Dr. Gray's Straight Talk

Honest and blunt healthcare discussion and advice.

Does Chiropractic Care Cause Strokes?

Posted by Dr. Gray on Thursday, September 11, 2008

Over the past several years, there has been a concerted effort by certain industries to give the impression that chiropractic care in the neck is dangerous. Obviously, the majority of these efforts can be traced back to individuals or industries who have a financial interest in taking patients away from chiropractic care, or in making chiropractic look bad. The point is, don’t believe everything you read and ask yourself, “Who has my best interest in mind?” Remember… follow the money.

Many of you who are patients of mine, or are patients of other chiropractors, have heard me discuss this issue many times. I have told you, and provided independent evidence and research articles, that the risk of having a stroke following a chiropractic is about 1 in a million. Well… I was wrong. The risk is actually 1 in 5.85 million!

Let’s put that in perspective. According to the National Safety Council, your odds of dying from tripping or stumbling is 1 in 6,455. Yours odds of dying by accidental drowning in your bathtub is 1 in 9,377. Your odds of dying due to the ignition or melting of your nightwear is 1 in 538,523. Your odds of dying from a lightning strike is 1 in 81,949. However, a research paper published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal found there is only a 1 in 5,850,000 risk that a chiropractic neck adjustment will cause a stroke. This means that you are seventy times more likely to die from a lightning strike than you are likely to have a vascular event after manipulation.

New findings published recently in the prestigious medical research journal, Spine, found that patients are no more likely to suffer a stroke following a visit to a chiropractor than they would after stepping into their family doctor’s office. In fact, it mentioned that you are just as likely to suffer a stroke if you turn your head to check traffic while driving.

“We didn’t see any increased association between chiropractic care and usual family physician care, and the stroke,” said Frank Silver, one of the researchers and also a professor of medicine at the University of Toronto and director of the University Health Network stroke program. “The association occurs because patients tend to seek care when they’re having neck pain or headache, and sometimes they go to a chiropractor, sometimes they go to a physician. But we didn’t see an increased likelihood of them having this type of stroke after seeing a chiropractor.” The conclusions of the report basically state that the stroke or damaged artery has most likely already occurred… that’s why the patient sought treatment with the physician.

Well, I thought this was going to be a short little blurb. Sorry, I’ve run on too long. I just want to reiterate the importance of putting things in perspective. “News” stories and stuff on the television are driven by money, and the billion$ being spent on advertising. Do your own research, think for yourself, and you’ll be able to see through many of the myths that are being fed to you through the media.


4 Responses to “Does Chiropractic Care Cause Strokes?”

  1. Thankyou for this article . We really need people to know how valuable good
    chirapractic care is.
    Barbie Edwards

  2. Great job in getting this information out. Chiropractic often provides superior results for many types of conditions and is very safe! That is why our malpractice is only $1500/year compared to 80K for a Neurosurgeon. Check out over 75 scientific studies here, http://www.ourchiropractic.com. I am a Scranton Chiropractor in Pennsylvania and very proud of my profession and our work. Keep up the good job! – Glenn Czulada DC

  3. I agree. I was in a fender bender and my primary care physician who has been my doc for over 24 years refused to send me to a chiropractor when I requested to see one. My neck and back hurt and he sent me to a physical therapist who was having my lift weights and do other excercises that were putting a tremendous amount of tensiona and pain to the my neck, shoulders and back because my spine was out of alignment. Well I found out later that the physical therapist he sent me to was his wife. I was pissed because he jeopardized my health for $$. He also prescribed me three different pills that only masked my sympotms and gave my side affects instead of getting to the root of the problem, which was my spinal cord.

  4. sandrar said

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

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