Why Medical Doctors Think Chiropractic Doesn’t Work

This is a very important topic I am going to write about today. This still comes up occasionally in our office, but in reality not that much anymore. I have more medical doctors as patients now than I ever have in 11 years of practice. After having discussions with them and thinking about this topic, I have answers as to why medical doctors think chiropractic doesn’t work. 

Let’s start by telling a story. Say John comes to my office because he is experiencing terrible back pain and has been diagnosed with a herniated disc. I examine John and agree with the diagnosis and lay out a plan of action for him that includes chiropractic care. We start our treatment plan and lets say one of two things happens: 1) John doesn’t follow my recommendations, things like not doing his homework, not keeping his frequency of visits or just becoming impatient and feeling like he’s not healing as fast as he’d like (these are the most common) or 2) John follows our recommendations but does not symptomatically get better. In either of these scenarios he goes to his Medical Doctor next. He tells the medical doctor all the things he has tried to get better, which includes chiropractic, but he is still in pain. The MD hears this and thinks or even says out loud, “I’m not surprised, chiropractic doesn’t work.”

Medicine’s Viewpoint

Let’s think about this from the MD’s viewpoint. When someone makes an appointment to see the MD it is because they are STILL having symptoms or pain. The only patients the MD sees are the ones who have not been helped by chiropractic. Of course he will believe chiropractic doesn’t work, that’s all he sees in his office is the “chiropractic failure cases.” The hundreds of thousands of people who do get better from chiropractic are not making appointments to see their MD. The MD’s never get to hear all of the success stories that we see and hear on a daily basis! Look, S#$@ happens. Not everyone gets 100% relief from chiropractic, but we have an AMAZING track record. In 11 years of practice I can count on one hand how many patients I had to refer out for surgery because chiropractic was not getting them better.

The Flip Side of The Coin

The reverse of the above story is also very common. Most people who come to see me tried the medical route without success or the results they wanted…that is why they are in my office! I stay open minded and realize that this does NOT mean that Medical Doctors and/or medicine does not work! It’s all about perspective. See my previous blog post on why seeking chiropractic first for pain is your better option HERE


After reading this brief blog post, can you now see why Medical Doctors Think Chiropractic Doesn’t Work? Next time your Medical Doctor gives you advice on Chiropractic, keep in mind this is like asking your dentist what you should do about your hemorrhoids! Most MD’s just don’t know what it is we do. I would never advise someone on their medications because that is not what I do! If you want to know if chiropractic is right for you, the best way to decide is visit your local chiropractor. If you are in Chicago, call me at (773)545-9379 and mention this blog post to receive a complimentary first consultation with me.

Yours in Health,

Dr. Steven Bourdage DC



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