Confessions of a Quackbuster

This blog deals with healthcare consumer protection, and is therefore about quackery, healthfraud, chiropractic, and other forms of so-Called "Alternative" Medicine (sCAM).

Monday, September 20, 2004

Eva Cassidy: Legendary Singer

Eva Cassidy: Legendary Singer Posted by Hello

Check out all the improvments I've made to my Eva Cassidy blog:

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Chiropractors need re-education!

The following is written by a former chiropractor who is now a medical student [all emphasis - PL]:

I can vouch for the need for re-education! Although I tried to practice an evidence based practice model for treating mechanical spinal conditions as a chiropractor, I found that because in my chiropractic training I had not been exposed to actual sick patients and never seen people with medical conditions that cause spinal pain and headaches (90% all visits to chiropractors, after all) , my management of patients tended to look for red flags that I had never actually seen, looking for diagnosis that I didn't really consider too likely to happen.

Looking back, I'm glad that I never missed anything big! It seems ridiculous to put somebody in a position professionally to be looking for something they have never actually seen! One trip to the neuro-ICU is all it would take to see it all, that that never happens in chiropractic training.

In medical school I have seen people with upgoing Babinski's, clonus, hyper-reflexia or arreflexia, non-responsive pupils, night pain, fevers, chills, cranial nerve palsies etc etc that I only ever read about in books when I was in chiropractic college. Now that I have seen these things and realize that they do happen and what it actually looks like, I feel confident that I would actually recognize these things when I see them again and have a good understanding of the proper work-up for these signs and symptoms. My chiropractic training did not do this for me, and as a result I had a very skewed view on things.

The chiropractic approach is basically to determine one thing: can this person have spinal manipulation or not? The chiropractic marketing gurus convince chiropractors that EVERYBODY needs it, no matter how the patient presents. Chiropractors actually start to believe it the more they hear it and tell each other this.

For supposedly being "neuro-musculo-skeletal specialists" I realize now how limited my clincal training as a chiropractor was. It really is a joke in my opinion. Chiropractic clinical exposure in chiro college is very limited, mostly restricted to well people with a mechancial problem. There is very little teaching about rehab exercise at all. So much emphasis is placed on the almighty adjustment it is just ridiculous.

There is an underlying mistrust of the medical profession permeates throughout chiropractic, which I feel is because of this isolation in training from the rest of the health care professions. Chiropractors, in my opinion, do not truly understand sickness and disease since they work with mostly healthy people who have a simple mechanical problem for the most part. I know that I didn't appreciate as much about health and disease as a chiropractor that now I am gaining in my medical education. PT's see a lot in hospital rotations, so they understand more about pathological conditions than chiropractors. I think if chiropractors ever had the chance to do hospital rotations that a lot of the misunderstandings about the medical profession that chiropractors have would lessen; and if chiropractors would just admit that they have a very limited scope of practice and stick to it, most MD's wouldn't have big issues with people with back pain trying a few manipulations.


For more information on chiropractic:


Thursday, September 09, 2004

The elusive chiropractic "subluxation"

The following is written by a chiropractor who has discovered what a scam he has been involved in:

I have great memories of the first time I experienced "subluxation diagnosis" at Life University.

I was a wide-eyed, idealistic chiro convert in first quarter. I went to some club (maybe Mo-Pal?) and some upper quarter student "analyzed" me.

I had just gotten adjusted that afternoon by my field doc and I thought he was going to be impressed by how I was subluxation-free. (At that time, I thought that subluxations were real, verifiable, etc.)

He was pleased to tell me that he had found many, many subluxations in my spine. I was horrified. What had my field doc been doing for two years? Don't worry, the upper quarter student said, everyone has subluxations all the time, it's normal.

Huh? I was so confused. How could everyone have subluxations all the time? We're they silently dying from these Killer Subluxations?

Next, I went to Full Spine club. I was finally going to find out a little about the complex, scientific analysis that chiros used to find subluxations. But when I got there, it was basically just a bunch of people who would find a few muscle spasms and then CRACK ! I asked them, in panic, how they were sure that areas of muscle tightness were really subluxations. Their answer: Oh sure, they're probably subluxations. Muscle spams are a component of Vertebral Subluxation Complex.

At that time, I still thought subluxations were REAL FINDINGS and didn't realize they were a dime a dozen and every chiropractor could find different listings on the same exact patient.

The funniest thing I ever remember was in some class (maybe Thompson or Activator) where the teacher was telling us to adjust based on a leg check. I remember some student asking, "But what if the X-RAY LISTINGS are different than the leg check?"

I just had to laugh. At that time, I still believed in chiropractic but knew that most chiros didn't use the x-rays for anything except a patient scare tactic. Not only that, but x-ray listings were bogus due to x-ray distortion, spinal asssymetry, among a million other things. Worse, chiropractic adjustments do not change x-rays listings.

So, I, even still a chiro believer, just had to laugh. How could my classmate in 9th or 10th quarter still actually believe that Gonstead style x-rays listings were valid or important? How could he actually believe, after all the contradictions we'd seen, that subluxations were real and not just one particular doctor's imagination (vs. another doctor's imagination)? It was like a 20 year old who still believed in the Easter Bunny.

It always amazes me that students can't see the obvious when they look at all the contradictory techniques and analysis system. The reason that practically anybody can invent their own technique system is because you are dealing with a mythological entity. That's why any New Age guru can invent their own "healing energy" system.

You say atlas is out, he says sacrum is the primary. Who cares? Let's all be friends. No one really BELIEVES in this junk anyway, right? Let's just jump through the hoops so we can get out there and pay back these loans!


For more of an understanding of the inner workings of chiropractic, read Chirotalk.

This blog is an affiliate site of Confessions of a Quackbuster & The Quack-Files

Sunday, September 05, 2004

Josh Groban, another talented singer

Here's another talented singer.

Josh's website
It is best viewed with a screen resolution of 1064 x 768

There are several things you can do on this page:

(a) Click on "music" and then "play a song" (up to the right) and listen to several songs. Be patient. It may take time to download the songs.

Songs I especially like:

"You're Still You"
"To Where You Are"

(b) Click "watch" and see videos, especially the bottom one (National Anthem).

He sings "The Star Spangled Banner" in an exceptionally beautiful arrangement. It gives me goose bumps! Maybe that's because I'm an expatriate American, who still considers the USA to be the greatest nation on earth, not in spite of its imperfections, but because of the American way of striving to correct those imperfections. Without America, the world would not know freedom, democracy, equal rights, human rights, etc.

Other good links:

Rising Star

A Star in the Making
Who Is Josh Groban?
By Bob Brown

April 12 — With just a few hour's notice, Josh Groban, an unknown singer still in his teens, suddenly found himself on stage in a duet with Celine Dion — but he didn't think he could sing in the right key.

"I thought to myself, 'Maybe one day I'll have a big break, but I don't want it to be like this,'" Groban remembers. "I didn't want to go in there unprepared."

But he had to. Dion was due to sing with Andrea Bocelli that night at the 1999 Grammy Awards, and Bocelli couldn't make the rehearsal. Groban was his stand-in, and, Dion says, he did better than all right. "This young man comes on stage almost going backward he was so scared," remembers Dion. "He took the microphone, and when he started to sing, he couldn't be any more powerful than that. … This kid was incredible!"

His career started to take off. A guest-starring role on Ally McBeal won him national attention last year and then, two months ago, he had a major international appearance at the closing ceremonies of the Salt Lake City Olympics, singing with Charlotte Church before a worldwide audience estimated at 1.6 billion people.

(There's more.....)

On the Brink of Stardom
Transcript: Singing Sensation Josh Groban

Google search: Josh Groban

This blog is an affiliate site of Confessions of a Quackbuster & The Quack-Files