Extraordinary Information On Which Health Provider Gets You Back To Work Fastest With The Least Cost

Tuesday, December 5th, 2017

If you have followed along with us for very long, you have likely heard me say, “Chiropractic first,” more times than you yourself can keep track of without the use of a computer or some sort of high tech gadget.

I can tell you that I’ve said it a lot. In fact, one of the hashtags that we commonly use on social media is #chiropracticfirst.

Does that mean that I recommend we use chiropractic first for things like cancer, allergies, asthma, diabetes, and things like that? Absolutely not. But, I have shared a lot of research over the years that backs up the idea of “chiropractic first” for neuromusculoskeletal conditions. The clinical evidence cannot be denied and the American College of Physicians and American Medical Association now recommend Chiropractic (along with massage and acupuncture) first for chronic and acute low back pain.

Just as a reminder, I wrote a blog that we published on November 11 of 2015 on our website. It had to do with a great research paper performed by BJ Keeney et. al. and was titled “Early predictors of lumbar spine surgery after occupational back injury: results from a prospective study of workers in Washington State.

Here is the link to that blog if you would like to quickly scan over it. https://www.amarillochiropractor.com/research-less-surgery-when-going-to-a-chiropractor-first/

One of the best things about this particular research paper is that it was published in Spine Journal. Now, Spine Journal sounds a little bit like it may be a chiropractic journal. It is not. Spine Journal is a very well-respected and highly regarded publication and it is utilized and read by everyone from neurosurgeons to orthopedic surgeons to chiropractors. This way, you know there is no bias present as far as the journal itself is concerned. In fact, with this particular journal, if there were a bias present, I would argue that it would be towards medicine rather than chiropractic.

I will just give you the Cliff Notes for this particular paper I’m referring to. Keeney and his colleagues found reduced odds of surgery were noticed for people that were thirty-five 35 years or younger, were female, were Hispanic, or whose first provider was a chiropractor. They concluded that around 42.7% of workers who saw a surgeon first had surgery and that only 1.5% of those seeing a chiropractor first ended up having surgery. Wouldn’t you agree that the finding is incredibly significant? I can promise you that if you have a chiropractor, he or she would like for you to go out and tell somebody this information. That is a promise I can comfortably make to you.

For this article, I wanted to talk about a newer study on September 17 of 2016 that has to do with the idea of “chiropractic first.” This particular article was published in the Journal of occupational rehabilitation and was titled “Association between the type of first healthcare provider and the duration of financial compensation for occupational back pain.” The main author of the paper was Marc-Andre Blanchette and colleagues and the link to the paper is https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10926-016-9667-9

Why They Did It


The authors of this paper were hoping to answer questions about the workers compensation system. Basically, they wanted to know how long people were being paid to be out of work as a result of back pain, what kind of health care provider they had visits with, and whether or not there was a subsequent episode of the complaint and compensation.

How They Did It

  • The authors poured through information from 5,511 workers that were helped through the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board for Back Pain in 2005.
  • They used different research models controlling for variables to compare the patients that visited three different types of healthcare providers.
  • To assess the occurrence of a subsequent episode, there was a two year follow-up period.

What They Found

  • When the patients that saw the physician first were compared to those who saw a chiropractor first, the chiropractic patients had pain that did not last as long, did not cost the compensation system as much money, and they returned to work faster.
  • When compared to those who saw a physician first, those who saw a physiotherapist or physical therapist first actually experienced a longer episode of compensation during the first 149 days.
  • In addition, subsequent episodes of compensation were higher for those workers that were treated with a physiotherapist for physical therapist first rather than those who saw the physician first.

Wrap It Up

“The type of healthcare provider first visited for back pain is a determinant of the duration of financial compensation during the first 5 months. Chiropractic patients experience the shortest duration of compensation, and physiotherapy patients experience the longest. These differences raise concerns regarding the use of physiotherapists as gatekeepers for the worker’s compensation system.”

Any person actually paying attention to clinical trials, research papers, and the latest evidence, can make no other conclusion than to say, “Chiropractic first” for neuromusculoskeletal issues. It’s about that simple.

Blanchette, MA., Rivard, M., Dionne, C.E. et al. J Occup Rehabil (2017) 27: 382.

Just another reason to call a chiropractor TODAY!

Research and clinical experience shows that, in about 80%-90% of headaches, neck, and back pain, in comparison to the traditional medical model, patients get good or excellent results with Chiropractic. Chiropractic care is safe, more cost-effective, it decreases your chances of having surgery, and it reduces your chances of becoming disabled. We do this conservatively and non-surgically. In addition, we can do it with minimal time requirements and minimal hassle on the part of the patient. And, if the patient develops a “preventative” mindset going forward from initial recovery, we can likely keep it that way while raising the general, overall level of health!
Please feel free to leave a comment and tell me your thoughts. I’d love to hear what you think.And….SHARE, SHARE, SHARE!! We cannot make a difference without your help.

Till next time……

The Amarillo Chiropractor Blog is written by Dr. Jeff Williams.
Amarillo TX Amarillo Pain & Accident Chiropractic Clinic provides customized chiropractic care to the Amarillo TX, Canyon TX, Pampa TX, Happy TX, White Deer TX, Dumas TX, Groom TX, Conway TX, Panhandle TX, Claude TX, Clarendon TX, Borger TX, Tulia TX, Hereford TX, Fritch TX, Bushland TX, and Vega TX communities.

Visit our main website at www.amarillochiropractor.com for customized Chiropractic in Amarillo TX. Choose several options to schedule your appointment: call (806) 355-3000 or click the button below for our contact info.

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