Chiropractic is the second largest primary health care
profession in the United States today. The following is
the American Chiropractic Association's official definition
"Chiropractic is based on the premise the relationship
between structure and function in the human body is a
significant health factor and that such relationship between
the spinal column and nervous system is the most significant,
since the normal transmission and the expression of nerve
energy are essential to the restoration and maintenance
of good health.
"Chiropractic is a branch of the healing arts which
is concerned with human health and disease processes.
Doctors of Chiropractic who consider man as an integrated
being and give special attention to the physiological
and biochemical aspects including structural, spinal,
musculoskeletal, neurological, vascular, nutritional,
emotional and environmental relationships.
The practice and procedures which may
be employed by Doctors of Chiropractic are based on
the academic and clinical training received in and through
accredited chiropractic colleges and include, but are
not limited to, the use of current diagnostic and therapeutic
procedures. Such procedures specifically include the
adjustment and manipulation of the articulations and
adjacent tissues of the human body, particularly of
the spinal column. Included is the treatment of intersegmental
aberrations for alleviation of related functional disorders.
Chiropractic is a drug-free, non-surgical
science and, as such, does not include pharmaceuticals
or incisive surgery. Due regard shall be given to the
fact that state laws, as well as the nation's antitrust
laws, may allow Doctors of Chiropractic to utilize ancillary
health care procedures commonly referred to as being
in the common domain."
Chiropractic is one of the three major schools of health,
the other two being allopathy (traditional medicine)
and osteopathy. Chiropractic is based on the understanding
that good health depends, in part, on a normally functioning
nervous system. Body structures such as cells and organs
function by the impulses carried through nerves. When
these nerve impulses travel uninterrupted, the organs
and cells are able to function normally. When there
is interference, the tissues and organs cannot function
properly and a state of malfunction may begin, predisposing
the body to a disease state and less than optimum health.