Attadale Chiropractic > News & Views > Articles of Interest > Consensus Chiropractic

Consensus Chiropractic

I write this about patients at the Attadale chiropractic clinic.

Most patients are prompted to start chiropractic by a desire to get rid of symptoms. Many find that as the chiropractor locates and adjusts their subluxations their subluxation-related symptoms reduce or cease.

Eventual outcomes of care are an interesting guess. Chiropractic is no cure all, within the chiropractic profession a common outcome estimate is that 80% will have very satisfactory outcomes, 10% will have minor improvement or stay about the same and 10% will continue to get worse.

Chiropractic differs greatly from the medical approach, which may use a battery of tests to create a diagnosis of a named disorder with the aim of using drugs and/or surgery to manage the subluxation-related symptoms. The subluxation/s causing the symptom/s are not addressed.

The 1979 Report Chiropractic in New Zealand described a subluxation-based model of chiropractic this way; "The chiropractor does not set out to cure or relieve a particular ailment. What he sets out to do is to ensure that the spinal column is functioning normally."

Patients call their spinal malfunctions "a pinched nerve" "a locked joint" "a bone out of place" and so on. Chiropractors address those faults, called "subluxations", by applying a specific thrust, called an "adjustment", in a particular line of drive at a particular speed to a particular depth to a fixated motion unit.

I locate some subluxations using indicators of malfunction such as fixation, (loss of joint range of motion) misalignment, and/or nerve interference.

Looking for indicators of joint fixation includes feeling, palpating, in areas around the spine and pelvic joints. Palpation is an interactive examination permitting the patient and me to feel and to discuss sensations associated with joint restriction, para-spinal tension, tenderness and/or pain. Although feeling is subjective, usually there is a close similarity between what my sensors indicate and what a patient says that she/he feels.

Palpation while the patient is still is called static palpation, feeling for function or the disruption of function while the patient is moving is called motion palpation.

During the symptomatic stage of chiropractic care new patients and the chiropractor may use the sequence of finding the subluxation, delivering a chiropractic adjustment and then re-examining that motion unit to compare what it was like prior to the adjustment to the outcome.

We may reach a consensus about the indicators of the subluxation. Then following the adjustment, often, not always, re-examination shows a reduction in the former subluxation indicators. Thus most times patients and I may reach a consensus about our pre-adjustment findings and our post-adjustment outcome.

This subluxation-based model of chiropractic care using motion palpation allows a high level of mutual agreement, consensus, about what bio-mechanical impairments were there at the outset of care, and what changes happen both during that visit and from visit to visit.

It is not uncommon that between visits patient's bodies are exposed to excessive amounts of emotional, physical and/or chemical stresses and that contributes to continuing recurrences of their own bio-mechanical impairments. By comparing changes in spinal function from visit to visit the patient and I may discover aspects of her/his lifestyle that need to be modified to stop subluxations recurring.

The patient's age, current health status and life style may influence the duration and the outcome of care. Injuries of decades ago may have created long term silent subluxations that are destabilised and lead to current symptoms. Commonly, nor always, initial adjustments may reduce acute symptoms but it may need ongoing collaborative chiropractic management to address silent chronic subluxations.


Your Chiropractor

Michael McKibbin passed his Iowa Basic Science and graduated from Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport Iowa.

Since then both wonderful staff and patients have contributed toward decades of valued experience in his family practice.


October 2010
This is the October 2010 newsletter.

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