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The Longitudinal Neurologic Systems

By |April 5, 2013|Chiropractic Education, Clinical Decision-making, Diagnosis, Education, Evaluation & Management, Neurology|

The Longitudinal Neurologic Systems

The Chiro.Org Blog

We would all like to thank Dr. Richard C. Schafer, DC, PhD, FICC for his lifetime commitment to the profession. In the future we will continue to add materials from RC’s copyrighted books for your use.

This is Chapter 3 from RC’s best-selling book:

“Basic Principles of Chiropractic Neuroscience”

These materials are provided as a service to our profession. There is no charge for individuals to copy and file these materials. However, they cannot be sold or used in any group or commercial venture without written permission from ACAPress.

Chapter 3: The Longitudinal Neurologic Systems

This chapter succinctly describes the basic structure and function of the six major longitudinal systems; viz, the sensory, motor, visceral, vascular, consciousness, and cerebrospinal fluid systems.

As we begin this chapter, it might be well for the reader to subjectively grasp the significance of the motor and sensory systems as far as possible. One exercise in this is to imagine that you had become unconscious and someone has placed you in a remote dark empty cellar, far beyond any source of environmental sound. The first thing you realize is that you are a total sensory and motor paralytic from the neck caudad. You are unable to move even a fingertip because your motor system is not functioning. Because there is no feeling, you do not know whether you are recumbent or tied in a chair. Your vision is normal, but there is no light. Your hearing is normal, but there is no sound. Your taste buds are functional, but there is nothing to eat or drink. Your olfactory organs are functional, but there are no detectable odors. There is little left except thought and memory.

After a time in this predicament, thoughts undoubtedly arise such as, “I wish I had really looked at the beauty of the world when I had a chance. I wish I had listened to the music of the masters and even the birds in my backyard when I had a chance. I gulped down so many delicious meals. I had a beautiful garden, but I rarely took time to appreciate its design and fragrance. I even failed to take time to appreciate the texture of my own clothes. I was in such a hurry to go nowhere that was more important. I missed so much.”


The human nervous system is a marvel in organizing and adapting to internal and external environmental changes:

(1) The receptors and afferent neurons of the visceral and somatic input systems are necessary to detect internal and external environmental changes.

(2) The visceral efferent neurons and the muscles of the motor output system must be stimulated if action is to be taken.

(3) The integrative system serves as intermediary stations via a complex arrangement of interneurons whose synapses control impulse strength and signal direction from the sensory system to the motor system.


For CAs: The Language of the Health-Care Professions

By |March 31, 2013|Chiropractic Care, Chiropractic Education, Education, Evidence-based Medicine|

For CAs: The Language of the Health-Care Professions

The Chiro.Org Blog

We would all like to thank Dr. Richard C. Schafer, DC, PhD, FICC for his lifetime commitment to the profession. In the future we will continue to add materials from RC’s copyrighted books for your use.

This is Chapter 4 from RC’s best-selling book:
“The Chiropractic Assistant”

These materials are provided as a service to our profession. There is no charge for individuals to copy and file these materials. However, they cannot be sold or used in any group or commercial venture without written permission from ACAPress.

Chapter 4: The Language of the Health-Care Professions

When more than one person is involved in any task, good communication is basic for success. Thus, a sound foundation in chiropractic terminology is an important functional skill to be possessed by any chiropractic assistant. It is a requisite to becoming an important asset to the office.

If a CA’s duties include taking dictation of case histories, examination findings, or narrative reports, she must know how to record scientific terms in shorthand and know how to spell them accurately. A good medical dictionary will be an important reference. Even if dictation is not required, she still must know what the doctor means when certain terms are used. He will expect his assistants to have a fundamental grasp of commonly used medical terms, abbreviations, and acronyms.

Do not enter this study lightly. On the other hand, do not let yourself be appalled by the formidable and specialized vocabulary used in health care. The learning of professional terms will not come overnight. It will extend the entire length of your career as new and unfamiliar words are confronted.


It would not be unusual if you found many words used in the first three chapters of this program strange or at least unknown. When you undertake the transposition from lay person to chiropractic assistant, you are faced with an entirely new language that must be mastered so the transition be successful. The most efficient method to accomplish this is by securing an understanding of basic word roots, prefixes, and suffixes used in the formation of technical words and gaining an understanding of the meaning of commonly used abbreviations and acronyms. Study and repetitive use is the way to mastery.

A fundamental knowledge of anatomy (structure) and physiology (function) will be of great assistance in learning terminology. A basic understanding of human anatomy and physiology is offered in the following chapter. This chapter will prepare you for the terminology of those and other clinical subjects. While professional terms may at first seem strange, you will see their purpose in this and following chapters.


The Subluxation – Historical Perspectives

By |September 28, 2012|Chiropractic Education, Subluxation|

The Subluxation – Historical Perspectives

The Chiro.Org Blog

SOURCE:   Chiropractic J of Australia 2009 (Dec); 39 (4): 151–164

Meridel I. Gatterman, MA, DC, MEd

Chiropractic Consultant,
Florissant, Colorado

Thanks to Dr. Rolf Peters, editor of the Chiropractic Journal of Australia for permission to republish this Full Text article, exclusively at Chiro.Org!

Subluxation is a term that continues to generate controversy into the 21st Century. This paper describes the controversy surrounding terminology arrived at through consensus in the latter part of the 20th century in addition to ongoing issues surrounding the use of the term subluxation.


A word is not a crystal, transparent and unchanged; it is the skin of a living thought and may vary greatly in color and content according to the circumstances and time in which it is used.

— Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Historically subluxation has been central to the philosophy, science, and practice of chiropractic as the primary articular lesion treated by chiropractors. A number of issues have surrounded the use of the term subluxation including: terminology, the nature of the lesion (aberrant motion versus misalignment), and clinical, economic and political issues. The complexity of these issues precludes discrete discussion, classifying them as such, however, gives focus to much of the controversy.

Aberrant Motion versus Misalignment

The controversial nature of the chiropractic subluxation began as early as 1906 with the Palmers emphasizing vertebral displacement (misalignment) [1] at the same time that Smith Langworthy and Paxson emphasized aberrant motion as the primary characteristic of subluxation [2] They stated that:

“A simple subluxed vertebra differs from a normal vertebra only in its field of motion and the center of its field of motion.” [2]

The aberrant motion concept subsequently became more popular in Europe, However in North America, Budden [3] was using the term “fixation” when referring to a subluxation at Western States Chiropractic College by 1930.

His definition described the vertebral fixation as:

“The fixation of a joint in a position of motion, usually at the extreme of motion.” [3]

This is just one of many articles @:

The Chiropractic Subluxation Page


Initial Case Management Following Trauma

By |June 1, 2012|Chiropractic Care, Chiropractic Education, Clinical Decision-making, Evaluation & Management|

Initial Case Management Following Trauma

The Chiro.Org Blog

Clinical Monograph 2

By R. C. Schafer, DC, PhD, FICC

Without a doubt, no other health-care approach equals the efficacy of chiropractic in the general field of conservative neuromusculoskeletal rehabilitation.

For many centuries, therapeutic rehabilitation was a product of personal experience passed on from clinician to clinician. In the last 20 years, however, it has become an applied science. In its application, of course, much empiricism remains that can be called an intuitive art –and this is true for all forms of professional health care.


The word trauma means more than the injuries so common with falls, accidents, and contact sports. Taber [1] defines it as “A physical injury or wound often caused by an external force or violence” or “an emotional or psychologic shock that may produce disordered feelings or behavior.” This is an extremely narrow definition for trauma can also be caused by intrinsic forces as seen in common strain. In addition to its cause being extrinsic or intrinsic, with a physical and emotional aspect, it also can be the result of either a strong overt force or repetitive microforces. This latter factor, so important in treating a unique patient’s specific pathophysiology, is too often neglected outside the chiropractic profession.

Taber [1] states rehabilitation is “The process of treatment and education that lead the disabled individual to attainment of maximum function, a sense of well being, and a personally satisfying level of independence. The person requiring rehabilitation may be disabled from a birth defect or from an illness. The combined effects of the individual, family, friends, medical, nursing, allied health personnel, and community resources make rehabilitation possible.” It is surprising that Taber excludes trauma as a prerequisite for rehabilitation for it is the most common factor involved.

You may also enjoy our page on:

Chiropractic Rehabilitation


Chiropractic Techniques

By |July 6, 2011|Chiropractic Education, Chiropractic Technique|

Chiropractic Techniques

The Chiro.Org Blog

SOURCE:   The Job Analysis of Chiropractic

The following list contains the 15 techniques most frequently used by doctors of chiropractic (DCs).

Although this list is dated, it still accurately reflects the most commonly-used techniques.

The most recent reviews suggest that Instrument Adjusting use is even more common (~46% vs. 34.5%).

These statistics are from the Job Analysis of Chiropractic, created by the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners in January 2000.

Just below the following Table, you will find a brief explanation of each of these manipulative/adjustive procedure.

Every chiropractic college teaches one or more of the following techniques. Most of the rest of them may be offered as Elective Classes, which can be taken by students during their normal 15-week trimester, under the direct supervision of Technique Instructors.

Chiropractic graduates undergo a National Board examination that requires the student to demonstrate competency in the top five manipulative/ adjustive techniques, plus the techniques taught at his/her chiropractic college.

Most Frequently Used Techniques:

% of DC Use
1. Diversified
2. Extremity manipulating/adjusting
3. Activator Methods
4. Gonstead
5. Cox Flexion/Distraction
6. Thompson Technique
7. Sacro Occipital Technique
8. Applied Kinesiology
9. NIMMO/Receptor Tonus
10. Cranial
11. Adjustive Instruments
12. Palmer Upper Cervical
13. Logan Basic
14. Meric
15. Pierce-Stillwagon