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Are Physical Therapists Stealing “Manipulation”?

Doctors, do you see the line between what we do as Chiropractors and what Physical Therapists do, becoming blurred? What has your experience been? (posted by: Admin)

5 Responses to “Are Physical Therapists Stealing “Manipulation”?”

  1. Recently I received a e-newsletter from SpineUniverse.com.
    It’s mostly a medically oriented website, but occasionally has some good info.
    I followed the link to a article with this teasing title:
    Herniated disc and sciatica: How to find pain relief…
    As I scanned the article, my eye caught the authors recomendations and quotes as follows:

    1) “Since you want to get the best treatment for your pain and other symptoms, you should get a personalized exercise plan from a physical therapist.” (are they allowed to say “BEST TREATMENT“?)
    2) “I would recommend you see a physical therapist…” (I thought a Doctor’s referral was necessary to see a P.T. — am I mistaken?)
    3) “I strongly encourage you to make an appointment as soon as possible with a physical therapist.” (Don’t I need to see a doctor first?)

    I wasn’t surprised to learn the author was a P.T. but I was surprised when I read his biography which announced his Doctorate of Physical Therapy (DPT) giving him doctor status, and that he “has a certificate in Spinal Manual Therapy and is a certified orthopedic manual therapist”. What is that??
    p.s. he’s from Wilmington, DE

    If the lines of definition between physical therapy, doctorates & title degrees, certified orthopedic manual therapist, physiatrists, and Doctors of Chiropractic, seemed blurred to me (and you?) what do you think the laypublic believes or understands the true distinction between us is? I’ve been called a “glorified massage therapist” by antagonists. Sure we see that as ignorance, but isn’t ignorance due to a lack of education?

    Do you think this is the time to create new legislation to try and reign in the attempt of PTs to expand into what I think is OUR domain, by statute, if I’m not mistaken??. Or do we need some kind of action/communication between the licenseing boards? No one wants to make enemies, but we’ve got to protect our profession, don’t we? Maybe we could even launch a public education promotion of CHIROPRACTORS as “the best and only doctors qualified to (fill in the blank)”. I’m not sure of the proper wording, but you get my drift?

    I hope to see you all at the 3/26 DCS meeting.

  2. As I re-read my initial comment it dawned on me… “WHAT is it, that WE ARE THE BEST AT and MOST QUALIFIED to do”? (THAT should light up the phonelines!!)

  3. Scott Schreiber says:

    Pt’s want to become the only Doctors of musculoskeletal medicine. However, Chiropractors that do evidence based rehab do it better. The stereotype that many Pt’s and MD’s seem to believe is that chiropractors only do manipulation ALL The time even when it is not indicated. This stereotype needs to be addressed in Delaware possibly by a media campaign? Ideas?

  4. Emily Swonguer says:

    This is a very touchy subject for me as I see the PT/DC lines getting blurred more and more around the country as well as with patients who have been previously seen at a PT clinic and are getting “adjustments” on a regular basis by the PT or in the case of my military patients, the PTs are adjusting them there as well despite the trials of getting more DCs into military treatment facilities. In doing some research I wanted to look at the DC/PT issue because of the growing accusations of us as DCs doing “PT” without a license (despite therapeutic procedures, exercises, and modalities being within our training and scope) couldn’t it be said that PTs are “practicing chiropractic” without a license. IN THE STATE OF DELAWARE there is NO LIMITATION of mobilization for PTs, specifically that a “MANIPULATION = Grade 5 MOBILIZATION” so since there is nothing in their scope that says they can’t perform a grade 5 mobilization then as long as they don’t call it a manipulation they can do whatever they want and patients don’t know the difference!!!!! Pennsylvania has put into their legislation successfully that blocks PTs from performing manipulations/grade 5 mobilizations and I think that it is time that we do the same so that NO patients OR doctors are confused thinking that a PT = DC

  5. Dr. Camp was kind enough to make some good points at the 3/26 meeting as to why this issue might better be left alone. If you missed the meeting, sorry. I think the next meeting will be combined with The Network meeting scheduled for 4/21 in Dover. Hope to see you’all there.

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