evidence based chiropractic

Factors Leading To Surgery For Some Discs & Disc Innervation

CF 183: Factors Leading To Surgery For Some Discs & Disc Innervation

Today we’re going to talk about the innervation of the disc and we’re going to talk about some factors that can lead to surgery for lumbar disc herniations.  But first, here’s that sweet sweet bumper music

 

 

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Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

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OK, we are back and you have found the Chiropractic Forward Podcast where we are making evidence-based chiropractic fun, profitable, and accessible while we make you and your patients better all the way around.  We’re the fun kind of research. Not the stuffy, high-brow kind of research. We’re research talk over a couple of beers. I’m Dr. Jeff Williams and I’m your host for the Chiropractic Forward podcast.   If you haven’t yet I have a few things you should do. 

  • Like our Facebook page, 
  • Join our private Facebook group and interact, and then 
  • go review our podcast on iTunes and other podcast platforms. 
  • We also have an evidence-based brochure and poster store at chiropracticforward.com
  • While you’re there, join our weekly email newsletter. 

You have found yourself smack dab in the middle of Episode #183 Now if you missed last week’s episode , we talked about Adjustments as immune boosters and we talked about pain. Is it mind or is it matter? Make sure you don’t miss that info. Keep up with the class. 

On the personal end of things…..

It’s been a bit of a whirlwind these last few weeks.  I’ve talked a little more recently about launching my very first book. It’s out. It’s available on Amazon. It’s called The Remarkable Truth About Chiropractic: A Unique Journey Into The Research. And I’d love for you to go pick up a copy for yourself. You can get either ebook or a paperback sent to your front door. Your call.  Here’s why I think you need it. All of the research we talk about here and lots before I started the podcast, has been categorized for you into conditions and body regions. So, if you need some research on neck pain, flip to the section and there you go. Migraines? SI joint issues? Go to those sections and there you go.  This comes in handy when you have a talk to give and don’t have the time to go searching through pubmed all day.

Or when a patient asks you a question on something specific. Or a host of any other reasons. It’s a reference for your practice for your education, patient education, and community education.  So go grab that up while you’re thinking about it. 

As mentioned in a previous episode, we visited New Orleans, Then we were home for one weekend. Then the next weekend we were off to Dallas for the Texas Chiropractic Association’s ChiroTexpo event which is our state’s convention basically.  Two board of directors meetings for me plus some networking, classes, and problem-solving. Essentially. 

I have seen him speak before. I went to Forward 19 in St Louis before the Rona came along and saw Brett Winchester talk. We had him in Dallas at this event and he did not disappoint. I was able to better connect with Brett here in Texas. We will absolutely have him on a future podcast and in the meantime, if you want to learn more about Dr. Winchester, check out his podcast at Gestaldt Podcast.  The dude is sharper than a tack, has worked with the St. Louis Cardinals, and is one of those on the top and on the edge so check him out if you’re smart. 

Then, even though Dr. Kevin Christie was already a friend, we really got to hang out and shoot the proverbial shoo shoo in Dallas, along with Dr. Winchester. And it was just a good time had by all. 

I used to be lone wolf, folks. I used to not care about the profession. I just cared about my office, my numbers, my business. Me, me, me. I got a bit shamed into joining the TCA. Then, they had a vacancy on the Board of Directors due to the director in my district having cancer. Well, how can you say no? I was thrown into the fire with no context, no history, no experience, and little idea of what to say or how to act. But I was thrown in with a group of about 20 people that lead the profession and develop leaders from scratch. That’s what they did for me. We got there. We made it happen. 

Fast forward about a decade or so and I was on the Board of Directors for about 5 years, been the Chiropractic Development Initiative Chair, served as the Public Relations Chair, and am now going into the second year as the Department Coordinator for Scientific Affairs. I help steer the speakers we have at our events among other things. 

Associations need your membership dollars and you need to be members. But that’s just a mostly passive notion. The REAL benefit is realized when one becomes active and plugged into the association. Meaning, through being active and involved at just about every step, I have developed a network of close friends and colleagues from around the entire state of Texas that, even though some practice differently than I, would still go to bat for me, support me, and back me. And I them. 

We have developed brothers and sisters, camaraderie, and family with each other. I cannot begin to share with you how many times I’ve had questions or issues that I was able to just call up one of my TCA buddies and get a solid answer for it.  This medical integration I’m going through right now. Do you think I just up and decided to do it and jumped into the fire? Hell no.

I called all of my TCA buddies who have done it previously.  One is now my consultant on it. The attorney that wrote the law that allows for this integration is TCA’s lobby team. He’s the one that has created the paperwork and contracts for me.  Literally, none of what I am today is possible to the degree it’s been possible if not for being active, plugged in, and a solid member of the TCA leadership. 

I don’t say this to brag that I’m active or brag about my positions in the TCA or to boast in any way. I say this to let you know that there is a difference between being a member and being an active member. Between building something larger than yourself and your own practice and doing your own small thing. Between being an influential leader and being a bench warmer.  Get into the game. Raise your hand. You can thank me later.

Our profession needs evidence-based, patient-centered leaders like you. Don’t bitch about our profession if you’re not willing to step in and do something to change it. 

Item #1

This one is called “Factors Associated With Progression to Surgical Intervention for Lumbar Disc Herniation in the Military Health System” by Anderson et. al. [1] and published in Spine Journal on March 15, 2021 which means it’s got the hot spread all over it. 

Why They Did It

To determine surgery-free survival of patients receiving conservative management of lumbar disc herniation (LDH) in the military healthcare system (MHS) and risk factors for surgical intervention

How They Did It

  • The Military Data Repository was queried for all patients diagnosed with lumbar disc herniation from 2011-2018
  • Follow-up time to surgical intervention was defined as the time from diagnosis to first encounter for lumbar microdiscectomy or lumbar decompression in either a military treatment facility or in the civilian sector. 
  • The Military Data Repository was also queried for history of tobacco use at any time during military healthcare system care, age at the time of diagnosis, sex, military healthcare system beneficiary category, and diagnosing facility characteristics. 
  • Multivariable Cox proportional hazards models were used to evaluate the associations of patient and diagnosing facility characteristics with time to surgical intervention.
  • A total of 84,985 military healthcare system beneficiaries including 62,771 active duty service members were diagnosed with lumbar disc herniation in a military treatment facility during the 8-year study period. 
  • A total of 10,532 (12.4%) military healthcare system beneficiaries failed conservative management onto surgical intervention with lumbar microdiscectomy or lumbar decompression. 

What They Found

Among all healthcare beneficiaries, several patient-level (younger age, male sex, and history of tobacco use) and facility-level characteristics (hospital vs. clinic and surgical care vs. primary care clinic) were independently associated with a higher risk of surgical intervention.

Wrap It Up

Lumbar disc herniation compromises military readiness and negatively impacts healthcare costs. military healthcare system beneficiaries with lumbar disc herniation have a good prognosis with approximately 88% of patients successfully completing conservative management. However, strategies to improve outcomes of conservative management in lumbar disc herniation should address risks associated with both patient and facility characteristics.

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Item #2 Our last one today is called “Innervation of the Human Intervertebral Disc: A Scoping Review” by Groh et. al. [2] and published in Pain Medicine in June of 2021 and that’s current hot. As in present-day, burning up the face of the Earth as we speak, hot. 

Why They Did It

Changes to the intervertebral disc (IVD) have been associated with back pain, leading many to postulate that the IVD may be a direct source of pain, typically referred to as discogenic back pain. Yet despite decades of research into the neuroanatomy of the IVD, there is a lack of consensus in the literature as to the distribution and function of neural elements within the tissue. The current scoping review provides a comprehensive systematic overview of studies that document the topography, morphology, and immunoreactivity of neural elements within the IVD in humans.

How They Did It

Articles were retrieved from six separate databases in a three-step systematic search and were independently evaluated by two reviewers.

What They Found

Three categories of neural elements were described within the IVD: perivascular nerves, sensory nerves independent of blood vessels, and mechanoreceptors. Nerves were consistently localized within the outer layers of the annulus fibrosus. Neural ingrowth into the inner annulus fibrosus and nucleus pulposus was found to occur only in degenerative and disease states.

Wrap It Up

While the pattern of innervation within the IVD is clear, the specific topographic arrangement and function of neural elements in the context of back pain remain unclear. I mostly included this because, in our Neuromusculoskeletal Diplomate program, they were clear about the innervation encroaching into a disc injury and how that makes re-injury somewhat easier and sometimes more painful. Because the nerves are further into the structure of the disc once the injury has occurred and then subsequently resolved.  Very interesting stuff.  That’s all I have the time for today folks. Y’all be safe. Keep changing our profession from your little corner of the world. Keep taking care of yourselves and everyone around you. Tough times are upon us but, the sun will shine again. Trust it, believe it, count on it. Let’s get to the message. Same as it is every week.  Store Remember the evidence-informed brochures and posters at chiropracticforward.com.   

 

Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

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The Message

I want you to know with absolute certainty that when Chiropractic is at its best, you can’t beat the risk vs reward ratio because spinal pain is primarily a movement-related pain and typically responds better to movement-related treatment rather than chemical treatments like pills and shots. When compared to the traditional medical model, research and clinical experience show us patients can get good to excellent results for headaches, neck pain, back pain, and joint pain to name just a few. It’s safe and cost-effective can decrease surgeries & disability and we do it through conservative, non-surgical means with minimal hassle to the patient. And, if the patient treats preventatively after initial recovery, we can usually keep it that way while raising the overall level of health!

Key Point: At the end of the day, patients should have the guarantee of having the best treatment that offers the least harm. When it comes to non-complicated musculoskeletal complaints…. That’s Chiropractic!

Contact Send us an email at dr dot williams at chiropracticforward.com and let us know what you think of our show and tell us your suggestions for future episodes.  Feedback and constructive criticism is a blessing and so are subscribes and excellent reviews on podcast platforms.  We know how this works by now. If you value something, you have to share it, interact with it, review it, talk about it from time to time, and actively hit a few buttons to support it here and there when asked. It really does make a big difference. 

Connect We can’t wait to connect with you again next week. From the Chiropractic Forward Podcast flight deck, this is Dr. Jeff Williams saying upward, onward, and forward.

Website https://www.chiropracticforward.com

Social Media Links https://www.facebook.com/chiropracticforward/

Chiropractic Forward Podcast Facebook GROUP https://www.facebook.com/groups/1938461399501889/

Twitter https://twitter.com/Chiro_Forward

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtc-IrhlK19hWlhaOGld76Q

iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing/id1331554445?mt=2

Player FM Link https://player.fm/series/2291021

Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing-through

TuneIn https://tunein.com/podcasts/Health–Wellness-Podcasts/The-Chiropractic-Forward-Podcast-Chiropractors-Pr-p1089415/

About the Author & Host Dr. Jeff Williams – Fellow of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine – Chiropractor in Amarillo, TX, Chiropractic Advocate, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, Businessman, Marketer, and Healthcare Blogger & Vlogger

Bibliography

1. Anderson AB, B.M., Pisano AJ, Watson NI, Dickens JF, Helgeson MD, Brooks DI, Wagner SC,, Factors Associated With Progression to Surgical Intervention for Lumbar Disc Herniation in the Military Health System. Spine (Phila Pa 1976), 2021. 46(6): p. E392-E397.

2. Adam M R Groh, M., Dale E Fournier, MSc, Michele C Battié, PhD, Cheryle A Séguin, PhD,, Innervation of the Human Intervertebral Disc: A Scoping Review. Pain Med, 2021. 22(6): p. 1281-1304.

Car Crashes and Research To Go Along With It (Part Two)

CF 176: Car Crashes and Research To Go Along With It (Part Two) Today we’re going to continue to talk about car wreck research. It’s good stuff and useful for all clinics and docs that deal with personal injury patients.  But first, here’s that sweet sweet bumper music
Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

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OK, we are back and you have found the Chiropractic Forward Podcast where we are making evidence-based chiropractic fun, profitable, and accessible while we make you and your patients better all the way around.  We’re the fun kind of research. Not the stuffy, high-brow kind of research. We’re research talk over a couple of beers. I’m Dr. Jeff Williams and I’m your host for the Chiropractic Forward podcast.   If you haven’t yet I have a few things you should do. 
  • Like our Facebook page, 
  • Join our private Facebook group and interact, and then 
  • go review our podcast on iTunes and other podcast platforms. 
  • We also have an evidence-based brochure and poster store at chiropracticforward.com
  • While you’re there, join our weekly email newsletter. 
You have found yourself smack dab in the middle of Episode #176 Now if you missed last week’s episode, we talked about Car crashes and awesome research around that topic. Part one I guess. Today’s episode is pretty much part two. So, make sure you don’t miss that info. Keep up with the class.  On the personal end of things….. On the personal side of things, we are still going down the path towards having the medical entity completed. I made a hire that I feel confident in. The nurse practitioner was referred to me by another nurse practitioner here in town who was his preceptor or teacher for his clinical hours when he was going through school. She told me that he is super smart, excellent with patients, eager to learn, and his wife is an amazing cook. So I was sold. And just taking the time to get to know him, I’m even more confident that I have made a good decision going forward. The majority of the work on this is going to be in the first 3 to 6 months I think. We have to get systems in place, I have to teach the nurse practitioner the exam I do. How do you teach somebody how to do the exam that an ortho fellowship practitioner does? Well, we shall find out.  I’ve already loaned him one of my dr. Stuart McGill books to get started on. I’ve been sharing with him a lot of the information that I learned in the Neuromusculoskeletal program, I’ve talked to him about McKenzie protocols and migrating the disc, and started him on the path of different ways to think of chronic pain. Including the up-regulated and sensitized central nervous system as well as the biopsychosocial aspect of chronic pain. Yellow flags, words matter, limiting MRIs, and all of the associated Tom Foolery.   He was unfamiliar with quite a bit of what I have been teaching him and showing him. But very receptive and very interested in learning about that side of pain and newer ways of thinking about it and approaching it. I think we’re going to be a great team.  Outside of that part of my life, I’ve started with the book launch. Not really the launch itself as much as getting the book ready for launch and putting together a launch team. What does a launch tram do exactly? Well, let me tell you. Basically, I’m going to be uploading it to Amazon once it’s formatted for it and everything is in place. Then, it’ll be free for the first 3 days. That’s when everyone on my launch team will go download it. Then, leave a review for it…..because my launch team is cool and they know that’s part of the launch process.  The free downloads and the Amazon book reviews give the book a little Amazon juice which will propel it up the charts a bit. That way, when the initial 3 days are over, and I can start charging money for it, the Amazon Juice has it set up for success and sales.  So, that’s the plan and guess what?? I’d love it if you regular listeners would like to be on my launch team. If so, just send me an email to [email protected] and make sure you tell me you’re on the launch team. It’s that easy. Or, send me a message through our Facebook group or the Facebook page or through smoke signal.  Whatever means you can get me a message that you want to help us, that’ll work for me.  It would be rude of me to not thank a couple of folks. I need to thank Dr. Chris Howson and Dr. Steven Roffers for helping me with the editing process. Dr. Howson is the inventor of the Drop Release tool, he’s smarter than hell, and he’s a good person on top of all of that. Go check out the Drop Release tool and show Dr. Howson some love won’t you? Dr. Roffers is the group admin of the Facebook group called Chiropractic Research Alliance with over 8,000 members, he’s a certified medical editor and serves on the editorial boards of 14 journals. Dr. Roffers offered to help me edit the draft as well.  So, these two pros need to be thanked and properly recognized for their efforts and their generosity. I appreciate you two and just appreciate you.  I honestly thought I’d ask for launch team members and there’d be crickets. In the first post I made on my Facebook properties, I’ve now got about 25 super awesome people that want to help support and promote the project. And in the process, they’re supporting and promoting evidence-based, patient-centered healthcare.  It’s a win-win and I thank you all. More to come as I get further down the road.  Now, on with the research.  CHIROUP ADVERTISEMENT As I mentioned last week, this podcast episode was inspired by a recent episode of the Chiropractic Science podcast hosted by Dean Smith. It was episode number 55.  His guest was Dr. Michael Freeman who I talked about in last week’s episode. These papers are papers they talked about on that episode so, if you want it from the horse’s mouth, go over to Chiropractic Science and find the recent episode with Dr. Michael Freeman and hit play. Then come back here and get my take on it.  Now let me pause just a second and say that if you haven’t jumped into personal injury, don’t. Unless you plan on getting the education it takes to do a good job. Take courses. Make yourself the expert. Know your worth. It pays well but the stakes are high for your patients. You have to deal with attorneys. You might have to testify under oath in court. Do you REALLY want to do that if you’re education and experience are not up to snuff? When I jumped in back in 2007, I had a basic Chiro education but I was not specialized in car wrecks or whiplash. I could have been better. So I made myself better. I recognized my shortfalls and I filled the gaps. I got the Advanced Certification in whiplash biomechanics and Traumatology through the SPINE Institute out in San Diego, CA. I got the certification from the Personal Injury Institute through Matthew DeGaetano who was also a Croft Commando.  I have attended CE hours on PI specifically. I ended up compiling all of the experience and education into a macro for ChiroTouch. If you want to check that out, go to personalinjurymacro.com but you’re not going to want to buy it unless you’re using ChiroTouch. It’s like gold though if you have ChiroTouch.  It’s got all of the Croft stuff in there, the research citations, crash descriptions, risk assessments, the whole thing. Plus all of my customization after I went through the Fellowship for the Neuromusculoskeletal program. IT’s gold, folks.  Anyway, my point was that you do your reputation and you do your patients a disservice if you are in the PI arena but you don’t know what the hell you’re doing. Plain and simple. It’s lucrative but dammit, get educated or get out. And understand that you’re not going to get 100% on every case.  To demonstrate my point, as I said, I’m a specialist now with the Fellowship, I have the cert in whiplash biomechanics and Traumatology, and I’ve been recognized as an expert in whiplash at the District Court level. Because of my macros I created, I can make narrative reports that nobody I’ve met can beat.  And YET…..I still don’t get 100% of my bills. Don’t think you’re going to get 100% either.  Because that’s the way PI works. Not all cases are created equally. Some fall apart completely. Some attorneys are truly awful people so stay on your toes. Some are amazing people and those are the ones you want to work with. Sometimes, the patient disappears. Sometimes they get in trouble and go to jail. Sometimes the insurance company just won’t budge and the attorney doesn’t feel there’s a strong enough case to go to court on.  At those times, you better be willing to wheel and deal. Otherwise, you might get that one bill paid but that attorney won’t be sending you any more clients and guess what? Attorneys talk to each all of the time. They’re mostly all good friends.  Some of my best friends professionally are attorneys. Some of my biggest enemies professionally through the years have been attorneys. One still owes me $42,000 and I don’t expect I’ll ever get it out of him because he’s a worthless, useless, terrible human being. But, it’s part of the dangers of swimming in this particular lake. Some of the fish have no souls.  But again, some are amazing people that I have forged solid friendships with.  I went off the rails a bit there but the point again is this; either get educated and do it at a high level or leave it to others that did actually put the work in to get the extra education. Plain and simple.  Item #1 Our first paper is called, “A systematic approach to clinical determinations of causation in symptomatic spinal disk injury following motor vehicle crash trauma”’ by Dr. Michael Freeman, et. al. (Freeman MD 2009)  and published in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation back in 2008.  Why They Did It This is a really long description of the objective here so follow along and we’ll discuss, “Clinical determinations of causation in cases of intervertebral disk (IVD) injury after a motor vehicle crash (MVC) are often disputed in court settings.  No published systematic guidelines exist for making such determinations. This has resulted in nonclinical people determine injury causation and performing the evaluations. This is traditionally a clinical activity.  The result is causal determinations that are potentially disconnected from clinical observations of injury. Meaning, when non-clinical people are doing the evaluation, they get it wrong a lot.  The purpose of this review was to evaluate the current literature on causation, causal determinations after trauma and intervertebral disk injury after a motor vehicle crash, and to develop a practicable, logical, and literature-based approach to causation determinations of symptomatic intervertebral disk injury after a motor vehicle crash. That was almost all quoted from the paper’s abstract but I tried to make it even more basic and less confusing.  What They Found
  • The results of the review indicate IVD injury can result from any MVC regardless of magnitude, thus meeting the first criteria of causation, biologic plausibility.
  • Individual determinations of causation depend entirely on the temporal association between the collision and the symptom onset (the second criterion) and a lack of a more probable explanation for the symptoms (the third).
  • When these causal elements are met, clinicians can assert causation on a “more probable than not” or “reasonable probability” basis.
  • You may have heard me mention I’m currently undergoing the Forensics Diplomate program right now. That is legal speak there. Probably meaning ‘greater than a 50% chance.”
Wrap It Up For the conclusion, they say, “Because of a lack of an established or reliable relationship between collision force and the probability of IVD injury the investigation of collision parameters is not a useful adjunct to causal determinations.” Item #2 Our last one today is called “Diagnostic Accuracy of Videofluoroscopy for Symptomatic Cervical Spine Injury Following Whiplash Trauma” by Freeman et. al. (Freeman MD 2020) and published in the International Journal Of Environmental Research and Public Health in 2020 and that’s still got some smoke! Now….if you don’t know, what is Videofluoroscopic examination? It’s basically x-rays (and video) that are dynamic. X-rays that are moving. So you can see the patient go into cervical flexion. It’s cool as hell. But you can accurately see when there is ligament injury or ligament laxity as well because in real time, you can observe the one vertebra slide forward on the one under. It’s crazy and a bit spooky.  When you see one vertebra slip forward on the one underneath as the patient goes into cervical flexion, it’ll make you anxious in your belly. It might make you pee a little. Anyway, look it up. See if you can find some videos through your Google machine.  Why They Did It Intervertebral instability is a relatively common finding among patients with chronic neck pain after whiplash trauma. Videofluoroscopy (VF) of the cervical spine is a potentially sensitive diagnostic tool for evaluating instability, as it offers the ability to examine relative intervertebral movement over time, and across the entire continuum of voluntary movement of the patient. At the present time, there are no studies of the diagnostic accuracy of Videofluoroscopy for discriminating between injured and uninjured populations. How They Did It
  • Symptomatic (injured) study subjects were recruited from consecutive patients with chronic (>6 weeks) post-whiplash pain presenting to medical and chiropractic offices equipped with Videofluoroscopy facilities.
  • Asymptomatic (uninjured) volunteers were recruited from family and friends of patients. 
  • Three statistical models were utilized to assess the sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values (PPV and NPV) of positive Videofluoroscopy findings to correctly discriminate between injured and uninjured subjects.
What They Found
  • A total of 196 subjects (119 injured, 77 uninjured) were included in the study.
  • Videofluoroscopic examination of the cervical spine provides a high degree of diagnostic accuracy for the identification of vertebral instability in patients with chronic pain stemming from whiplash trauma.
Wrap It Up “Videofluoroscopic examination of the cervical spine provides a high degree of diagnostic accuracy for the identification of vertebral instability in patients with chronic pain stemming from whiplash trauma.”     Alright, that’s it. Y’all be safe. Keep changing our profession from your little corner of the world. Keep taking care of yourselves and everyone around you. Tough times are upon us but, the sun will shine again. Trust it, believe it, count on it. Let’s get to the message. Same as it is every week.    Store Remember the evidence-informed brochures and posters at chiropracticforward.com.   
Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

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  The Message I want you to know with absolute certainty that when Chiropractic is at its best, you can’t beat the risk vs reward ratio because spinal pain is primarily a movement-related pain and typically responds better to movement-related treatment rather than chemical treatments like pills and shots. When compared to the traditional medical model, research and clinical experience show us patients can get good to excellent results for headaches, neck pain, back pain, and joint pain to name just a few. It’s safe and cost-effective can decrease surgeries & disability and we do it through conservative, non-surgical means with minimal hassle to the patient. And, if the patient treats preventatively after initial recovery, we can usually keep it that way while raising the overall level of health!   Key Point: At the end of the day, patients should have the guarantee of having the best treatment that offers the least harm. When it comes to non-complicated musculoskeletal complaints…. That’s Chiropractic!   Contact Send us an email at dr dot williams at chiropracticforward.com and let us know what you think of our show and tell us your suggestions for future episodes.  Feedback and constructive criticism is a blessing and so are subscribes and excellent reviews on podcast platforms.  We know how this works by now. If you value something, you have to share it, interact with it, review it, talk about it from time to time, and actively hit a few buttons to support it here and there when asked. It really does make a big difference.    Connect We can’t wait to connect with you again next week. From the Chiropractic Forward Podcast flight deck, this is Dr. Jeff Williams saying upward, onward, and forward.   Website
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  Social Media Links https://www.facebook.com/chiropracticforward/   Chiropractic Forward Podcast Facebook GROUP https://www.facebook.com/groups/1938461399501889/   Twitter     YouTube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtc-IrhlK19hWlhaOGld76Q   iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing/id1331554445?mt=2   Player FM Link https://player.fm/series/2291021   Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing-through   TuneIn https://tunein.com/podcasts/Health–Wellness-Podcasts/The-Chiropractic-Forward-Podcast-Chiropractors-Pr-p1089415/   About the Author & Host Dr. Jeff Williams – Fellow of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine – Chiropractor in Amarillo, TX, Chiropractic Advocate, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, Businessman, Marketer, and Healthcare Blogger & Vlogger   Bibliography Freeman MD, C. C., Kohles S, (2009). “A systematic approach to clinical determinations of causation in symptomatic spinal disk injury following motor vehicle crash trauma.” PM R. 1(10): 951-956.   Freeman MD, K. E., Rosa S, Gatterman B, Strommer E, Leith W, (2020). “Diagnostic Accuracy of Videofluoroscopy for Symptomatic Cervical Spine Injury Following Whiplash Trauma.” Int J Environ Res Public Health 17(5): 1693.  

w/ Dr. Bobby Maybee – (Part Two) Everything Evidence-Based Chiropractic, Insight, Instruction, & Inspiration

CF 162: w/ Dr. Bobby Maybee – Everything Evidence-Based Chiropractic, Insight, Instruction, & Inspiration (Part Two)

Today we’re going to be joined by Dr. Bobby Maybee for Part Two of our conversation. Dr. Maybee is the leader and originator of the Forward Thinking Chiropractic Alliance and co-founder of the Chiropractic Success Academy. Full of insight, instruction, and inspiration. Stick around.

But first, here’s that sweet sweet bumper music

Subscribe button

OK, we are back and you have found the Chiropractic Forward Podcast where we are making evidence-based chiropractic fun, profitable, and accessible while we make you and your patients better all the way around. 

We’re the fun kind of research. Not the stuffy, high-brow kind of research. We’re research talk over a couple of beers.

I’m Dr. Jeff Williams and I’m your host for the Chiropractic Forward podcast.  

If you haven’t yet I have a few things you should do. 

  • Like our Facebook page, 
  • Join our private Facebook group and interact, and then 
  • go review our podcast on iTunes and other podcast platforms. 
  • We also have an evidence-based brochure and poster store at chiropracticforward.com
  • While you’re there, join our weekly email newsletter. 

You have found yourself smack dab in the middle of Episode #162

Now if you missed last week’s episode , we talked about lumbar spinal fusion surgery. This was new, current, and very much in favor of conservative, non-pharmacological, nonsurgical care.. Keep up with the class. 

On the personal end of things…..

I have the second shot of the two vaccines coming up in two days. I had absolutely zero reaction to the first one. I keep hearing that the second is worse than the first. However, several of my friends that had a miserable first shot experience had a much more pleasant second shot experience. 

So, here’s to an easy second shot. If you’re not getting yours because you want to see if everyone else grows a forehead horn first, that’s reasonable. I don’t blame you. I’m a lone wolf in a sense. My business does not run without my presence. Therefore, I need to be here. I need to be healthy. So, the vaccine makes sense to me. 

I covered a book called Peak Performance for you in the last episode or two on relaxation and visualization. Further back, I talked about a book called Quit Like A Millionaire I would absolutely recommend. Wow, what a great book. I’ve told you about Back In Control by David Hanscum MD about chronic pain and the biopsychosocial side of it. That’s a book I recommend all of my chronic patients. Check it out. 

This episode, I’ll tell you about one I’m going down the path on by Tom Wheelwright called ‘Tax-Free Wealth: How to Build Massive Wealth by Permanently Lowering Your Taxes 

https://www.amazon.com/Tax-Free-Wealth-Permanently-Lowering-Advisors/dp/1937832058

It’s in the Rich Dad Poor Dad netword o fproducts and I can’t say enough about it. If you’re like me, you’re sending upwards of $100k to the IRS every year regardless of how much you try to not do just that. What if we could spend that money on building our business or businesses rather than sending it to Washington where we have a bunch of corrupt politicians that have no idea what compromise even means anymore?

Politicians that go into office middle to upper class but come out multi-millionaires. Yeah, I’m more interested in figuring out how to keep it at home and working for me instead of letting those knuckelheads decide what to do with my money. That’s a big hell no. 

That’s what this book is about. Tom will also tell you about his ‘Wealthability’ program that costs a hell of a lot of money. My wife and I are doing it. We just started. You know I’m always honest with you all and I’ll tell you how it goes. For the most part though, you get all the info you need inside his book. I’m just lazy and need someone to do it for me so that’s why I went with the program. 

Actually, I’m not lazy. I think listeners here know that I’m not lazy. I just have too many irons in the fire to figure it all out myself. That’s not where my talent lies. So, people like me have to pay people like them to give me their talent and expertise and it typically comes at a price. And it does. 

I’ll keep you updated. 

Alright, let’s get to the meat and taters here. We have Part Two coming up with THE Dr. Bobby Maybee of the Forward Thinking Chiropractic Alliance. First thing’s first, if for some reason you missed Part One last week, stop..collaborate and listen….Sorry, anyone from the 80s and 90s can’t say the word STOP without adding those words to the end…..Anyway. Stop and go listen to Part One with Dr. Maybee and then come back for Part Two

Just as a refresher from last week, I want to run through some key aspects of Dr. Maybee once more. 

Dr. Maybee initially began the Forward-Thinking Chiropractic Alliance (FTCA) in 2014 as an attempt to change the landscape and conversation of the chiropractic profession of social media.   

Since then the FTCA has gone on to create evidence-based content in a grass roots nature.  This content is typically for the internet, and in an educational format through continuing education courses, and is staunchly evidence based.  

Dr. Maybee hosts “Forward, The Podcast of the Forward-Thinking Chiropractic Alliance.”  As well, he was just elected Chair of the Oregon Board of Chiropractic Examiners Peer Review Committee, and is a member and supporter of the American Chiropractic Association.  

Dr. Maybee is a 2004 graduate of Western States Chiropractic College.  In his free time, he co manages a household of 5 children, 2 dogs Jett and Abbie, and a cat named Goober.

And the best reason we can ever have to thank someone for something, Dr. Maybee is a veteran of the US Air Force which no doubt lends itself to him being such a good and effective leader. 

Alright, let’s hop into Part Two and pick it up where we left off last week. 

  • What is your vision for the FTCA and what does the group to to move closer and closer to accomplishing them?
  • I was at the Forward 19 event in St Louis and really enjoyed it. Tell us about what goes into creating something like that? How do you pull it off?
  • Recently, I have been on a rant. I see vitalists say kooky stuff and I’m physically and mentally unable to ignore it. I have a recent episode on a guy that wants to teach other chiropractors how to treat 9 new patients and 99 established patients within three hours. Then I had an episode on the shake up of the WFC Research committee. As I mentioned in the episode, you were there in Berlin when it all started going sideways. Can you walk us through it all as far as you know it to be?
  • I think I’ve seen you vacillate on the topic of unity or not. Where do you stand on the whole deal? Is it possible the two sides can continue to live together? Or do you see groups like the Primary Spine Practitioner start to gain steam?
  • Tell us about the CSA that you and Dr. Kevin Christie have put together.

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Alright, that’s it. Y’all be safe. Keep changing our profession from your little corner of the world. Keep taking care of yourselves and everyone around you. Tough times are upon us but, the sun will shine again. Trust it, believe it, count on it.

Let’s get to the message. Same as it is every week. 

Store

Remember the evidence-informed brochures and posters at chiropracticforward.com. 

Subscribe Button

The Message

I want you to know with absolute certainty that when Chiropractic is at its best, you can’t beat the risk vs reward ratio because spinal pain is primarily a movement-related pain and typically responds better to movement-related treatment rather than chemical treatments like pills and shots.

When compared to the traditional medical model, research and clinical experience show us patients can get good to excellent results for headaches, neck pain, back pain, and joint pain to name just a few.

It’s safe and cost-effective can decrease surgeries & disability and we do it through conservative, non-surgical means with minimal hassle to the patient.

And, if the patient treats preventativly after initial recovery, we can usually keep it that way while raising the overall level of health!

Key Point:

At the end of the day, patients should have the guarantee of having the best treatment that offers the least harm. When it comes to non-complicated musculoskeletal complaints….

That’s Chiropractic!

Contact

Send us an email at dr dot williams at chiropracticforward.com and let us know what you think of our show and tell us your suggestions for future episodes. 

Feedback and constructive criticism is a blessing and so are subscribes and excellent reviews on podcast platforms. 

We know how this works by now. If you value something, you have to share it, interact with it, review it, talk about it from time to time, and actively hit a few buttons to support it here and there when asked. It really does make a big difference. 

Connect

We can’t wait to connect with you again next week. From the Chiropractic Forward Podcast flight deck, this is Dr. Jeff Williams saying upward, onward, and forward.

Website

Home

Social Media Links

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TuneIn

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About the Author & Host

Dr. Jeff Williams – Fellow of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine – Chiropractor in Amarillo, TX, Chiropractic Advocate, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, Businessman, Marketer, and Healthcare Blogger & Vlogger

 

 

w/ Dr. Bobby Maybee – Everything Evidence-Based Chiropractic, Insight, Instruction, & Inspiration (Part One)

CF 161: w/ Dr. Bobby Maybee – Everything Evidence-Based Chiropractic, Insight, Instruction, & Inspiration (Part One)

Today we’re going to be joined by Dr. Bobby Maybee who is involved in so many things chiropractic but most notably he’s the leader of the Forward Thinking Chiropractic Alliance and co-founder of the Chiropractic Success Academy. This is going to be an excellent episode folks. Full of insight, instruction, and inspiration.  But first, here’s that sweet sweet bumper music.

Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screen-Shot-2018-07-12-at-10.23.22-AM-150x55.jpg

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screen-Shot-2018-07-12-at-10.23.33-AM-150x55.jpg

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screen-Shot-2018-07-12-at-10.23.09-AM-150x55.jpg

OK, we are back and you have found the Chiropractic Forward Podcast where we are making evidence-based chiropractic fun, profitable, and accessible while we make you and your patients better all the way around.  We’re the fun kind of research. Not the stuffy, high-brow kind of research. We’re research talk over a couple of beers. I’m Dr. Jeff Williams and I’m your host for the Chiropractic Forward podcast.   If you haven’t yet I have a few things you should do. 

  • Like our Facebook page, 
  • Join our private Facebook group and interact, and then 
  • go review our podcast on iTunes and other podcast platforms. 
  • We also have an evidence-based brochure and poster store at chiropracticforward.com
  • While you’re there, join our weekly email newsletter. 

You have found yourself smack dab in the middle of Episode #161 Now if you missed last week’s episode , we talked about lumbar spinal fusion surgery. This was new, current, and very much in favor of conservative, non-pharmacological, nonsurgical care.. Keep up with the class.  On the personal end of things….. I’d like to hear how some of you are busier than normal or how some of you have only dropped off a bit during COVID. I wrapped up my stats from 2020 and it was a bit of a blood bath around my joint if I’m being honest and I’m always honest with you all. That’s they only way we move forward. Honesty.  So, let’s cover a few of the key stats. By the way, if you’re not keeping good stats and measuring all of your office metrics, I can’t tell you what a mistake it is that you’re making. My office turned around when I started accurately tracking my metrics. How can you know where you’re going or measure success in a quantifiable way if you’re not measuring it? As you’ll find out more and more in the coming months, I’m very big on keeping stats because it turned my office around. I know the value. Anyway, let’s get to some of my take-aways from my 2020 stats. 

  • One of the big kickers for me is that my new patients were down 36.1% from 2019. Yeah, that hurt like hell, folks. That’s in spite of picking up in our marketing efforts, posting and boosting about our cleaning and disinfecting efforts, and growing our social media following. Our area was hit hard with COVID. On the New York Times site, Amarillo, TX at different times and even recently has been #13 nationwide in areas hit the hardest. At one time, we were #2 on their list of the areas with the most new cases. People just did not feel comfortable going anywhere around here at different times during the year. Some times were more comfortable than others of course but overall….uncomfortable.
  • As a result of the new patient issue, my overall visit numbers suffered and were down 33.8%. So, we saw 33.8% less visits over the course of the year in 2020. When you consider the value of one visit in my office, well…..let’s just say that adds up to a considerable amount of income lost.
  • You’ll start to see a theme here when I tell you that my total services billed were down 36.6% and net services when we remove our write-offs sat at about 40% down. Ugh, right? But, we worked hard on our billing, of course. When you have extra time, you turn to billing and collections efforts. As a result, our total collections were only down 25.4%. Funny how that happens. 
  • We could go through a whole bunch of different metrics but I have an amazing guest today we need to get to. The most important stat is the final overall total. When we include all of the things that make us money like chiropractic, rehab, laser, decompression, acupuncture, massage, and on and on….when we combine it all, our total collections across the board were down 25.4% in 2020. While that’s a tough pill, I’m not alone. Many of you have had the same difficulties. Many of you have had it worse. And I’m sorry. It’s been difficult for us all. But the good news is that I think it’s lightening up and if improvement and progress makes us all feel good, it won’t take much to improve and show progress over 2020. Will it? I think not so here’s to all good things in 2021. Let’s get all of our practices back on track and help some folks get out of pain and avoid surgery. 

Now, without further adieu, let’s get to our guest today.  Today we are joined by the always interesting and talented Dr. Bobby Maybee hailing from the Pacific Northwest. Portland, Oregon to be exact. Dr. Maybee initially began the Forward-Thinking Chiropractic Alliance (FTCA) in 2014 as an attempt to change the landscape and conversation of the chiropractic profession of social media.   

Since then the FTCA has gone on to create evidence-based content in a grass roots nature.  This content is typically for the internet, and in an educational format through continuing education courses, and is staunchly evidence based.   Dr. Maybee hosts “Forward, The Podcast of the Forward-Thinking Chiropractic Alliance.”  As well, he was just elected Chair of the Oregon Board of Chiropractic Examiners Peer Review Committee, and is a member and supporter of the American Chiropractic Association.  

Dr. Maybee is a 2004 graduate of Western States Chiropractic College.  In his free time, he co manages a household of 5 children, 2 dogs Jett and Abbie, and a cat named Goober. And the best reason we can ever have to thank someone for something, Dr. Maybee is a veteran of the US Air Force which no doubt lends itself to him being such a good and effective leader. 

Welcome to the show Bobby, tell me how Portland is this morning.

How’s the weather? 

Introduction

  • Tell me your chiropractic story. Why chiropractic for you?
  • Tell me what got you to the place where you are the expert in the clinic that you are. What experiences or certifications built that person?
  • Tell me about your practice in Portland
  • With as many kiddos as you have and as many things as you’re involved in, what does a typical week look like for you.
  • How did the FTCA get started?
  • I see here and there online that some vitalists have really started to make the term ‘evidence-based’ a keyword, a trigger word, or a point of conterntion. Have you noticed that as well and how do you think a healthcare profession come to mock evidence and research?
  • What is your vision for the FTCA and what does the group to to move closer and closer to accomplishing them?
  • I was at the Forward 19 event in St Louis and really enjoyed it. Tell us about what goes into creating something like that? How do you pull it off?
  • Recently, I have been on a rant. I see vitalists say kooky stuff and I’m physically and mentally unable to ignore it. I have a recent episode on a guy that wants to teach other chiropractors how to treat 9 new patients and 99 established patients within three hours. Then I had an episode on the shake up of the WFC Research committee. As I mentioned in the episode, you were there in Berlin when it all started going sideways. Can you walk us through it all as far as you know it to be?
  • I think I’ve seen you vacillate on the topic of unity or not. Where do you stand on the whole deal? Is it possible the two sides can continue to live together? Or do you see groups like the Primary Spine Practitioner start to gain steam?
  • Tell us about the CSA that you and Dr. Kevin Christie have put together.

CHIROUP ADVERTISEMENT

Alright, that’s it. Y’all be safe. Keep changing our profession from your little corner of the world. Keep taking care of yourselves and everyone around you. Tough times are upon us but, the sun will shine again. Trust it, believe it, count on it. Let’s get to the message. Same as it is every week.  Store Remember the evidence-informed brochures and posters at chiropracticforward.com.     

Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screen-Shot-2018-07-12-at-10.23.22-AM-150x55.jpg

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screen-Shot-2018-07-12-at-10.23.33-AM-150x55.jpg

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screen-Shot-2018-07-12-at-10.23.09-AM-150x55.jpg

The Message

I want you to know with absolute certainty that when Chiropractic is at its best, you can’t beat the risk vs reward ratio because spinal pain is primarily a movement-related pain and typically responds better to movement-related treatment rather than chemical treatments like pills and shots. When compared to the traditional medical model, research and clinical experience show us patients can get good to excellent results for headaches, neck pain, back pain, and joint pain to name just a few. It’s safe and cost-effective can decrease surgeries & disability and we do it through conservative, non-surgical means with minimal hassle to the patient. And, if the patient treats preventativly after initial recovery, we can usually keep it that way while raising the overall level of health!

Key Point: At the end of the day, patients should have the guarantee of having the best treatment that offers the least harm. When it comes to non-complicated musculoskeletal complaints…. That’s Chiropractic!

Contact Send us an email at dr dot williams at chiropracticforward.com and let us know what you think of our show and tell us your suggestions for future episodes.  Feedback and constructive criticism is a blessing and so are subscribes and excellent reviews on podcast platforms.  We know how this works by now. If you value something, you have to share it, interact with it, review it, talk about it from time to time, and actively hit a few buttons to support it here and there when asked. It really does make a big difference. 

Connect We can’t wait to connect with you again next week. From the Chiropractic Forward Podcast flight deck, this is Dr. Jeff Williams saying upward, onward, and forward. Website https://www.chiropracticforward.com

Social Media Links https://www.facebook.com/chiropracticforward/

Chiropractic Forward Podcast Facebook GROUP https://www.facebook.com/groups/1938461399501889/

Twitter https://twitter.com/Chiro_Forward

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtc-IrhlK19hWlhaOGld76Q

iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing/id1331554445?mt=2

Player FM Link https://player.fm/series/2291021

Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing-through TuneIn https://tunein.com/podcasts/Health–Wellness-Podcasts/The-Chiropractic-Forward-Podcast-Chiropractors-Pr-p1089415/

About the Author & Host Dr. Jeff Williams – Fellow of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine – Chiropractor in Amarillo, TX, Chiropractic Advocate, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, Businessman, Marketer, and Healthcare Blogger & Vlogger  

The Failure Of Lumbar Fusion Surgery

CF 160: The Failure Of Lumbar Fusion Surgery

Today we’re going to be talking all about lumbar fusion surgery and my growing disdain for the procedure. 

But first, here’s that sweet sweet bumper music

 

OK, we are back and you have found the Chiropractic Forward Podcast where we are making evidence-based chiropractic fun, profitable, and accessible while we make you and your patients better all the way around. 

We’re the fun kind of research. Not the stuffy, high-brow kind of research. We’re research talk over a couple of beers.

I’m Dr. Jeff Williams and I’m your host for the Chiropractic Forward podcast.  

If you haven’t yet I have a few things you should do. 

  • Like our Facebook page, 
  • Join our private Facebook group and interact, and then 
  • go review our podcast on iTunes and other podcast platforms. 
  • We also have an evidence-based brochure and poster store at chiropracticforward.com
  • While you’re there, join our weekly email newsletter. 

You have found yourself smack dab in the middle of Episode #160

Now if you missed last week’s episode, we talked about setting yourself apart in the way you treat migraines. This was an excellent episode that has no choice but to make you better. Make sure you don’t miss that info. Keep up with the class. 

On the personal end of things…..

I watched an ESPN 30 For 30 the other night. It was on Jim Valvano and his North Carolina State Wolfpack that won the national championship in basketball in 1983 I believe. It was such an unlikely story and some of his techniques were a bit wonky. 

For example, he used to make the team practice cutting down the nets from the goals after winning the championship. Far before it was ever even in the realm of possibility. The players said that was more than a little weird at first but that they came to enjoy it and it was just a part of goal-setting and visualizing. 

Visualization is such a big part of a mental process we can, and should, partake in. I myself forget to think to do it. Even though I know how impactful visualization can be. 

I can give you a personal example where visualization came in handy for me. I was a mediocre discus and shot put thrower in high school. OK, probably above average to be honest but I don’t want to pump my own tires too much. 

I ended up my junior year at 150’. That throw might win district but won’t do a lot for a guy at a regional meet. 

When my senior year came around, in the early Spring, I began getting recruited by a lot of colleges. Mostly DII colleges. One of the coaches recruiting me knew about my discus and shot put throwing. He recommended a book. It was called Peak Performance: Mental Training Techniques Of The world’s Greatest Athletes by Charles A. Garfield. 

This book was about relaxation and visualization techniques of the top athletes in the world. It was like nothing I’d ever read. Now, this was back in 1990. They may have improved visualization and relaxation techniques since then but I’m telling you, this book punted me into a different stratosphere on this stuff. I’ll put a link to it on biblio.com in the show notes for this episode. Go check it out. 

https://www.biblio.com/book/peak-performance-mental-training-techniques-worlds/d/1362768092?aid=frg&currency_id=1&gclid=Cj0KCQiAlsv_BRDtARIsAHMGVSZ40_eKAIMbAHTRPRIUrdGXJN5c6n4SG74XgCEYiPpihaJGbuny2QgaAmgHEALw_wcB

Anyway, while I was throwing in the low 160s in the discus and low 50-foot range in the shot put, when I got this book it was toward the middle of the season so it was a bit rushed. But I dove in immediately. 

Within two weeks I was at 168’ and then at the end of the season, I won state in Texas (not an easy feat with a state of 25 million people)  with a personal meet best of 176’ 4 1/2 inches. I beat my best throw of my junior year by 26’. Not only that but I went to state in the shot put. Most definitely my weak event and threw my personal best there. It was my best throw by about a foot which is a huge jump in that event ending up at 55’. Just a couple of inches from our school record. Not an accomplishment that would have ever happened without this book. 

i apologize. I went out on a tangent a bit there but I’m talking about this book and this visualization topic because it’s real and I know it can make a difference in your life and your practice. 

Listeners of this podcast know I’m not a hippy-dippy kind of dude. This isn’t a hippy-dippy thing. It’s real and I’ve experienced it. This book is meant for business as well. I encourage you to check it out yourself. 

That 30 For 30 is my favorite. It’s very inspiring and he has some great quotes in the show. You can Google his quotes as well to save some time. But, in one part, he was quoting Ralph Waldo Emerson and the quote was, “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”

For many of us, 2020 and COVID stole our enthusiasm. If you take Emerson at his word here, then that would mean that 2020 and COVID also stole our greatness. 

I want to encourage the listeners of the Chiropractic Forward Podcast to get your enthusiasm back. Get your greatness back. Do it right now. Make it a priority. Make it a foundation of your practice this month and let’s see what happens. 

Pass it down to your staff. Keep them pumped up. Even when or if numbers are down. My numbers are down. I’ve made no secret about that. But around here, we’re going to make enthusiasm a key ingredient of our values. Along with honesty, integrity, ethics, love, fun, and being evidence-based and patient-centered. When we add enthusiasm into that mix, I think we have a winning concoction. 

This discussion portion was meant to only deal with enthusiasm but I got to talking about Jimmy V and his visualization efforts and like an ADD guy, I saw a squirrel and just went that direction. Thank you for indulging me. I hope you found something helpful in it all. 

 em today. I first want to say that I am not against surgery for the right person and the right issue. If it’s needed and the last resort, well why the hell not? But a stat I came across a year or so ago said that out of the 56 million back pain sufferers in our country, only about 5% of them actually, truly, clinically need surgery. 

Then, as you’ll see, when you have something as invasive and impactful on life as lumbar fusion being performed so often with no improved overall outcomes on the back end of it all….well, don’t you have to be responsible and step back and take another look at that and ask yourself, what are we as surgeons doing this for, and should we continue?

Item #1

This first one today is called “Is Lumbar Fusion Necessary for Chronic Low Back Pain Associated with Degenerative Disk Disease? A Meta-Analysis” by Xu et. al. (Xu W 2020) and published in World Neurosurgery on November 27, 2020. 

Hot potato, hot potato, get ‘em while they’re good and hot!

Why They Did It

The authors wanted to evaluate the efficacy and safety of lumbar fusion versus nonoperative care for the treatment of chronic low back pain associated with degenerative disk disease.

Remember this is a meta-analysis. It’s right up there at the top of the research pyramid with systematic reviews. Meaning….it’s good stuff.

How They Did It

  • They did a comprehensive duplicate electronic database search that included PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, and China National Knowledge Infrastructure. 
  • They took studies published up to June 30, 2020
  • The main outcomes including clinical results, complications, and all-cause additional surgeries were presented in the form of short and long-term follow-up results. 
  • Six prospective studies involving 159 patients for short-term follow-up and 675 for long-term follow-up were included.

What They Found

  • The 2 interventions exhibited little difference in regard to short- and long-term Oswestry Disability Index and visual analog scale scores for back and leg pain, 
  • Lumbar fusion might bring about lower additional surgery rate 
  • Lumbar fusion might bring about a higher complication rate in the long term.

Wrap It Up

“The present meta-analysis determined that fusion surgery was no better than nonoperative treatment in terms of the pain and disability outcomes at either short- or long-term follow-up. It is necessary for clinicians to weigh the risk of complications associated with fusion surgery against additional surgeries after nonoperative treatment. Considering lax patient inclusion criteria in the existing randomized clinical trials, the result needs to be further confirmed by high-quality research with stricter selection criteria in the future.”

So, since we know systematic reviews and meta-analyses are like computers, then we know that they are only as good as the data you put into it. What you put into it determines what you get out of it. If they haven’t done a lot of quality research on low back fusions, well then they won’t have a lot of good quality information to assemble a meta-analysis. Right? 

When we look at 6 studies with 159 patients for the short-term part and we have 675 patients for the long-term…..I’m not a researcher but, to me, that sure doesn’t seem like a huge sample size. Certainly not when you consider the number of lumbar fusions happening around the world every single day. For such an expensive and invasive surgery, you’d sure think there’d be more to go on out there for a project like this. Is it just me?

CHIROUP ADVERTISEMENT

Item #1 was a new paper. Now I want to re-visit a couple of papers we have covered on the podcast before. One in episode 144 and one all the way back in Episode 54. 

Item #2

Item #2 is titled “Lumbar Spine Fusion: What Is The Evidence?” by Harris et. al(Harris I 2018). and published in the Journal of Internal Medicine in 2018. 

Basically, in this paper, they say that lumbar spinal fusion is common and associated with the high cost and a risk of serious adverse events. They state that they aim to summarize systematic reviews on the effectiveness of lumbar spine fusion for most diagnoses. 

Of important note is where they say that they found NO high-quality systematic reviews and the risk of bias of the randomized controlled trials they found was generally high. For something as serious as lumbar fusion surgery. Where they cut into the body, take two vertebrae that usually aren’t unstable on each other, and then drive screws into them and affix hardware to fuse them together forever and ever amen. 

No high-quality systematic reviews for lumbar fusion surgery and the RCTs out there generally carry a high risk of bias. 

Doesn’t that just give you a warm fuzzy feeling inside when a surgery like lumbar fusion doesn’t have a lot backing it?

They go on to say that the available evidence doesn’t support a clinical benefit from lumbar fusion surgery compared to non-operative treatment or stabilization without fusion for thoracolumbar burst fractures. 

They say that surgical intervention for metastatic carcinoma of the spine associated with spinal cord compromise improves mobility and neurological outcome. That was based on a single trial. 

Item #3

This one we covered in episode 144 is called, “Surgery for chronic musculoskeletal pain: the question of evidence” authored by Harris et. al(Harris IA 2020). and published in Pain Journal in September of 2020.

Why They Did It 

They say that globally, the most common reasons surgery is performed relate to the musculoskeletal system, and outside of injury, the most common reasons pertain to arthritis and back or neck pain. AKA – chronic pain. Chronic pain has become a special interest of mine after going through the orthopedic diplomat last year. It’s fascinating. 

They say, “Although the surgical treatment of chronic pain generally relies on attributing pain to objective, often visible changes on imaging studies, the causes of chronic pain are more complex and are strongly influenced by psychosocial factors.” 

Things like Yellow Flags. Go look up yellow flags and Annie O’Connor’s book called World Of Pain please and thank you.  Annie will be speaking at the Texas Chiropractic Association’s Winter Conference on March 5-6. I encourage you to be watching out on www.chirotexas.org for more info because you’ll be able to take this seminar from anywhere in the world. And I recommend you do because my hero, Dr. Anthony Nicholson from Australia will be one of the presenters. Dr. Carlo Amendolia, I will be a speaker at this thing, Dr. Brandon Steele, and Dr. Jay Greenstein as well. This is quite the conference getting put together, folks. So make your plans. 

They say that surgeries like debridement of degenerative joints and things of that nature ignore the complexity of chronic pain. They look at surgery as purely mechanistic in nature with little to no involvement otherwise and the procedures often rely on observational evidence only, rather than rigorous, comparative trials.  

In addition, they say that when the trials have actually been performed for these surgeries have been mostly subjective and measurements are usually not blinded to reduce the bias of the outcomes.  

Who really wants to go under the knife for anything other than having a mole cut off when the procedures have not been thoroughly investigated, researched, and tested? 

Uh hell no. No thank you. 

This paper was written to demonstrate that observational evidence is not adequate when you consider the costs and risks of surgical intervention. They advocate that surgical procedures should undergo randomized controlled trials with blinding and showing statistical and clinically important symptomatic improvement when compared to no surgery at all.  

Well no duh. Who on Earth would put something into widespread use….surgically that is…..without doing their due diligence through research? Well…..evidently everyone in the medical profession from this.  

Ultimately in this paper, the goal here was to quantify what kind of support exists in the literature for some common procedures.  

How They Did It

  • The first thing to do was to identify the common procedures performed for chronic pain
  • Secondly, they had to identify the number of published RCTs comparing each procedure to a control group treated without that procedure
  • They did a search of the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials
  • Each paper was reviewed by two independent authors

What They Found

  • A very low proportion of the RCTs on the selected procedures compared the procedure to not performing the procedure. 64 from the more than 6,735 studies. Less than 1% if you’re keeping track. Is that not stunning? And infuriating?
  • Of those 64, only 9 were favorable to surgery. 
  • When considering individual surgical procedures, the majority of comparative trials did not favor surgery 
  • None of the studies using patient blinding for any procedure found it to be significantly better than not having the surgery at all. 

Wrap It Up We conclude that many common surgical procedures performed for musculoskeletal conditions causing chronic pain have not been subjected to randomized trials comparing them to not performing the procedure. 

Based on the observation that when such studies have been performed, only 14% (on average) showed a statistically significant and clinically important benefit to surgery; there is a need to produce such high-quality evidence to determine the effectiveness of many common surgical procedures.  

Furthermore, the production of high-quality evidence should be a requirement before widespread implementation, funding or professional acceptance of such procedures, rather than the current practice of either performing trials after procedures have become commonplace, or not performing comparative trials at all.” 

Wouldn’t you like to know that your mom’s spinal surgery procedure was fully vetted? It was researched against not doing it at all? They haven’t done that? 

Make memes and/or infographics from the sound bites I’ve given you here. You can use all of this stuff if you have a little imagination. 

Alright, that’s it. Y’all be safe. Keep changing our profession from your little corner of the world. Keep taking care of yourselves and everyone around you. Tough times are upon us but, the sun will shine again. Trust it, believe it, count on it.

Let’s get to the message. Same as it is every week. 

Store

Remember the evidence-informed brochures and posters at chiropracticforward.com. 

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The Message

I want you to know with absolute certainty that when Chiropractic is at its best, you can’t beat the risk vs reward ratio because spinal pain is primarily a movement-related pain and typically responds better to movement-related treatment rather than chemical treatments like pills and shots.

When compared to the traditional medical model, research and clinical experience show us patients can get good to excellent results for headaches, neck pain, back pain, and joint pain to name just a few.

It’s safe and cost-effective can decrease surgeries & disability and we do it through conservative, non-surgical means with minimal hassle to the patient.

And, if the patient treats preventatively after initial recovery, we can usually keep it that way while raising the overall level of health!

Key Point:

At the end of the day, patients should have the guarantee of having the best treatment that offers the least harm. When it comes to non-complicated musculoskeletal complaints….

That’s Chiropractic!

Contact

Send us an email at dr dot williams at chiropracticforward.com and let us know what you think of our show and tell us your suggestions for future episodes. 

Feedback and constructive criticism is a blessing and so are subscribes and excellent reviews on podcast platforms. 

We know how this works by now. If you value something, you have to share it, interact with it, review it, talk about it from time to time, and actively hit a few buttons to support it here and there when asked. It really does make a big difference. 

Connect

We can’t wait to connect with you again next week. From the Chiropractic Forward Podcast flight deck, this is Dr. Jeff Williams saying upward, onward, and forward.

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About the Author & Host

Dr. Jeff Williams – Fellow of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine – Chiropractor in Amarillo, TX, Chiropractic Advocate, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, Businessman, Marketer, and Healthcare Blogger & Vlogger

 

 

Bibliography

  • Harris I, T. A., Stanford R, (2018). “Lumbar spine fusion: what is the evidence?” Internal Med J.
  • Harris IA, S. V., Mittal R, Adie S, (2020). “Surgery for chronic musculoskeletal pain: the questions of evidence.” Pain 161(9): S95-S103.
  • Xu W, R. B., Luo W, Li Z, Gu R, (2020). “Is Lumbar Fusion Necessary for Chronic Low Back Pain Associated with Degenerative Disk Disease? A Meta-Analysis.” World Neurosurg 146: 298-306.

Primary Spine Care, Frozen Shoulder, & Evidence-Based Chiropractic & Cost

CF 158: Primary Spine Care, Frozen Shoulder, & Evidence-Based Chiropractic & Cost

Today we’re going to talk about Evidence-Based Chiropractic, We talk about the primary spine care model integrated into a primary care setting. What happens when that’s the mode of treatment? Then we’re going to talk about some Frozen Shoulder (adhesive capsulitis) research in JAMA recently.   But first, here’s that sweet sweet bumper music  

Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

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OK, we are back and you have found the Chiropractic Forward Podcast where we are making evidence-based chiropractic fun, profitable, and accessible while we make you and your patients better all the way around.  We’re the fun kind of research. Not the stuffy, high-brow kind of research. We’re research talk over a couple of beers. I’m Dr. Jeff Williams and I’m your host for the Chiropractic Forward podcast.   If you haven’t yet I have a few things you should do. 

  • Like our Facebook page, 
  • Join our private Facebook group and interact, and then 
  • go review our podcast on iTunes and other podcast platforms. 
  • We also have an evidence-based brochure and poster store at chiropracticforward.com
  • While you’re there, join our weekly email newsletter. 

You have found yourself smack dab in the middle of Episode #158 Now if you missed last week’s episode, we talked about chiropractors that spread misinformation, we talked about patients needing movement, and we talked about love. I’m a softy at heart believe it or not. Make sure you don’t miss that info. Keep up with the class. Evidence-Based Chiropractic is catching on!

On the personal end of things….. We are sitting here on a Monday 12/21 as of the typing up of this episode. Christmas is upon us. Nothing crazy special going on beyond that.  There are a couple of things I’ll mention. The first is that I got the Mirror gym you hang on a wall. It’s basically like having a trainer in your living room. Lots of you are already used to this sort of a deal with products like Peloton but it’s new to me and it’s pretty awesome. I’m doing stuff like Tai Chi, yoga, boxing, kickboxing, and stuff like that.

Stuff I’d never do otherwise and it’s pretty darn cool.  We turned what used to basically be a dog room into a small gym and it’s been pretty cool so far. I’m enjoying it. I’ve always been a skinny dude stuck in a big dude’s body. So, now that I’m down 33 lbs on weight watchers, and I’ve added the home gym to the mix, I feel like I’m on the way to realizing the skinny dude. Eventually. Lots of work left to do first though. 

Secondly, I’m getting the vaccine in a day or two if everything works out. I have mentioned several times on the podcast that I have very positive relationships with a lot of folks in my local medical community. Through that network, my wife and I will be getting ours this week. I’m ready to get that dude and start moving on with life. 

No, I’m not worried about it. Understanding I have some level of influence and some level of leadership with my friends, family, and patients, I feel it’s important to get out front and set an example on this deal.  Especially being a chiropractor. When you see so many of us disenfranchised because of the vitalists in our profession out there preaching the harms of vaccines when they wouldn’t know how to make it through a research paper on the vaccine to save their lives…..well, wouldn’t it be refreshing to see evidence-based chiropractors stepping up and leading the way on this vaccine? Here’s my stance on it. Maybe it helps you if you’re on the fence. Maybe it doesn’t but here it is anyway.  I’m not an epidemiologist or a maker of vaccines. I have researched masks, COVID, the transmission of Covid, and things like that. Not as much on the vaccine on the vaccine itself though. 

Scientists understand so much more about that sort of research than I’ll ever know. A Fox Poll says 61% of Americans will get the shots while only 23% are strictly against taking it. There were 16% unsure. Probably the ones waiting to see if everyone does OK with it before they step up. And I don’t think that’s unreasonable.  The point is, those getting it like me…..I’m not the minority on it. For me, it’s not only about life or death. I have a 20-something-year-old patient that can’t go back to work because she’s still positive 6 weeks later. I know a nurse that was positive for over nine weeks. I know Patients that had to go to physical therapy for weeks. Long haulers is a real deal. In the end, it’s an easy decision for me. I’m not worried at all really.

There’s risk crossing the road. If I get sick, I have to close my office for at least 2 weeks if not more. That means I lose a lot of money, there will be patients drop off of the schedule, we’ll miss new patients, and I’ll be sick AND anxious the entire time. If COVID doesn’t make me nauseous, the destruction of my business while I’m out sick will.  Besides myself, I have 13 or so other employees and their families depending on my presence. My business depends on my presence and does not run when I’m not there. That’s a little different than a lot of other folks. I’m not doing that if I can prevent it. If a vaccine allows me to prevent it, well then, a vaccine it is.

We chiropractors work within inches of people’s faces and in close contact with them. That puts us at more risk than the average Joe and, if we have it, puts our patients at serious risk of getting it from us.  If you’re like me, we work with a lot of elderly and immunocompromised patients. I’m not willing to put them at risk like that when all I had to do was trust in science and just get the damn vaccine. They ran human trials on 35000-45000 or so people with no unacceptable issues. That’s a huge sample size. I’ve seen this thought on the FTCA group before. It’s probably a Bobby Maybee special quote but, back before Facebook, people would have just taken the vaccine.

They weren’t worried about this stuff back before Facebook told them to worry about it.  No matter what’s out there these days, you have people casting doubt on it for zero reasons. Maybe it’s a call for attention at all costs. Who knows? But it’s to the point now where science and experts are constantly doubted and discounted. And that’s about as dumb and dangerous as can be.  It was OK to cure smallpox and polio but COVID……nah bruh.

If there were real questions, would basically the entire medical complex be in line taking it? My guess is that they wouldn’t.  What if someone can afford to be out of work or out of their office for 2-4-6 weeks and they want to wait to get it? I think it’s reasonable if someone wants to wait to see if anyone has adverse effects before they take it. I don’t think that’s unreasonable at all. But I think that it’s just delaying the fact that almost everyone is going to do fine with it and most people are going to end up getting it.

They started it in England two weeks ago. Nothing has happened. Because they already did the test trials to make sure nothing would happen. Considering the success of the testing, I think the people not getting it are at far more risk than the people that are getting it. Besides all that, I’m ready to get back in my life. Traveling, doing fun stuff, having a life…..important stuff. Like seeing my mom and step pops and being able to visit my dad in the nursing home for the first time since March.

More power to those that have been doing those things all along but for the above-mentioned reasons, we have not.

So that’s where I’m at. We are all on our own walk and we all need to do what we think is best. Staying healthy, staying open and available, and continuing to provide for my family, my staff, and my patients are what I think is best.  So, I’m out front on this. It’ll be good for my patients and family to see a picture of me getting my vaccine on social media. It’ll be good for my patients to see it.

And it’ll be good for those in the medical community that is friends with me to see it. It’ll reaffirm that no….I’m not one of THOSE chiropractors.  I encourage you to be out front with it if you get one. Be a leader and blaze the trail.  And Merry Christmas, Dammit. 

Item #1 The first one today is called “Implementation of the Primary Spine Care Model in a Multi-Clinician Primary Care Setting: An Observational Cohort Study” by Whedon, et. al. (Whedon JM 2020) and published in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics on September 1, of 2020. And that’s a blistering blast of hotness.  If you don’t recognize the Whedon name, he is very prolific in chiropractic research. 

Why They Did It

The objective of this investigation was to compare the value of primary spine care with usual care for the management of patients with spine-related disorders within a primary care setting.

How They Did It

  • They retrospectively examined existing patient encounter data at 3 primary care sites within a multi-clinic health system
  • Designated clinicians serve in the role as primary spinal care as the initial point of contact for spine patients, they coordinated the care, and they followed up for the duration of the episode of care
  • A primary spinal care doctor may be a chiropractor, PT, or medical or osteopathic physician trained in primary spinal care for spine-related disorders
  • They had sites where the primary spinal care was implemented as well as control sites where they just stuck with the usual care model
  • They examined clinical encounters occurring over a 2 year period from February 2016 to March 2018. 

What They Found

  • Primary spine care was associated with reduced total expenditures compared with usual care for spine-related disorders
  • At site one, the average per-patient cost was $162 in a year and $186 in year two. 
  • That is compared to site II, a control site, where the cost in year one was $332 and $306 in year two. And in site three, also a control site offering only usual care, where the cost in year one was $467 and year two was $323

Wrap It Up

Among patients with SRDs included in this study, implementation of the PSC model within a conventional primary care setting was associated with a trend toward reduced total expenditures for spine care compared with usual primary care. Implementation of PSC may lead to reduced costs and resource utilization but may be no more effective than usual care regarding clinical outcomes.

CHIROUP ADVERTISEMENT

Item #2

Our second item today is called “Comparison of Treatments for Frozen Shoulder: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis” by Challoumas, et. al. (Challoumas D 2020) and published in JAMA Open on December 16, of 2020 and it does not get one degree hotter than that people!

Why They Did It

The authors here wanted to know the answer to the question, “Are any treatment modalities for frozen shoulder associated with better outcomes than other treatments?”

How They Did It

  • It was a meta-analysis of 65 studies with 4097 participants
  • They searched Medline, EMBASE, Scopus, and CINHAL in February 2020.
  • Studies with a randomized design of any type that compared treatment modalities for frozen shoulder with other modalities, placebo, or no treatment were included.
  • Data were independently extracted by 2 individuals
  • Pain and function were the primary outcomes, and external rotation range of movement (ER ROM) was the secondary outcome
  • Length of follow-up was divided into short-term (≤12 weeks), mid-term (>12 weeks to ≤12 months), and long-term (>12 months) follow-up.

What They Found

  • Despite several statistically significant results, only the administration of intra-articular (IA) corticosteroid was associated with statistical and clinical superiority compared with other interventions in the short-term for pain
  • Subgroup analyses and the network meta-analysis demonstrated that the addition of a home exercise program with simple exercises and stretches and physiotherapy (electrotherapy and/or mobilizations) to the intra-articular corticosteroid may be associated with added benefits in the mid-term

Wrap It Up

The findings of this study suggest that the early use of intra-articular corticosteroid in patients with frozen shoulder of less than 1-year duration is associated with better outcomes. This treatment should be accompanied by a home exercise program to maximize the chance of recovery.

Item #3

Now, on to Evidence-Based Chiropractic. Our third and final one this week is called “Cost comparison of two approaches to chiropractic care for patients with acute and sub-acute low Back pain care episodes: a cohort study” by Whedon et. al. (Whedon JM 2020) and published in the Chiropractic and Manual Therapies on December 14, 2020. Get your red hots right here, get ‘em hot right here.  I told you Whedon was prolific. That’s two papers in this one episode that he’s the lead author on and I did not do that on purpose. I didn’t realize who the authors of the papers were until I started typing. He’s on his A-game. 

Why They Did It

The abstract for our Evidence-Based Chiropractic talk leads off by saying, “Low back pain (LBP) imposes a costly burden upon patients, healthcare insurers, and society overall. Spinal manipulation as practiced by chiropractors has been found to be cost-effective for the treatment of LBP, but there is wide variation among chiropractors in their approach to clinical care, and the most cost-effective approach to chiropractic care is uncertain. To date, little has been published regarding the cost-effectiveness of different approaches to chiropractic care. Thus, the current study presents a cost comparison between chiropractic approaches for patients with acute or subacute care episodes for low back pain.” How They Did It

  • It was a retrospective cohort design to examine the costs of chiropractic care among patients diagnosed with acute or subacute low back pain.
  • The study time period ranged between 07/01/2016 and 12/22/2017
  • They compared cost outcomes for patients of two cohorts of chiropractors within the health care system: Cohort 1) a general network of providers, and Cohort 2) a network providing conservative evidence-based care for rapid resolution of pain.
  • They used generalized linear regression modeling to estimate the comparative influence of demographic and clinical factors on expenditures.
  • A total of 25,621 unique patients were included in the analyses

What They Found

  • The average cost per patient for Cohort 2 (mean allowed amount $252) was lower compared to Cohort 1 (mean allowed amount $326
  • Patient and clinician related factors such as health plan, provider region, and sex also significantly influenced costs.

Wrap It Up In general, providers in Cohort 2 were found to be significantly associated with lower costs for patient care as compared to Cohort 1. Utilization of a clinical model characterized by a patient-centered clinic approach and standardized, best-practice clinical protocols may offer lower cost when compared to non-standardized clinical approaches to chiropractic care.

So….just who the hell do you all know that’s been preaching this until his face is about to explode? That’s right, listeners of this podcast. One word, two syllables…..Day-um.  Evidence-based and patient-centered care is the future of chiropractic. It is first and foremost, treating our patients with respect and the best care and that’s what they deserve.  Secondly, it’s speaking the language of the medical community. Which is the language of research. When you’re using their language, you’re starting to communicate more effectively.  I think it’s time for superhero sound effects….boom, pow, snap, kawachow!

Alright, that’s it. Y’all be safe. Keep changing our profession from your little corner of the world. Keep taking care of yourselves and everyone around you. Tough times are upon us but, the sun will shine again. Trust it, believe it, count on it. Let’s get to the message. Same as it is every week. 

Store Remember the evidence-informed brochures and posters at chiropracticforward.com. 

Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

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The Message I want you to know with absolute certainty that when Chiropractic is at its best, you can’t beat the risk vs reward ratio because spinal pain is primarily a movement-related pain and typically responds better to movement-related treatment rather than chemical treatments like pills and shots. When compared to the traditional medical model, research and clinical experience show us patients can get good to excellent results for headaches, neck pain, back pain, and joint pain to name just a few. It’s safe and cost-effective can decrease surgeries & disability and we do it through conservative, non-surgical means with minimal hassle to the patient. And, if the patient treats preventatively after initial recovery, we can usually keep it that way while raising the overall level of health!

Key Point:

At the end of the day, patients should have the guarantee of having the best treatment that offers the least harm. When it comes to non-complicated musculoskeletal complaints…. That’s Chiropractic!

Contact Send us an email at dr dot williams at chiropracticforward.com and let us know what you think of our show and tell us your suggestions for future episodes.  Feedback and constructive criticism is a blessing and so are subscribes and excellent reviews on podcast platforms.  We know how this works by now. If you value something, you have to share it, interact with it, review it, talk about it from time to time, and actively hit a few buttons to support it here and there when asked. It really does make a big difference. 

Connect We can’t wait to connect with you again next week. From the Chiropractic Forward Podcast flight deck, this is Dr. Jeff Williams saying upward, onward, and forward. Website https://www.chiropracticforward.com

Social Media Links https://www.facebook.com/chiropracticforward/

Chiropractic Forward Podcast Facebook GROUP https://www.facebook.com/groups/1938461399501889/

Twitter https://twitter.com/Chiro_Forward

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtc-IrhlK19hWlhaOGld76Q

iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing/id1331554445?mt=2

Player FM Link https://player.fm/series/2291021

Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing-through

TuneIn https://tunein.com/podcasts/Health–Wellness-Podcasts/The-Chiropractic-Forward-Podcast-Chiropractors-Pr-p1089415/

About the Author & Host Dr. Jeff Williams – Fellow of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine – Chiropractor in Amarillo, TX, Chiropractic Advocate, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, Businessman, Marketer, and Healthcare Blogger & Vlogger  

Bibliography

  • Challoumas D, B. M., McLean M, (2020). “Comparison Of Treatments For Frozen Shoulder: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.” JAMA Open 3(12): e2029581.
  • Whedon JM, B. S., Dennis P, Fischer VA, Russel R, (2020). “Cost comparison of two approaches to chiropractic care for patients with acute and sub-acute low Back pain care episodes: a cohort study.” Chiropr Man Therap 28(68).
  • Whedon JM, T. A., Bezdijan S, (2020). “Implementation of the Primary Spine Care Model in a Multi-Clinician Primary Care Setting: An Observational Cohort Study.” J Man Physiol Ther 43(7): P667-674.

 

The Shake-Up With WFC’s Research Committee

CF 154: The Shake-Up With WFC’s Research Committee Today we’re going to talk about the research committee shake-up at the WFC. I’ve wondered for months now what exactly happened with shake-up and it hasn’t been easy to figure it out either. Who is to blame and what companies are to blame as well? We’ll get knee deep into it in this episode.  But first, here’s that sweet sweet bumper music

Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

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OK, we are back and you have found the Chiropractic Forward Podcast where we are making evidence-based chiropractic fun, profitable, and accessible while we make you and your patients better all the way around.  We’re the fun kind of research. Not the stuffy, high-brow kind of research. We’re research talk over a couple of beers. I’m Dr. Jeff Williams and I’m your host for the Chiropractic Forward podcast.   If you haven’t yet I have a few things you should do. 

  • Like our Facebook page, 
  • Join our private Facebook group and interact, and then 
  • go review our podcast on iTunes and other podcast platforms. 
  • We also have an evidence-based brochure and poster store at chiropracticforward.com
  • While you’re there, join our weekly email newsletter. No spam, just a reminder when the newest episodes go live. Nothing special so don’t worry about signing up. Just one a week friends. Check your JUNK folder!!

Do it do it do it.  You have found yourself smack dab in the middle of Episode #154 Now if you missed last week’s episode , we talked about how some chiropractors could be better and being careful which guru you’re going to place your faith in. Some are just absolute loons and only driven by profit, not results and not the patient.

The saying is, when you’re focused on the outcomes, you’ll never have to worry about the income. Make sure you don’t miss that info. Keep up with the class.  While we’re on the topic of being smart, did you know that you can use our website as a resource? Quick and easy, you can go to chiropracticforward.com, click on Episodes, and use the search function

On the personal end of things…..

Chugging along. Making friends and influencing people. That’s how we do it here. Actually, that’s not true. I’m sure I got the vitalists all fired up last week and probably will this week as well. I’ll probably get some companies fired up too.  We’ll see. It doesn’t have a thing to do with anything chiropractic but I’ve mentioned a time or two here that I’m branching out and, as a retirement plan, I’m working on a little side gig in the voice over / voice artist industry. This stuff is fascinating y’all. It really is. 

So I went through the steps you’re supposed to go through in getting yourself all set up and now, here I am, I got a commercial demo done. If you’re just feeling goofy and bored, go to jeffwilliamsvoice.com and there’s a demo there you can listen to. Turns out I have the John Deere, Ford truck, eat this burger type of voice and I’m totally OK with that.  Anyway, after you get a demo, you start submitting to talent agencies around the world. Well, hell….I don’t have all day to spend on doing this stuff so I can only get a few per day and there are tons of them.

But, in just the first round or so of submissions, I already got signed up with a talent agent out in San Francisco and Los Angeles as well as interest from a talent agency in Barcelona Spain and potentially a marketing firm down in Dallas/Ft. Worth. . So….how damn cool is that? Maybe, one of these days, my side gig takes over my day job. I’m not holding my breath though. But, seriously, my buddy has done it for about 7 years and he’s making six figures. Can you imagine making a good 6 figure salary but no employees, no overhead, you can make that money in your basement in your underwear (sorry for the visual there), and you can do it from anywhere in the world as long as you have an internet connection?

Well, it’s a cool idea and a lot of folks get to do it that way. Who knows? It’s a lot of luck and all that stuff but I’ve never been one that was afraid to take chances or afraid to fall on my face.  Either way, it’s exciting and isn’t that what it’s about? Keeping life interesting and exciting? That reminds me, if you need a voice over for a youtube video, your podcast intro, or any commercial you’re doing, remember ol Uncle Jeffro here. I got you covered!

Item #1

Now, let’s get to spilling the tea shall we? I have to start by saying, I don’t love talking about this stuff. I don’t at all. It makes me uncomfortable. Mostly because some of my friends won’t like it. I work with a lot of chiropractors around the nation in different capacities and to be honest, while we work FOR the chiropractic profession, we don’t see eye to eye with each other on WHAT chiropractic is.  Still, they’re my friends. So what do I do? Do I just say nothing about things I know they won’t agree with? Or do I talk about it and give my view point on them?

Well, I have a podcast so I guess I talk about it. I could stay out of the messiness of our profession and avoid tough subjects all together I guess. But who ever changed anything by taking that sort of stance? That’s not really any kind of stance at all is it? You change things by standing up, somewhere, and supporting your convictions. So that’s where i’m at. I don’t like. I’m uncomfortable with it, honestly. But the show must go on.  Let’s start with what happened. Dr. Greg Kawchuk was the head of the World Federation of Chiropractic. I’m a fan of Dr. Kawchuk. so when I saw on Facebook or Twitter or somewhere that he resigned his post as head of the WFC research committee, it had me a bit miffed. Not only that but a lot of HUGE chiropractors on the committee left with him. Researchers on the level of Jan Hartvigsen for example. 

To be specific, those that resigned are

  • Greg Kawchuk DC PhD Canada – Chair
  • Simon French, PhD, MPH, BAppSc(Chiro) Australia
  • Iben Axén DC PhD Sweden
  • Jan Hartvigsen DC PhD Denmark
  • Martin Descarreaux DC, PhD Canada
  • Carolina Kolberg DC PhD Brazil

Every single one of these researchers has been in the episodes we have released. They are big time for our profession. The vitalists, unfortunately, have labeled them subluxation deniers. I label them scientists but….whatever.  I say tomato, they say dumb stuff. Their statement of resignation went like this, “Effective immediately, we (Greg Kawchuk (Chair), Iben Axen’, Martin Descarreaux, Simon French, Jan Hartvigsen, and Caroline Kolberg) resign from the World Federation of Chiropractic (WFC) Research Committee.

We no longer feel it is possible to function as independent academics in our roles on the committee. We urge the WFC to continue to promote the EPIC principles (Evidence-based, People-centered, Interprofessional and Collaborative), and to protect its core values from potential conflicts and outside influence. We wish the best for the WFC and our colleagues who serve on its Research Committee.” Now, it wasn’t all bad because they put Dr. Christine Goertz into the post as the head of the WFC committee and if you’re a listener here at the Chiropractic Forward evidence-based chiropractic podcast…..well then you know what a fan of Dr. Goertz we are. She’s a chiropractic treasure. 

But, when I first heard the news, as you can imagine, and as you probably felt when you heard, it was a bit concerning for our profession to lose so many high profile, top-level researchers at once. What’s that going to mean for our profession and why did this happen in the first place? I started paying attention. I started looking for information. What the heck happened? But nothing. Not only nothing on the story but nobody was talking about it either. Like….it was just another event that happened on just another day. No big deal. When, in reality, at least to research consumers such as myself, it was a huge deal! Why did this happen and what the hell is the story?

Well, I’m going to give away the ending here before we really dive in, I’m not 100% sure but at least now I have an idea. A generaly idea.  When I decided I was going to do this episode, I put it in our private Facebook group. We only have around 450 members approximately. Again, in case you don’t know, we have a public Chiropractic Forward page. That’s just to get the word out about the podcast and market the podcast.  Then we also have a Chiropractic Forward private group where we can share research papers, we can discuss amongst ourselves, and all that good stuff and we can do it privately. I encourage you all to join the private group.

Not if you’re a vitalist. That’s not the group for you. But if you’re evidence-based and patient-centered, then you’re a good fit.  Anyway, I posted in there that I wanted to do this episode and if anyone had the back story, please send me a private message about it. That I wanted to get it figured out and tell our audience. 

There was a lot of interest in the episode but nobody knew the story about what happened. I asked elsewhere. Nobody knew but everyone wanted to know. I even asked Dr. Kawchuk himself and he was tied up in a research project. Dangit.  Unfortunately, the research community’s lack of open communication on this matter has left this up to others to define the narrative. For example, when Googling up this story, I got an article by Matthew McCoy. The ever-so-nutsy vitalist out in Georgia. The townhall crier and huckster of woo. Yes, he’s one of them setting the narrative. 

Also, one of the top hits was by our global hater for the ages, Edzard Ernst. What a toolbag. Yes, our global hater sets the narrative on what is happening in the chiropractic world. But nothing from the evidence-based, patient-centered side of the profession. What in the hell is going on here, people? Why in the hell are you all sitting on your hands? Why are you not talking about this, writing about this, yelling about this, or at least pushing back on this? Are we spineless? No pun intended by the way. 

It’s just astonishing to me that so little is written about it and that the only information you can find on it is created by flat-earthers or by the apex of chiropractic haters.  Finally, one of my colleagues here in the U.S. contacted me through text and we set up a phone call. They gave me the story as well as they understood it and that’s what I’m going to give you. Thank you to this colleague for shedding as much light on this story as you could. I really do appreciate it and I’m pretty sure the rest of our audience does as well. 

If we are being fair, a small part of it appears to be Dr. Kawchuk’s fault, a very large part of it seems to fall on the vitalist, subluxation or nothing, rah rah rah crowd, and an even bigger aspect of the whole enchilada I believe can be directly pointed at the WFC’s corporate sponsors that backed the vitalist, subluxation is the only way crowd. I personally blame the companies. Without them bullying the WFC with sponsorship dollars, this wouldn’t have happened regardless of the rest of the dominoes that fell. 

Let’s back up a bit.  It sounds like it all begin in Berlin in 2019. Those of us paying attention know that it goes back much further than that though don’t we? Oh yeah, with the evidence-based, patient-centered model becoming more and more prevalent and moving the vitalists more and more to the fringe of the world, the louder the minority has become.  Still, it appears, Berlin 2019 at the WFC conference was the final straw. Dr. Greg Kawchuk, who again, I’m a fan of, was one of the speakers at the event. His presentation was not vitalist/subluxation friendly.

Word on the street is that his speech was met with cheers but was also met with water bottles being thrown up on the stage and antics like that. Because, you know….our profession is divided in two in case you’ve been hiding in a cave. So, cheers makes sense. I don’t know what makes the other side think it’s OK to throw stuff on the stage but who knows? Maybe that’s just a dumb little European quirk.  I had the opportunity to see almost the exact same speech at the Forward ’19 event in St. Louis a little over a year ago. I absolutely loved it. And, no….it was not subluxation friendly.  Here was the difference in the speech I saw in St. Louis and the one that was given in Berlin.

Dr. Kawchuk, it is suggested, made a quip during his speech that taking a child to a vitalistic chiropractor is similar to taking a child to a Catholic priest.  There are no recordings in existence of this version of the speech but I believe the basic gist of the comment was that if you’re willing to take your kid to a vitalist for 60+ visits, then you should leave your kids with a Catholic priest.  OK, let’s address this because this one comment is what the ICA hung their hat on so I think it’s a pivotal thing. I think it’s also why this part of the speech was dropped when I heard it in St. Louis.  It is my understanding, first of all, that Dr. Kawchuk wrote a letter of apology but it was perceived as having some “Yeah, but…” sentiment attached so maybe it didn’t come off as sincere as his detractors would want.

But here’s the thing, it wouldn’t have mattered how sincere the apology was, they found something to hang their hat on. They found an achilles heel and they weren’t going to let go of it. Regardless of what Greg said to them about it.  Can I just say that I’m a Christian and I’m used to getting made fun of by so many out there in the world. It almost doesn’t even affect me anymore. Notice I said ‘almost’.

Now, I’m not Catholic. But Catholics are Christians so, by association, I should be rather offended as well right? I suppose if I were of the easily offended mindset, I would be. But I’m not because I see it all for what it’s worth.  Number one: the Catholic church has had quite a well-chronicled issue in the past with priests and misconduct. I don’t know how you could argue with that and someone bringing it up has become VERY commonplace. That doesn’t make Greg’s comment any more out of place than the 100 other people I have seen mention or make fun of it on Facebook over the past 3-5 years. It’s become very common. Doesn’t make it right but it does make it common. 

Number Two: did that belong in this speech? Well, I wasn’t the speaker so how do I know. I know that I saw the same speech last year without the comment and it seemed very effective and very welcome to everyone that was in attendance. So, it appears it would have been just as good and ultimately less offensive to some.  Knowing what we now know, it doesn’t appear that it was a good choice to go with for that particular speech to that particular crowd. I would say that I enjoy a great and entertaining speech and the one I saw in St. Louis by Dr. Kawchuk was just that. It was actually pretty dang amazing.

I became an instant fan and hearing of the Catholic priest comment later on did nothing to dampen my fandom.  I suggest people lighten the hell up and quit being so damned dramatic. Water off a duck’s back. Oh my goodness, someone said something you didn’t like or agree with? Poor thing. Bless your heart.  So, Greg gave them something to hold onto and go on the attack with. OK. Do you think the ICA got irate over the priest comment? Or do you think they got irate because the speech was anti-vitalist, anti-subluxation?

Honestly….think about it. Let’s be smart. Which do you think it was? It should already be clear what I think it is.  So, the speech is made and the vitalists lose their damned minds and the ICA decides to deal with this travesty. Nobody but the higher ups over there know exactly how it all went down but, by all appearances, it looks like they started leaning on sponsors to pull support from the WFC until changes that the ICA deemed appropriate were made.  So, basically, the ICA decided to be a bully and start flexing on the playground.

They could read the tea leaves and with scientists like Kawchuk, Hartvigsen, and the others steering, the future wasn’t so bright for the ICA bullies so they started figuring out how to pull the purse strings. That’s what it looks like to me.  It looks like companies like ChiroHealth and Foot Levelers leaned on the WFC to remove Kawchuk. In advance of that, Greg just resigned. Then, the other top-level researchers resigned in solidarity and, I would imagine, in protest to what was happening. 

And I don’t blame them one bit.  Here’s the thing here; it is my opinion and the opinion of others that these vendors used our money that we paid them to bully the WFC at the urging of the ICA to oust Kawchuk. And it is my opinion that they used one sour comment to do it. When I feel pretty sure that they bullied the WFC simply because they didn’t like that the speech and the research committee seemed anti-subluxation. Here are the companies that pulled support simultaneously at this pivotal time for the WFC:

  • Standard Process
  • ChiroHealthUSA – USA
  • Chiro Diplomatic Corps
  • NCMIC – USA
  • National Chiropractic Council – USA
  • Koala Mattress – Australia
  • Life Chiropractic College West – USA
  • Life University – USA
  • Lloyd Table Inc – USA
  • Breakthrough Coaching – USA
  • Chiropractic Education Australia Ltd. – Australia
  • Da Vinci Labs – USA
  • Integrated Assessment Services Inc. – Canada
  • Japan Federation of Chiropractic Professionals – Japan
  • Mettler Electronics Corp. – USA
  • Tokyo College of Chiropractic (Formerly RMIT University) – Japan
  • Sidecar

It looks like vendors like ChiroHealth, Foot Levelers, and several others used the money we paid them, to then turn around and bully the WFC research committee because they gave a speech that was anti-subluxation. Used. Our. Money.  I repeated that for a reason. They use our money to get rid of the world’s biggest and best researchers because they didn’t like what they said.  On the other hand, these are the companies that continued to financially support and sponsor the WFC:

  • Palmer College of Chiropractic
  • Parker University
  • Logan Chiropractic College
  • New York Chiropractic College
  • Southern California University of Health Sciences
  • University of Bridgeport
  • University of Western States
  • National University of Health Sciences
  • Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College
  • Anglo European College of Chiropractic
  • Madrid College of Chiropractic
  • Nordisk Institute
  • Dynamic Chiropractic
  • The American Chiropractor
  • Chiropractic Economics

I would like to thank this group that chose to continue to support the WFC, thus continue to support research and science. Thank you for not being bullied by the ICA and the loud minority. Now, let’s be fair. Maybe it was just that times are tough. COVID has us all down. I know it’s got me down. Did they pull or reduce support for the WFC because of the ‘Rona? How are we to know? I don’t know. You don’t know either. But it seems pretty danged coordinated in conjunction with Dr. Kawchuk’s resignation doesn’t it? I mean….doesn’t it? It’s your choice to continue working with these companies but I’ll tell you this much, being evidence-based as I am….I will be second-guessing my commitment and participation with them going forward.

Honestly, how could you not? As my colleague so eloquently stated to me, “Their power is our power.” Again, nobody knows the exact motivation of these companies. I sure as hell don’t. I just know what it looks like.  What if enough of us contacted these companies and griped about this? We can collectively tell them we don’t approve of that sort of influence. We don’t approve of them using our money to bully our research community.

What if this were to serve as a rallying cry for activism over apathy? For a bunch of crappy stuff to take place, all it takes is for good people to just sit on their hands and do nothing.  This can be a rally cry for the WFC and Dr. Goertz, for the ACA, CARL, for the FTCA, and for this Chiropractic Forward Podcast. But, as my esteemed colleague said, there’s a cover charge to getting your voice heard and social media doesn’t quite cut it.  Now, how much of all of this was theater and how much was legitimate?

If Kawchuk was going to be let go because of the financial pressure by the ICA and these companies, was his resignation simply to keep the ICA from getting a win? It seems they reduce exposure by just going to their universities and doing their research there anyway. They’re not out front taking all of the heat and they’re still doing all of their research and all that anyway. Makes you wonder why anyone would want to be out front like that anyway, doesn’t it? I don’t think it was theater.

I think Greg got tired of dealing with the vitalist crap and said to hell with you people. I think the ICA bullied these companies and the WFC to push him out under the guise of a priest comment but really because they didn’t like the anti-subluxation sentiment of the research coming out of the WFC. And I think the companies did exactly what the ICA wanted them to do. So, I think the vitalists and subluxation people won at the end of the day.  It’s all looking like a bunch of stinky garbage on the part of the vitalists but, sometimes those unafraid to get down in the slop are the ones that win the battle. Doesn’t mean they win the war. Just the battle. 

Here’s what I believe. I believe right and truth win every single time. Eventually. So, let’s look at it from that perspective. There are mountains of papers supporting spinal manipulative therapy. There is a paucity as the researchers say….a paucity of solid, respectable research backing the vitalistic, subluxation theory that was generated in the late 1800’s. Here in 2020..it just hasn’t formulated into a solid, well-researched fact, folks. I’m sorry. Don’t punish the messenger.  Anecdotal evidence and charismatic gurus with guitars don’t make it true or make it right. 

Here’s something else I believe strongly, when you have people like McCoy and Edzard Ernst setting the narrative for our profession because we’re not willing to discuss something openly, well, then we’re just asking for it, folks. You either want a well-respected profession or you don’t.  Or, do you want a split all together? The Primary Spine Practitioner program through the University of Pittsburgh may be a good first step for some of you that are bent on the separation.  Can’t we all just get along? I don’t see it happening. I really don’t. I don’t see how our profession can be unified.

Vitalists refuse to follow or even notice solid research that doesn’t confirm their bias. Outright refuse. They insist it’s appropriate to see regular healthy people once per week for life.  Evidence says that’s not appropriate so, therefore, evidence-based chiropractors say it’s inappropriate and it gives us a bad name. So, what do you do about that? You can’t fix it. Evidence based folks can’t continue in a profession where part of the crowd makes them appear illegitimate.

Vitalists refuse to conform to any appearances of being evidence-based.  So, what’s the answer? You tell me. I don’t see a clear answer. I think it lies with the middle group that is neither evidence-based or vitalistic. They’re just out there making a living and getting through their days but are pretty much apathetic to either. When something happens that activates that group, I think that’s what will be the deciding factor on where this profession goes. 

I disagree with 99.9% of everything Edzard Ernst says but I agree with this comment wholeheartedly when he says, “In my view, the problem of the chiropractic profession is unsolvable. Giving up Palmer’s obsolete nonsense of vitalism, innate intelligence, subluxation, etc. is an essential precondition for joining the 21st century. Yet, doing so would abandon any identity chiropractors will ever have and render them physiotherapists in all but name, Neither solution bodes well for the future of the profession.”

I would say that he left out the fact that many PTs are now adding spinal manipulative therapy to their arsenal so maybe PTs are rendering themselves chiropractors rather than the other way around? I would also add to Ernst’s comment that a recent nationwide poll showed that people go to chiropractors to get rid of their pain. They do not go for wellness, vitalism, weekly visits, or innate intelligence talk.  In the comments of Ernst’s post a chiropractor chimed in and said that in his opinion, the profession has a better chance of providing a valuable healthcare service without the ICA members which make up only about 5% of the profession tagging along and raising a stink whenever someone challenges their model or views. 

Researchers should have the freedom to speak thei truth without fear of reprisal of companies that we essentially fund. It goes a hell of a lot deeper than a bad joke folks. It’s an attack on evidence-based chiropractic and an attack on the research community. And we’d better all start seeing it that way because now, the ICA has a win and you can believe they’ll be back for more. If these companies reduced or withheld funding to pressure the WFC based on the ICA’s pressure, we should let these companies know how we feel about it.  I see chiropractors going forward in the world treating pain, following current research, and current widely accepted guidelines. Guidelines that are based in the research literature. I see a profession that accepts a certain standard and a profession that hopefully begins to take policing its own seriously. 

Otherwise, we’ll continue to be the pimple on healthcare’s butt. And that’s the way I see it. And before anyone says it, I’ll say it first…no, I do not want to be a medical doctor. No desire at all. But being a chiropractor doesn’t mean that I have to blindly accept and promote a philosophy from the late 1800’s. They are not mutually exclusive. In any way. The adjustment is the cornerstone of my personal practice and the way I treat patients. It’s just not the end-all-be-all of what I do.  And all of this mess when we are at the precipice of actually breaking through in the healthcare industry. I’ve said it so many times on this podcast but there is no better time to be a chiropractor.

Y’all, it’s a perfect storm. The opioid crisis. The research backs every freaking thing we do OUTSIDE of the subluxation theory. Literallly everything we do.  Spinal manipulative therapy, exercise/rehab, low level laser, massage, acupuncture, balance and proprioceptive training, and things like that. Research backs it all up. It just can’t back up the subluxation stuff.  But we are at a point that we can actually get more patients in our doors if we are a respectable, evidence-based, patient-centered profession.  Again, you can disagree with me. You can cuss me. But you’ll always know where I stand and according to me, I stand for what’s right, I stand for the truth, ethics, morality, and I stand for patients and their right to be treated like respected individuals and not targets that have to be closed.

IF we can’t agree on that, then maybe you can at least respect me and respect the fact that I’m willing to make a stand for what I believe in. Because honestly, I don’t see a lot of folks standing up on this deal.   Maybe it’s just me. I would assume these things would be common sense. Alright, that’s it. Y’all be safe. Keep changing our profession from your little corner of the world. Keep taking care of yourselves and everyone around you. Tough times are upon us but, the sun will shine again. Trust it, believe it, count on it. Let’s get to the message. Same as it is every week.  Store Remember the evidence-informed brochures and posters at chiropracticforward.com.   

Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

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The Message
I want you to know with absolute certainty that when Chiropractic is at its best, you can’t beat the risk vs reward ratio because spinal pain is primarily a movement-related pain and typically responds better to movement-related treatment rather than chemical treatments like pills and shots. When compared to the traditional medical model, research and clinical experience show us patients can get good to excellent results for headaches, neck pain, back pain, and joint pain to name just a few. It’s safe and cost-effective can decrease surgeries & disability and we do it through conservative, non-surgical means with minimal hassle to the patient. And, if the patient treats preventativly after initial recovery, we can usually keep it that way while raising the overall level of health!
Key Point: At the end of the day, patients should have the guarantee of having the best treatment that offers the least harm. When it comes to non-complicated musculoskeletal complaints…. That’s Chiropractic!
Contact Send us an email at dr dot williams at chiropracticforward.com and let us know what you think of our show and tell us your suggestions for future episodes.  Feedback and constructive criticism is a blessing and so are subscribes and excellent reviews on podcast platforms.  We know how this works by now. If you value something, you have to share it, interact with it, review it, talk about it from time to time, and actively hit a few buttons to support it here and there when asked. It really does make a big difference. 
Connect We can’t wait to connect with you again next week. From the Chiropractic Forward Podcast flight deck, this is Dr. Jeff Williams saying upward, onward, and forward.
Website https://www.chiropracticforward.com
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About the Author & Host Dr. Jeff Williams – Fellow of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine – Chiropractor in Amarillo, TX, Chiropractic Advocate, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, Businessman, Marketer, and Healthcare Blogger & Vlogger

Common Surgeries Aren’t Well-Researched & Chiropractic Wins Again

CF 144: Common Surgeries Aren’t Well-Researched & Chiropractic Wins Again Today we’re going to talk about how some of the most common musculoskeletal surgeries aren’t very well-researched and we’ll talk about how chiropractic performs when lined up with multidisciplinary treatment.  But first, here’s that sweet sweet bumper music  
Chiropractic evidence-based products

Integrating Chiropractors

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  OK, we are back and you have found the Chiropractic Forward Podcast where we are making evidence-based chiropractic fun, profitable, and accessible while we make you and your patients better all the way around.  We’re the fun kind of research. Not the stuffy, high-brow kind of research. We’re research talk over a couple of beers. I’m Dr. Jeff Williams and I’m your host for the Chiropractic Forward podcast.   If you haven’t yet I have a few things you should do. 
  • Like our Facebook page, 
  • Join our private Facebook group and interact, and then 
  • go review our podcast on iTunes and other podcast platforms. 
  • We also have an evidence-based brochure and poster store at chiropracticforward.com
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Do it do it do it.  You have found yourself smack dab in the middle of Episode #144 Now if you missed last week’s episode, we talked about a new paper that came out in JAMA that said spinal manipulative therapy doesn’t work and what our research experts have to say about that and what my big mouth has to say about it. Make sure you don’t miss that info. Keep up with the class. There may come a time you need to take a stance on that.  While we’re on the topic of being smart, did you know that you can use our website as a resource? Quick and easy, you can go to chiropracticforward.com, click on Episodes, and use the search function to find whatever you want quickly and easily. With over 100 episodes in the tank and an average of 2-3 papers covered per episode, we have somewhere between 250 and 300 papers that can be quickly referenced along with their talking points.  Just so you know, all of the research we talk about in each episode is cited in the show notes for each episode if you’re looking to dive in a little deeper.  On the personal end of things….. I’m trudging through the designated doctor program here in Texas to assess the extent of the injury, return to work, and all of that fun fun stuff. I’m not even sure why I’m doing it. Just to have back up plans. I like multiple streams and I like options. If I get as busy as I was in 2019, I’ll never have the need for it. If it stays where I’m at – 75% of where I was, well it may be something I entertain.  Either way, will it make me a better doctor for personal injuries, work comp, and all patients in general? Hell yeah, it will. Even if I never use it for a DD exam, I’ll be a better doc after going through it. Guaranteed. Even if I don’t pass the damn test!! Which I hear is stupid and has nothing to do with the curriculum. Even if I fail the test, I’ll be better.  It is slowly cooling off here in the Texas Panhandle. While I realize we just went through the longest Spring and Summer known to mankind, I’m going to miss it. Despite all that went into making it the longest Spring and SUmmer ever….I’m going to miss the aspect of time slowing down, sitting on the back patio with my wife, dinner outside in the outdoor kitchen, swimming in the pool, and just being warm in general.  Oh, how I despise the cold weather. Lol. Here’s where you Northerners call me a pansy but….it’s like needles when the cold wind blows. I grew up a couple of hours north of where I live now and there was a difference in weather. At times, it would get bone-chilling cold growing up. I would take a shower in the morning before school, drive there and park, and walk into the school. My wet hair from showering would freeze before I got into the building. Now that’s cold, folks.  I grew up with that, yes, even in Texas. My hometown is called Perryton, TX and it’s only 7 miles from the tiny little strip of Oklahoma and it’s about 45 miles from Kansas. So, it’s not deep in the heart of Texas. It’s way up North.  My point is, I went to school down in Natchitoches, Louisiana, and then lived in Dallas for about 6 years before relocating back to the Texas Panhandle and Amarillo, TX.  Having not been in the cold cold for 8-10 years got me spoiled to the point that I can’t even tolerate cold weather anymore. At all. For any reason. It borderline pisses me off.  Everything dies, it’s cold, it’s windy, people are all yay about pumpkin spice crap, my bones ache a bit, and I’m bitchy 2/3 of the time.  I’m just warning you all, this is what you get to look forward to dealing with for the next 3-4 months. My whiny butt being all cold-weather fussy. But here’s the saving grace and the best thing since sliced bread; the remote start vehicle.  Yes, as any good Texan, I have a pickup and that dude has remote start with defrost and heated seats. You damn right. This is the ONE thing that has made Winter somewhat tolerable for me and, being a good Christian, I thank God and the car companies on the frigid mornings for blessing us all with such wonderous inventions like the remote start.  Now, I don’t want you North Dakota or Canadian friends of mine rolling your eyes too hard at me here. I’m sure you’d melt down here in TX in the Summers so…..we agree to play to our strengths and roll on down the road. Trust me, go through two-a-days in college in Louisiana and tell me how tough you are. Lol. Something you don’t see on TV when you watch football is the humidity. It’s REAL.  I went from three-a-days at one college playing football here in the Texas Panhandle to two-a-days in Louisiana. Not a problem by anyone in the Panhandle but in Lousiana, it looked like a battlefield with players dropping left and right with cramps and having to get IVs there on the practice field….it was insane. So, I’m cold intolerant but I can handle the other end of it. Don’t be too hard on me. Lol.  What does all of this have to do with chiropractic and research? Not a damn thing. Just a little bit of fun rambling and brain dump.  Let’s get on with the real reason we’re here. Item #1 This first one came to me from Dr. Craig Benton, one of my buddies, down in Lampasas, TX where it’s always a bit balmy almost year-round. It’s called “Integrating a multidisciplinary pain team and chiropractic care in a community health center: an observational study of managing chronic spinal pain” by Prater et. al(Prater C 2020). and published in Journal of Primary Care & Community Health on September 10th of 2020. Holy smokin scorchin’ blaze of newness! Look, y’all should know how I feel about chronic pain by now. This is right down my alley. Not a dark alley. No, one that’s lit up like an airport runway. Bright alley.  Why They Did It They say that chronic pain is one of the most common diseases in the US with the underserved population being most affected for obvious reasons. They say the underserved are at more risk of opioid misuse or overuse since they lack therapeutic access otherwise. For this reason, they are looking for other avenues to provide treatment to chronic pain sufferers.  How They Did It
  • This was a prospective observational pilot study
  • Held at a community health center
  • Measured the effectiveness of two interventions among the underserved population
  • The two interventions were 
  • Multidisciplinary team
  • Chiropractic care
  • The outcomes measured were pain and functional disability measured via the Pain Disability Questionnaire and reduction of opioid dosage at 6 and 12 months. 
  • 35 folks complete baseline and follow-up outcome measures from August 2018 to May 2020
Wrap It Up A key finding was quote, “Participants in the chiropractic team and those completing the study before COVID-19 were found to have significantly greater improvement at follow-up.” Well isn’t that sexy? Indeed.  “This observational study within a community health center resulted in improvement in spinal pain and disability with chiropractic care versus a multidisciplinary pain team. Offering similar services in primary care may help to address pain and disability, and hopefully limit external referrals, advanced imaging, and opioid prescriptions.” This was a pilot study with small sample size. Nothing to do backflips about but it’s a start down this path or thinking and learning so hopefully, we’ll see some very cool and very positive things for the chiropractic profession down the line if papers like this continue to come out. Before we get to the next paper, I want to tell you a little about this new tool on the market called Drop Release. I love new toys! If you’re into soft tissue work, then it’s your new best friend. Heck if you’re just into getting more range of motion in your patients, then it’s your new best friend. Drop Release uses fast stretch to stimulate the Golgi Tendon Organ reflex.  Which causes instant and dramatic muscle relaxation and can restore full ROM to restricted joints like shoulders and hips in seconds.   Picture a T bar with a built-in drop piece.  This greatly reduces the time needed for soft tissue treatment, leaving more time for other treatments per visit, or more patients per day.  Drop Release is like nothing else out there, and you almost gotta see it to understand, so check out the videos on the website. It’s inventor, Dr. Chris Howson, from the great state of North Dakota, is a listener and friend. He offered our listeners a great discount on his product. When you order, if you put in the code ‘HOTSTUFF’ all one word….as in hot stuff….coming up!! If you enter HOTSTUFF in the coupon code area, Dr. Howson will give you $50 off of your purchase. Go check Drop Release at droprelease.com and tell Dr. Howson I sent you. Item #2 I think I got this one from Dr. Craig Benton as well. Dr. Benton is a former guest of this podcast. Sounds like we need to have him back on. He’s my Allstar this week. Thank you, Dr. Benton. For keeping me in business and helping me keep everyone, including myself, educated.  This one is called, “Surgery for chronic musculoskeletal pain: the question of evidence” authored by Harris et. al(Harris IA 2020). and published in Pain Journal in September of 2020. Blisters!!! I got blisters on my fingers!!! You Beatles fans…..you’ll get it.  Why They Did It They say that globally, the most common reasons surgery is performed relate to the musculoskeletal system, and outside of injury, the most common reasons pertain to arthritis and back or neck pain. AKA – chronic pain. Yes, I love me some chronic pain people! Not suffering from it. Learning about it and treating it.  They say, “Although the surgical treatment of chronic pain generally relies on attributing pain to objective, often visible changes on imaging studies, the causes of chronic pain are more complex and are strongly influenced by psychosocial factors.” Things like Yellow Flags. Go look up yellow flags and Annie O’Connor’s book called World Of Pain please and thank you.  They say that surgeries like debridement of degenerative joints and things of that nature ignore the complexity of chronic pain. They look at surgery as purely mechanistic in nature with little to no involvement otherwise and the procedures often rely on observational evidence only, rather than rigorous, comparative trials.  In addition, they say that when the trials have actually been performed for these surgeries have been mostly subjective and measurements are usually not blinded to reduce the bias of the outcomes.  Do you want yourself or loved ones cut into when the procedure has not been thoroughly investigated, researched, and tested? Uh hell no. No thank you.  This paper was written to demonstrate that observational evidence is not adequate when you consider the costs and risks of surgical intervention. They advocate surgical procedures that should undergo randomized controlled trials with blinding and showing statistical and clinically important symptomatic improvement when compared to no surgery at all.  Wouldn’t you expect that they already do this???? Evidently not. At all, really.  Ultimately in this paper the goal here was to quantify what kind of support exists in the literature for some common procedures.  How They Did It
  • The first thing to do was identify the common procedures performed for chronic pain
  • Secondly, they had to identify the number of published RCTs comparing each procedure to a control group treated without that procedure
  • They did a search of the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials
  • Each paper was reviewed by two independent authors
pastedGraphic.png What They Found
  • A very low proportion of the RCTs on the selected procedures compared the procedure to not performing the procedure. 64 from the more than 6,735 studies. Less than 1% if you’re keeping track. Is that not stunning? And infuriating?
  • Of those 64, only 9 were favorable to surgery. 
  • When considering individual surgical procedures, the majority of comparative trials did not favor surgery 
  • None of the studies using patient blinding for any procedure found it to be significantly better than not having the surgery at all. 
Wrap It Up We conclude that many common surgical procedures performed for musculoskeletal conditions causing chronic pain have not been subjected to randomized trials comparing them to not performing the procedure. Based on the observation that when such studies have been performed, only 14% (on average) showed a statistically significant and clinically important benefit to surgery; there is a need to produce such high-quality evidence to determine the effectiveness of many common surgical procedures.  Furthermore, the production of high-quality evidence should be a requirement before widespread implementation, funding or professional acceptance of such procedures, rather than the current practice of either performing trials after procedures have become commonplace, or not performing comparative trials at all.” Wouldn’t you like it in the year 2020, when we hear bragging about the amazing advances of medical wonders and technology, and sometimes rightfully so…..would you like it if these things that should go unsaid are actually done? Wouldn’t you like to know that your mom’s spinal surgery procedure was fully vetted? It was researched against not doing it at all? They haven’t done that? Seriously? Look, ever heard of phantom limb pain? Just in case, it’s where a limb is amputated. Cut off completely. Yet, it still hurts. Why the hell does something that is gone and no longer exists still hurt? It’s because chronic pain lives as much or more in the brain as it lives in a peripheral source.  So, if you go in and do surgery on arthritis for a chronic pain sufferer, what are the real chances that you got rid of that pain? How many people have arthritis that commonly doesn’t bother them much at all beyond the first 15 or so minutes after they wake up? The answer isn’t precise but it’s probably a hell of a lot if I’m placing bets.  Did you know that if a person has surgery and they’re in chronic pain syndrome that even if the surgery goes perfectly, they will still have a 60% chance of developing pain at the new site of surgery? That’s what happens when you have a sensitized or upregulated central nervous system. It’s on high alert and using pain to make your future decisions and to protect you. You have to turn the volume down on the central nervous system if you’re ever going to control the pain in the brain. It’s actually the MOST IMPORTANT aspect of treating chronic pain.  How many people get surgery when they don’t need it because the arthritis isn’t really the issue. When the issue actually lies withing the limbic system in the brain? To be fair, how many people get adjusted by the chiropractor a million times because they’re trying to pop out the pain? Hell, doing that a million times only deepens the issue.  Don’t get me wrong, there’s SMT benefit in regard to proprioceptive input, sensorimotor function, movement dysfunction, blood flow, and pain modulation but…..beyond a certain point, it will create instability and that will deepen the issue.  I tell new chronic patients that we treat this issue through a combined approach. They must be approaching the issue from a cognitive aspect simultaneously with my physical treatment as well as the exercise/rehab. If we have that comprehensive, three-pronged approach to their condition, we are going to stand a much better chance at getting this sucker under control.  If you’re adjusting and sending them out the door, that’s low-level and borderline ineffective at best. At the worst, with too many appointments, you compound the issue by adding spinal instability to the mix. Too many chiropractors and subluxation slayers just do not understand this concept. They think they’re being specific. The research is pretty clear. You’re adjusting segments at a time. Not one. You’re not that good.  Alright, that’s it. Y’all be safe. Keep changing the world and our profession from your little corner of the world. Continue taking care of yourselves and taking care of your neighbors. Tough times are upon us but, the sun will shine again. Trust it, believe it, count on it. Let’s get to the message. Same as it is every week.  Store Remember the evidence-informed brochures and posters at chiropracticforward.com.   
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The Message I want you to know with absolute certainty that when Chiropractic is at its best, you can’t beat the risk vs reward ratio because spinal pain is primarily a movement-related pain and typically responds better to movement-related treatment rather than chemical treatments like pills and shots. When compared to the traditional medical model, research and clinical experience show us patients can get good to excellent results for headaches, neck pain, back pain, and joint pain to name just a few. It’s safe and cost-effective can decrease surgeries & disability and we do it through conservative, non-surgical means with minimal hassle to the patient. And, if the patient treats preventatively after initial recovery, we can usually keep it that way while raising the overall level of health! Key Point: At the end of the day, patients should have the guarantee of having the best treatment that offers the least harm. When it comes to non-complicated musculoskeletal complaints…. That’s Chiropractic! Contact Send us an email at dr dot williams at chiropracticforward.com and let us know what you think of our show and tell us your suggestions for future episodes.  Feedback and constructive criticism is a blessing and so subscribe and excellent reviews on podcast platforms.  We know how this works by now. If you value something, you have to share it, interact with it, review it, talk about it from time to time, and actively hit a few buttons to support it here and there when asked. It really does make a big difference.  Connect We can’t wait to connect with you again next week. From the Chiropractic Forward Podcast flight deck, this is Dr. Jeff Williams saying upward, onward, and forward. Website
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Social Media Links https://www.facebook.com/chiropracticforward/ Chiropractic Forward Podcast Facebook GROUP https://www.facebook.com/groups/1938461399501889/ Twitter YouTube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtc-IrhlK19hWlhaOGld76Q iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing/id1331554445?mt=2 Player FM Link https://player.fm/series/2291021 Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-chiropractic-forward-podcast-chiropractors-practicing-through TuneIn https://tunein.com/podcasts/Health–Wellness-Podcasts/The-Chiropractic-Forward-Podcast-Chiropractors-Pr-p1089415/ About the Author & Host Dr. Jeff Williams – Fellow of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine – Chiropractor in Amarillo, TX, Chiropractic Advocate, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, Businessman, Marketer, and Healthcare Blogger & Vlogger   Bibliography
  • Harris IA, S. V., Mittal R, Adie S, (2020). “Surgery for chronic musculoskeletal pain: the questions of evidence.” Pain 161(9): S95-S103.
  • Prater C, T. M., Battaglia P, (2020). “Integrating a Multidisciplinary Pain Team and Chiropractic Care in a Community Health Center: An Observational Study of Managing Chronic Spinal Pain.” Journal of Primary Care & Community Health.