Let us start by making a comparison with the medical world. Many MDs that graduate prefer to be general practitioners and take care of people for anything and everything. What they do not have specialized knowledge in, they refer to other MDs possessing that particular specialization the patient’s condition requires.
This brings us to the term ‘specialization’. Specialization is what happens when an MD decides to go into different fields such as Neurology, Pediatrics, OBGYN, etc… They specialize. They don’t see patients for anything and everything. They are focused on their one little corner of healthcare and they rock it out within that specific specialization.
We can relate this to the chiropractic profession too. Some, in fact most, chiropractors get out of school and keep their heads down and just work all their lives and try to build a business and build a practice the best they can. Some chiropractors are amazing at building their practices while some, unfortunately, are not.
This is sometimes reflective of their lack of skill and knowledge. Sometimes it may be a lack of business acumen. Sometimes it’s just simply bad luck all around.
For the chiropractic profession overall, there has not traditionally been a significant amount of specialization over the years. However, that is slowly starting to change.
With different changes in the healthcare world, including the American College of Physicians now recommending chiropractic for low back pain, chiropractors are starting to move into more integrated treatment systems. With this opportunity comes a need for more specialization in the profession.
Over the last 5-10 years, it has become more and more common for doctors of chiropractic to specialize in pediatrics, nutrition, neurology, sports, rehabilitation, and orthopedics.
Dr. Jeff Williams here at Creek Stone Integrated Care has been working toward what is called a Diplomate in American Chiropractic Orthopedists (DACO). The DACO consists of 300 hours of education. That is 50 hours live and 250 hours online before finally taking and passing a big test to make sure the doctor is worthy of the title of DACO.
What exactly does a DACO provide a chiropractor as far as knowledge goes?
According to the website for the American Chiropractic Orthopedists, it is as follows:
“Board certified chiropractic orthopedists are doctors of chiropractic who have completed extensive postdoctoral education in non-surgical orthopedics, and have passed rigorous specialty Board examinations leading to Diplomate status as a chiropractic orthopedist. Less than 2% of chiropractic physicians attain this status.
To become Board certified, the chiropractic orthopedic specialist is required to demonstrate advanced proficiency in the evaluation and non-operative management of a broad range of injuries, conditions and disorders of the neuromusculoskeletal system with particular emphasis on the spine and extremities.”
The DACO course is current with evidence and research. Everything as far as testing, evaluation, and treatment is current with research. Going to a DACO means you have received one of the best evaluations a person can get because DACO are HIGHLY knowledgeable in the neuromusculoskeletal system, how it works, what makes it not work, etc..
Let us take neck pain for example. Many general chiropractors will simply do a couple of tests to make sure it’s safe and then adjust. Don’t get us wrong: many chiropractors are MUCH more thorough than that but some simply are not.
A DACO though, they know that chronic neck pain may not just lie in the joints of the neck but that proprioception from the upper part of the neck, from the eyes, and from the vestibular system could be contributing to altered function of the movement of the joints in the neck, contributing to the ongoing pain.
The proper exercises, many times, can help with this sort of malfunction but, a chiropractor that is not a DACO will most likely miss conditions such as this.
We can go on and on with different conditions but experience and education truly set professionals apart in all fields of business or healthcare.
Dr. Williams is about halfway to his DACO and already gets to use the latest knowledge and techniques on a daily basis.
If we can help you, call us at 806-355-3000 and let us set you up for an evaluation and come see the difference.