Paralyzed woman sues chiropractic for half billion

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So you say you have a problem when "they" start killing unsuspecting people? If that is the case, you must go running and screaming from western medicine then. How many thousands die every day from percriptions? (Heath Ledger and Anna Nicole Smith included?) How many unsuspecting people live uncomfortably for years with surgical gauze, scissors, the doctors watch floating inside of them? How many people have gotten the wrong knee operated on? The wrong leg amputated? We hear about these medical horror stories every single day! But one chiropractor happens to adjust a patient and she suffers a stroke, and you want to abolish chiropractic all together? How do you know that the stroke caused her paralasis? She was operated on by medical doctors. Maybe while they were digging around in there, they caused the damage?

I have been seeing a chiropractor since I was 20 and I have gotton amazing results. I no longer suffer with dibilitating migranes that my doctors had me on T3's with caffine and codine since I was 15. I was born with asthma and was in and out of oxygen tents as a child, with my ever present inhaler by my side. Since I started chiropractic care, I haven't used my inhaler in over 10 years! Neck adjustments are not unnecessary nor are they done haphazzardly. Chiropractor do more school hours than medical doctors. I believe they are more knowledgeable, caring and health orientated then any medical doctor I have ever met.

Last year I had the misfortune to be admitted to the hospital. My symptoms were diarrhea, vomitting, painful stomach cramps, etc. Within 3 hours of being admitted the medical doctor diagnosed me with Ulcertive Colitis. Wanted to get me on steriod treatment immediately and was adament that is what I had. Even though I did not have any previous stomach problems. I called my chiropractor, told him my symtoms, and he said it sounded like a bacterial infection, not Ulcertive Colitis. Well, what do you know, 4 days later the doctor came back with my numerous test results and what a surprise, I DID NOT have ulcertive colitis, but indeed did have Shigella, a bacterial infection! Something my CHIROPRACTOR diagnosed over the PHONE!
So what about me? I was given unnecessary drugs, went through unnecessary tests, and all the unnecessary emotional termoil that I went through thinking that I had a chronic condition??? Should western medicine be abolished? I know that I did not suffer a stroke, and I feel very sorry for this lady. However, I feel that chiropractic does way more harm than good. It give the body a chance to function at it optimum. No drugs, no knives, no side effects.


Originally posted by Michelle:
[b]I don't either. I don't care what people believe or how they come to believe it.

When they start killing and paralyzing unsuspecting people without warning them ahead of time that it could happen, that's when I have a problem with it.[/b]

[ 13 June 2008: Message edited by: dontbelievethehype ]



Originally posted by M. Spector:
[b]Scoliosis is obvious even to the untrained eye, and there's no way an orthopedic surgeon would miss it. Also, it's not caused by compression of a nerve root in the spine.[/b]

Actually, it's not completely obvious if you have a slight case. I have a slight case of scoliosis and didn't find out until I was 18 because doctors didn't notice it since I didn't have any pain until then. I still don't get a lot of pain from it, but my doctor just happened to notice during a check-up when I was 18. I didn't even complain about it, he just noticed.

He was trained to catch that stuff but an untrained eye wouldn't notice that about me. So it's not always obvious if it's not a severe case. But even slight cases can cause pain.

Wayne MacPhail

There's been a lot of talk about anecdote and personal experience here. The problem with both is that, especially when it comes to personal health or the well-being of a loved one, it is very easy for human beings to be confounded by hopes, emotion and coincidence into believing a particular act had a particular effect.

Just because one thing follows another does not mean one thing was caused by another. For example, you might have a cold for three days, rub something on your chest and get better the next day. Did that something cure your cold? Probably not, it's just that you applied it about the same time the cold would have cleared up anyway.

The only real way to sort out if there is just coincidence or causality between two events is to do a series of carefully monitored tests that screen out other variables. These tests need to be done by parties that are blinded to factors that could skew the results. And, the tests need to be repeatable by other researchers.

When these sort of double blind/placebo controlled tests are done on chiropractic techniques, the chiropractors fail miserably. A group of ten chiropractors can't agree on where the "vertebral subluxations" are on an x-ray or a live patient. They can't agree how many there are. They can't agree on what disorders they would cause. They can't agree on what procedure to use to "treat" them. Even the same chiropractor looking at the same x-ray over time can't reidentify the same subluxations.

These tests have been done, repeatedly with the prior cooperation and design input from chiropractors. When they fail, which they always do, they come up with some after-the-fact excuse. But, they fail.

Truth is, not just anecdotally, subluxations don't exist. The adjustment of the upper neck has a risk of stroke, sometimes resulting in Sandy Nette's condition. There is no benefit of chiropractic upper neck manipulation. And, when a stroke occurs, chiropractors are ill-trained to recognize let alone treat it.

So, we can all share stories about how we or others were helped. But, when you stand back and try to sort signal from the noise and look for overarching patterns and proof, chiropractic comes up woefully short. Some people may want to believe it works, but belief isn't proof and anecdote isn't evidence.

Subluxations don't exist. No one, not even chiropractors, can work on the non-existent. Sandy Nette's neck was adjusted for nothing. She's not the only one. Many Canadians, mostly women have suffered her fate. That is what her lawsuit is about.

[ 14 June 2008: Message edited by: Wayne MacPhail ]



Originally posted by Trevormkidd:
[b]In my case a fairy tickles my heart.[/b]

[img]biggrin.gif" border="0[/img] [img]biggrin.gif" border="0[/img]

You heathen. Jesus pumps the blood through my veins. Well, when Elvis needs a break, that is.

Wayne MacPhail

Sorry, I was at a conference and travelling yesterday, so I'm catching up.

There has been a lot of discussion about "energy". There are also sorts of provable forms of energy in the world, magnetic, gravitational, electrical, strong and weak atomic forces etc. They are tangible and measurable. Those measurements can be repeated and the effects shown over and over again. Our detection, understanding, modulation and amplification of those energies allows us, for example, to send a probe to Mars and get pictures back.

Other "energies" are not proven to exist and are more philosophical constructs than actual forces that we can repeatedly and provably detect. The Innate "energy" that D.D. Palmer claims is impinged by "vertebral subluxations" is a good example. Palmer was a well-meaning gentleman in a religious and spiritual climate that was awash in talk of "life energy" and "magnetic healing". In fact, Palmer was a grocer and magnetic healer before he came up with the unproven idea of chiropractic.

The problem is, Innate energy doesn't exist, is not measurable and doesn't control anything. Even chiropractors themselves, when they talk to each other in research journals admit this.

It is lovely, poetic and powerfully comforting to speak of life energy or magical energy. Unfortunately those energies have not been repeatably, provably been harnessed for healing.

There's also been discussion of "ancient treatments" or treatments and knowledge that has been around "thousands" of years. Unfortunately, antiquity doesn't equal veracity. Racism, foot binding and female circumcision are also ancient beliefs most cultures have either laid aside or at least condemn. Yes, many herbal treatments contain active ingredients that have resulted in some extremely useful drugs when the active chemical compounds are identified. Yes, there is a good deal of value from listening well to history's lessons. But there is a lot of nonsense too. We need to study and learn from the past critically, I think. If something done historically is repeatably, provable shown to be effective, great. If it was based on misunderstandings of how the body is constructed or functions, perhaps it's time to set it aside and look elsewhere.

[ 14 June 2008: Message edited by: Wayne MacPhail ]


Likely what happens in chiropractic neck manipulation is dissection of the vertebral arteries. It leads to stroke in the posterior circulation of the brain, which includes areas responsible for vision, as well as all of the coordinated functions of the brainstem which carry all of the tracts running from the brain down to the rest of the body. Like Michelle said, one of those strokes in just the right area of the pons can cause what's called "locked-in syndrome", which is right up there with ALS and Huntington's Disease as one the great bogeymen of neurology.

I'm only a first, soon to be second-year, resident in neurology, but already when a stroke comes into the emergency room one of the questions I ask in cases of dissection is "have you recently had any neck manipulation". I've had one case that was suspicious, but anecdotally, my preceptors have all seen one somewhere along the line.

It's dangerous as hell and if one of my family members ever wanted to go for any kind of neck manipulation, I'd probably tie them to a chair and make them watch "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" before letting them out the door.


This is getting long, so I started a new thread. [url= continue here.[/url]


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