and unknown by the public.

Never mind that chiropractic is unscientific. Never mind that there is no such thing as a subluxation. Never mind that it’s nonsense that chiropractic is superior to medical care for spinal disorders. At best, it can be equal to standard physical therapy. Besides, it’s not really spinal manipulation that is the problem with chiropractic. As I’ve said so many times before, chiropractors are physical therapists with delusions of grandeur. The delusion comes from the claims of so many chiropractors that they can treat more than just back pain. I’m referring to conditions such as allergies, asthma, and all manner of other diseases not related to the spine or the musculoskeletal system that chiropractors claim they can treat. Therein lies the quackery, and limiting privileges of chiropractors in medical centers practicing science-based medicine is not a bad thing, particularly given the chance of stroke from neck manipulation.

So let’s move on to the ISM, given that I have more than a bit of a stake in the success of this particular organization. The ISM is a policy institute, newly formed—embryonic, even—dedicated to supporting science-based medicine and opposing bad science and pseudoscience in medicine. It’s as simple as that. In other words, it’s an institute dedicated to standing up for the sorts of issues that Orac has been standing up for right here on this very blog for seven years. What’s not to like? Well, if you’re JCS, apparently the mission statement of ISM is very offensive because it explicitly states that the purpose of ISM is to stand up for science and against quackery. JCS’s response to the statement that ISM “relies on the qualifications, expertise, and understanding of medicine and science of all our Fellows to reliably inform public policy with objective facts and sound judgment” is this:

This mission statement is troubling on many levels. First of all, it is not the role of any medical mob to police other healthcare professions. Keep in mind there are no federal or state agencies working in conjunction with ISM. It alone acts like a bully who brandishes this war of words to defame all CAM professions by fear-mongering and slander.

Because, obviously, to chiropractors like JCS, reliably informing public policy with objective facts, science, and sound judgment is slanderous. What drivel! What nonsense! How typical! Slander generally involves knowingly making statements about someone that are false and defamatory. Opinions offered in good faith are not slander. Opinions that are supportable with science, evidence, and facts are not slander. Nor is it “bullying” to state a scientific viewpoint. If anything, it’s practitioners of “complementary and alternative medicine” (CAM) modalities like chiropractic who tend to be the bullies. Remember the British Chiropractic Association sued Simon Singh for libel because he referred to chiropractors making “bogus” claims (which many of their claims arguably are). Fortunately, the BCA lost, and lost spectacularly. In any case, it’s usually the quacks who are the bullies, suing supporters of science-based medicine left and right who dare to criticize them too harshly. Examples are legion, and I’ve blogged about them many times before, including the case of Doctor’s Data suing Steve Barrett, Shayla McCallum and Dr. Thomas Lodi making legal threats against a blogging cancer patient, a quack named Andreas Moritz threatening to sue a blogger, Barbara Loe Fisher suing Paul Offit, Andrew Wakefield suing Brian Deer, Joseph Chikelue Obi legally threatening a blogger, and, of course, Marc Stephens threatening skeptical bloggers who criticized Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski.

The list goes on and on and on. In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me if JCS started making legal threats for my referring to chiropractic as quackery.

I must admit, I was a bit disappointed in JCS’s post. He mentions several skeptics, some of whom I know, such as Harriet Hall, Steve Salzberg, and Jann Bellamy. Hilariously, JCS gets something about Harriet Hall so completely wrong that I really do have to wonder where he got his information. First, he’s incensed that Harriet called the study of CAM “quackademia” on NPR on February 15, 2012. That’s not what’s wrong. I’m sure Harriet did do exactly that, and I heartily approve. I use the term “quackademic medicine” myself frequently, although I do try to give credit where credit is due and point out that I did not coin the term. Dr. R. W. Donnell did, as far as I have been able to tell. No, what JCS claimed was that Harriet was the spokesperson on Capital Hill during the “Obamacare” debate and demanded that only MDs be called doctors. I know Harriet. I also know that she has never testified before Congress (although I think it would be awesome if she were called to do so). I’d also disagree that only MDs should be called doctors. PhDs have every right to be called “doctor” as well.

In any case, what disappointed me is that I wasn’t mentioned at all in the post. Darn it, I spend seven and a half years discussing science, science-based medicine, and in general putting CAM, “integrative medicine,” and the antivaccine movement (as well as a lot of non-medical pseudoscience as well) into proper context, and I don’t even rate a mention?

Oh, well, JCS is promising part two. In the meantime, I can only wonder if maybe, just maybe, I should have resurrected the Hitler Zombie for JCS. Clearly his brain’s been chomped, given how he pulled a Godwin, quoting Adolf Hitler about the power of propaganda in the context of blaming the AMA for propaganda against chiropractors.

Maybe I should have done a Hitler Zombie piece, after all. Of course, on the other hand, JCS can’t seem to make up his mind whether ISM is a bunch of medical gangsters, Nazis, or just your run-of-the-mill bullies. He really is a very confused fellow. JCS’s confusion aside, I wish that we skeptics actually did have the power that people like JCS actually attribut to us. Alas, we do not. All we have is science, reason, facts, and our words. They will have to suffice.

Comments

  1. #1 Blue Wode
    UK
    July 3, 2012

    Is this the same J. C. Smith who wrote ‘The Medical War Against Chiropractors: The Untold Story From Persecution To Vindication’?
    http://www.ebm-first.com/chiropractic/various-concerns/2094-the-medical-war-against-chiropractors-the-untold-story-from-persecution-to-vindication.html

    I wonder how the sales are going…

  2. #2 elburto
    July 3, 2012

    Wow. He has no self-awareness at all. Perhaps adjusting the stick up his ar$e would be beneficial to him.

    Now to get serious. I’m pretty sure that quacks have the right to marry who they want, to have kids or adopt them. They’re not denied housing or employment, nor are they murdered, victims of ‘corrective’ r*pe, or accused of being the root of society’s ills.

    Pathetic, mewling, crybaby, wannabe medical professional, QUACK.

    OT but speaking of Hitler zombies, Paula Kirby has claimed that feminist bloggers are simultaneously Nazis and Stasi for denouncing sexism.

  3. #3 Baron Scarpia
    July 3, 2012

    Actually Kirby didn’t. She called certain people Feminazis and at the same time made it very clear that she did not mean they were Nazis- she said this explicitly (She compares the term to ‘Grammar Nazis’). Given that intent is not magical, you may still think that it carries the connotation that such people are Nazis, which would indicate a failure of communication on her part. (Frankly I do not think she should have used the term at all, because I do not see how you can separate the two terms in the minds of the public)

    What you can’t do is say that she called Myers, Watson, Benson et al Nazis, because she didn’t.

    I won’t touch the ‘sexism’ part of the comment, there have been enough strawmen in the debate already…

  4. #4 Orac
    July 3, 2012

    Please, people. I really don’t want that argument metastasizing to my comment threads. I’ve already been burned badly enough by it, and I admit my massive error for every having said anything in the first place. These days, I’d rather deal with a torrent of Thingy comments than for a comment thread on my blog to become dominated by this kerfuffle.

    Blue Wode: Wow. That book is some serious crazy. I had no idea, although I probably could have guessed from just his one article and from perusing JCS’s website.

  5. #5 elburto
    July 3, 2012

    My grandfather’s entire family were murdered in Auschwitz-Birkenau and Ravensbruck*. Among them was a baby, some toddlers, and my grandfather’s grandparents.

    Their ‘crime’ was that they were dark-complected. Poles, which made them Lebensunwertes Leben.

    A dear, amazing friend of mine was Ostdeutsch, she lived in Berlin.and was a feminist activist, helping mothers maintain contact with children who’d been in West Berlin hospitals when the wall went up, among other ‘subversive’ acts.

    Small things happened at first. Stuff in her flat was missing, or moved. She received anonymous calls through the night.

    Her mail never reached her, she lost her job and couldn’t get another. She was summoned to Party HQ multiple times.

    Then it ramped up. Her brother and her girlfriend were ‘disappeared’. They never turned up. Her flat was ransacked, her family and friends were warned to avoid her, and then she was brutally r*ped and beaten.

    To this day she won’t use a landline, she has flashbacks, and feels terrible guilt about her dead loved ones.

    Totalitarian regimes there. Death, destruction, brutality and total control. Comparing that to bloggers wishing to implement sexual harassment policies at atheist/freethought conventions is quite frankly pi$$ing into the graves of the victims of both regimes. The 50 million killed in WWII and the victims of the Stasi deserve better than being used to denigrate people you disagree with.

    It disgusts me. I’d love to see her read her little screed. to survivors.

    *Ravensbruck was for women. Feminists, single mothers, lesbians, and ‘gender traitors’ (masculine women and effeminate men) were murdered there after being worked half to death in the Siemens factory.

    I’ve been there to pay my respects. The exhibit about the children in the camp is one of the things that will haunt me forever.

  6. #6 elburto
    July 3, 2012

    Sorry Orac, you commented while I was writing mine.

    I’ll change the subject now.

  7. #7 Orac
    July 3, 2012

    It’s OK, elburto.Your post was actually appreciated.

    I was referring to the whole kerfuffle about TAM with misogynists calling feminists Nazis, etc. I don’t want to be drawn into that, and I don’t want my blog comments to be taken over by it. The vitriol outstrips even that of many of the quack trolls who show up here.

  8. #8 Heliantus
    July 3, 2012

    JCS is heavy with hyperbole. However, his grasp of the reality is, well, tenuous.

    His intolerant quasi-KKK attitude

    It’s true, you have all of these physicians running around in white garb and masks and burning caduceus-like sticks in front of the houses of chiropractors.

    And it’s also true that it’s not correct to use the n-word anymore in North America. Instead, we say of a black man that he is from Kenya.

    Similar comments could be done (and have already be done) on sexism, homophobia and other prejudices Mr JCS believe to be over.
    Damn, the Texas Republican manifesto from last week is bristling with them. Talk about “politically incorrect”.
    And of course, as pointed by ORAC, it’s all false equivalency.

    ironically, research shows that chiropractic care is superior to medical care for most spine-related disorders

    And research also shows that, if you let a chiropractor touch you above the neck, he is also superior at giving you spine-related disorders.

  9. #9 Gingerbaker
    July 3, 2012

    Sounds like J.C. Smith is the Bill Donohue for chiropractic, although I doubt if he is making as large a fortune as the Catholic League ($22 million in assets).

    Scepticism/atheism needs a counterpart.

  10. #10 Darwy
    Røde grøde med fløde....but live free or die atm.
    July 3, 2012

    Orac, I agree that PhD’s should be able to call themselves “Dr” (I had a high school English teacher who had her Doctorate – and you only made the mistake of calling her ‘Mrs. M’ ONCE)

    However it should also be recognized that some folks with PhD’s (*cough Viera*) abuse their credentials to give them and their opinion more weight than they should have.

    A PhD paleogeology (or whatever it is V has) does’t equate to having the education and understanding to give medical advice.

    That’s one thing that really ticks me off – and folks fall for it, because she uses the “Dr. V” tagline.

  11. #11 Calli Arcale
    July 3, 2012

    Clearly the “n-word” is unacceptable today in our general society, and the “b-word” is certainly an epithet offensive to women, but the “q-word” is still openly used by many biased MDs even though it was found to be a baseless charge back in the 1970s.

    I can see where this could go. We can point out, as Orac has done, that blacks do not choose to be black but that chiropractors do choose to be chiropractors. And then it occurs to me — maybe they’re arguing that they didn’t choose it either. They were born incompetent!

    :-D

    On a more serious note, political correctness is a red herring. They’re trying to divert us into arguments about politeness, since they have a better chance of success there, or at least of obfuscating until the entire argument becomes meaningless. But it doesn’t matter. Our argument doesn’t hinge on “othering” alternative practitioners. It hinges on their poor skills, dubious qualifications, nonstandard procedures, and conspicuous lack of any scientific foundation for their work. They could make it up as they go along and no one, even one of their own, would likely be able to tell the difference. Calling them quacks isn’t an insult. Calling them quacks is an honest opinion.

  12. #12 rs
    July 3, 2012

    D.O.s are doctors. 99% forego the use of manipulative medicine and stick to hard science, but I believe it is mostly based on time and results… in today’s system, the use of manipulative medicine as an adjuvant therapy is just not feasible with respect to effort vs reward. But there is no denying that pain cam be alleviated with manipulative therapy, and a body that is not in a pro-inflammatory state does heal better, as does a body with a positive mindframe.

    Careful how you judge medicine when you’ve not been on the other side

  13. #13 rork
    July 3, 2012

    I think we can stop calling anyone Doctor, unless flattery gets you better medical care, in which case continue.

  14. #14 lilady
    July 3, 2012

    @ Blue Wode: You can see J. C. Smith’s book on the link that Orac provided:

    http://chiropractorsforfairjournalism.info/Books_by_JCS.html

    “Just as Woodward and Bernstein revealed Nixon’s Watergate fiasco, Smith has accomplish a similar feat in his investigation of the epidemic of unnecessary back surgeries. This book proves that back surgery may be the biggest ruse nowadays in the medical profession as an unnecessary and ineffective surgery thrust upon a gullible public. Someday it will be ranked with other unnecessary surgeries such as mastectomies, tonsillectomies, and hysterectomies. While these are often unnecessary, none of them leave patients as disabled as a failed back surgery.”

    I *know* a breast cancer surgeon who might be a bit perturbed about that.

  15. #15 lilady
    July 3, 2012

    (Running out the door to shop)…

    J.C. Smith is licensed in Georgia under “James Charles Smith”

    http://www.smithspinalcare.com/Home_Page.html

  16. #16 G
    July 3, 2012

    I’d also disagree that only MDs should be called doctors. PhDs have every right to be called “doctor” as well.

    DVMs?

  17. #17 Denice Walter
    July 3, 2012

    One of the far-seeing paradigm-shifters I survey often speaks passionately of the long war chiropractors have valiantly fought against governmental censor of their dissemination of wisdom and opposition to their devoted healing services selflessly delivered for the benefit of mankind.

    OK, is that the type of “fair journalism” they would like to hear? It appears to me that alt med websites and lobbyists like the ANH are already providing enough of that crap.

    -btw- Orac, I enjoyed that first paragraph… well played, sir!

  18. #18 Militant Agnostic
    July 3, 2012

    Before I respond, please take note of this disclaimer. In this post, I am not speaking for ISM in any capacity. I do not speak for ISM, nor am I authorized to speak on behalf of ISM. As a snarky blogger, I speak for no one but myself, and that is enough.

    Am I the only one to notice that nowhere does Orac disclaim that he speaks for the mob? I think complaining about failing to receive your shill/minion payments may be a very bad idea.

  19. #19 Dangeous Bacon
    July 3, 2012

    Smith’s rant about “medical bigots” reminds me of the classic speech by Terry Rondberg (of the World Chiropractic Alliance), comparing chiros’ titanic struggle to that of the civil rights movement in the ’60s and Rosa Parks refusing to sit in the back of the bus.

    ht_p://www.worldchiropracticalliance.org/news/busads2.htm

    Careful Orac, or you’ll be arrested for committing “hate crimes”.

    Any chance this JC Smith is the same chiro who’s ticked off Rondberg and other leading lights of the profession?

    ht_p://chirotalk.proboards.com/index.cgi?action=display&board=courageousDCs&thread=2730&page=1

  20. #20 Antares
    way north
    July 3, 2012

    @Darwy and the Dr:

    Germany used to have a practical system where the “Dr” was qualified into subjects, e.g. “Dr. med. Hans Wurst” for a PhD (not just MD) in medicine or “Dr. rer. nat. Paul Aner” for a PhD in the natural sciences.

    In practice people would still usually just say “Dr. Whatsyourname”, and IIRC Germany is now also slowly converting to PhDs, but at least in principle the structure to distinguish at least broadly was there.

  21. #21 Old Rockin' Dave
    July 3, 2012

    “I’d also disagree that only MDs should be called doctors. PhDs have every right to be called “doctor” as well.”
    A lot of other people are also called “doctor”, but we should all heed Nelson Algren’s warning – ‘Never play cards with a man called “Doc”.”

  22. #22 Liz Ditz
    On the barricades, fighting woo
    July 3, 2012

    Chiroquacktor is my phrase of choice, especially the ones who claim to be “chiropractic neurologists”.

    Edzard Ernst coined “marketing based medicine” for chiroquacktic because the industry spends so much time talking about how to get more patients.

  23. #23 palindrom
    July 3, 2012

    In the higher-ed world, my impression is that places in which PhDs are addressed as “Dr” tend to be a little lower on the academic food chain. In places higher in the pecking order, you can simply assume that anyone on the faculty must have a doctorate.

    One nice thing about having a PhD is that when you have a form that asks for “highest degree achieved”, you can simply answer “yes.”

    Finally, on the Doc thing — an acquaintance of mine had a mom who was an aging bohemian back in the 70s; she hung out with a fellow for a while who called himself “Lovable Old Doc [X]“. She saw through him and memorably stated her objections as “He’s not lovable, he’s not old, he’s not a doctor, and his hame isn’t [X}!”

  24. #24 herr doktor bimler
    July 3, 2012

    some folks with PhD’s [...] abuse their credentials to give them and their opinion more weight than they should have.

    UNPOSSIBLE.

  25. #25 Calli Arcale
    July 3, 2012

    rs — I don’t think anyone would dispute that. But that’s not the sort of thing we’re talking about. My husband’s regular doc is a DO; a DO was the obstetric surgeon who delivered my second child. Fine doctors, both of them. My problem is with, for instance, a DC who claims twisting your neck will cure your sinus infection.

  26. #26 Dianne
    July 3, 2012

    what’s the good of being accused of running a conspiracy to crush any sort of “unconventional” or “alternative” medicine if we don’t actually have the power to crush unconventional and alternative medicine?

    You mean you don’t have the power to instantly crush all chiropractic efficacy by uttering the magic phrase, “Anecdote is not evidence”? You seriously need to renegotiate your contract with Lord Draconios.

  27. #27 lilady
    July 3, 2012

    @ Dangerous Bacon:

    “Any chance this JC Smith is the same chiro who’s ticked off Rondberg and other leading lights of the profession?”

    You’ll find that “JCS” on the discussion board is James Charles Smith MA DC. See his newest entry where he is pimping his own book:

    http://24499.activeboard.com/

  28. #28 Narad
    July 3, 2012

    In the higher-ed world, my impression is that places in which PhDs are addressed as “Dr” tend to be a little lower on the academic food chain.

    Indeed. In the society journals I’ve worked on, “Dr.” was forbidden in references to colleagues (generally in the acknowledgments). “Prof.” was OK for full professors. In correspondence, basically everyone was “Dr.,” often including graduate students and even the production staff when we received correspondence from foreign authors, unless we knew each other, which case it was first names as usual.

    And I always call my vets “Doctor,” even though I’ve known them for a very long time. This puts me in an uncomfortable position, as they then insist on calling me “Mister” in return, which I dislike, but I can’t break the habit.

  29. #29 elburto
    July 3, 2012

    rs – pain cam be alleviated with manipulative therapy, and a body that is not in a pro-inflammatory state does heal better, as does a body with a positive mindframe.

    I’m so torn between:

    [citation needed]

    and

    Oh bless your heart, are you new around here?

  30. #30 rork
    July 3, 2012

    I also would have picked on rs’s “Careful how you judge medicine when you’ve not been on the other side”.
    Every acupuncture fraud says that. You just judge for yourself you see, after having tried it. It’s the only evidence that matters, right? So I vote for “new around here”.

  31. #31 Calli Arcale
    July 3, 2012

    I had the impression he/she was talking about spinal manipulation for the relief of mild uncomplicated lower back pain and taking offense where it wasn’t warranted; thus my clarification. I find a lot of people who use and defend manipulation are unaware of the staggering depths of crazy that exists in that arena.

  32. #32 Denice Walter
    July 3, 2012

    I kind of like the term “manipulative therapy” as an alternative designation for woo: you get manipulated into buying nonsense and learn to believe that it’s therapy.

  33. #33 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 3, 2012

    a body that is not in a pro-inflammatory state does heal better

    Do you mean I should stay out of California? Or is there a more pro-inflammatory state out there (I suppose Colorado is pretty much inflamed right now)?

  34. #34 Lucretius
    UK
    July 3, 2012

    I keep seeing adverts for MMS on this blog? Whats up with that?!

  35. #35 LindaRosaRN
    http://www.scienceinmedicine.org
    July 3, 2012

    “Death, destruction, brutality and total control.” Alas, let us not forget that this sort of treatment is still with us. It is the four-decade-old quackery called “Attachment Therapy” (aka Holding Therapy, Compression Therapy, Rage Reduction, Nancy Thomas parenting, etc.). It meets the definition of “torture” as defined by the UN and has been linked to the abuse and deaths of numerous adopted children through starvation, hypothermia, slow suffocation, etc. And in some places, it is state-funded. (see childrenintherapy.org)

  36. #36 dedicated lurker
    July 3, 2012

    And of course ACT was also subject to a legion of bogus lawsuits.

  37. #37 Swizzlesticks
    July 3, 2012

    “I was referring to the whole kerfuffle about TAM with misogynists calling feminists Nazis.”

    Don’t want to drag you into the fray, but if you wish to stay aloof, then stay aloof. Don’t make inflammatory statements like that. Maybe you aren’t aware of it, but the ‘kerfuffle’ is about people making accusations of misogyny to avert examination of their position and about dishonesty, not about misogynists V feminists as some would like you to believe.

  38. #38 Chemmomo
    Almost at holiday time
    July 3, 2012

    Thank you Liz Ditz @ 3 Jul 1:06 pm for the perfect lead in with your Edzard Ernst paraphrase. On that subject, from Smith’s quoted passage above, with my emphasis

    research shows that chiropractic care is superior to medical care for most spine-related disorders, a fact untold by the media and unknown by the public.

    Hmm. Could that be because these chiropractors spend so much effort creating a market for themselves by suggesting that all health is spine-related?

    And now it’s our fault that folks do listen to their marketing beyond what research shows? Hmmm.

  39. #39 Orac
    July 3, 2012

    Swizzlesticks is apparently either unaware of or doesn’t remember what, exactly, I got raked over the coals and labeled a “bully” for saying (pointing what I considered to be a Hitler Zombie-worthy analogy) and who raked me over the coals for saying it (Ophelia Benson, the person who made the analogy, and many of her supporters). In any case, this particular blog war long ago got too nasty even for Orac, and that’s saying a lot. It reminds me of some of the epic blog throwdowns that ScienceBlogs used to be known for. Thankfully, this sort of drama has apparently moved over to FreeThoughtBlogs now. Hopefully, it will stay there.

    In any case, I’d rather have Thingy, Sid Offit, our old friend the cannabis troll, Medicien Man, and John Best all infest the comments here simultaneously than let this issue get a foothold here.

  40. #40 Swizzlesticks
    July 3, 2012

    @Orac:

    I’m not aware of your involvement . The comment you made in THIS thread reads to me as making a judgement on the issue, and there’s no context given . That is what I was responding to and felt the urge to point this out to you in case you were not aware of that. I wasn’t making any judgements.

  41. #41 TFJ
    July 3, 2012

    I don’t want to derail this thread but Orac’s response to me has been significantly expanded and edited in a way that makes my subsequent post look a bit silly. Not making any accusation of malicious intent, just explaining why my post seems to ignore points in Orac’s.

  42. #42 TFJ
    July 3, 2012

    TFJ = Swizzlesticks, by the way. I’ll shut up and let you all get back to business.

  43. #43 TFJ
    July 3, 2012

    My mother has terrible back pain for which she can get no relief from so-called mainstream medicine. The only relief she gets is from a local ‘chiropractor’. This guy seems responsible and effective, the antithesis of what I understand a chiropractor to be. What he is not is a woo artist and the pseudoscientific bunkum seems absent from his practise. Is anyone aware of more evidence-based schools of chiropractry that concentrate on medically safe manipulation of the spine? It’s hard to get people here to believe the original principles behind chiropractry as they understand it to be a something akin to a kind of advanced physiotherapy. My mother won’t hear a word against chiropractry as she can’t understand that her practitioner isn’t really a chiropractor. Much the way she won’t countenance condemnation of homeopathy as she thinks it encompasses herbalism.

  44. #44 Ron
    July 4, 2012

    @TFJ
    “Is anyone aware of more evidence-based schools of chiropractry that concentrate on medically safe manipulation of the spine?”

    yes i do, it’s called “orthopedic manual physical therapy”
    it’s not chiropractic but they do use manual therapy (including spinal and peripheral joint manipulation) but in a medically safe way and evidence base context…

    no “putting the vertebrae back in place” or other mystical pseudoscience concepts.

    BTW – most of the research on spinal manipulation was done by orthopedic manual physical therapist…

  45. #45 Dangerous Bacon
    July 4, 2012

    My two cents on who is entitled to call themselves “Dr.”:

    If you have achieved a doctorate or degree in a recognized (though not necessarily evidence-based) school that grants the title of “doctor” in a health field, you are indeed a doctor. However, if you are giving medical advice as a “doctor” and are not a medical doctor, you should reveal just what your qualifications are (this includes PhDs in education or whatever). Similarly, if you’re an M.D. and pontificating about religion or politics, your being a “doctor” is irrelevant to the discussion unless you have a similar advanced degree in those areas as well.

    Often I see people writing in to the editor of newspapers and identifying themselves as doctors, when they are actually chiropractors, naturopaths etc. This is especially noteworthy (and disgusting) when they support crankery like antivaccination views. Why exactly does a chiro writing one of these letters sign off as “Doctor” so-and-so, instead of Joe Blow D.C.? Obviously, the former title has a cachet to this person that D.C. does not, and he thinks it makes him more believable.

    Dangerous Bacon M.D. (I also have a Masters degree in Science :)

  46. #46 Pariedolius
    Sonoma County, heart of the Axis of Me-ville™.
    July 4, 2012

    “Inflamation” is CAM’s “quantum.”
    Everything is caused by “inflamation” in some circles. Quacks like to take a tiny bit of the truth, add enormous amounts of unicorn, spriggin and MLP*, stir and regurgitate to the credulous . . . usually for a small profit.

  47. #47 Pariedolius
    BronyCon 2012
    July 4, 2012

    *My Little Pony.

  48. #48 palindrom
    July 4, 2012

    Dangerous Bacon @11:20 –

    Love the allusion!

    For others who may not be familiar, the comedian Merle Kessler, kingpin of an outfit called Duck’s Breath Mystery Theatre; had a long-running series of radio skits, in which a character called “Dr. Science” would give ridiculous, and often very funny, answers to scientific questions. The intro said:

    “He’s smarter than you are! He has a Master’s degree —– in Science!!”

  49. #49 jrkrideau
    July 4, 2012

    @ Lucretius
    I keep seeing adverts for MMS on this blog? Whats up with that?!

    I think the ad-robost search on key-words in postings. Yesterday I had an excellent set of ads:

    MMS
    Sodium Cloride
    Ask a Canadian Lawyer

    The last advert was probably one I would needed if I had anwered the first!

  50. #50 Roger Kulp
    July 4, 2012

    There is so much out there on autism and chiropractic,here’s just a little sample.Surprised it has gotten so little attention here.

    Chiropractor forms American Chiropractic Autism Board

    New Research Sheds Light on Chiropractic and Autism

    Autism recovery teams include chiropractors

    Alternative cures for autism

    EVERY month, Susan Crisp takes her eight-year-old son, Daniel, for a 15-minute chiropractic treatment.

    Daniel has autism and Susan and her husband, Gary, firmly believe that this complementary therapy has been key to the recent improvements they’ve seen in his development. “His communication has improved tremendously,” says Susan.

    “He has started putting three or four words together and it is not in response to questions from us.

    “It’s spontaneous. At one time, if he wanted something out of the fridge he would drag me to it and point. Now he’ll say, `Mummy, I want’.

    “He doesn’t seem so closed in as he once was and is interacting more with his three older sisters.”

    Television presenter, Quentin Willson, has reported similar success from the treatment for his son, Max.

    Indeed, it was after seeing Quentin talking about his son on TV two years ago that Susan first got the idea to try chiropractic for Daniel.

    “It was a coincidence that I saw it. I had the TV on and it really caught my eye because there were so many similarities between what he was talking about with his son and Daniel,” she remembers.

    Chiropractic Care:A child with autism and a doctor’s incredible journey.

  51. #51 herr doktor bimler
    July 4, 2012

    you should reveal just what your qualifications are (this includes PhDs in education or whatever).

    Does quantum gauge theory count? Asking for a friend.

  52. #52 Narad
    July 4, 2012

    Does quantum gauge theory count? Asking for a friend.

    Just wear the sleeve patch.

    (Shouild be devil’s forks on those handles, though.)

  53. #53 Narad
    July 4, 2012

    *My Little Pony.

    Not aerodynamically stable when rigged with model-rocket engines, BTW.

  54. #54 Mrs Woo
    July 4, 2012

    @TFJ – curious if the chiropractor your mother sees is an older one? Hubby goes and sees one when his back hurts and the man is definitely an “I only manipulate the spine, I do not prescribe supplements, energy healing, etc. Chiropractors manipulate the spine to relieve pain related to spinal issues and nothing else” kind of guy. When we first began my own journey with illness a neighbor recommended her chiropractor/ND who waved this electronic gizmo up and down me and that, plus a 200-item or so questionnaire demonstrated various “weaknesses” that he would have to address.

    The minimum cost for treatment from him was somewhere around $2000 every quarter, I believe. We went for the “free evaluation” – I was unimpressed by it all, hubby was terribly distressed by it all (the guy made it sound like I might keel over dead within a few weeks), but, lucky for me, that sum of money made hubby sit back and think long enough to get him away from there, and it was easier to refuse to go back when he had no money already invested.

  55. #55 Phoenix Woman
    The Scorching Tundra
    July 4, 2012

    Mrs. Woo — $2000 a quarter? As in every three months?

    Cripes, you could get a series of weekly deep-tissue massages for three months in a package deal from pretty much any massage therapist out there and it would do a lot more good than whatever Bozo Boy was offering.

  56. #56 Roadstergal
    Yay Area, CA
    July 4, 2012

    Just today, I was looking on the Anthem Blue Cross website (our work-provided heath care) for a PCP for m’boy. The drop-down for all the various subcategories of provider had ‘chiropractic’ listed – as well as ‘acupuncture’ and ‘holistic care’. There were probably other woo practitioners there, too, but I got depressed and stopped looking. It is just ridiculous that our premium dollars are supporting rank quackery. If the ISM helps change that, I will be one happy puppy.

  57. #57 Denice Walter
    July 4, 2012

    OT- but I know how much everyone is in need of a laugh- the harsh times we live in and all-

    Mike Adams supplies a trifecta of perfectly stupid grandiosity ( today- Natural News) however, the most recent of the three is certainly worth a read because he discusses the Higgs Boson and CONSCIOUSNESS! And it gets even WORSE from there. Who would have thought it possible? Mikey never disappoints!

    -btw- altho’ I am recovering from my trip ( I like to experience a week’s worth of travel and activities in 4-5 days), I am definitely ‘out of sorts’- fortunately, I acquired quite a few moodily atmospheric photos ..and pearl earrings ( not the stuck-up conservative type but *edgy* pearls) – purchasing unnecessary objects is the best placebo.

  58. #58 Infuriatingly Moderate
    Sun!
    July 4, 2012

    @Roadstergal: I buy individual insurance in WA state – craptastic catastrophic, no prescriptions, high deductible. Deductible is waived for 6 annual office visits, but those 6 visits require 25% coinsurance. But for chiropractic and acupuncture can have 12 visits with only a $25 copay.

    Haven’t looked recently to see if I can get any kind of individual policy without that stuff in it, but I doubt it.

  59. #59 Artful Lodger
    July 4, 2012

    It’s true that chiropractic contains much nonsense. But then, so does SBM. Just examine the expansion of off -label prescribing, the medical reliance on profligate antibiotic use, the tacit recommendation of alcohol as “heart-healthy,” the vaccination of babies with Hep B a few hours old, ripping tonsils out prematurely & unecessarily… the list is never-ending.

    Most of SBM is not science based. I am not an advocate of CAM, either. I choose neither for everything except emergencies, & then I consult experts, medically- trained experts. Luckily my family has never had an emergency, so have never had the need to visit any quack- either medical or cam.
    Many of our friends have their whole family iatrogenetically sick, by believing in such quackery.
    Who was it who said “he who lives medically, lives miserably”?

  60. #60 novalox
    July 4, 2012

    @artful lodger

    Citations needed.

  61. #61 Pariedolius
    Sonoma County, the Heart of the Axis of Me-ville™
    July 5, 2012

    So ArtfulLodger, you’re saying no preventive care. No teeth cleaning. No check-ups. No colonoscopys. No mammograms. No pap smears. None of the early detection that has been a major force in improving cancer survival rates. Just the ER or nothing. Just out of curiosity, how old are you?

  62. #62 Pariedolius
    Just Back From Fireworks
    July 5, 2012

    Oh, wait. You used the term “iatrogenically sick.” Dang, if you’d also used “allopathic” I’d have had Crank Bingo!

  63. #63 Artful Lodger
    July 5, 2012

    Pariedolius

    I differentiate dentistry from SBM. So I do have dental treatment done as & when needed, but without annual checkups.

    Regarding mammograms, colonoscopies, cholesterol checks, blood presure checks, pap smears, PSA (even their inventor, Professor Richard Ablin, called them “no better than a coin toss”), no. They are a part of SBM that is not science-based. Why do you ask my age? What has that got to do with anything?

  64. #64 Narad
    July 5, 2012

    I differentiate dentistry from SBM. So I do have dental treatment done as & when needed, but without annual checkups.

    I’d love to hear how you determine “as & when needed.”

  65. #65 DLC
    July 5, 2012

    Artful Lodger: first, [citation needed]! multiple times. you make a big ass-load of assertions and assumptions, with little to back it up. Not everybody with an MD is automatically a Science-Based-Medicine devotee, and some of them are heavily into Woo-Based wishful thinking. Sorry, but you don’t get to spam a bunch of standard-issue sCAM tropes and then claim you’re not a sCAM advocate.

  66. #66 Mrs Woo
    July 5, 2012

    @Phoenix Woman – that included, of course, his prescribed supplements, monitoring my diet, more of the waving of the electronic thing over me set to “heal” instead of “diagnose” (apparently electronic wand thingies are quite expensive), etc. LOL

    As soon as he began doing the “diagnostic” I felt like an idiot. No idea why hubby believed that it was actually “doing” anything. I am always fascinated by people (even Mr Woo) who go far enough down the “alternative” path – because everything that most people take for granted is “a lie” to them and snake-oil salesmen, debunked cranks and their websites, etc., are all “the real truth.” When you bring up discarded prophecies that never came true, the implausibility of treatment theories by kinds of woo, etc., you are just someone who “refuses to know the truth,” not someone who prefers to believe things that are plausible.

    @Artful Lodger – maybe you’d have fewer dental emergencies (and if you’re younger, you’ll avoid painful scaling procedures later and reduce/prevent the possibility of gum disease) if you would consider regular every six-month cleanings? A long time in a bad marriage reduced my ability to afford those kinds of “luxuries” and I regretted it a lot when I finally got on my own 12 years later. Just a caring suggestion – if you’re convinced the entire world is a scam artist hopefully you’ll at least not be enamored with things like laetrile when you suspect you have cancer vs. going to a doctor, being diagnosed and then evaluating all treatments offered. I can at least hope that you’re not being disingenuous.

  67. #67 puppygod
    July 5, 2012

    @Artful Lodger

    It’s true that chiropractic contains much nonsense. But then, so does SBM.

    No. Medicine (without qualifiers) does indeed contain much nonsense. This is why many people here prefer SBM – which pretty much by definition is based on scientifically verified data.

    Chiropractics, again by definition, is based on nonsense (subluxations or whatever it’s called). It does co-opt many procedures used by actual medicine (and even SBM), but their starting point is bullshit. In my book that means that, by GIGO rule, all of chiropractics is bull.

    @Narad

    *My Little Pony.

    Not aerodynamically stable when rigged with model-rocket engines, BTW.

    And this is why we have flight computers with dynamic stability control.

  68. #68 Krebiozen
    July 5, 2012

    The labelling of PSA as a useless test always irritates me. It is an extremely useful test, much easier to carry out than acid phosphatase which it replaced. There is no doubt that PSA is useful in both diagnosis and monitoring of treatment. There is some argument about whether it leads to overdiagnosis when used as a screening test in asymptomatic men of all ages, but to claim it is useless is to completely misunderstand its use. By the way, Ablin did not invent PSA, which has existed for millions of years, nor did he invent the test for PSA. Claiming that “mammograms, colonoscopies, cholesterol checks, blood presure checks, pap smears, PSA” are all not science-based is mind-bogglingly ignorant. I’m wondering if Artful Lodger is another incarnation of Emily/Pegasus, I detect similar style and content.

  69. #69 Krebiozen
    July 5, 2012

    Here’s what a practising urologist has to say about Ablin’s take on PSA. Ironicallly it seems likely that screening with PSA could have prevented Ablin’s father’s death, which sparked Ablin’s interest in prostate cancer.

  70. #70 Politicalguineapig
    July 5, 2012

    Artful lodger: Just examine the expansion of off -label prescribing, the medical reliance on profligate antibiotic use, the tacit recommendation of alcohol as “heart-healthy,” the vaccination of babies with Hep B a few hours old, ripping tonsils out prematurely & unecessarily… the list is never-ending.

    Two points: First of all, while red wine is believed to be good for the cardiac system, that doesn’t mean ALL alchohol is automatically approved. Secondly, doctors don’t automatically yank tonsils anymore. I still have mine. I’ll shut up now and let the rest of the posters school you.
    Mrs. Woo/everyone: In my city, we have free dental clinics, and lots of clinics that accept low income patients.
    Narad: and how exactly did you find that out? Inquiring minds wish to know.

  71. #71 Calli Arcale
    July 5, 2012

    Phoenix Woman:

    Mrs. Woo — $2000 a quarter? As in every three months? Cripes, you could get a series of weekly deep-tissue massages for three months in a package deal from pretty much any massage therapist out there and it would do a lot more good than whatever Bozo Boy was offering.

    I visited my in-laws a couple of weeks ago. My father-in-law (recently retired from the USAF) told of the fabulous massage therapists they had at the base in Kyrgyzstan. They gave you exactly what you paid for, and took great pride in it. But, he said, it was a mistake to get the deep tissue massage. These men and women had trained in Russia, which leans towards more *aggressive* massage, and the deep tissue massage was so deep it was hard to move afterwards. ;-)

    Artful Lodger:

    I differentiate dentistry from SBM. So I do have dental treatment done as & when needed, but without annual checkups.

    The real benefit to biannual checkups at a dentist is the cleaning. Unless you have cavities or other dental problems that need monitoring or repair, you’re mostly there for the hygeinist, as far as I’m concerned. The dentist takes a peek too as long as you’re there. But even the best brushing regimen can’t keep the plaque away completely, so a good regular scraping is helpful for reducing cavities, gingivitis, and other problems. The less of that on your teeth, the less you’ll need the attentions of the actual dentist.

  72. #72 Glaxxon PharmaCOM Terrabase DIA
    Sonoma County, the Heart of the Axis of Me-Ville™.
    July 5, 2012

    Artful Dodger, I asked how old you are, because if you’re younger than 50, you have no effing idea what starts to happen to even the heathiest body as one ages. If you think those tests are bullshit, then good luck to you. One more question: isn’t it hard to breathe with your head in all that sand?

  73. #73 lilady
    July 5, 2012

    About that “doctor” thing…

    When dear hubby, an attorney, first went to work for a German corporation 40 plus years ago , he was referred to as Herr Doktor ******. It took about a year of employment for him to “loosen up” his co-workers to call him by his first name.

    When DH did guest lectures to masters level students at universities in Germany and Austria, he was again addressed as “herr doktor”.

    (At the guest lecturers’ reception afterward, he quickly *convinced* the students that he preferred to be addressed by his first name.

  74. #74 Narad
    July 5, 2012

    And this is why we have flight computers with dynamic stability control.

    I whirled it around my head on a string, dammit. It should have flown. Don’t even get me started on the Estes R2-D2 model rocket.

  75. #75 Narad
    July 5, 2012

    Unless you have cavities or other dental problems that need monitoring or repair, you’re mostly there for the hygeinist, as far as I’m concerned.

    No hygienists in my world–the dentist does everything.

  76. #76 Mrs Woo
    July 5, 2012

    @PoliticalGuineaPig – very good advice. A bit more difficult in rural areas. Sometimes if you’re lucky, you’ll find a really sweet dentist who can afford to let you have a really long-term payment situation for more involved/expensive procedures, but frequently poorer people in rural areas just end up with tooth after tooth pulled because it is all they can afford. It’s a sad thing.

    Growing up I had good dental care, but we drove almost an hour to get to a dentist – the closest county was the smallest in the state and had no full-time dentist, no full-time doctor, no hospitals, traffic lights, radio stations or television stations. They were oddly proud of that…

    However, in the cities, especially ones with dental schools of some sort, you often can get free/reduced treatment there if you qualify. I definitely recommend that to people I meet in the virtual world as a possibility to investigate.

    I now have no issues acquiring regular dental care, but a decade of not getting regular cleanings has required a lot of “catch-up” and very little of it is pleasant. Really hope that the Artful Lodger is being a bit coy about their dental practices or they might be in for a rude awakening at some point.

  77. #77 Militant Agnostic
    July 5, 2012

    Mrs Woo

    Really hope that the Artful Lodger is being a bit coy about their dental practices or they might be in for a rude awakening at some point.

    I think Artful Bullshitter is in for several rude awakenings.

  78. #78 Composer99
    http://composer99.blogspot.ca
    July 5, 2012

    Artful Lodger:

    Why should we care what individual people have to say about PSA screens?

    What matters is that the bulk of the evidence shows about them.

    Can you show that the bulk of the evidence supports your position on PSA screenings? Or are you just asserting some unsubstantiated poppycock that you happen to find personally compelling?

  79. #79 Politicalguineapig
    July 5, 2012

    Mrs. Woo- ah, thanks. I have lived in cities all my life, so I didn’t even think about rural areas. Bit of a blind spot on my part. (Then again, in a small town, I’d probably become the local ax murderer.)

    Narad: LOL.

  80. #80 JCS
    www.chiropractorsforfairjournalism.info
    July 9, 2012

    Good morning to all the MCPs (medical chauvinist pigs) who’ve enjoyed taking cheap shots at me and my profession.

    I would so enjoy a direct debate on TV between those who still profess ol’ time medical bigotry and modern evidence-based chiropractors.

    Any takers among this group of trash talkers? Do you have the backbone to go public with your outdated and anti-scientific concepts or will you continue to trash talk behind the scenes?

    Although consumed by your own bigotry, your comments only reaffirmed the demagoguery, propaganda, and ignorance that prevails in the medical-drug-surgical profession. It’s so sad to see educated people with such narrow minds, but we’ve seen that before in Nazi Germany where good people were persecuted for being different, haven’t we?

    I could argue each of your points, but I’ll let my book do that for me in 262-pages with 755 citations. If that is pseudo-science, I’d love to read your learned response to disprove my valid points taken from medical spine care experts.

    Indeed, what science/research/guidelines will it take to convince you that chiropractors are the primary spine care providers whose treatments are both cost and clinically-effective as well as extremely safer?

    Have any of you even read the AHCPR, UK BEAM, Manga I & II, BJD or any of the current 17 international guidelines that recommend SMT for LBP?

    Or do you, like most MDs, subscribe to the “Don’t confuse me with the facts” mindset? Sadly, a closed mind is a terrible thing to waste, which may explain why we have an enormous medical crisis today.

    As Composer99 said, “Or are you just asserting some unsubstantiated poppycock that you happen to find personally compelling?” Sounds to me like much of the medical propaganda against chiropractors.

    After reading my book, please respond: I’d love to hear your rants against your own experts and international guidelines that recommend SMT over drugs, shots, and spine surgery for 85% of these cases.

    In fact, you might learn that the medical model for LBP–narcotic drugs, ESI, and spine fusions–are addictive, ineffective, and based on the debunked “disc theory” that proves medical spine care treatments are the “pseudo-science” of today.

    Ironically, after years of trash talk calling chiropractors an “unscientific cult,” now it turns out the evidence reveals that much of medical spine care is unsupported in the research.

    BTW: You might enjoy this upcoming movie teaser: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-C42_gnJ3a8

    regards,
    JCS
    http://www.chiropractorsforfairjournalism.info

  81. #81 john RPH
    columbia , IL
    July 9, 2012

    the NUMBER ONE killer of man ” way to go Medicine!” and where proud of it., chiropractors are too safe, don’t you guys get? not about what you know, its who you know and how much money we can make doing it. yes our medicine kills 100′s of thousands of people a year,but that’s why we get the pharmaceutical companies and the AMA to buy off congress. you elect them , we pay them off. chiropractors will never get it, its not about ethics, it’s about making money and boy we can do it. when you quacks figure out how to make billions of dollars and you have milions of deaths under your belt. you will no longer be quacks !!!! get it now !!

  82. #82 lilady
    July 9, 2012

    @ JCS: Too bad you chose a profession with a worthless degree… and too bad you engage in quackery… and label the professional licensed health care providers who are based in science…as Nazis.

    “I could argue each of your points, but I’ll let my book do that for me in 262-pages with 755 citations. If that is pseudo-science, I’d love to read your learned response to disprove my valid points taken from medical spine care experts.”

    (Shades of the latex-fixated troll) READ MY BOOK!!!!

    Let me fix that fer yer…

    Indeed, what science/research/guidelines will it take to convince you that chiropractors are the primary spine(less) care providers whose treatments are both cost(ly) and (not) clinically-effective as well as (proven to be not) extremely safer?”

    If I want to have a soothing back massage JCS, I’ll make an appointment at the local spa. At least I won’t have to worry about a licensed massage therapist damaging my spine, and won’t have to listen to your drivel about spine manipulation being the root of all medical problems.

  83. #83 novalox
    July 9, 2012

    @john rph

    [citation needed]

  84. #84 Chris
    Neither here nor there...
    July 9, 2012

    John, RPH: What is the chiropractic treatment for hypotension from exercising due to obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?

  85. #85 Politicalguineapig
    July 9, 2012

    John: G.I.G.O. Research that!

  86. #86 Agashem
    July 9, 2012

    Ah Chris, no fair asking hard questions!! John only wants apostles, not fact-based information……

  87. #87 lilady
    July 9, 2012

    I believe that John RPH … is inferring that he is a Registered/Licensed Pharmacist. *Somehow*, I *suspect* that the only exposure John RPH has had to pharmaceuticals, are the drugs such as Oxycontin, that he has *scored* on the street.

  88. #88 lilady
    July 9, 2012

    From Dr. Smith’s website:

    http://www.smithspinalcare.com/Page_5.html

    “The DRX9000 spinal decompression is not covered by any insurance. You will be happy to know we offer the DRX at a greatly reduced rate. For example, the manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $200 per treatment, but we offer it for only $65 (plus any other therapies or procedures, of course). The standard DRX program consists of 30 visits and we re-evaluate every 10 visits to gauge your progress. Many patients use the following plan below to pay for this treatment and other non-covered treatments.

    Financing with CareCredit®”

    Here’s the *scoop* (from a chiropractor website, no less), about the DRX9000 machine and other spinal decompression machines. Note the scandalous *marketing* of this *therapy* by chiropractors, the lying to patients about insurance coverage and the insurance fraud committed by chiropractors who, in the past, billed for this *therapy* under covered insurance codes. BTW, the manufacturer of the DSX9000 machine that Dr. Smith touts on his website, is out of business.

    Tough luck Dr. Smith that you are stuck with an expensive *therapy* contraption. Tough luck for your patients as well, Dr. Smith, because you are paying off the costs of the contraption on your patients’ backs (pun intended).

  89. #89 lilady
    July 9, 2012

    Here’s the website about the DRX9000 gizmo, missing from my post above:

    http://chirotalk.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=fraud&action=print&thread=2929

  90. #90 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    July 9, 2012

    Everything else notwithstanding, that JCS website is both juvenile and amateur. Not what someone would expect from a “medical professional”. The layout, the colours, the fonts, they all look like something out of a nursery school website.

    Someone should tell Mr. Smith that red type on purple background is what is called ultra low contrast and is almost impossible to read. He uses red to highlight important text but it’s on that purple background so the purpose is defeated and it can’t be read.

    Also, music that starts automatically is considered rude and obnoxious in the web design world.

    Did you notice JCS shilling for yet another “Burzynski” style infomercial “documentary”? The film was for paid for by the chiropractic industry! And the “filmmakers”, like the Burzynski producer, come from the world of TV commercials; they’re not real documentarians. The fact Joe Mercola is featured in the teaser removed any doubt of credibility or objectivity.

    The teaser also shows an adorable little baby, supposedly being manipulated. That scene turned my stomach.

  91. #91 lilady
    July 9, 2012

    Oh cripes, the cute baby in Smith’s Informercial is being *treated* with craniosacral therapy. Some idiots even allow their chiros to do this *treatment* on newborns.

  92. #92 AdamG
    July 9, 2012

    my favorite part of JCS’ ludicrous website is when it says:

    Just as the Jewish Anti-Defamation League protests against biased statements or articles in the media, we need to do the same—be that voice to respond to future attacks by medical misinformers.

    Right, because calling out chiropractic’s lack of evidence is TOTALLY the same thing as Anti-Semitism.

  93. #93 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    July 9, 2012

    By the way, I was commenting on JCS’s website for his own chiropractic business that lilady provided a few comments above, not the “fair journalism” site.

    http://www.smithspinalcare.com/Page_5.html

  94. #94 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 9, 2012

    Can someone please show me a subluxation? Please? Anyone?

  95. #95 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 9, 2012

    That said, I am perfectly willing to believe that spinal manipulation is a better treatment for back pain than painkillers. If Chiropractors have science behind their treatments, more power to them (and please make that data known). Acknowledge your profession’s limits and move on.

  96. #96 Narad
    July 9, 2012

    Right, because calling out chiropractic’s lack of evidence is TOTALLY the same thing as Anti-Semitism.

    I suppose the religiosity is there.

  97. #97 rose
    July 9, 2012

    When my herniated disc developed my neurosurgeon prescribed physical therapy and Advil and not carrying around my thirty pound child. That combination of therapies did the trick. Did you notice I said neurosurgeon, and yet he did all he could to avoid surgery.
    No surgery and only occasional flareup(about once every five years) Also no chiropractor. My family is pretty much down on chiropractors since my father-in-law went to a chiropractor for upper back pain. It didn’t get better after six months so he went to an MD. It turns out he had TB.

  98. #98 Infuriatingly Moderate
    Wish I could send this weather east.....
    July 9, 2012

    Anecdote alert:

    For me personally it’s a 3-degrees-of-separation deal (contractor hired a guy who was a relative kind of thing), but to claim chiropractors are all shining beacons of truth and righteousness drives me nuts.

    http://www.holdahlchiropractic.com/www.shouldvedoneacannonball.com/why_we_need_your_help.html

    This, in particular (ellipses mine, apologies if I screw up the HTML):

    Two weeks into Trauma Recovery we were fortunate enough to get an offer for his Chiropractic office on a promissory note to a semi-local chiropractor (…)This appeared to be a huge blessing to us, as we did not have any medical insurance at the time of his accident. We had over $900k in medical bills and were terribly afraid of losing everything (…) Unfortunately, less than 2 years after the “promissory note” the buyer drained our A/R, paid 5% of the principal owed, took our patients to his new office 15 miles south and went bankrupt on Jason’s practice.

  99. #99 Politicalguineapig
    July 9, 2012

    Rose: As I’ve understood it, surgery is considered ‘the nuclear option.’ Even professional surgeons seem to be cautious about advising it. I’ve only had oral surgery, but even that takes a lot out of a body.

  100. #100 Mrs Woo
    July 9, 2012

    @JCS – I have read before that chiropractic, if limited to what it can do (and do well), manual therapy, recommending appropriate exercise to rehabilitate injury, etc., that they would do fine. In fact, we have a chiropractor just like that here in our little neck of the woods.

    He’s “one of your own” who eschews all claims of vitalistic thinking (i.e., he doesn’t “realign energy meridians,” etc.), doesn’t attempt to sell all kinds of various supplements, tonics or potions, etc. He says, “I can fix sore backs and I do it well.”

    I like him. He’s cheap, if he doesn’t “fix” you repeat visits are free, etc. He also admitted that he can’t do much for spinal stenosis because of the actual physical narrowing of the spinal canal.

    It’s too bad that so many of you either believe in what you’re selling or just like the idea of selling it to the unsuspecting. There is plenty you can do that is proven. Why add to it?

    Oh. Wait. The money!

    My bad.

  101. #101 Dan R.
    July 10, 2012

    On the Doctor thing….

    At least in a hospital / medical, my view is that the title “Doctor” should be reserved to those that hold a terminal degree with an license and unlimited scope of practice in their field.

    In most hospitals this would usually mean MD / DO / PhD (Clinical Psych) / DMD / DDS / DPM. It would not include those with terminal degrees who don’t have an unlimited license (Advanced Practice Nurses, some LCSW and PT now have a terminal degree).

    DC / ND shouldn’t be let on staff period, and their scope of practice is so limited IMHO they shouldn’t qualify.

  102. #102 JCS
    www.chiropractorsforfairjournalism.info
    July 10, 2012

    Your ugly comments are shocking coming from so-called professionals as well as considering not one cited any evidence to support your bigotry.

    If ISM is a science-based org as it claims, where is your evidence that supports your anti-chiro contentions? Not one of you has stated any evidence, but you all gave your opinions that are supported only by your own propaganda.

    If any of you actually knew the history of this medical war against chiros, you might recall during the Wilk v. AMA antitrust trial that the chiros’ attorney, George McAndrews, asked the AMA’s bigwigs of their opinions of chiro, which were painfully similar to those on this blog. Then he asked the AMA leadership to prove it, and not one of them could do so. Indeed, they were simply repeating their own propaganda. And you wonder why I refer to ISM as a bunch of medical Nazis?!?

    Secondly, are all of you stupid about the many comparative studies and guidelines that now support SMT for back pain? I cite 17 such guidelines in my book, but none of you seem to understand there is now more RCTs on back pain that recommend SMT over drugs, shots, and spine surgery.

    Why is it this ISM group is so behind the times on the evidence? Has your bigotry clouded your judgment?

    Thirdly, while honest MDs and spine researchers like Rick Deyo and Paul Goodley acknowledge the paradigm shift in spine care to “hands-on” care, few MDs seem to grasp the neurophysiologic implication of vertebral subluxations’ possible affect upon Type O disorders. Is this above your heads or education to understand interference to the nerve system may cause organic problems? This isn’t rocket science, but simply neurophysiology. Do they not teach you this in med school or what?

    This idea is not new or invented by chiros. Do you recall AT Still, MD, founder of osteopathy also wrote of this? Do you remember Walter B. Cannon, MD, a professor of physiology at Harvard University, who coined “flight or fight” and his study on psychosomatic problems?

    Why is it when medical men study the same phenomenon they are honored, but when DD Palmer postulates on the same concept, he is ridiculed? Perhaps a bit of medical bias prevails?

    For those of you steeped in medical bigotry with closed minds, it is impossible to discuss this issue–similar to Jim Crow being reasonable about black people. Perhaps it will take another generation of MDs who are tolerant of other disciplines and the supportive research before chiro care is as mainstream as drugs, shots, and surgeries.

    In the meantime, millions of back pain patients will suffer due to your bigotry; millions will become addicted to Oxycontin, millions will have ineffective epidural shots, and hundreds of thousands will become disabled from spine fusions based on the outdated disc theory. Indeed, your bigotry will cause pain and suffering to millions of people.

    Aside from the lack of medical ethics in spine care, one thing is certain, the ISM is avoiding the evidence.

    I challenge any of the GoodFellas at ISM to an open, live debate on CNN to discuss these issues. Let’s have Sanjay Gupta, neurosurgeon and CNN’s heralded medical director, act as host for this debate that will give the public both sides of this issue for the first time. Let’s argue in the court of public opinion to see who the public believes–medical bigots or the new evidence!

    Do any of you have the backbone to put your medical chauvinism before the public? Like bullies in the playground, you spout your skewed opinions to scare others, but in the end, you’re really a bunch of cowards.

    I can’t wait. Any takers?

  103. #103 lilady
    July 10, 2012

    Why on earth would I ever go to the local chiro to diagnose and treat lower back pain…when I have a medical doctor who is a specialist in orthopedics to diagnose and order physical therapy, if warranted?

    “Secondly, are all of you stupid about the many comparative studies and guidelines that now support SMT for back pain? I cite 17 such guidelines in my book, but none of you seem to understand there is now more RCTs on back pain that recommend SMT over drugs, shots, and spine surgery.”

    READ MY BOOK!!!!!

    We all are aware of studies that state chiropractors can be effective to treat lower back pain…and only lower back pain.

    Why don’t you arrange for a debate on CNN…I’m sure any of the physicians who blog on the Science-Based Medicine site would be happy to debate you.

    Jim Crow laws? That’s a new *one*.

  104. #104 Chris
    Neither here nor there...
    July 10, 2012

    JCS, so what is the chiropractic solution to arm pain from exercising that causes hypotension in someone with obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?

  105. #105 Narad
    July 10, 2012

    And you wonder why I refer to ISM as a bunch of medical Nazis?!?

    Oh, I don’t think anybody’s wondering about any such thing. It’s just not for the reason that you want.

  106. #106 Composer99
    July 10, 2012

    JCS:

    I suggest you pay a visit to the Dachau concentration camp (in Bavaria) and Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp (in Poland) and perhaps read the three books written by historian Richard Evans on the Third Reich.

    Then cram your despicable Nazi analogy where the sun don’t shine.

  107. #107 Mrs Woo
    July 10, 2012

    @JCS – I don’t think anyone is arguing that chiropractors cannot do a limited part of medical care and do it well. Every time you bring up chiropractors being a good option it is for some kind of back pain/injury.

    There is danger in some adjustments, though. Do you do them?

    http://www.chiropracticstroke.com/victims.johnhoffman.php

    Or do you avoid things that aren’t safe to do to protect yourself and those you treat?

    So, how would a chiropractor cure spinocerebellar ataxia? I noticed you haven’t responded with a chiropractic treatment for obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, either.

    It isn’t that chiropractors are unable to do any type of medical treatment, they just can’t do nearly what some believe they can.

  108. #108 LWS
    July 10, 2012

    JCS sez: “If ISM is a science-based org as it claims, where is your evidence that supports your anti-chiro contentions?”

    Before we, you, or anyone else can determine that ISM has any evidence in support of any contention, we have to see at least the contention that ISM has made. I personally can’t find any “anti-chiro contentions” on or off their website.

    So, JCS, you should give citations (or URLs) for the “anti-chiro contentions” made by the organization that have you so animated.

  109. #109 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 10, 2012

    I’ve seen chiropractors claim to be able to treat asthma, allergies, and depression. If there is data to substantiate these claims. please share.

  110. #110 JCS
    July 10, 2012

    Since many of you are unfamiliar with the latest research, you might enjoy this study:

    Effectiveness of manual therapies: the UK evidence report
    by Gert Bronfort, Mitch Haas, Roni Evans, Brent Leininger1 and Jay Triano
    Background
    The impetus for this report stems from the media debate in the United Kingdom (UK) surrounding the scope of chiropractic care and claims regarding its effectiveness particularly for non-musculoskeletal conditions.
    Purpose
    The purpose of this report is to provide a brief and succinct summary of the scientific evidence regarding the effectiveness of manual treatment as a therapeutic option for the management of a variety of musculoskeletal and non-musculoskeletal conditions based on the volume and quality of the evidence. Guidance in translating this evidence to application within clinical practice settings is presented.

    You can read the entire report @ http://chiromt.com/content/18/1/3#B21

    In regards to Mrs. Woo’s comments, why do you think if chiropractic care can’t cure everything, it can’t help anything?

    If this is your contention and if medical care is so great, why does the US lead the world in every category of chronic degenerative disease? One might think with all the “wonder drugs” and surgeries that the US should be the healthiest country in the world.

    Okay, stop laughing, but let me ask:

    Why does the WHO rank the US 37th is medical care, 72nd in population health, but #1 in cost?

    Certainly medical spine care can be accused of the “get less for more” story since the medical profession refuses to follow the evidence-based guidelines that call for conservative care first along with the shocking increase in its most expensive medical spine care treatments.

    Indeed, if medical care is so good, why do we have a healthcare crisis?

    So, Mrs. Woo, before you categorically condemn chiropractic, may I suggest you ask your own profession the same tough questions.

    In regards to lilady’s comment: “Why on earth would I ever go to the local chiro to diagnose and treat lower back pain…when I have a medical doctor who is a specialist in orthopedics to diagnose and order physical therapy, if warranted?”

    Obviously you are behind the times in spine diagnosis–22 years behind actually. Scott Boden of Emory found on MRI studies in 1990 that asymptomatic patients had disc abnormalities. Rick Deyo coined the term “incidentalomas” to describe these selling points by spine surgeons. NC BC/BS announced last year that a disc abnormality is a clinical finding, not a diagnosis, and will not pay for spine fusion based on an abnormal disc alone. Univ. of Pitt this year also announced it will not allow a consultation with a neurosurgeon unless the patient has had 3 months of failed chiro/physical therapy.

    The point, Mrs. Woo and lilady, is that most back pain is joint dysfunction compounded by axial compression, and weak core muscles, not disc abnormalities alone. Pathophysiology has replaced pathoanatomical issues in spine diagnosis and care.

    So, you can see your orthopedist who finds incidentalomas and recommends surgery, but until the joint dysfunction is corrected, you’ll continue to be in pain as millions of failed back surgery victims discover too late.

    This is the evidence that has started the paradigm shift away from drugs, shots, and surgery toward conservative hands-on care. Plus, not to tell your patients via informed consent about these new guidelines is unethical.

    Again, if ISM is so hell bent on science, just where is your evidence that condemns chiropractic care? Even Edzard Ernst’s salacious study, Deaths After Chiropractic, was a lame attempt to frighten patients. His stats–26 fatalities in 76 years equated to 0.34 deaths/year, but compared to the thousands of deaths via drugs, shots, and surgery, he should have applauded chiropractic’s safety rates.

    The evidence suggests there is more proof that SMT helps LBP than anything the medical world offers, but you keep ignoring it because of your historical bias.

    Instead, you continue to trash talk DCs, you continue to misinform patients about the safety of SMT, and you continue to leave “a wake of disability” behind as Gordon Waddell once wrote.

    Again, Mrs. Woo, just because we don’t help everything doesn’t mean we’re not good at what we do–helping NMS patients. Isn’t it time to follow the guidelines and end your senseless genocide against chiropractors?

    Again, I challenge the ISM to a public debate on this issue. Bring your bigotry and I’ll bring the evidence, then let the chips fall where they may.

  111. #111 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 10, 2012

    JCS – so you agree with me, then, that when chiropractors stick to what the evidence suggests they can help with, such as back and neck pain, they are fine and they should avoid caring for things their techniques are unsuited for.

    What are your views on the following Wikipedia extract: “Traditional chiropractic assumes that a vertebral subluxation interferes with the body’s innate intelligence”?

  112. #112 Narad
    July 10, 2012

    Again, I challenge the ISM to a public debate on this issue. Bring your bigotry and I’ll bring the evidence, then let the chips fall where they may.

    Perhaps you should tell them, rather than just making yourself look unhinged over here.

  113. #113 lilady
    July 10, 2012

    @ JCS: Thanks for the link, here:

    BTW: You might enjoy this upcoming movie teaser: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-C42_gnJ3a8

    What the hell is the *doctor of chiropractics* in that YouTube video, doing to that baby…it sure looks like cranio-sacral therapy.

    I read your link written by chiropractors about lower back pain…I also read this:

    Safety of Manual Treatment in Children

    The true incidence of serious adverse events in children as a result of spinal manipulation remains unknown. A systematic review published in 2007 identified 14 cases of direct adverse events involving neurologic or musculoskeletal events, nine of which were considered serious (eg. subarachnoid hemorrhage, paraplegia, etc.) [315]. Another 20 cases of indirect adverse events were identified (delayed diagnosis, inappropriate application of spinal manipulation for serious medical conditions). The review authors note that case reports and case series are a type of “passive” surveillance, and as such don’t provide information regarding incidence. Further, this type of reporting of adverse events is recognized to underestimate true risk [315-317].

    Importantly, the authors postulate that a possible reason for incorrect diagnosis (for example. delayed diagnosis, inappropriate treatment with spinal manipulation) is due to lack of sufficient pediatric training. They cite their own survey [318] which found that in a survey of 287 chiropractors and osteopaths, 78% reported one semester or less of formal pediatric education and 72% received no pediatric clinical training. We find this particularly noteworthy.

    I find that “particularly noteworthy” and “particularly outrageous”, as well.

  114. #114 Chris
    Time to seal the shower grout..
    July 10, 2012

    JCS, I see you’ve ignored hypotension in HCM. Perhaps you would prefer an easier question?

    So how well do chiropractic therapies work for neonatal seizures? Is cranial sacral more effective than anti-convulsants? How about when the seizures cause the heart and/or breathing to stop?

  115. #115 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 10, 2012

    lilady – JCS pointed to a study that concludes:

    Spinal manipulation/mobilization is effective in adults for: acute, subacute, and chronic low back pain; migraine and cervicogenic headache; cervicogenic dizziness; manipulation/mobilization is effective for several extremity joint conditions; and thoracic manipulation/mobilization is effective for acute/subacute neck pain. The evidence is inconclusive for cervical manipulation/mobilization alone for neck pain of any duration, and for manipulation/mobilization for mid back pain, sciatica, tension-type headache, coccydynia, temporomandibular joint disorders, fibromyalgia, premenstrual syndrome, and pneumonia in older adults. Spinal manipulation is not effective for asthma and dysmenorrhea when compared to sham manipulation, or for Stage 1 hypertension when added to an antihypertensive diet. In children, the evidence is inconclusive regarding the effectiveness for otitis media and enuresis, and it is not effective for infantile colic and asthma when compared to sham manipulation.

    Massage is effective in adults for chronic low back pain and chronic neck pain. The evidence is inconclusive for knee osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia, myofascial pain syndrome, migraine headache, and premenstrual syndrome. In children, the evidence is inconclusive for asthma and infantile colic.

    Presumably, then, he disagrees with the use of spinal manipulation on infants as they are unlikely to be suffering from back or neck pain or dizziness.

  116. #116 Composer99
    July 10, 2012

    ISM is not obliged to provide evidence against chiropractic practice.

    As a matter of principle those claiming positive medical indications for their practices have the responsibility of showing the safety and efficacy of their practices. That is, you have the evidentiary burden of proof exactly backwards by any reasonable standard.

    Imagine if Merck or GSK were allowed to immediately bring products such as, say, Vioxx to market and regulatory agencies had to provide evidence against them before they could be regulated or removed. You appear to be claiming that standard for chiropractic practice, a standard which is clearly specious.

    Just as pharmaceutical companies are required to provide safety and efficacy data before they are given sanction to market their products, so ought chiropractors show their practices have a suitable risk/benefit ratio and clinical efficacy for any given indication before they are given sanction to do so.

    In addition, since traditional chiropractic is based on scientifically-discredited vitalism and nonexistent physiological phenonema (the subluxation blocking innate intelligence) it is, by definition, quackery, in the same way that ancient Greek humour-based therapy (e.g. bloodletting) would be. You may find that an unseemly insult, and indeed it has pejorative connotations, but it is accurate.

  117. #117 novalox
    July 10, 2012

    @jcs

    Bigotry. You keep tossing that word around, but I bet you really don’t know what true bigotry is.

    Your specious arguments, blatant antisemitism, profuse ad hominem, and Godwinning only serve to disrespect those who have faced true bigotry.

    So I really do suggest that you shut the hell up with your victimization crap, because there are a lot of other people who have faced true bigotry, and would just laugh at your face at your claims of “bigotry”.

  118. #118 lilady
    July 10, 2012

    Here at chirobase.org, Dr. Smith is quoted about chiropractic care for children…to “prevent spinal decay”.

    http://www.chirobase.org/09Links/q-z.html

    “James C. Smith, DC: “Just as dental care is a family affair, we believe spinal care should also be for everyone in your family. We offer a discount family plan to enable everyone in your family to avoid the future problems suffered by neglect. Just as you prevent tooth decay with maintenance care, we urge you to prevent spinal decay with regular preventative care in our clinic.” [8/30/04] “

  119. #119 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 10, 2012

    lilady – well, that certainly makes it more difficult for me to give JCS the benefit of the doubt. JCS – can you please point to the evidence that shows that spinal manipulation in childhood will reduce “spinal decay”?

  120. #120 Old Rockin' Dave
    July 11, 2012

    @Mephistopheles O’Brien,
    Spinal decay better be real, because I just went out and bought a spine brush, spine paste (no fluoride, of course) and a package of spinal floss, and they weren’t cheap!

  121. #121 JCS
    July 11, 2012

    First of all, I feel bombarded by the various issues, questions, and trash talking, but let me answer a few.

    Apparently many of you feel pediatric adjustments are inappropriate. Considering forceps delivery have caused problems with upper cervical spines in many infants, and considering most adult spine problems began in youth from accidents, sports injuries, and playground falls, is it any wonder why DCs are concerned about adjusting children.

    In fact, to ignore these traumatic childhood spinal injuries is sheer negligence, similar to ignoring dental care until the child has a toothache.

    I do not adjust kids or animals, but do refer them to those DCs who have certification in these areas. It’s actually quite fascinating to learn how they treat kids and pets. Even the Kentucky Derby winner, I’ll Have Another,” was treated by a chiro.

    In regards to “novalox’s” anger about my use of the term “bigotry,” he/she is sadly mistaken. Novalox obviously is unaware of the history of the medical war when over 12,000 DCs were arrested in the first half of the 20th century until state laws were passed to protect them from the evil forces of Morris Fishbein and, later, the Committee on Quackery. Many more DCs were extorted, ran out of town, and publicly humiliated–all mentioned in my book. I wonder how many MDs would go to jail to practice or put up with the slander?

    A TV director and black man in a discussion once said that “the only white guys that know what it is like to be black are chiropractors in a hospital.”

    Or, I might add, the thousands of DCs who have been denied access to hospitals. This led to the Wilk v. AMA antitrust case that clearly illustrated the genocide campaign by the AMA’s Committee on Quackery whose stated goal was to “contain and eliminate the chiropractic profession.”

    If this is not medical bigotry, navolox, what is? Slander, boycott, and marginalization all due to greed, not patient care as the AMA contended and which was disproved in court–it was the CoQ’s smokescreen that the ISM still uses today.

    The judge at the Wilk v. AMA antitrust trial mentioned in her Opinion the damage done by the AMA to libel the image of chiropractors:
    “Labeling all chiropractors unscientific cultists and depriving chiropractors of association with medical physicians, injury to reputation was assured by the AMA’s name-calling practice.”

    But all of you are missing the big picture in this argument–the failings of medical spine care consisting of drugs, shots, and surgeries.

    If the ISM is concerned about evidence-based practice, why is there no outcry about the epidemic of Oxycontin, the ineffectiveness of epidural shots, or the failing of spine fusions based on a disproved disc theory and “incidentalomas” seen on expensive MRIs?

    You all seem to cherry pick on issues that are not within my scope anyway and ignore these huge issues in spine care.
    No ethical DC today believes chiropractic is a cure-all; that has been stated by all our national orgs, too.

    But SMT has affected some Type O disorders. In my book I mention these studies if you’re interested. The New Zealand Report mentioned that 7% of NMS patients also reported help with their Type O disorders. Certainly this area needs more research, but the present studies show beneft with some Type O issues.

    But in regards to spine care, the research and guidelines are clear that for 85% of NMS conditions, hands-on care is more cost and clinically-effective than drugs, shots, and surgery.

    The ISM isn’t really interested in “science” as it suggests; it is really a turf war to maintain the medical monopoly. Indeed, anyone slightly knowledgeable of the paradigm shift in spine care attests to the superiority of chiro care over medical care.

    According to Pran Manga, PhD, Ontario (Canada) health economist, “There is an overwhelming body of evidence indicating that chiropractic management of low back pain is more cost-effective than medical management.”

    So, what will it take for the medical chauvinists to accept the evidence and refer NMS cases to DCs? Okay, stop laughing since most prejudiced MDs would never refer despite the evidence. Instead, like Harriet Hall, they take cheap shots at chiropractic to discourage patients from getting spine care from DCs.

    So, instead of cherry picking on incidental issues or spouting more trash talk, I challenge you to tell me why you refuse to follow the guidelines that recommend chiro care over medical care.

    And please, stop with the sarcasm and trash talking. Let’s stick to the evidence, not to the hyperbole or bias.

  122. #122 Mrs Woo
    July 11, 2012

    @JCS – most of the things it suggests most strongly are treatment for spinal issues, which no one here argues that chiropractic can take care of. However, vitalism has no basis in science. It is unlikely that a spinal adjustment will improve hepatitis or kidney stones. Chiropractors practicing what is scientifically demonstrated as effective treatment get no argument.

    Chiropractors who are what you describe as “chirovangelists” on your website are more likely the target for derision. Science-based treatment is fine.

    The way you portray your profession and the medical profession, though, is more than a little amusing. I have been trying so hard not to ask if a persecution complex made you choose chiropractic or if you developed one somewhere in chiropractic school?

    I haven’t seen anyone here suggest that chiropractic is not effective for low back pain. Lilady suggested that a trusted orthopedist could do just as well, probably recommending physical therapy and surgery as a last resort.

    Our local chiropractor doesn’t do anything but back issues and doesn’t have much respect for chiropractors who venture further than that with unproven claims. Since you are so willing to share studies, etc., surely you agree that making unproven and unlikely promises isn’t a good thing?

    I didn’t say chiropractic can’t help anything. I said that chiropractic cannot help everything. Big difference.

  123. #123 Chris
    In a medical building waiting room...
    July 11, 2012

    I am not cherry picking any issues. I am using ones that I have had to deal with for one child.

    So what is your treatment for neonatal seizures?

    Severe speech dyspraxia?

    How about seizures due to dehydration from rotavirus infection?

    Croup so bad his oxygen levels were below 70%?

    A complex migraine that mimiced a stroke?

    Hypotension that caused arm pains from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?

    Mitral valve damage from HCM?

    Chiropractic is focused on too little of the body (spine), with the premise that it can cure all. Including the rediculous notion it is okay dokay for babies.

    Here is what the data show: your training is limited, and you should not pretend to be a comprehensive medical care provider.

  124. #124 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 11, 2012

    JCS – Do you have evidence that shows that spinal manipulation for infants and children provides a benefit?

    I notice that I’ll Have Another retired between the Preakness and the Belmont, and will not race again. Is there, in your view, a connection between chiropractic treatment and this outcome?

    If you want to talk about back pain, I think most people would listen to the evidence. What is your view of chiropractors providing treatment for conditions where the is no evidence that chiropractic methods provide benefit?

  125. #125 Calli Arcale
    July 11, 2012

    If the ISM is concerned about evidence-based practice, why is there no outcry about the epidemic of Oxycontin, the ineffectiveness of epidural shots, or the failing of spine fusions based on a disproved disc theory and “incidentalomas” seen on expensive MRIs?

    What makes you so convinced there *isn’t* an outcry against these things? The FDA recently released new guidelines to try and reduce Oxycontin abuse. Epidurals . . . I’m not sure what makes you think they’re ineffective. I might need to know exactly what sort of epidural you are referring to. (Presumably you are aware that it refers to a route of administration, not a specific therapy.) Incidentalomas resulting in unneccesary surgery have been discussed on this very blog.

    Thing is, you are presuming that everyone who questions you a) opposes chiropractic completely, b) worships medical care completely, and c) is out to get you. In addition to insulting survivors of real bigotry (oh, boo hoo, some chiropractors got run out of down for defrauding their patients; that’s *totally* what it’s like to get castrated and then lynched because some white gal got pregnant and decided to deflect blame by claiming you’d raped her), you are ruining any possibility of earning supporters here. You are *displaying* bigotry, quite frankly, by refusing to even find out what our positions actually are.

    So, instead of cherry picking on incidental issues or spouting more trash talk

    Why not? It’s what you’re doing.

    Fact is, I don’t trust chiropractic any further than I trust Glaxo Smith Kline. Which is to say: not at all. I want evidence, and I want meaningful regulation that can be used to hold them accountable when they act in the absence of data.

    There is modest evidence suggesting that chiropractic can be helpful for mild, uncomplicated low back pain. You refer to it to support chiropractic in general, and while avoiding being tied down to exactly what it is you do; perhaps this is because you know that evidence cannot help support anything besides the treatment of mild, uncomplicated low back pain. It’s ridiculous to use it to support treating an infant for injuries to the neck sustained during a forceps delivery, which would very much not be mild, uncomplicated low back pain but would instead by an acute thoracic/cervical injury. There is very little evidence of any kind surrounding the value of chiropractic for this sort of indication, yet curiously when challenged, I’ve never seen a chiropractor provide the evidence.

    My children are enormously precious to me. I will not use any therapy on them that does not have evidence behind it. They are not guinea pigs.

  126. #126 Mrs Woo
    July 11, 2012

    JCS – where do you stand on the push for DC’s and ND’s to be primary care physicians?

  127. #127 lilady
    July 11, 2012

    @ JCS: How would you treat a child with spastic quadriplegia, congental bilateral hip and acetabula dysplasias with severe scoliosis and kyphosis?

  128. #128 Chris
    Back home...
    July 11, 2012

    Well, JCS does not really treat kids. But he refers kids to DCs that do. So obviously he thinks that chiropractic therapy can work for medically interesting kids.

  129. #129 novalox
    July 11, 2012

    @jcs

    Your comments marginalize those who have truly been the victims of bigotry, thus you have proven yourself to be a despicable little man.

    I know a few people who have been true victims of bigotry, and they would laugh at your examples of “bigotry”

    You have proven yourself incapable of having an honest argument, much less address the questions posed.

  130. #130 lilady
    July 11, 2012

    I linked to this site before…either here…or on the Ho-Po, when I took on a *mommy and her infant’s cranio-sacral *therapist*

    http://www.craniosacraltherapy.org/Babies.htm

    (I don’t know whether to laugh at this outrageous *therapist’s* blog…or to weep for the infants who are subjected to manipulations).

  131. #131 lilady
    July 11, 2012
  132. #132 JGC
    July 11, 2012

    Let’s argue in the court of public opinion to see who the public believes–medical bigots or the new evidence!

    Why the court of public opinion? Why all the challenges to public debates? Surely you’re aware these aren’t appropriate forums to address whether or not chiropractic treatments are of any benefit with respect to specific illnesses or disabilities.

  133. #133 Narad
    July 11, 2012

    “Even the Kentucky Derby winner, I’ll Have Another, was treated by a chiro.”

    Let’s see… ““I’m not a chiropractor, I’m a positionalist,” [Larry Jones] said.” The hed isn’t always the payload, JCS. Details, details.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/02/sports/belmont-stakes-a-chiropractor-for-the-four-legged-set.html

  134. #134 ArtK
    Coming up through the bunch
    July 11, 2012

    Even the Kentucky Derby winner, I’ll Have Another, was treated by a chiro.

    Aside from the fact that the hed was wrong and the guy denies being a chiropractor, why should this convince me that chiropractic is good? It’s yet another anecdote. How is it anything but an argument from authority or popularity, both bad logical fallacies? Are you claiming that chiropractic is the reason he won the Derby?

    I’ll Have Another also had to withdraw from the Belmont due to a tendon injury. If you get to claim that chiropractic helped the horse, I have an equal amount of evidence that it caused his injury (i.e. none.)

  135. #135 Militant Agnostic
    July 11, 2012

    I’m not a chiropractor, I’m a positionalist,” [Larry Jones] said.

    Sounds like Larry Jones wanted to distance whatever it is that he does to horses from chiropractic.

  136. #136 Liz Ditz
    In the barn, talking to the horses.
    July 11, 2012

    Re equine chiropractic (which I have paid for and in some instances, will continue to pay for): depending upon the practitioner, it’s more like physical therapy for horses than human chiropractic.

    I am not a lawyer, but I believe that different states have different regulations re animal chiropractic. In California, it used to be that a licensed DVM had to be present when chiropractic adjustments were administered.

    I have ceased using chiropactic as part of my care, because of the risk. I can get the same results with an effective massage.

  137. #137 Liz Ditz
    July 11, 2012

    I oppose chiropractic because so many DCs spout babble like this (posted today by a Coeur d’Alene chiropractor in the local paper)

    Many people wonder why chiropractic care is part of the mix [of care for ADHD, autism, and learning disorders]? It seems that there is an incorrect notion that chiropractic is only for back pain. While chiropractic is certainly for back pain, that’s not all.

    Chiropractic is about neural efficiency. Neural efficiency is about the function of your nervous system. The nervous system consists of your brain, spinal cord, and nerves. Your brain is processing millions of messages per second (some say trillions) and communicating with the rest of your body via the spinal cord. The spinal cord directs those messages to and from the brain. We all know what happens if you sever your spinal cord. You lose control of anything below the affected area. The brain can no longer communicate to the body.

    Yet, there is something not as severe as a spinal cord break that can cause a lot of problems. It is called a subluxation. A subluxation is when one of the bones of your spine moves out of place and creates tension on the nerve that exits the bone. This restriction of the nerve reduces its ability to send messages. If your brain is unable to effectively communicate with your body, how do you think your body is to perform all its necessary duties?

    Chiropractic is part of this program because it is proven to restore that vital nervous system function by eliminating subluxations with a gentle adjustment of the spinal bone(s) back into place. It is the basis of the Focus program because it is of great importance that your brain and body are able to communicate with one another. This is called neural efficiency and it is vitally important. Most of the basic sensory information that keeps you functioning comes from mechanisms happening in your body. If your brain can’t receive that information, it can’t decipher the messages that your body creates. This creates big problems.

    This is all complete nonsense, of course. The most common learning disability, dyslexia, is most likely caused by a difference in auditory processing that has nothing to do with the spine. ADHD, one of the most heritable disorders, cannot be treated successfully with chiropractic. The idea that chiropractic can improve autism’s symptom is both cruel and laughable.

  138. #138 Liz Ditz
    http://lizditz.typepad.com
    July 11, 2012

    And let’s address the issue of the relationship between (some) chiropractors and the anti-vaccination movement. Tim O’Shea DC has been leading the way, with his classic The Sanctity of Human Blood: Vaccination Is Not Immunization. Sadly he is right down the road from me and is one of the leaders in the fight against CA AB2109.

    Koren Publications (“Helping chiropractors educate the world”) markets a number of “vaccine information” products.

    Educate your patients with up-to-date information on the dangers of vaccination.

    Koren sells a $500.00 “Vaccination Lecture Kit” that teaches chiropractors how to lie and mislead about vaccinations, and how to more effectively spread Fear Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD) about vaccines.

    He also markets a “Myth Busting Report on Childhood Vaccines, with the following content

    Today our children are expected to receive 81 vaccines by the time they reach school age. Yet today’s child is sicker than ever. We see a modern epidemic of allergies, asthma, autism, attention deficit disorder (and that’s just the A’s!) plus learning disorders, brain and other cancers, dyslexia, vision and hearing problems – and many other conditions that barely existed before mass vaccination. Are vaccines to blame for the chronic illness in our children?

    Did you know that deaths from childhood diseases had decreased 90%-98% before mass immunization? That autism does not exist – or is incredibly rare – in non-vaccinated children? That vaccines are not tested for their ability to cause cancer as well as fertility problems in adults.

    Before your patients take their children to the pediatrician for their expected shots, let them know the risks they’re facing. Give them the scientifically accurate information they desperately need to know.

    Vaccine sales are predicted to generate about $20 billion in revenue in 2012. What else will this dangerous medical procedure generate?

    Personalization (available for only $10) on the back of the report will let readers know that you are their local go-to-source for accurate healthcare information and preventive wellness care. To Personalize the Myth Busting Report select the appropriate option and follow the instructions below.

    To personalize your Myth Busting Reports, please enter your copy in the Comments box during checkout. Please use forward slashes (/) to indicate the end of each line. Seven lines are available with a maximum of 30 characters per line. See sample below.

    Personalized: $55.00 for packs of 100.

    Chiropractors: damaging public health since….

  139. #139 Mrs Woo
    July 11, 2012

    A DC in northern KC advertised that he could improve Down’s Syndrome, Liz. Hubby heard his radio shows and wanted me to go see him to see if he could cure the incurable. When I got on the guy’s website and asked my husband how curable Down’s Syndrome could be and how a chiropractic adjustment could “clear allergies” I got him to quit bugging me (until the next time he would hear the guy’s program, then it would start all over again).

    Every radio program I happened to be in the car with hubby for included lots of gushing endorsements (pun first unintentional, then left intentionally) for internal cleansing with their special colonics machine…

  140. #140 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    Cabbage is leading by a head
    July 11, 2012

    ArtK – well put.

    Re your location – are you, perhaps, Banana?

  141. #141 Matt ford
    July 11, 2012

    @JCS: Take this from who works on horses on daily basis I’ll have another injury only cure is time. There is nothing a chiropractor could do that would help his injury.

  142. #142 Militant Agnostic
    July 12, 2012

    @Matt Ford
    Take this advice form someone who read your comment – when typing capitalize proper names dammit, especially the goofy names of race horses. I had to read your comment 3 times Before It Made Sense.*

    *I am sure that somewhere there is a horse named Before It Made Sense

  143. #143 John Raymond DC
    Whidbey Island, WA
    July 12, 2012

    Just visiting this site from a link and doubt I’ll be back after reading a few posts. Before becoming a chiropractor (12 years now) I served with the Army Special Forces as a medic for 13 years. I have organized medical civil actions programs in Africa, and Asia, as well as set up multinational and multi service ATLS courses numerous times, and also met physician standards at least 4 times. Taught the Hong Kong special police emergency care, been certified as a dive medical technician, rotated in numerous hospitals and numerous rotations in the different clinic alongside the residents, and overall did some crazy stuff in my life I can’t even begin to tell you. I am not bragging, just letting you know my background. In fact, you all know more about me then my closest friends and family now.

    During that time I knew nothing about what I do now, but wish I had. I think of myself as a skeptic and have always admired people who question the status quo. But what I have read here are mostly a bunch of cynics, not skeptics that have let their bias and ignorance get the best of them.

    JCS is a prolific writer, and I respect what he is trying to do in educating others (or trying anyway) and though I do not always agree with his terminology and less then subtle anger at times, I know the frustration he feels.

    I have seen this argument in the past, and like here, it seems more of a political argument where nobody is willing to listen to the other, since they know that their side is the only right one, and the spinsters and pundits are there only source . But that isn’t science is it, and for people who espouse to be evidence based I am confused.

    I have not heard JCS say anything about treating everything, and do not know any DCs that does personally, though I am sure you can find many examples, just as I could find examples of many bad MDs. And though our past is full of color, I can find some good (quacky) stuff in medical journals of that era. But what is the point? Every, and I mean every person I have met that denigrates DCs has never been to one.

    I run a referral only practice, and have learned people will gravitate to what works for them. I do not pressure them into long-term care (as some unfortunately do), nor do I claim to treat everything. That being said I do see evidence that need attention regarding other “organic” conditions. Interesting to note that most evidence with manipulation and non NMS conditions come from the medical side.

    Many of the people I see have already had about 3 months of medical care and physical therapy without result. I love it when the patient states that they need to get aggressive now so send them to me As if what I do is so dangerous. Every procedure has risk, but they are very low in what I do.

    I could go on, but again, what’s the point. I have heard this all before, and it has nothing to do with seeking truth or regarding scientific evidence as the corner stone of our beliefs. It is all about egos, ignorance, half truths, personal attacks and the total blindness in even seeing this fact.

    I am just going to keep doing what I know is helping people, where nobody else did in many cases. And if you don’t like it fine. It hasn’t hurt business as people that I help will keep sending others. All they want is to feel better, and they could care less than I do about this type of denigration.

    It’s all about choice anyway, and all I want to see is that we have a seat at the table. If not, then wait another decade, cause the PTs are fighting to take what we have (big time push at present), but suppose when they do it, it will finally be scientific?

  144. #144 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 12, 2012

    John Raymond DC,

    Thanks for your post. Perhaps you can answer the questions JCS has neglectedto and help break through what you consider a political debate.

    1. Is there good evidence that says that chiropractic treatment provides benefit for conditions other than back pain, neck pain, and dizziness? Where is it?

    2. Is there good evidence to say that chiropractic treatment of infants and children provides a benefit? Where is it?

    3. Based on what we read of traditional chiropractic training, it is based to some extent of non-scientific vitalism and terms like “subluxation”, which have no physical meaning. What is your view of those? Are they still taught and if so, why?

    4. JCS brought up chiropractic treatment of horses and mentioned that Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another was under a chiropractor’s care. Assuming this is true, did that contribute more to the horse winning or to the injury that retired the horse permanently before the Belmont? How do you know?

  145. #145 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 12, 2012

    the PTs are fighting to take what we have (big time push at present), but suppose when they do it, it will finally be scientific?

    Is there anything chiropractic care can do that cannot be done by competent physical therapists? If so, what and what is the evidence for that? Thanks.

  146. #146 Agashem
    Somewhere near the Thousand Islands Parkway
    July 12, 2012

    I once met a veteranarian who told me she realized that chiro was bulls*it when a chiro claimed he could manipulate a horse’s spine. She said, have you ever looked a horse’s spine? Do you think a man is big enough or strong enough to actually move anything in that spine? If so you are deluded. And based on that, she would give no further credence to chiro.
    That argument made a lot of sense to me, look at the positions chiros put a human into to effect a manipulation, how could they manipulate a horse?

  147. #147 Lawrence
    July 12, 2012

    @John – simple solution to the proble. How about all chiro’s get training as actual physical therapists?

    Then there would be a distinction – you would all actually be qualified to do what you claim to do….see, problem solved!

  148. #148 Mrs Woo
    July 12, 2012

    @John Raymond – once again – no one here will argue about the science-based/proven treatments that chiropractic can do. However, there are chiropractors out there who will make all sorts of claims (including curing autism, curing heart disease, curing cancer) that are not proven and are based in theories that science can find no basis for.

    I don’t consider myself cynical, but I might have become so. I have been dragged to faith healers, chiropractors, NDs and had thousands of supplements bought for me to “try” while hubby attempts to cure an incurable illness with few reliable treatments.

    You haven’t listed what treatments you do vs. treatments you don’t, so I have no idea how “science based” your treatment modalities are. I have said repeatedly that I don’t object to chiropractors taking care of what they have been proven to be able to treat. I’m relieved, though, that you agree that JCS’s presentation is angry.

    I have been to a chiropractor. They were someone who practiced a LOT of non-science-based treatments and wanted to set me up with a credit plan to pay for their very expensive treatments and have me agree to a minimum of three months’ treatment including the supplements they sold, the special unique diet they would prescribe, attachment to some electrodes here and there plus adjustments. His price per visit was six times higher than my primary care physicians.

    So, I have been to a chiropractor. I was also to the chiropractor in town here, who only does back treatment, says that is all chiropractic methods actually teach that is “real,” etc. He I don’t mind having hubby go to. He couldn’t be much help to me and admitted it the first visit (not a lot you can manipulate when bone spurs grow into the spinal canal).

    I do not mind chiropractors. I understand that separate laws in every state had to be created to let them practice and it was a long journey. I do have one observation, though – when medicine has proven that one of their treatments is not effective and/or a new treatment is better, the old is discarded. When chiropractic, though, it seems that a lot of teachings (depending on the school – maybe I’m wrong and it’s just students themselves who have embraced these “philosophies”) that are outside of scientific consideration or explanation are still taught and still used to explain it.

    As long as there is a part of the group that practices that way it makes the whole group seem a little suspect.

    I have had bad doctors, too. I dropped them when I discovered how bad they were. That’s the way it is. I will go to a doctor first almost always. When Mr Woo’s back hurts, though, I have no problem with him choosing the chiropractor first. He has helped him in the past and is very practical.

    Does this make me “bigoted” or “prejudiced” against chiropractors?

  149. #149 Shay
    July 12, 2012

    “have seen this argument in the past, and like here, it seems more of a political argument where nobody is willing to listen to the other, since they know that their side is the only right one, and the spinsters and pundits are there only source . But that isn’t science is it, and for people who espouse to be evidence based I am confused.”

    How can you be confused over a simple request (several simple requests, actually) asking for scientific evidence to support your claims?

    Seriously — if we met on a dating website and I told you that I’m a 21-year-old swimsuit model, wouldn’t you ask for some kind of corroboration?

  150. #150 Calli Arcale
    July 12, 2012

    Mrs Woo:

    As long as there is a part of the group that practices that way it makes the whole group seem a little suspect.

    And it’s not a small part that practices that way. There are the “straights”, of course, who most definitely practice that way and represent a definitive movement within chiropractic and strive to adhere to DD Palmer as closely as possible. DD Palmer definitely promoted using chiropractic well beyond those limits. (Indeed, the legend of chiropractic’s origin centers on a supposed cure for deafness accomplished via a single spinal manipulation.) And then there are the schools; I’ve reviewed the course offerings, and from those at least, it does not appear that many chiropractic schools trouble themselves with the limits of the profession. This is also borne out by the class-action lawsuits some students have won after successfully arguing that the schools left them ill-prepared to practice.

    There are definitely some evidence-based chiropractors out there, people like the retired Samuel Homola, DC. But they are a minority. I suspect the majority want to be evidence-based, but lack the training (that lawsuit, again). The profession is too inconsistent to get any idea of what you’re going to experience just by noticing their shingle, and to date, professional chiropractic organizations have done little to address that.

  151. #151 JCS
    July 13, 2012

    Quoting Mrs. Woo: “However, vitalism has no basis in science.”

    Are you so sure, Mrs. Woo, considering the recent discovery of the Higgs boson “God particle”? Perhaps there is more vitalism in the universe than you understand. Perhaps vitalistic practitioners were ahead of their time?

    If find this attitude anti-vitalism attitude odd considering doctors are dealing with a vital entity and not a machine. After all, what is the difference between a live body and dead one?

    How do you divorce the “life energy” from the health process? Perhaps this is a denial problem among medical atheists. Indeed, how do MD “believers” cope with a profession that professes such atheism?

    Francis R. Collins, head of NIH, admitted in his book that nearly 50% of MDs and scientists are atheists. He spoke of his conversion from a believer as a child to an atheist in med school back to a believer now.

    I find it shocking that anyone dealing with healthcare can have such a myopic attitude to disregard the value and role of vitalism in health care. Again, we’re not dealing with car mechanics, but alive human bodies that do have a vital energy.

    The recent Higgs boson discovery must give you atheists alarm when the leading scientists announce this “God particle.” Indeed, how do you ignore the role of vitalism in the human body and healing experience?

    Also, David Eddy, father of evidence-based medicine, admitted that only 15% of medicine is based on science. Again, why do you all brag about “scientific medicine” when, in fact, much of medicine is outdated, unproven, and ineffective? This is especially true for medical spine care treatments as all the research now admits (but which you are probably unaware of).

    I suggest you critics look at your own house before throwing stones at chiropractic. Indeed, if medical care is so effective, why does America lead the world in every category of disease?

    Why is medical care the second-leading cause of bankruptcy and the leading cause of death according to Gary Null, PhD, in his article, Death After Medicine?

    Please, Mrs. Woo et al. answer these critical questions before you ask silly questions about the scope of chiro care for Type O disorders that some have been shown to respond to SMT (page 228 in my book).

    Have none of you ever studied neurophysiology in med school to understand this connection? Or are you solely focused on blood therapy and the germ theory?

    Indeed, if only 15% of medical care is evidence-based as Dr. Eddy suggests, and if 50% of MDs are atheists as Dr. Collins believes, and since America is amidst a healthcare crisis, it seems the medical house needs repair.

    Let’s be real: the medical monopoly has become slow to change, afraid of competition, deadly, and expensive. If any of you have any honestly, you have to agree that America has a healthcare crisis not because of chiro care, but due to medical care.

  152. #152 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    July 13, 2012

    Gee, our chiro is now quoting Gary Null. What’s next, some references to whale.to?

    I knew the altie quacks would start using the “god particle” for their own ludicrous claims as soon as the news broke, but I thought it would be reiki quacks and faith healers.

  153. #153 Lawrence
    July 13, 2012

    @MSII – the physicists that originally coined the term “God Particle” now regret ever uttering it – people that continue to use it have no idea what the Higgs-Boson actual is or what is supposedly does.

    Using it in terms of health is like trying to use the existence of atoms (which we can’t see) as evidence of magic.

  154. #154 JGC
    July 13, 2012

    Are you so sure, Mrs. Woo, considering the recent discovery of the Higgs boson “God particle”?

    You are aware that “god particle” is simply a nickname I trust? How exactly does the discovery of the Higgs boson suggest that models invoking vitalism have any validity?

    If find this attitude anti-vitalism attitude odd considering doctors are dealing with a vital entity and not a machine.

    As far as i can see you’re using the term ‘vital entity” here simply as a synonym for “living organism”–how does noting the fact that doctors treat living organism srather than mechanical constructs argue that vitalism has a place in natural science?

    After all, what is the difference between a live body and dead one?

    Living bodies exhibit growth and development, metabolize, maintain homestasis, are capable of reproduction, display irritability, etc. Dead bodies do not.

    How do you divorce the “life energy” from the health process?

    What energy are you referring to here as “life energy”? How is it detected, how can it be quantified and in what units is it expressed?

    The recent Higgs boson discovery must give you atheists alarm when the leading scientists announce this “God particle.”

    Why? it’s simply an elementary particle predicted to exist by the standard model of particle field, representing the minimal excitation energy of the Higgs field (interactions with which result in elementary particles possessing mass.) How exactly is the discovery of teh Higgs boson any more alarming for anyone, athiest or otherwise, than the previous discoveries of hadrons, leptons or quarks?

  155. #155 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    July 13, 2012

    Lawrence,

    Exactly. It’s a great headline/soundbite -friendly name but it’s now been co-opted by everyone involved with any kind of “energy” healing.

    And for the record, Gary Null does not have a real PhD from a real university. It was from a freestyle, “do your own thing” mail order diploma mill. His friends were on the committee to which he defended his dubious thesis.

  156. #156 Old Rockin' Dave
    July 13, 2012

    Of course the Higgs boson is the “God particle” to Catholics, Orthodox, and some Protestants – without it you don’t have Mass.

  157. #157 Shay
    July 13, 2012

    @Dave: rim shot.

  158. #158 Denice Walter
    July 13, 2012

    @ Marc Stephens Is Insane:

    We can expect to read loads more quoted by alties from the *ne plus ultra* of woo: he currently has 5 or 6 “scholars in residence* working with him to write “ground-breaking articles” ( like the recent *Bad to the Bone*) and a film production staff putting his”hard-hitting” documentaries together. All bilge is available @ Gary Null.com and the Progressive Radio Network. Or a facebook page of someone you vaguely know. You keeps sending this crap to you. Or sending it here.

  159. #159 Denice Walter
    July 13, 2012

    OOPs…WHO keeps sending this crap to you…

  160. #160 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    July 13, 2012

    Never has a surname been more appropriate than Gary “Null”.

    His new movie has been referenced here dozens of times across various discussions from opponents of mainstream medicine. It was pulled down from free sites (probably a conspiracy theory surrounds that, like he was suppressed or silenced by Big Pharma) but I’m sure it will rear its ugly lie-spewing head again.

  161. #161 Chris
    Under stormy clouds...
    July 13, 2012

    JCS:

    The recent Higgs boson discovery must give you atheists alarm when the leading scientists announce this “God particle.” Indeed, how do you ignore the role of vitalism in the human body and healing experience?

    Nothing reveals how clueless someone is when the mistake a nickname for something that is very important to some kind of religious silliness.

    Sometimes people who actually do science (and in my case engineering) make up terms that are funny, silly, but very descriptive of the work being done. When an analysis of a structure comes together and actually reflects the real test data some of us called it “orgasmic.” We did not literally have an orgasm, but we actually felt very good about the results of the mathematics combined with physics and how the computer model worked.

    The “god” particle just meant it was a very important thing to find. Nothing else.

    I believe that unless you can access the whole body and understand all of the functions (like how obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy causes hypotension), you are no more than an under-trained physical therapist. And not a very good one if you believe in “vitalism” (the thing that makes cranial sacral, a form or homeopathic massage, absolutely worthless).

    At least in the USA the osteopaths have recognized that focusing on the spine was insufficient, and upgraded their training. They are now licensed to work as real physcisians, and there is very little difference between a Do and an MD.

    Now here is a question, JCS: why did you decide to become a chiropractor instead of becoming a real physician? Or even a physical therapist?

  162. #162 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 13, 2012

    JCS – I must admit I’m very disappointed by the quality of that answer. Not only does it not provide any answers to the reasonable, polite questions that have been put to you, it brings in a number of irrelevancies. Can you explain how the Higgs boson relates to chiropractic care? You also hint that religion has some bearing on your field – what is that, precisely?

    Likewise, your tu quoque argument (or in the immortal words of Peewee Herman, “I know you are but what am I?”) answers nothing. Likewise, your appeal to an unknown, undemonstrated, discredited life force loses much of your potential credibility.

    You’d have done much better to explain the evidence that leads you to believe in the effectiveness of chiropractic care as well as what it is and is not suitable for. One can only hope that a more reasonable chiropractor (possibly John Raymond DC or one of his ilk, though it appears he’s a hit and run poster) will address the open questions since you, apparently will not.

  163. #163 JGC
    July 13, 2012

    Is the confusion unique to the “God particle”? I wonder if JCS also thinks Girl Scout Cookies are made from real Girl Scouts?

  164. #164 Niche Geek
    July 13, 2012

    JCS – In what year did David Eddy make that claim? And on what data did he base his percentage? I’ll give you a hint on the first: It was more than twenty years ago.

  165. #165 Militant Agnostic
    Where snake oil is made using real snakes
    July 13, 2012

    @Chris

    The “god” particle just meant it was a very important thing to find. Nothing else.

    The version I have heard was that a physicist wrote a book referring to it as the God Damn Particle because it was so hard to find, but his publisher changed it to the God Particle.

    I think JCS has managed an abuse of physics that was too stupid for Judith the Reiki Master

  166. #166 Mrs Woo
    July 13, 2012

    So good to have those more articulate step up in defense while I was visiting with family! Thank you.

    Actually, I am not an atheist. I don’t see why I would have to be an atheist to believe the idea of some special “force” in living creatures that is improved by realignment, be it spine or “meridians” that are used to describe what is adjusted, is a doubtful idea.

    How do I then describe the “life” that animates humans since we are so much more amazing than rocks? Well, I certainly don’t rely on advanced physics theory, etc. Just because there are things I don’t necessarily know the answer to I don’t go plugging guesswork into them. I’m perfectly content to say “I don’t know what animates us for as long as it does and why it ends.”

    There are reasons things die – lots of them. But what exactly there is that makes a living thing so alive that we can’t recapture and put back into a dead body, what it is that makes every single living creature unique, I don’t know how we measure it. I do know that I see very little real evidence for energy pathways, etc. The one group of papers linked to earlier in here had very little that scored well for treatment of conditions not related to lower back pain. Either they scored high in reliability but the high score was little evidence, or they scored low in reliability with a score of higher possibility of improvement.

    Anecdotally I can tell you that if someone is in pain that touching and just stroking them at a pressure that they find comforting can be a distraction from and help reduce the pain they feel. I believe it is a combination of endorphins and other things released because we feel nurtured and comforted plus the distraction of another sensation for our brains to focus on. Distraction also can be very effective for pain, provided it is a distraction that adequately interests the patient and absorbs their interest.

    @JCS – the mumbo jumbo introduced by vitalism – energy healing, distance healing, etc., is unproven and has no scientifically viable explanation as of yet. I would actually be pleased to hear that it could be done. Imagine healing cancer with nothing but a wave of a hand! All of us would love to be able to do that, even moreso if we have watched anyone we love battle cancer (and I have, including both parents, deceased, a lot of first degree relatives and several friends).

    I find it fascinating that you make so many assumptions when you attack us, like all of us are medical personnel (and usually physicians), all of us are atheists, all of us believe the best treatment has to be a “chemical” substance and insinuating that it is not good for you and only created to make you sick and/or dependent on medicine (maybe you should go see what chemical substances are – there are some very natural chemicals out there!), etc.

    Since plants are living things, too, do you realign their “vital energy pathways” when they get a bit droopy?

  167. #167 Chris
    Neither here nor there...
    July 13, 2012

    Militant Agnostic:

    The version I have heard was that a physicist wrote a book referring to it as the God Damn Particle because it was so hard to find, but his publisher changed it to the God Particle.

    Very funny. Well, finding it does make it match their mathematical model. It is always exciting when the test results confirm the model. In structural engineering it is cool when the testing confirm the computer models, especially since it shows it is strong enough, but without any extra mass (weight). And it is always fun to watch tests that check for failure (boom! crack!).

    Now if they used the interesting turns of phrases that we used in the office I worked in, it would have been called the Orgasmic Particle. I am sure that would have made some interesting news coverage.

    There is always confusion with using the vocabulary that one group has specifically defined. For instance the difference between “theory” in science, and in general English.

    Or my favorite, the word “trick.” I knew it was just a mathematical method to calculate something, not a way to deceive the data. But, then again, I come from a world where “imaginary” and “transcendental” numbers are required to model real life systems.

  168. #168 Shay
    July 13, 2012

    If religion has a bearing on medicine, I’d like to know which one so I can start hedging my bets. My primary care physician is a Roman Catholic* but my dentist is Hindu and although I’m not sure about my optometrist, based on his last name and country of origin, I would say that there’s a good chance he’s not Christian.

    (*I didn’t ask and she didn’t tell, but the ashes on her forehead last February 22d were kind of a hint).

  169. #169 TBruce
    July 13, 2012

    That 15% figure that JCS quotes is based on a “survey” of a few British GPs about 60 years ago. Any time I see someone refer to it as support, I know that he is a complete idiot.

  170. #170 Bill Price
    July 13, 2012

    Chris :

    JCS:
    The recent Higgs boson discovery must give you atheists alarm when the leading scientists announce this “God particle.” Indeed, how do you ignore the role of vitalism in the human body and healing experience?

    Nothing reveals how clueless someone is when the mistake a nickname for something that is very important to some kind of religious silliness.

    The “god” particle just meant it was a very important thing to find. Nothing else.

    It’s even more revealing when one realizes that the nickname was a publisher’s bowdlerization of the actual (physicists’) nickname. This according to the guy that wrote the book on the Higgs. It was the “goddamn” particle because of its importance and of the difficulty of verifying its existence. Google gives many more references to the real story of the name: just google for “goddamn particle” (with or without quotes). The WaPo ref is just the first.
    No, I do not expect the clueless one to actually believe anything that his preachers have not instructed him to believe, nor to think other than what his preachers permit him to think. This reference is provided for those of us who actually care about reality.

  171. #171 Chris
    Really laughing...
    July 13, 2012

    Mr. Price, ooh, thank you for that! The URL was munged, but I am sure I’ll be able to find that book on Higgs without too much trouble.

  172. #172 Chris
    Just testing...
    July 14, 2012

    eiπ + 1 = 0
    or

    e^iπ + 1 = 0

  173. #173 Chris
    Aargh, superscripts don't work...
    July 14, 2012

    e^(i θ) = cos θ + i sin θ

    Does JCS know which are imaginary and transcendental numbers?

  174. #174 Chris
    Not in Las Vegas...
    July 15, 2012

    Euler transcendental meditation by an engineer:

    eeeeeee… raised to iiiiiii times piiiiii equals minus ooooonnnneeee…….. eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

  175. #175 JCS
    July 16, 2012

    Chris asks: “Now here is a question, JCS: why did you decide to become a chiropractor instead of becoming a real physician? Or even a physical therapist?” .

    Good questions, Chris; now here is the answer.

    I know it is hard for medical chauvinists to think anyone would voluntarily want to become a “real” chiropractor and embrace the vitriolic medical bigotry. Indeed, most DCs have thick skins and strong backbones to persist in a world of such pronounced prejudice and ignorance. We DCs are a dedicated bunch because we know our methods work well in most mechanical spine cases.

    But to answer Chris’ question, here goes. While playing football at the illustrious University of California at Berkeley in the late 1960s, I was blindsided by a 230-pound defensive end who drove me into the ground, leaving a dent in the sod and me with a bruised shoulder and subluxated thoracic spine. I can still feel the pain from that tackle.

    The team ortho gave me the standard pain pills and muscle relaxers and the team PT did his usual therapy, all to no avail. I could barely breath or lift my arm without great pain.

    My roommate, an Olympic long jumper and world record holder, took me to his chiro who also was the team chiro for the Oakland Raiders at that time. He literally carried me into the chiro’s office. If any of you have ever “wrenched your back,” as they say Down South, you know the pain I was in. After just one adjustment, I was improved and a week later back practicing.

    Interestingly, the team MD came up to me and said, “Well, I guess the drugs worked.”

    I told him, “No, all they did was make me constipated and dizzy. Instead, I went to a chiropractor.”

    Like millions of patients with the same story, this arrogant MD had the gall to tell me, “But chiropractic doesn’t work!”

    “How can you say that? I’m back here playing, aren’t I?”

    “Well, chiro may help with back pain, but when they say they can cure diabetes, they’ve gone too far.”

    In my 33 years practicing, I’ve never heard one chiro claim to cure diabetes, but I’ve heard many mistaken MDs repeat this fallacy. Again, as the court records found at the Wilk trial, too many MDs believe their own propaganda.

    So, Chris, my choice to become a DC was made because it helped me immensely and over my career I’ve helped thousands of medical failures, especially those poor souls who were duped into spine fusions, those addicted to opioids, or those who failed to respond to PT.

    Again, until proper joint play is restored, all the other medical methods will not help. Aberrant joint dysfunction is the primordial problem in 85% of back pain cases, which then in a domino effect, leads to disc problems, nerve pressure, reflex spasms, pain and inflammation. Again, if any of you understood simple spine mechanics and neurophysiology, this would be a no-brainer.

    BTW: Do any of you even know how many joints there are in the spine? I’ll bet a million that none of you do, which illustrates how med school has chosen to ignore perhaps the most important system in the body–the spine and CNS/PNS.

    Just amazing how politics/greed taints one’s vision of the body, eh? In the same light, let me ask: how many of you have cured diabetes?

    As I’ve written before, the current science suggests back pain is not pathoanatomic, but pathophysiologic in nature. I hope these big words aren’t confusing to the trolls on this blog who are ignorant of the latest in spine research.

    On another note, this discussion has gone Down Under on ABC News. Although the Land of Oz has its share of medical bigots, too, I’ve learned that not all MDs are like those trolls on this blog.

    Here is the first part of that article:
    “Another article in today’s Medical Journal of Australia has poured more fuel on the fight over the teaching of complementary medicines at the nation’s universities.

    In March, a number of doctors calling themselves the Friends of Science in Medicine called for the scrapping of the teaching of courses in what they dubbed pseudo-sciences — like homeopathy, iridology and reflexology.

    They urged the institutions to stick to teaching courses based on an experimental, evidence based approach to science.

    In today’s article, Professor Paul Komesaroff, the director of the Monash Centre for Ethics in Medicine and Society, accuses the group of doctors of acting solely in their own interest.”

    Wow, an ethical MD who doesn’t think the healthcare world revolves around medicine–how refreshing is that?
    Enjoy the entire article @ http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2012/s3546523.htm

    I’m still waiting for just one of you to give me an intelligent response to the paradigm shift in spine care away from medical care to chiro/hands-on care as every international guideline now recommends. Even the NASS recommends 2 to 4 weeks of chiro care before medical care.

    And, despite Harriett Hall’s Chicken Little remarks, the military health service announced it was moving to CAM and away from the “pill for every ill” approach to back pain.

    So, instead of repeating your juvenile (although cute snide remarks), is anyone capable of discussing the EVIDENCE in spine care in a SCIENTIFIC manner?

    I still believe the ISM should be renamed the Institute for Demagoguery in Medicine since most have no real interest in evidence or science. Their real objective is to continue the medical monopoly that has led the USA to the present healthcare crisis.

    I know that’s asking a lot from medical bigots to be rational, but with my Free Speech background from Berkeley, I expect it from supposedly learned professionals. Maybe I assume too much, but hopefully there are an honest few among you all. Maybe not.

  176. #176 JCS
    July 16, 2012

    You might enjoy Medical GoodFellas Part 2 @ http://chiropractorsforfairjournalism.info/GoodFellas_Part_2.html

    Enjoy,
    JCS

  177. #177 novalox
    July 16, 2012

    @jcs

    [citation needed]

  178. #178 Agashem
    Thousand Islands out the window
    July 16, 2012

    Not only evidence, but some understanding that the US model of healthcare is not worldwide. You would be hard pressed to find many back surgeries here in Canada compared to what it was. We all agree that there were too many surgeries in the past. Just like there were too many chiropractors claiming all sorts of idiocy, including ‘helping’ with autism. Nowadays in Canada we do try other things but let’s face it, there are bigger issues surrounding back pain than just chiro vs MDs. There is an entire societal attitude that needs adjusting (pun intended). Most back pain sufferers would do the best thing in exercising every day. I don’t mean back exercises, I mean walking, biking, swimming, all of which are doable with a sore back.
    As for JCS’s anecdote regarding a subluxed thoracic spine, I think he needs to review his anatomy. The thoracic spine is incredibly stable given the ribs that are attached and while you could perhaps postulate ‘subluxations’ in the region of the cervical or lumbar spine, you are being foolish if you think this happens in the thoracic spine.
    So JCS how do answer all the PTs that have dealt with patients who have ‘failed’ chiropractic care?

  179. #179 Chris
    Neither here nor there...
    July 16, 2012

    And, JCS, explain why chiropractors try to pretend they cure things beyond lower back pain. Because you have no complaint against the “medical chauvinists” if you cannot answer my questions on hypotension and arm pain, and neonatal seizures.

  180. #180 Krebiozen
    July 16, 2012

    Thanks for mentioning Friends of Science in Medicine JCS – the overseas friends list includes a number of familiar names, including our host here. I entirely support their efforts to get superstitious nonsense removed from the syllabuses of reputable academic institions. Chiropractic and homeopathy should be taught (if at all) somewhere they won’t be mistaken for science-based medicine.

  181. #181 Krebiozen
    July 16, 2012

    Trying again with the link formatted properly. The overseas friends list.

  182. #182 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    July 16, 2012

    Here’s a chiro who claim to treat migraines. This guy treats both sinus and migraine headaches, carpal tunnel syndrome and fibromyalgia (which doesn’t even exist).

    See the tabs at the top of the page for each ailment he can cure: here’s one page on headaches.

    http://drjohnraymondblog.com/category/headaches/

    Is he out of his depth as a chiro? Bueller?

  183. #183 Shay
    July 16, 2012

    “And, despite Harriett Hall’s Chicken Little remarks, the military health service announced it was moving to CAM and away from the “pill for every ill” approach to back pain.”

    No, the military did not. The Air Force (a branch of the service for which I have never had much respect and for which I now have even less) announced that they were offering acupuncture as an alternative treatement for pain, the so-called “battlefield acupuncture.”*

    The claims that the use of acupuncture is wide-spread in the military all seem to come from acupuncture websites.

    (*Given that the Air Force is not normally found on the battlefield, this is an interesting euphemism. The Air Force’s mission is not to be on the battlefield, so there’s no snarkiness intended there. They fly. They bomb things. That’s their job).

    I find it interesting that JCS keeps harping on the whole bigotry angle. That’s like calling me a bigot because I don’t believe in Kuan Yin.

  184. #184 Orac
    July 16, 2012

    You might enjoy Medical GoodFellas Part 2

    Oh, I did enjoy it. I haven’t laughed so hard in a long time. Unfortunately, I was laughing at you instead of with you. Too bad it’s too late for me to start a long post, given that tomorrow’s post is done. Maybe I’ll have some fun with this later in the week. Or maybe not. It’ll depend on my mood tomorrow night and, of course, whether something else catches my interest more.

  185. #185 LWS
    July 16, 2012

    JCS telegraphed everything in “Part 2″, so there is nothing revelatory there. I note that he still keeps putting words in ISM’s organizational mouth, but as here, he never once gives a link or a citation to back up what he claims *ISM* says about chiropractic. He just has himself as the source. And he appears to have a fool as a source.

  186. #186 Calli Arcale
    July 17, 2012

    JCS:

    I know it is hard for medical chauvinists to think anyone would voluntarily want to become a “real” chiropractor and embrace the vitriolic medical bigotry.

    The irony of this sentence is amazing. Not only are you grotesquely overestimating the amount of “bigotry” you face (yes, you have to put up with people *doubting* you and *disagreeing* with you, oh poor you), but you are quite proud to start your rant off with a preemptive insult against those who disagree with you. The word “projection” comes to mind.

    Honestly, chiropractors and other alternative practitioners enjoy considerable protection in this country. So you can’t pretend you’re an MD or a DO. So what? Why would you want to, especially given how deeply you loathe those professions? Chiropractic has been found to be of equivalent usefulness for the treatment of uncomplicated lower back pain as medication. It is not better. It is simply different. For those who suffer significant side effects to medication, it can be a godsend, and for the rest, hey, less medication is generally a good thing. But why would you complain about not being accepted as a real doctor if that’s all you do? In my experience (dangerous words, I know), chiropractors who object to their status are the ones who want to be primary care practitioners and treat all comers. Not merely cases of uncomplicated lower back pain, but migraines (which are *not* tension headaches), neck stiffness, asthma, sinus infections (yes, I’ve met chiros who claim to be able to treat sinus pain, though when I asked they had only a dim idea of how and were ignorant of facial nerve anatomy), allergies, autism, Crohn’s Disease, and more. I saw chiros asked how they’d treat a patient presenting with headache, stiff neck and fever; not one suggested going to the ER, or was aware that that’s a major sign of meningitis.

    LWS — he has no idea what ISM says about chiropractic. All he’s doing is projecting his sentiments about mainstream medicine onto ISM so that he can have a convenient foil for his martyrdom. I doubt he will respond to this post, as he has largely failed to respond to any of the specific questions put to him. I don’t think he even listens much. I rather think he’s gotten out of the habit of listening to people other than himself.

  187. #187 Mrs Woo
    July 17, 2012

    @Calli – he even refused to tell me whether or not he realigns the energy of droopy plants – it could be a whole new market for him!

    I couldn’t figure out if I was amused or flattered that he has mistaken me for a doctor. I did feel a bit sorry for doctors, though…

  188. #188 Calli Arcale
    July 17, 2012

    If he does, I have a peace lily at home that could do with some serious attention. ;-)

  189. #189 Shay
    July 17, 2012

    Lots of water and keep it out of direct sunlight, Calli.

    (and I’m not even a chiropractor!)

  190. #190 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 17, 2012

    JCS – Why do you continue to ignore the reasonable questions about your profession in favor of calling those who ask questions trolls?

    I think I know, but want to hear it from you.

  191. #191 JCS
    July 18, 2012

    In regards to the Friends of Science in Medicine, it appears the trolls on this list should take a lesson in academic dialogue.

    Professor Stephen Myers, SCU [Southern Cross University]:
    “the real benefit of an appropriately mentored and approved university education is the exposure of students to the biomedical sciences, epidemiology and population health, differential diagnosis, safe practice and critical appraisal.”

    Professor Paul Komesaroff, Monash University:
    “while there was now an extensive evidence base in relation to complementary therapies, the concept of evidence-based medicine was highly contested and debated within Western medicine itself.”

    “It is not appropriate for doctors or scientists with a particular view of medicine to impose those views on the whole community; rather, they should respect the rights of individuals to choose the approach to health care they feel is suitable for them.”

    Obviously anyone who espouses a freedom of choice in healthcare will be ignored by most MDs in the USA. Benjamin Rush realized this impasse when he proposed a medical freedom amendment should be added to the Constitution.

    Recently, Sen. Tom Harkin supported an anti-discrimination clause in the Obamacare language, knowing the medical chauvinists like Harriet Hall would object to anyone other than MDs being covered or being called “Dr.”.

    In regards to Agashem’s comment, I agree that most spine practitioners and patients are clueless about the proper management of chronic back pain. First of all, there is no wonder treatment, whether it’s an adjustment, drugs, shots, surgery, passive PT or acupuncture.

    As one with 3 spinal injuries to manage myself, proper spine care is a daily effort that includes stretching, spinal strengthening, posture awareness, core exercises, aerobics, and periodic adjustments when joint play is lost.

    This lack of spinal hygiene is rarely mentioned by practitioners, which only leads to future degenerative problems. Even when I teach these principles to my patients, by and large most fail to follow through, only to relapse.

    In regards to the emphasis by some on this list to what may appear outlandish claims by some DCs, I’ve found many hard to understand myself, but considering the expansive role of the nerve system and the power of placebo, it doesn’t surprise me anymore when patients give me their testimonials.

    Even the NZ Inquiry reported 7% of Type M patients testified to improvement with Type O issues.

    For those who are academic minded, rather than trolls, there are many studies about the effectiveness of SMT on Type O disorders. I mention them in my book. Knowing this remains a source of contention, I found this research fascinating.

    The days of “chiropractic cures everything but rigor mortis” are gone with the wind.

    But the concept of spinal-visceral reflexes remains very much alive, as does cortico-circuitry and neuroplasticity research, which are much too complex to explain here.

    One reason why I wrote my book is to give answers to reasonable questions, but I’ve found most comments on this blog to be the standard trash talk from uninformed bigots who couldn’t be persuaded by all the evidence in the world.

    Indeed, the evidence against drugs, shots, and spine fusion abounds, but as Rick Deyo remarked, the increase in these methods have increase astronomical.

    So, where is the “science” behind unnecessary opioids, ineffective ESIs, or unsupported spine fusions?

    It appears “evidence” is a subjective word to most MDs.

  192. #192 novalox
    July 18, 2012

    @jcs

    Thanks for the unabashed stupidity you have presented here. I do like a good laugh, and your utter inability to answer questions, along with the proficient ad hominem and crass idiocy displayed here, has given me a good laugh.

    Please keep it coming, I do like a good laugh, and you seem like the perfect idiot and puppet to provide some good chuckles.

  193. #193 Mrs Woo
    July 18, 2012

    @JCS – would it surprise you to know I had spinal surgery recommended to me eight years ago and did not do it? The chiropractor that I keep bringing up that lives here in town told me that there’s nothing he can do about it, either (it’s structural, but not an alignment issue).

    I’m curious – why are opioids unnecessary? Seriously curious here. Are they always unnecessary?

  194. #194 Calli Arcale
    July 19, 2012

    JCS:

    So, where is the “science” behind unnecessary opioids, ineffective ESIs, or unsupported spine fusions?

    That’s an odd question. There’s no science behind unneccesary opiods, ineffective ESIs, or unsupported spine fusions. But *neccessary* opiods, *effective* ESIs, and *supported* spine fusions are another matter. I know someone who can only get relief of her constant pain by using opiods. She’s seen chiropractors. She’s seen orthopedists. She’s seen neurologists. She’s seen PTs. She’s seen everybody. In the end, the only one that’s given her any relief (other than the anesthesiologist) is the pain clinic, which got her set up with a morphine pump. And she *still* hurts. The morphine just makes it bearable.

    You want to compare errors made by doctors to successes by chiropractors, as if this somehow indicts all of medicine and vindicates all of chiropractic. But that’s absurd. Errors can and do occur in any field. That’s why you should *want* regulation and scientific research. The “freedom of choice” sounds great, but every politician I’ve seen pushing it has been backed by alternative health organizations and corporations. They have a vested interest in avoiding research that might disprove their therapies, and peer review that might spotlight how they have the scientific process completely backwards. (Rather than testing their hypotheses, they are usually collecting evidence to support their conclusion, a very different thing.)

    I do not think chiropractors should be able to represent themselves as general practitioners. They are specialists, and the breadth of their training is not adequate for that role. I have no problem with wanting to do spinal manipulation and be a primary care practitioner (what Joe Public refers to as a “doctor”) — for that, go get a DO degree. Be licensed to practice medicine, not just chiropractic.

    Does medicine make mistakes? Is medicine sometimes unscientific? You bet. But that’s a lousy argument for deregulation, which is, essentially, what alt med arguments boil down to. Alt med only looks safer because it’s not studied well enough to quantify its risks. You don’t actually know that it’s safer. You believe it is, and that’s fair, but you need to understand the limits of what you know.

  195. [...] couple of weeks ago, I had a bit of fun with a rather clueless chiropractor by the name of J.C. Smith (JCS), who decided to take a swipe at [...]

  196. #196 JCS
    July 20, 2012

    the medical chauvinistic attitude has always been perplexing considering the outcomes of medical care are so poor despite the ranting of some MDs who ignore these facts.

    Furthermore, without free enterprise in healthcare, the American Medical Monopoly continues to rip-off the consumers with expensive and often ineffective methods that would be weaned if there were an even playing field with open competition. This is certainly true in the spine care field. Yet some trolls on this list ignore these critical issues about the declining healthcare system that will soon bankrupt this country. Instead they resort to trash talk or suggest that I “go get a DO degree…to practice medicine.”

    I’m still laughing at that chauvinistic thought. Why do you think we need more doctors pushing drugs? Indeed, if wonder drugs are so effective, why do we lead the world in every category of disease? We are now a nation of drug addicts because real healthcare professionals that profess natural, non-invasive, and non-drug methods have been marginalized by the AMA.

    Instead of the benefits of a free marketplace that determines the best mousetrap, we see a medical cartel that restricts freedom of choice, ignores informed consent laws and instead resorts to trash talk to scare patients.

    Dr. Steven Strauss, Advanced Leadership Fellow at Harvard University, mentioned this “cult-like belief” in the declining American healthcare system in his article, “America: Slouching Towards Third World Status.” This is particularly ironic considering the AMA has long-labeled chiropractic an “unscientific cult”; now the shoe is on the other foot with a leading Harvard professor accusing the public of having a cult-like attitude of the medical profession. Moreover, the medical profession has a cult-like opinion of its own superiority despite the poor statistics.
    Many Americans still have an almost cult-like belief that America is the greatest nation on earth. They systematically reject evidence suggesting we have significant room for improvement.
    I defy anyone to name a single important health care metric where the U.S. is considered a best-practice example as a nation. The only thing we lead the world in… is cost of health care. We have the world’s most expensive health care system. For example, our health care system costs almost twice Canada’s, but we produce inferior results.
    For Boehner to say we have the best health care system in the world, and not be laughed out of office, is at best ‘trained incapacity’ or ‘occupational psychosis.’
    This “occupational psychosis” is most evident in medical spine care as mentioned by Richard Deyo, MD, MPH:
    I think the truth is we have perhaps oversold what we have to offer. All the imaging we do, all the drug treatments, all the injections, all the operations have benefit for some patients. But in each of these situations, we’ve begun using those tests and treatments more widely than science would really support.
    We’ve witnessed disturbing practices that seem designed to maximize someone’s income, regardless of whether there was benefit or harm to patients.
    This deception will continue by the medical spine community, primarily the upsurge in pain management clinics, aka, “pill mills,” offering opioid drugs and ESIs, and the spine surgeons who still cling to an outdated disc theory that leads to the overuse of complex spine surgeries spurred by million dollar commissions from device manufacturers.

    We is the outcry on this blog about these issues rather than focusing on medical propaganda from yesteryear?

    And you wonder why your remarks remind me of a troll?

  197. #197 novalox
    July 20, 2012

    @jcs

    Thank you again for that incomprehensible wall of text. Your idiocy and utter ignornance is very amusing, and has given me a good laugh.

    Please, keep posting. Your stupidity is very amusing and is good for a laugh at your expense.

  198. #198 Mrs Woo
    July 20, 2012

    @JCS – you have been repeatedly told that for some types of spine care no one will argue that chiropractic would be effective. If I remember correctly, the person who said you should get a DO to practice medicine said in the first part of their comment to you that if you wanted to work as a primary care provider you should have a DO. Since you yourself have agreed that chiropractic is best for spine care, and I doubt that you have had the same training in differential diagnoses, organ systems, etc., I don’t understand why you would be offended to be told such a thing – either you want to be a primary care physician and require more training to be qualified to do so (something that you have partway acknowledged in some of your comments about other chiropractors who practice and make claims regarding allergy management, etc.), or you are proud to be a chiropractor and treat spine problems (in what you apparently believe is the only reasonable method).

    I am often baffled when people coming here supporting alternative therapies make such broad assumptions (including everyone here is a medical professional and/or ignoring what is said and repeatedly going back to their original diatribe). You assume, apparently, that if chiropractic were made a primary method of back pain management that no one would ever require narcotics again.

    You also insinuate that if chiropractic were the “first stop” instead of a later one that the issues facing this country regarding medical care would be almost non-existent? Is that your assertion? What are you trying to say there?

  199. #199 Krebiozen
    July 20, 2012

    JCS,
    You wrote a couple of things you wrote I would like to pick up on:

    Indeed, if wonder drugs are so effective, why do we lead the world in every category of disease?

    I don’t live in America, I’m a Brit, but I do know that you don’t lead the world in every category of disease. In fact I’m struggling to think of any category of disease you lead the world in. Perhaps you could enlighten me. That’s unless you are excluding the entire undeveloped world from the comparison, which seems just as dishonest as the filtering of data Strauss complains about.

    You also have a non-sequitur there, as wonder drugs are generally intended to treat, not prevent or cure, diseases; it’s a bit like asking why there are so many car accidents now people have airbags in their cars. The main reasons that there are more degenerative diseases in modern developed countries are that people are living longer, too many of us are obese and we don’t get enough exercise. Lack of exercise and obesity are major causes of the kinds of problems you as a chiropractor presumably see most of. I assume you advise your patients to get more exercise and eat a healthier diet, just as my conventional family doctor does.

    Prescribed drugs do have side effects of course, that tends to be a consequence of having effects, just as neck manipulation carries a risk of rupturing a blood vessel causing a stroke..

    We are now a nation of drug addicts because real healthcare professionals that profess natural, non-invasive, and non-drug methods have been marginalized by the AMA.

    Prescription drug addiction is a problem, I agree, and that needs to be dealt with. That’s a regulatory problem rather than a medical one, I think, as properly used opiates are invaluable.

    You claim that chiropractors among other alternative practitioners are being marginalized, so I wondered how many chiropractors there are in the US. According to one website there are somewhere in the region of 100,000 active chiropractors in the US, assuming the increase in numbers shown continued after 2001. The number of active chiropractors per head of population more than doubled between 1980 and 2001, which hardly suggests the profession is being repressed, does it? There are about twice as many physical therapists, to add a little perspective.

    I’ll leave the political aspects of US healthcare alone, except to point out that medical practice in the UK, where we demand value for taxpayers’ money, doesn’t seem to be radically different to the US, where insurance companies demand value for their shareholders’ money.
    We’ve witnessed disturbing practices that seem designed to maximize someone’s income, regardless of whether there was benefit or harm to patients.At risk of commiting a tu quoque fallacy, I have to ask if you mean like chiropractors recommending regular manipulations as preventative care? The chiro doth protest too much methinks.

  200. #200 Krebiozen
    July 20, 2012

    Damn. The first sentence of my last paragraph was supposed to be in a blockquote, not a blockquiote. Probably due to posting too fast. I’ll slow down.

  201. #201 AdamG
    July 20, 2012

    cortico-circuitry and neuroplasticity research, which are much too complex to explain here.

    I, personally, would love to read JCS’s explanations of these topics.

  202. #202 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 20, 2012

    JCS – even if we grant your indictment of the US medical system in all its particulars (something I do not do, but just for the same of argument):

    You have not to date provided evidence that chiropractic care provides any benefit for any condition other than back pain.

    You have not provided any data to indicate that chiropractors receive adequate training to act as primary care doctors.

    You have not provided any data to support any of the key topics in traditional Chiropractic (life force, subluxations, the linkage of spinal alignment to diseases other than back pain) .

    Frankly, sir, your posts appear to have the sole purpose of insulting others without providing useful data.

    Why, sir, should I not consider you a troll?

  203. #203 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 20, 2012

    Furthermore, where is the data that we need both physical therapists and chiropractors?

  204. #204 TBruce
    On a break from work which does not involve twisting backs.
    July 20, 2012

    For example, our health care system costs almost twice Canada’s, but we produce inferior results.

    of course, that is true. It must be due to the anti-chiropactic bigotry in the US system. Let’s look at some numbers to support this.

    Chiropractors in the USA: 100,000 (see above comment by Krebiozen)

    Chiropractors in Canada: 7000 (2012 figure from CCA)

    Since the population of Canada is approximately 1/10th of the USA, the numbers show a marked shortfall of chiropractors in…Canada!

    I’ll leave the obvious conclusion about health care costs and chiropractors in your chiropractical hands, JCG.

  205. #205 Redloh
    July 20, 2012

    My DH went to a local Chiro a couple years ago. He really only wanted the manipulations that Medicare would pay for. So first up, we need to watch some promotional video promoting all sorts of woo. Apparently the manipulations don’t work as well unless you also agree to be hooked up to some silly electrical pulse machine for 20 minutes or so. Then there are the PT exercises. oh and free X-rays for me and my son. Of course we should also submit to their therapy, though we have no pain to report.

    We never got out of there without melting the credit card for this crap.N I always felt that there was a hustle going on. My DH finally, alarmed at the effect on our budget said no more and he stopped going.

    He’s fine and we both agree, no more Chiro’s. They have all figured out that they can only grow their revenue by adding all sorts of ridiculous and useless “therapies”

    I agree with the PT comparison. We’ve both benefited and found them really effective. Best part, insurance covers it and they don’t try to run up the bill.

  206. #206 JCS
    July 21, 2012

    Obviously I am arguing with trolls who have not done any research on the effectiveness of SMT on Type O disorders. Instead, you simply repeat the medical propaganda that was disproved years ago at trial.

    On the other hand, there are some “flowers in the desert” who are not medical chauvinists like the ISM trolls. FYI: a similar discussion on the “pseudo-science” issue started by ISM has continued Down Under with its associates in the “Friends” of Science in Medicine.

    Fortunately, these flowers in the desert there have the backbone to refute their chauvinistic colleagues.

  207. #207 Krebiozen
    July 21, 2012

    Obviously I am arguing with trolls who have not done any research on the effectiveness of SMT on Type O disorders.

    Firstly, as the saying goes, you keep using that word, but I don’t think it means what you seem to think it means.
    Secondly, if you have some compelling evidence for the efficacy of chiropractic for nonmusculoskeletal disorders, do share it with us. The best evidence I have seen is an equivocal systematic review in an alternative medicine journal.

  208. #208 Krebiozen
    July 21, 2012

    This vanished first time I submitted it, apologies if it appears twice.

    Obviously I am arguing with trolls who have not done any research on the effectiveness of SMT on Type O disorders.

    Firstly, as the saying goes, you keep using that word, but I don’t think it means what you seem to think it means.
    Secondly, if you have some compelling evidence for the efficacy of chiropractic for nonmusculoskeletal disorders, do share it with us. The best evidence I have seen is an equivocal systematic review in an alternative medicine journal.

  209. #209 Krebiozen
    July 21, 2012

    I have disappearing comment syndrome. I submit, it appears to process it, and the page refreshes with the updated comment number, but since the comment doesn’t exist it stays at the top of the page.

  210. #210 Krebiozen
    July 21, 2012

    Trying again.

    Obviously I am arguing with trolls who have not done any research on the effectiveness of SMT on Type O disorders.

    Firstly, as the saying goes, you keep using that word, but I don’t think it means what you seem to think it means.
    Secondly, if you have some compelling evidence for the efficacy of chiropractic for nonmusculoskeletal disorders, do share it with us. The best evidence I have seen is an equivocal systematic review in an alternative medicine journal.

  211. #211 Mrs Woo
    July 21, 2012

    @JCS – the whole thing in this forum is for YOU to provide the studies and evidence as to the “effectiveness of SMT on Type O disorders” – for that matter, which “type O disorders” (apparently, from what I read “type O disorders is a chiropractic term)? What were the trials and what were they tested/compared with? How well was the blinding done?

    The one group of studies you linked to long ago in this thread pretty much said that chiropractic had the best evidence for some types of back pain. When you got to other types of treatment either the evidence was sketchy or the study was (according to the summary table provided by the people who reviewed the studies). It really didn’t suggest that diabetes would be improved with chiropractic, at least not in a strong way.

    That was a review of studies that you provided. Yet you keep insisting that there’s evidence that chiropractic is effective treatment for “type O disorders.”

    Tell me – if you were insulin dependent would you rely on chiropractic to keep your blood sugar in check?

  212. #212 Krebiozen
    July 21, 2012

    Third time lucky?

    Obviously I am arguing with trolls who have not done any research on the effectiveness of SMT on Type O disorders.

    Firstly, as the saying goes, you keep using that word, but I don’t think it means what you seem to think it means.
    Secondly, if you have some compelling evidence for the efficacy of chiropractic for nonmusculoskeletal disorders, do share it with us. The best evidence I have seen is an equivocal systematic review in an alternative medicine journal.

  213. #213 Krebiozen
    July 21, 2012

    There’s something very odd going on, apologies if this ends up as multiple comments.

    Obviously I am arguing with trolls who have not done any research on the effectiveness of SMT on Type O disorders.

    Firstly, as the saying goes, you keep using that word, but I don’t think it means what you seem to think it means.
    Secondly, if you have some compelling evidence for the efficacy of chiropractic for nonmusculoskeletal disorders, do share it with us. The best evidence I have seen is an equivocal systematic review in an alternative medicine journal.

  214. #214 Johnny
    High and dry (we need rain)
    July 21, 2012

    A question for JCS -

    Can a chiropractor cure deafnes? Did Palmer tell the truth in case number 1, or was the whole thing made up? Or was it something else? What do you think really happened?

  215. #215 Denice Walter
    July 21, 2012

    I think that JCS should be made aware that our most esteemed and gracious host has indeed written another post about him… yesterday’s.

  216. #216 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    July 21, 2012

    So I did a quick Pubmed search for “effectiveness of SMT on Type O disorders”. What I found was 3 paperes:

    Spinal manipulative therapy for chronic low-back pain – “High quality evidence suggests that there is no clinically relevant difference between SMT and other interventions for reducing pain and improving function in patients with chronic low-back pain.”

    Efficacy of spinal manipulation for chronic headache: a systematic review. “SMT appears to have a better effect than massage for cervicogenic headache. It also appears that SMT has an effect comparable to commonly used first-line prophylactic prescription medications for tension-type headache and migraine headache.”

    Trunk exercise combined with spinal manipulative or NSAID therapy for chronic low back pain: a randomized, observer-blinded clinical trial. “For the management of CLBP, trunk exercise in combination with SMT or NSAID therapy seemed to be beneficial and worthwhile.”

    Are there other studies I should look at?

  217. #217 novalox
    July 21, 2012

    @jcs

    Nah, you’re not arguing with trolls. You’re just arguing with people who are truly knowledgeable in the sciences, and who likes to see a fool like you make a complete idiot of himself with his statements.

    At least your idiocy is entertaining. I’ve gotten a few chuckles out of your postings.

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