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Why Your Medical Doctor Referred You to Integrated Physical Medicine

Many people who seek help from their medical providers for back pain, headaches, neck pain, and other conditions are surprised when they are referred to a chiropractor at Integrated Physical Medicine in Evansville. Those startled patients are often operating with the misconception that chiropractors and medical professionals are still uniformly at odds with one another.

Unfortunately, they are partially correct. In fact, some medical professionals are stuck in the past, either ignoring or ignorant of the research that overwhelmingly shows, in a variety of conditions, the benefits patients receive by working with both medical and chiropractic providers.

For those startled patients that are surprised to be referred to a chiropractor for help with their pain, here are some of the likely reasons you were asked to see us in our Evansville, IN chiropractic office:

Your doctor is practicing state-of-the-art medicine by referring you to a chiropractor; it is a sign that he/she is not stuck in the past.

As recently as 1980, the American Medical Association (AMA) deemed it unethical for MD’s to associate professionally with chiropractors. This practice was based more on an economic concern over losing patient revenues than some principled reading of science. Had a few brave chiropractors not handed the AMA a crushing defeat in federal court on antitrust grounds (where the judge’s ruling noted that:

“…there is some evidence that the Committee on Quackery and the AMA were motivated by economic concerns – there are too many references in the record to chiropractors as competitors to ignore…”,

this economic and political alienation of chiropractic may still be ongoing.

Times have really changed. Now, not only do chiropractors and medical doctors share professional referral relationships, but many times they are training and working side-by-side. Their different philosophies are now melded in a complementary fashion as in two sides of the same coin as opposed to warring factions. In fact, in some of the nation’s finest health care systems (like the University of Pittsburgh Medical Centers) patients MUST seek chiropractic care before they are approved for many spine surgeries.

Your medical provider has made you and your recovery (not their ego and/or pocketbook) their top priority by referring you to Integrated Physical Medicine for chiropractic care.

Your provider has kept up with the research and treatment guidelines. For example:

  • The US Department of Health and Human Services’ non-partisan Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR) released their treatment guidelines for acute low back pain in which they concluded that spinal manipulation (i.e., chiropractic adjustments) should be used in most cases, and especially before pursuing a surgical intervention. In their review of the research, they saw little value in prescription medications in this group of patients. (Acute Low Back Problems in Adults. Clinical Practice Guidelines. Bigos S, et al. Agency for Health Care Policy and Research Publication No. 950642 (1994) – U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.)
  • Similarly, the Canadian government funded the largest single analysis of all the available scientific literature on low back pain ever completed which came to be known as The Manga Report, named after the lead author. This study drew international attention when it recommended that the initial management of ALL low back pain be transitioned from medical doctors to chiropractors. They also noted that “spinal manipulation when performed by chiropractors” provided the most cost-effective, safe and efficacious care for low back pain. (The Effectiveness and Cost-Effectiveness of Chiropractic Management of Low-Back Pain (The Manga Report). Pran Manga and Associates (1993) – University of Ottawa, Canada.)

So you see, by referring you to an Evansville chiropractor, they are demonstrating their knowledge of the latest research and their commitment to practicing evidence-based medicine.

Your medical provider is aware that Integrated Physical Medicine will put you and your recovery first and not their ego or pocketbook.

Our chiropractors similarly practice in adherence to the latest practice guidelines, which assures you that you will either improve rapidly or will be referred for additional testing and/or consultations with other health care providers. Our doctors maintain relationships with the top neurosurgical and orthopedic programs in the region. The MD/DC referral paradigm goes both ways and our doctors facilitate consultations with the finest doctors in Evansville, or in particularly tough cases, our doctors work with physicians at Vanderbilt University, Washington University, The Cleveland Clinic, The Mayo Clinic, the University of Louisville and Indiana University.

“Do I need a referral to see a chiropractor?”

The short answer is, “No!”

The licensing of DC’s virtually everywhere in the USA, including that of chiropractors in Evansville, IN, gives us a similar scope of practice to that of a general practice medical practitioner, (e.g., Family Medicine) except we use no drugs or surgery! Just like those family practitioners, doctors of chiropractic enjoy direct access to patients and have at their disposal all the same diagnostic tests.

The bottom line for you: the best health care possible exists when health care providers from all disciplines and philosophies work together. In short, THAT is why you were referred to an Evansville, IN chiropractor.

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