History of Chiropractic

Crosby Chiropractic St. Peters

History of Chiropractic

The roots of chiropractic care can be traced all the way back to the beginning of
recorded time. Writings from China and Greece written between 2700 B.C. and 1500
B.C. mention spinal manipulation (Tui Na) and describe the positioning and moving of
the legs to ease low back pain. Hippocrates, a Greek physician, who lived from 460 to
357 B.C., published texts detailing the importance of spinal care. He wrote, "Get
knowledge of the spine, for this is the requisite for many diseases."
In the United States, the practice of spinal manipulation started to gain momentum in
the late nineteenth century. From its inception chiropractic has recognized the vital
importance of the nervous system and has not separated what the nervous system is
responsible for from the treatment of the bony spinal structure that protects it. In
Davenport Iowa, in 1895, Daniel David Palmer founded “Chiropractic” (from the Greek
words Cheir = hand and Praxis = to treat) as a healing art after helping the janitor in his
building regain some of his hearing with what is considered in chiropractic circles to be
the first adjustment. Daniel David Palmer was very well versed in the information written
in medical journals of his era and he also had great knowledge of developments that
were occurring through the world regarding anatomy and physiology. After treating the
janitor and another patient with heart issues, he wrote "I had a case of heart trouble
which was not improving. I examined the spine and found a displaced vertebra pressing
against the nerves which innervate the heart. I adjusted the vertebra and gave
immediate relief — nothing "accidental" or "crude" about this. Then I began to reason if
two diseases, so dissimilar as deafness and heart trouble, came from impingement, a
pressure on nerves, were not other disease due to a similar cause?”
The science (knowledge) and art (adjusting) of Chiropractic were formed at that time. In
1897, Daniel David Palmer established the Palmer School of Chiropractic, which
continues to be one of the most prominent chiropractic colleges in the United States.
Through the twentieth century, doctors of chiropractic gained legal recognition in all fifty
states and in the Canadian provinces. Recognition and respect for chiropractic in North
America has resulted in growing support for chiropractic care globally. International
research also yields positive scientific results for chiropractic which have changed,
shaped and molded todays perceptions of chiropractic care. A 1979, The New Zealand
Report strongly supported the efficacy of chiropractic care and resulted in the

integration of chiropractic and medical care in that country. The 1993 Manga study
published in Canada investigated the cost effectiveness of chiropractic care. The results
of this study concluded that chiropractic care would save the Canadian government
hundreds of millions of dollars annually with regard to work disability payments and
direct health care costs if chiropractic were used first with low back pain.
Today’s chiropractors frequently treat individuals with neuromusculoskeletal symptoms
such as headaches, neck and low back pain, sciatica and other joint pains.
Chiropractors also treat osteoarthritis, spinal disk conditions, carpal tunnel syndrome,
tendonitis, sprains, and strains. However, the scope of conditions that Doctors of
chiropractic manage or provide care for is not limited to neuromusculoskeletal disorders.
Chiropractors also have the training to diagnose and treat a variety of nonneuro-
musculoskeletal conditions like allergies, asthma, digestive disorders, non-suppurative
otitis media. As additional research is done, getting chiropractic for these conditions
may become as normal as seeing your chiropractor for neck or low back pain!

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