Ask the chiropractor- are Chiropractors Doctors? Dr Hulsebus breaks down this question in this week's ask the chiropractor. #healthy815 #icachiropractor #PalmerProud
- Hi, I'm Dr. Brant Hulsebus, chiropractor. Coming at you today with another episode of Ask The Chiropractor. Ask The Chiropractor is our little podcast that we do here. When somebody has a question about chiropractic or chiropractic care or chiropractors, we try to answer the question for you. A lot of times you'll have or somebody will have a question about chiropractic care and they'll want to ask their family doctor or who they think is their primary healthcare provider a question about the chiropractor before going. And I'm here to tell you that most primary medical doctors have no training or education on what chiropractors do or don't do or why we do or what we don't do. And they're probably a really bad source to ask, cause they're uneducated on the topic. And so if you have a question about chiropractic or chiropractor, you should always ask the chiropractor. Just as if you had a question about your teeth, you would ask a dentist, not a podiatrist. So today's question, are chiropractors real doctors? We get asked this question a lot. Not so much in the office, but out in public. So are chiropractors real doctors? Let's break this question down. Let's go to top to bottom, front to back with this. Okay, first, what's a real doctor? Define a real doctor for me. Is Dr. Jill Biden, the Vice President's wife, our First Lady, is she a real doctor? She has a doctrine, so therefore you get the title doctor. So, I went to Palmer College of Chiropractic. Matter of fact, I was there over the weekend for the 125th anniversary of the school opening. 125 years, this school's been producing chiropractors, giving them a doctrine of chiropractic. So do I have a doctorate? Yes. Does that make me have the title doctor? Yes. Is that why chiropractors go by doctor? Yes. Is my school accredited? Is chiropractic schools real schools? Well, absolutely they are. They're completely accredited. The same people that are accredited chiropractic schools are the same ones that are accredited medical schools, dental schools, the osteopath schools, everything else under the sun. Every other type of school, the same accrediting agency as the United States Department of Education oversees our education. We have certain educational requirements in order to have the actual curriculum. The school must be able to pass national boards. If you cannot pass national boards, if the students that graduate do not, the school goes on academic probation. There's a school nearby here that just went through this, that their students had a hard time passing one of the national boards, therefore the school was placed on academic probation for not being up to par. So we're always being watched. We're always being monitored. I'm happy to say that school is not my school, Palmer. It was a different school, but yes. So is the education real? Yes. Do we have a real college campus? Yes. (laughs) We definitely have a real college campus. We have a beautiful college campus, right in downtown Davenport. Next time you're at Davenport, go up Brady Street hill, take a look at it. Brady Street's a one way, so the only way you can go is uphill. So go down to the river, come up Brady street hill, take a look at our campus. It's something to be very proud of, that we offer Bachelor's degrees in science. And we also offer the doctrine of chiropractic at Palmer College. So in order to become a chiropractor here in the state of Illinois, I had to complete 90 hours of prerequisites. And then I completed chiropractic school. I graduated chiropractic school with a Bachelor's of Science and a Doctrine of Chiropractic. So in chiropractic school, it's 10 trimesters long, 30 some hours, so we cram five some years into three some years. So we graduate with a complete doctrine. So are we real doctors? Well, we have a doctrine. The next question is a lot of people say, "Well, you're not real doctors because our real doctor has to be able to prescribe medicine." So if this is your only measuring stick to whether someone's a real doctor or not, then I'll say we're not real doctors. We don't prescribe medicine. So, but there's a lot of healthcare providers don't prescribe medicine. Mental health fields. There's a lot of mental health fields that don't prescribe medicine. The ability to prescribe medicine does not make one a doctor. I understand in Illinois, we have marijuana dispensaries. You can go in and tell the guy behind the counter what you want and they'll pull out a certain kind of marijuana for you. That's a drug, does that make them a doctor? I don't think so, but that's a thing, right? Or you can go to a health food store and you can talk to them about what you're going through and the person behind the health food counter will give you different supplements or some people call those drugs. Does that make them a medical doctor or a real doctor? I would say not. So if the ability to prescribe drugs makes someone a real doctor, in your opinion, then a chiropractor would not be a real doctor. And you're very limited on the fact of who can be your doctor and who cannot. Is having an MD degree the only way to become a real doctor? Well, my dentist friends, optometrist friends, podiatrist friends would all be highly offended by that too. And my veterinarian friends, right? Let's be honest. Next is, you know, a lot of doctors I go to, a lot of my friends who are doctors in the field of medicine, they're not even MDs. They're DOs, doctors of osteopath. Doctors of osteopath started in St. Louis, Missouri, a couple years before chiropractic did. And in the beginning, there was no difference between chiropractic and the osteopath and the philosophy behind the means to an end, that the osteopaths believed they were manipulating bones in order to free up the blood flow. Chiropractors knew they were just in the spine in order to create nervous flow. So they started off very, very similar but DOs decided to join the AMA and chiropractors decided not to join the AMA. And that's how we started to separate, be different. The chiropractors didn't want to join the AMA cause we were afraid that in time, you wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a DC and an MD. Today, I have a challenge. You can't decipher the difference between a DO and MD, most of the time. I'm not putting either one of them down, I'm just saying they're very, very similar. Again, most of my friends that I see are Dos, not MDs. And I didn't even know that until after I went there. So, I hope that answers your question, are chiropractors real doctors are not. So, in the state of Illinois, I can tell you that we are licensed healthcare providers. The exact same licensing board as any other MD or DO. The licensing board in Illinois has, I believe eight members. And one of them is a DC. The rest of them are MDs and DOs. So if I got in trouble, had to go in front of the board, it would be the exact same board as my medical friends, exact same people. If I had a question about how to obtain a license, that board is the exact same also in Illinois. A lot of states, matter of fact 49 states have a separate chiropractic board, but in Illinois we do not. In Illinois, we are licensed medical providers that cannot prescribe nor do surgery. That's the limitations on our license. So same licensing board, same rule committee, actually even the same rules. Like we had to do, when I graduated, we do part one, two, three national boards and we had to have the same success failure rate as MDs. The exact same roles apply to both of us in order to get licensed in Illinois. Exact same classroom hours are required both for MD and DC in Illinois. So I'm a licensed healthcare provider in Illinois, as required in the exact same testing requirements and graduation requirements and schooling requirements as an MD. So does that make me a real doctor? Well, the state of Illinois seems to think so. That's why I'm a licensed physician. So are chiropractors real doctors? Well, it all depends on what you're going to the doctor for, right? If you have mental health problems, you go to the dentist and the dentist can't help you with the mental health problems. Does that make the dentist not a real doctor? No. The dentists is just really good with your teeth, not with your mental health, but he's still a real doctor. If you go to a podiatrist and you're having issues with your GI system, does that make the podiatrist not a real doctor? No, they specialize in the feet. So are chiropractors not real doctors because we don't necessarily do the, you know, we focus on just in the spine to help the nervous system. If you came to see me with a laceration in your arm, you need stitches, does that make me not a real doctor? You know, I don't know. No more it does the rest of them, right? So to answer your question are chiropractors in the state of Illinois real doctors? I would say, yes, we are. Are we a specialty type of doctor? Yes, we are. Do we do one thing and do it well? Yes, we do. Does that make us any less of a doctor of anybody else? No. Every doctor has their area of specialty. I have a good friend, who's a really, really good shoulder surgeon. But if I was having an appendix rupture, I don't know if he'd be the first doctor I went to, despite how good he is with his shoulder. I'd probably go see my friend, Dr. McCarthy, who does abdominal surgeries, and that's his specialty. I would probably not ask Dr. McCarthy if I had a shoulder problem, he's probably not the best shoulder surgeon. Now, if we were stranded on a desert island, he'd probably be my first pick. But you get what I'm saying. So, I hope that answers your question are chiropractors real doctors. If you have a question for us, let us know, leave a message below, send us, go to Rockford DC R O C K F O R D dc.com. Leave us a message there. Ask us your question and maybe next week you'll be the question of the week. Right now, I believe the question next week is gonna be about tinnitus, ringing in the ears. Can chiropractors do anything about ringing in the ears? Come back next week, you'll find out your answer. Again, I'm Dr. Brant Hulsebus, chiropractor here in Rockford, Illinois.