chiropractor has a duty to disclose to the patient any unusual findings discovered in the course of examination, and may collaborate with other health professionals when it is in the best interests of the patient to do so.
Chiropractic care to detect and correct vertebral subluxations may offer benefits for all people, including those who do not demonstrate symptoms of a disease or health condition. 141
Therefore, the presence or absence of symptoms and/or a medical diagnosis should not be a factor in determining the need for or appropriateness of chiropractic analysis and/or adjustments, nor should the presence of symptoms be required by any chiropractic board, insurance company or court of law to justify the rendering of chiropractic care to any patient.
Further support for this can be found in the Association of Chiropractic Colleges’ Position Paper No. 1, endorsed by all chiropractic colleges in the U.S. and Canada and virtually every chiropractic organization in the world. It states in part: "The practice of chiropractic includes: establishing a diagnosis; facilitating neurological and biomechanical integrity through appropriate chiropractic case management, and; promoting health" (section 3.0, The Chiropractic Paradigm).
The paper goes on to state: "Chiropractic is concerned with the preservation and restoration of health, and focuses particular attention on the subluxation; A subluxation is a complex of functional and/or structural and/or pathological articular changes that compromise neural integrity and may influence organ system function and general health; A subluxation is evaluated, diagnosed, and managed through the use of chiropractic procedures based on the best available rational and empirical evidence." (Section 4.0, The Subluxation). Nowhere does this defining document state or imply that chiropractic is to be used only for patients exhibiting symptoms.
The use of health care procedures on asymptomatic patients is commonplace in all medical and alternative care fields, both as a preventive measure and in recognition of the fact many health conditions do not exhibit outward signs, particularly in their early stages.
The need for chiropractic care by asymptomatic patients is one that has been widely supported by the chiropractic profession. It is estimated, based on the findings of an expert panel of seven chiropractic researchers, that 97% of the chiropractic profession provides chiropractic services to asymptomatic patients if subluxations are present.
_________________________________________________________ Council on Chiropractic Practice Clinical Practice Guideline Number 1 Vertebral Subluxation in Chiropractic Practice – 2003 Update & Revision