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To ask your views on chiropractor

(43 Posts)
swarskicat Sun 02-Mar-14 19:19:11

I have had bad and next problems for about 15 years. Had physiotherapy and osteopathy, both of which helped briefly.

My back went really badly in January and a few people suggested a chiropractor, so thought that I would give it a try,

I rang my local one to make an appointment and they directed me to Groupon where they had a deal. You pay £29 and get:
1. An initial consultation, including x-rays
2. A review of said x-rays and an initial 'adjustment'
3. A workshop on spinal care, posture and how great chiropractors are
4. Another 'adjustment' and consultation on what care package they recommend.

The initial consultation was ok, but the chiropractor 'Dr Alex' was a bit scruffy (not that that matters in itself), could not maintain eye contact and spent most of the time staring out the window. He said that my right shoulder was higher than my left, thought I need inserts (i already wear them) and my head was stuck forward.

Second consultation - x-rays show that I have stage 1-2 misalignment of my neck and early stages of arthritis. Bottom of my back is fine. One hip turns in, making one leg longer than the other. He did some initial 'adjustments'. The workshop was ok, bit patronising but interesting.

Now for the question. I am due to go back on Wednesday for the final session I have paid for and I am sure that he is going to want me to sign up for a 'care package'. He has already suggested that this will involve about 3 adjustments a week for about 6 months then maintenance. I am not sure about this. It is a huge amount of money, the cracking of my next made me feel sick (although did ease stiffness) and I am not sure I trust the guy.

Any thoughts, experiences that may help? There seem to be lots of people on here who swear by they chiropractor, but any other experiences?

Umbongolongo Sun 02-Mar-14 19:24:38

3 visits A WEEK??!
I wouldn't visit a chirpractor if you paid me to. Physio yes, osteopath yes.
People may have other views, but knowing what training a physio and osteopath has to go through compared to a chiropractor... No way.

Can you get some more physio? See if your GP will refer you if you don't have a self referral service. And get your inserts checked by a physio too. Having one leg slightly longer than the other is very common, so don't worry too much.

Crowler Sun 02-Mar-14 19:26:49

I object to "woo" but I do occasionally go to the chiro when I have a pinched something or other in my neck or back. There's always a bit of sales talk, but I go 1x when I'm in pain and nothing else.

It seems to work, who knows.

I would avoid any large package - that sounds like snake oil to me.

Umbongolongo Sun 02-Mar-14 19:26:59

By the way, the 'cracking' of any vertebrae is NOT going to re-align your neck/spine. If it was that easy, there would be no need for any spinal surgery! Our bones are made of tougher stuff than that.

noblegiraffe Sun 02-Mar-14 19:29:21

Chiropractic is quackery, with a potential to be dangerous if they aren't careful.

Don't sign up to anything you aren't happy with.

heather1 Sun 02-Mar-14 19:29:44

My friend went to a chiro. He gave her a stroke when he manipulated her.
IMO osteopath is the way to go.
Go with your instincts.
A good Osteo will give you exercises for you back that you can do at home

RandomMess Sun 02-Mar-14 19:30:12

The cracking is the sound of air being pushed out the joint. An osteopath works more on the soft tissue to ease all the tensions that are pulling/affecting the area to make it as "normal" as possible.

Not sure I like the sound of your Chiro tbh.

swarskicat Sun 02-Mar-14 19:35:08

Thanks, you have reinforced my thoughts. I feel that I should not be allowing someone I don't trust completely to move my spine about! The x-ray did show my neck bones curving forward instead of backwards though - so maybe I should look more into postural exercises and I may get a neck support pillow.

His patter in the workshop sounded very much like a sales pitch to me.

bigredtractor Sun 02-Mar-14 19:36:35

I had to 'break up' with my chiropractor when he wouldn't take no for an answer about repeat visits.

I had a specific short term problem which I felt had got much better. But he / the practice still kept on about twice weekly visits at ££ per time. I dodged their calls in the end - crazy behaviour all round.

If you're concerned by their manner I'd avoid him / them. And any practitioner that points you towards a groupon-type deal would ring alarm bells with me. Could you ask for local recommendations elsewhere?

kukeslala Sun 02-Mar-14 19:37:01

I went to chiro, best thing I ever did and other things I had tried did not work.
Thats a very intensive course of treatment! I had 2 a week for 2 weeks and then one for the next week, one a fortnight for a few weeks and it kept increasing.
If that is a "set package", my chiro hates them as its not a one size fits all thing.

Musicaltheatremum Sun 02-Mar-14 19:37:54

I hate the way they do X-rays. I'm not sure of the dose but spinal X-rays are severely restricted in the NHS because the radiation dose. All your malalignments can be helped with posture and excersise so agree osteopath or physiotherapist.

likeneverbefore Sun 02-Mar-14 19:42:52

If they qualify at the AECC college place they basically do 6 years of medical degree. The only bit they don't do is prescribing, so not sure I agree that an Osteopath or Physio is going to be better qualified.

I've been to one, it helped but it was expensive.

noblegiraffe Sun 02-Mar-14 19:51:55

Ask for references to clinical trials that show chiropractic to be more effective than placebo.

paxtecum Sun 02-Mar-14 19:55:15

I go to a McTimoney chiroprator.
She is brilliant and in no way pushy.
I go once or twice per year.

Three adjustments per week is far, far too many.

Is your chiropractor a McTimoney one?

A physio manipulated my neck and gave me a trapped nerve.
I ended up on morphine tablets.

I would only trust a McTimoney chiropractor as their method is very gentle.

noblegiraffe Sun 02-Mar-14 19:56:57

In fact, here's the latest Cochrane review of the evidence for treating low back pain

sykadelic15 Sun 02-Mar-14 20:13:32

I had some back pain and my chiro fixed it. I would go see her again but it IS $$. I prefer massage combined with chiro.

Bellini81 Sun 02-Mar-14 20:19:37

I used to work for a chiropractor in North London who sounds like Dr Alex, is this the area? If so he is just after your money with the care package which is hundreds of pounds and knows that you don't really need 3x sessions a week

Umbongolongo Sun 02-Mar-14 20:23:48

McTimoney 'chiropractors' have been in the spotlight recently, and it is common to see them refereeing to themselves as mctimoney practitioners, not chiropractors. In fact a quick google shows my local one makes a point on her website in the bio of saying she is NOT a chiropractor, but instead an 'accredited mctimoney practitioner'.
Tread very carefully, which ever way you go.
My physio works for a private company. My nhs trust contract out physio services. She is brilliant, and can do manipulation that an nhs physio is simply not trained to do.
You were very unlucky to get a trapped nerve during manipulation. This is a risk with any manipulation and could have happened during an osteopath or chiro treatment too no doubt.
The main point is that physios and osteos incorporate the muscular systems into their treatment. My physio wouldn't dream of 'cracking' my neck without having first warmed up my neck/shoulders and massaged out points.

Nojustalurker Sun 02-Mar-14 20:25:32

After a car crash a few year ago I woke up one day in agony and unable to stand up straight. I had three appointments a week for the first two weeks but bearing in mind I would not drive, walk, go to work ect.

I now see her about once every two months. Cost €27 per session.

swarskicat Sun 02-Mar-14 20:28:47

It is a Backtohealth clinic - I think that it is franchise? And yes he is new to this clinic, the people on the website are different to the people that I met at the clinic. I think he said he used to work in Kingston most recently. He is tall (over 6") and an ex-professional rugby player before becoming a chiropractor. There is just something a bit dodgy about him. Am now thinking that I will not go back on Thursday.

Inglori0us Sun 02-Mar-14 20:33:11

I had a few months of chiropractic treatment which vastly improved a chronic back and hip problem that physio hadn't helped at all. Osteopath had given me short term relief only.
My chiropractor was very professional and gave me no sales pitch. I paid for treatment as I went along. I also did a course of rehab through the practice which was excellent.

Inglori0us Sun 02-Mar-14 20:35:26

Swarskicat I used Morten Neilson at the Wolff Clinic. He has a practice in Richmond and another in Purley. He was excellent.

Refoca Sun 02-Mar-14 20:40:40

I saw a back to health person, he did make some improvements to me but I found him quite objectional as a person. He spent his entire time trying to worry me, call me a liar or put down other professionals.

swarskicat Sun 02-Mar-14 20:40:59

Ok - think the message here is to find a more reputable chiropractor. There are 2 others locally so think I will try one of them, as despite my misgivings, it seems logical and my neck does feel eased.

WorkingBling Sun 02-Mar-14 20:41:53

I am a very big fan of chiropractic. But would never consider using one without a personal recommendation and never in a situation like this ie groupon etc

Have you checked that he is registered with British chiropractic association?

It's quite intense so you should not go to anyone you feel uncomfortable with.

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