What Science?

A Chiropractic Response to the Chiefs of the Departments of Pediatrics of Pediatric Hospitals in Canada and Elsewhere

By Allen Roberds, DC
We wish to express our gratitude to Murray Katz and those medical practitioners who issued their "Statement of the Chiefs of the Departments of Pediatrics of Pediatric Hospitals in Canada." This statement brings up the critical issue of proper, scientific care for infants and children everywhere. We welcome this opportunity to respond.

Until now, the major "health care provider" has not been publicly scrutinized for the safety and efficacy of its routine treatments for infants and children, so that a balanced perspective can be established, in regard to condemning or condoning of certain medical or chiropractic practices.

Therefore, we wish to express our great concern over the continuing anecdotal attacks against chiropractic by political medicine,1 and especially the unscientific claims being made, and dangerous practices being performed on infants and children by some medical practitioners. Harmful medical practices are being conducted with impunity and alarming consequences, without benefit of controlled clinical trials or scientific outcome measures to determine their safety or efficacy for infants and children.2,3,4

Medical treatment, radiation, inoculations, drugs, and surgery ("RIDS") operates best as crisis care. However medicine's inherently dangerous and often deadly side-effects are well documented5 and contribute to the increased risk of future genetic damage and health problems for the infant or child,6,7 without any health benefit to the infant or child, except in emergency conditions. Risk of medical treatment is appropriate for only emergency situations and after safer, noninvasive, conservative measures have been exhausted.

We call upon government to evaluate courses taught and claims made by graduates of medical schools, regarding medical treatment ("RIDS") of infants and children, in non-emergency situations, which promotes a paradoxical health philosophy of saying "no" to drugs when well, but "yes" to drugs when sick.

We challenge chiropractic critics in the medical profession to act responsibly and produce any scientific evidence they possess, to support their anti-chiropractic allegations, especially those claiming chiropractic to be of no value, unscientific, or dangerous, or to submit a public apology to the chiropractic profession.8

Contrary to information being distributed to parents and the general public:

  1. Medical treatment ("RIDS") is not required as a preventive therapy to maintain a child's health. The proper settings for the practice of medicine is the emergency room and first aid station.9


  2. Medical treatment ("RIDS") cannot substitute for natural immunity and health, nor for chiropractic spinal adjustment. Chiropractic care is well documented to benefit the health of those infants, children and adults who suffer the untoward health consequences of biomechanical faults/subluxations of the spine.10 Spinal manipulation can also benefit the patient, in preventing future disease.11,12


  3. Parents should not allow an unqualified medical practitioner or "orthopractor"13 to treat any musculoskeletal problems of infants, children, or adults without prior consultation and referral from a chiropractic doctor.14 With minimal education and training in the musculoskeletal system,15 it seems irresponsible and dangerous for uniformed representatives of the medical profession to misguide patients regarding another profession's specialty.16


  4. Unsubstantiated claims by some medical practitioners that postural deformities, such as scoliosis, kyphosis or unequal leg lengths, do not have long-term, deleterious health consequences, and "are not effectively treated by manipulation," contradict the 1980 AMA Orthopedic Council statement,17 the current scientific literature, and clinical practice.18 Such claims can only function as a source of embarrassment to their more responsible and learned colleagues.


  5. Infant and childhood diseases (measles, mumps, whooping cough, etc.) are not effectively prevented by inoculation, yet inoculations are known to cause significant brain injury and death to many children and to increase the incidence and severity of those diseases for which they have been inoculated.19,20


  6. Until parents are made aware of inoculation risks and until actual inoculation/immunization studies, (not misleading inferences from white blood cell counts) are produced, demonstrating inoculation efficacy in creating immunity21,22 school boards should not authorize, and parents should not allow their children to attend school inoculation programs organized by medics and pharmaceutical companies.


  7. Nausea, fever and the common cold, among some other so-called infant and childhood diseases, are not necessarily disease processes or normally life threatening, but manifestations of a properly functioning immune system.23 They represent the body's solution, not its problem, and are not effectively treated routinely with emergency intervention measures ("RIDS"). In the great majority of cases what a medical practitioner may diagnose as disease in a child is in fact the body's natural and health response to an unhealthy situation, which may become serious if proper health care by a qualified health care provider is denied, and/or the body is not allowed to respond in a natural, timely and proper manner.24


  8. Parents should regard, with extreme skepticism, claims made by some parents that their infants or children have been actually cured of diseases with medicine ("RIDS"). However, well meaning, such unreliable personal testimony, based on years of outdated "medical science"25,26 and pharmaceutical advertising, ($13 million a day),27 cannot substitute for scientific fact.


  9. We understand the concern of some parents, steeped in the medical model of disease, concerning ear infections. Some parents may be unduly convinced their child's life is in danger, based on the unscientific claims and recommendations of some medical practitioners. These unprofessional scare tactics, which intimidate and frighten parents, only lend impetus to the emotional appear of a quick fix with drugs and surgery. Modern medicine's drug and surgical treatment for ear infections remains ineffective and fraught with serious complications and long-term, irreversible consequences for the child.28,29 Until independent, scientific documentation is produced, in support of medical treatment's efficacy and safety for ear infections, such treatments should be prohibited.

    If there is scientific documentation based on well established designs and protocols for controlled clinical trials and patient outcome measures demonstrating clinical efficacy for treatment of non-crisis infant or childhood "diseases" with medicine ("RIDS"),30 we would welcome the opportunity to review it. If it exists, let us see it! We are open to scientific discussion and willing to be convinced of medicine's efficacy in cases where facts may warrant it. A matter as important as the lives and well-being of children must not be based on bias, tradition, faith or financial interest, 31 but science, compassion and common sense.

    Until and unless such documentation is provided, we call upon government to stop the practice of unscientific medicine to protect the innocent.32,33


  10. We call upon government to immediately suspend all medical treatment/payments in the pediatric age group, i.e., up to 18 years, except for first-aid/crisis intervention or referral from a doctor of chiropractic. Chiropractic doctors are qualified by education and training to recognize problems which may require referral to a qualified medic. Chiropractors do not stand to benefit financially from any medical treatment to the patient.


  11. We call upon government to conduct an independent comparative study of morbidity and mortality rates over the last few years in Canada and the U.S. Since Canada's health care system has made it virtually impossible for many patients to receive immediate medical treatment, and since US patients still have ample access to medical treatment, we submit that this study will reveal startling new insights into the current health care challenge.34


  12. A profession which asserts itself as the definitive health care profession and calls its service health care should be required to provide a product called health. Obviously a profession's name should accurately and honestly reflect its product. We therefore call upon legislators to: a) require medical practitioners to stop using the term "health" care in favor of the more accurate and honest term "emergency" care or some equivalent, so as to avoid misleading the public; b) remove medicine's unfair legal advantages over chiropractic, thereby allowing honest competition and natural market forces to prevail in determining which "health care" providers merit patient confidence, in terms of patient outcome, safety, satisfaction and cost effectiveness.

We find it reprehensible, cynical and ironic for representatives of a documentedly incompetent, bungling and fatality producing profession35,36 to criticize chiropractic, which, enjoys one of the finest health care records in history, for patient out-come, safety, satisfaction and cost effectiveness.37,38

Let the records of chiropractic and medicine speak for themselves.

Finally we challenge those representatives of the medical profession who feel for whatever reasons compelled to oppose the chiropractic profession to put patient's interests first in their deliberations and considerations; to dispense with hypocrisy and to 'oppose' as a noble, scientific and "worthy opponent" as we shall continue to strive to be for medicine!


  1. Statement of the chiefs of the departments of pediatrics of pediatric hospitals in Canada, as cited in Dynamic Chiropractic, September 23, 1994, Vol. 12 no. 20.


  2. Coulter H, Fisher BL. A Shot in the Dark, Garden City Park: Avery Publishing Group, 1991.


  3. Finn T. Dangers of Compulsory Immunizations - How To Avoid Them Legally, Family Fitness Press, P.O. Box 1658 New Port Richey, FL 33552, 1983.


  4. Black D. Inner Wisdom, Tapestry Press, Springville, UT, 1990, p. 3,11, and references p. 187 #35.


  5. Roberds A. Operation response-able, Part II, Dynamic Chiropractic, July 1, 1994.


  6. Ibid.


  7. Colgan M. Don't smell the roses, Muscular Development, Fitness and Health, September 1994.


  8. Chapman-Smith D. Cervical adjustment, the risk of vertebral artery injury, The Chiropractic Report, promotional issue. The chiropractic adjustment is so safe it prompted David Chapman-Smith, after reviewing the literature, to say that in terms of mortality, "You have more chances of dying from the effort of giving the adjustment than the patient does from receiving it."


  9. Mendelsohn R. Confessions of a Medical Heretic, Contemporary Books, Inc., Chicago, 1979. Also see Malpractice and How To Raise a Healthy Child in Spite of Your Medical Doctor, by Mendelsohn, MD.


  10. Biederman H. Manuelle Medizin, Springer-Verlag, 1992. Also see references #18.


  11. Gunn, Spine, 1980. Also see reference #18.


  12. Professional notes, The Chiropractic Report, January 1989, Vol. 3, No. 2, Pg. 1


  13. "We have no idea whether the people joining are good or bad manipulators, and frankly, we don't care" by Murray Katz, MD, cited in The Chiropractic Report, September 1994, Vol. 8 No. 5


  14. Lowe J. Spasm, See Robert Mendelsohn's, MD, Foreward, Pg. 11, McDowell Publishing Co., Houston, TX, 1983.


  15. The Chiropractic Report, March 1993 Vol. 7, No. 3, p. 2, col. 3


  16. Ibid.


  17. AMA Orthopedic Council, 1980 Conference, definition of manipulation.


  18. Leach RA. The Chiropractic Theories, Principles and Clinical Applications, Third Edition. Williams and Wilkins Publishing, 1984. Also see Rockwell J. Clinical Perspectives on Myofascial Therapy, Applied Physiotherapeutics, Jascouvea and Schafer, 1994, Second Edition, pp 530-532; The Dental Physician, 1985 H. Founder, (Introduction by Hans Selye, MD); Illustrated Textbook of Orthopedics, Vol. II, Jan Cyriax, MD, 1983.


  19. Coulter H, Fischer BL. A Shot In the Dark. Garden City Park: Avery Publishing Group, 1991.


  20. Finn T. Dangers of Compulsory Immunization, How to Avoid Them Legally, Family Fitness Press, P.O. Box 1658, New Port Richey, FL 33552.


  21. Coulter H, Fischer BL. A Shot In the Dark, Garden City Park: Avery Publishing Group, 1991.


  22. Ibid.


  23. Hart J. Subluxation: the reason for chiropractic's existence. The Digest of Chiropractic Economics, Sept/Oct 1994.


  24. Ibid. Also see D. Black, PhD, Inner Wisdon, Tapestry Press, Springville, UT, 1990, p. 3 ".....Fighting them with drugs would be misguided at best, harmful or fatal at worst."


  25. Black D. Health at the Crossroads, Tapestry Press, Springville, UT 1988.


  26. Black D. Inner Wisdon, Tapestry Press, Springville, UT, 1990.


  27. Wolinsky H, Brune T. Serpent on the Staff, G.P. Putnam's Sons, New York 1994.


  28. Practice Guidelines for O.M.E. from the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (see Dynamic Chiropractic, September 23, 1994, Vol. 12, No. 20).


  29. Colgan M. Don't Smell the Roses, Muscular Development, Fitness, Health, Sept. 1994.


  30. Webster L. International Chiropractic Pediatric Assoc. Newsletter, January 1992.


  31. Wolinsky H, Brune T. Serpent on the Staff, G.P. Putnam's Sons, New York 1994.


  32. See Reference #9.


  33. Finn T. Dangers of Compulsory Immunizations, How to Avoid Them Legally, Family Fitness Press, P.O. Box 1658, New Port Richey, FL 33552.


  34. Los Angeles County Medical Physicians Strike, January 1975, and Doctors Strike in Israel as cited in Confessions of a Medical Heretic, Mendelsohn, Robert, MD, Contemporary Books, Inc., Chicago, 1979 p. 114.


  35. Watkins W, John G. The Epidemic of Medical Malpractice, 1976. Also see JAMA, January 5, 1990 Applying the brakes to the runaway American health care system, N.E. Davis, Denise NcKee and Joan S. Zenan, MLS, in JAMA August 17, 1994 p. 570, Review of care professionals," ...The traditional biomedical model has come up sorely lacking...


  36. See Reference #5


  37. Wolinsky H, Brune T. Serpent on the Staff, G.P. Putnam's Sons, New York 1994.


  38. Manga P. The Manga Report, University of Ottawa, as cited in The Chiropractic Report, September 1993, Vol. 7 No. 6. Also see Chiropractic for pain headaches and stress, Chester Wilk, DC, pp. 28-31.

Allen Roberds, DC
Nashville, TN

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