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Dynamic Chiropractic – April 22, 2011, Vol. 29, Issue 09

Talking About Chiropractic on the Dr. Oz Show

Audience gets an education in chiropractic from guest DC.

By Editorial Staff

With alternative health care continually moving further into the mainstream of public health consciousness, media vehicles from print to radio to television are following suit, giving chiropractic and other professions much-needed and much-deserving attention.

"The Dr. Oz Show," hosted by cardiothoracic surgeon Dr. Mehmet Oz, vice chair and professor of Surgery at Columbia University and director of the Cardiovascular Institute and Complementary Medicine Program at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, featured New York chiropractor Dr. Steven Shoshany on its March 3, 2011 episode. During a segment dedicated to chiropractic, Dr. Shoshany performed an adjustment on Dr. Oz's "assistant of the day," positioning her on an in-studio adjusting table and then delivering both a side-lying and a prone adjustment. Dr. Shoshany, a graduate of Life University, explained to Dr. Oz and audience members that chiropractors attempt to find the root cause of pain, rather than trying to mask it with pain-relieving medication.

Dr. Oz set up the chiropractic segment by emphasizing the prevalence of back pain in the general population and how many common daily activities can put the spine at risk for pain/injury. He also referenced the recent Cochrane review (Sidney M. Rubinstein, Marienke van Middelkoop, Willem J.J. Assendelft, Michiel R. de Boer, and Maurits W. van Tulde: "Spinal Manipulative Therapy for Chronic Low-Back Pain." Cochrane Database Syst Rev, February 2011) that suggests chiropractic manipulation is as effective as pain medication. The study authors concluded that spinal manipulation "appears to be no better or worse than other existing therapies for patients with chronic low-back pain." While the chiropractic community may have preferred that Dr. Oz reference a more definitive study showing chiropractic's clear advantage, telling the public that chiropractic is a viable option for dealing with pain is, as Dr. Oz told viewers, "good news."

While Dr. Oz is not a DC and has a distinct medical / surgical background, he has proven to be fairly well-rounded in his discussion of health care, particularly in his emphasis on conservative options, from alternative therapies to diet to exercise. For example, as reported in Acupuncture Today, one of MPA Media's sister trade publications, in 2007 Dr. Oz featured acupressure on the Oprah Winfrey Show as part of "Ask Dr. Oz" – a recurring segment on Oprah's show that eventually expanded into its own show. And that same year, "Ask Dr. Oz" featured an acupuncture demonstration by Daniel Hsu, LAc, MSTOM, with Oprah receiving a wellness treatment and a guest receiving treatment for her chronic shoulder pain. Alternative medicine is a regular topic of discussion on "Dr. Oz."

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