Chiropractor Vs Doctor: Difference Worth Knowing

Most often we get confused if chiropractors are doctors! Well, there are some specific differences between doctors or medical doctors (MD) and the Chiropractors or Doctor of Chiropractic (DC). This article will focus on some of the differences between the two.

Chiropractor Vs Doctor

Chiropractor Vs Doctor: Differences worth Knowing

Chiropractor vs Doctor: Differences in Definition

Someone who diagnoses conditions that affect the body and the musculoskeletal is a chiropractor. However, a medical doctor is someone who is involved in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases and injuries of the entire body system. Depending on the areas of specialization; there are various types of medical doctors like, paediatricians, psychiatrists, neurologists, cardiologists, and so on. There are also different types of chiropractors like, radiologists, sports medicine specialists, orthopaedists etc.

Chiropractor Vs Doctor: Differences in the Medical Education and Training

The academic degree for chiropractors is known as “Doctor of Chiropractic” and referred to as DC. The WHO or The World Health Organization lists other potential paths for pursuing this full time DC program; B.Sc (Chiro), which is a 5 year integrated bachelor program and a 2-3 years M.Sc (Chiro) or Masters program following the Bachelor’s degree. One can apply for the DC program after finishing a four-year undergraduate degree. Post graduate or Master’s degree candidates can have specialisations on Chiropractic like radiology, neurology, orthopaedics etc. It must be noted that though chiropractic is the 3rd largest doctor level health care profession; it suffers from a reduced level of credibility than other medical professions.

The academic degree of medical doctors are known as “Doctor of Medicine degree” and referred to as MD. The candidates willing to take admission in to the Doctor of Medicine degree, should take the MCAT or Medical College Admission Test and then complete a four year of undergraduate program so as to be eligible for a medical school program that goes for 4 years. Before graduating, candidates are required to take the COMLEX or Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examination and/or the USMLE or the United Sates Medical Licensing Examination Part 1 and also Part 2. It is also essential for the candidate to take minimum of one year of internship and then go for the Part 3 of USMLE examinations before practicing in the United States as a medical doctor. One can go for further specialization requires 3-8 years of residency training.

Chiropractor Vs Doctor: Differences Based on Rights to Prescribe Medications

Chiropractors cannot prescribe medication. Though New Mexico allowed limited prescription rights to DCs, recently. However, Medical doctors can prescribe all medication.

Chiropractor vs Doctor: Differences Based on Abilities to Perform Surgery

Chiropractors can do only minor surgery in some states. Doctors of Chiropractic are non pharmacologic and non surgical clinicians who are known to be very much professional at conservative treatments within their scope of practice. They do perform MUA in surgical setting.

Specialists of medical doctors have complete surgical rights in their area of expertise.

Chiropractor Vs Doctor: Differences in the Treatment Techniques and Specialization

Chiropractors use at least 20 different types of procedures for treating the human body. Chiropractors usually manipulate the spine and various other joints while their treatment procedures; which help in relieving pain and even have curative effects. Some common kinds of treatments in chiropractic include exercises, dietary regimens, relaxation techniques, electrical stimulation and also sometimes acupuncture.

Medical doctors can specialize in several areas and treatments which vary depending on the age group and the type of disease of the patient. Specialists like paediatricians treat children, dermatologists treat diseases and disorders pertaining to the skin, oncologists treat cancer and so on. Some of treatment modalities by doctors include diagnosing, prescribing medications, surgical treatments and various other therapies in medical practice.

Chiropractor Vs Doctor: Other Differences

American Chiropractic Association or the ACA is a professional organization representing Doctors of Chiropractic. While American Medical Association (AMA) and American Osteopathic Association (AOA) is the organization representing medical doctors or MD.

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:July 7, 2017

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