Chiropractic Education

Published 12:00 am Friday, March 4, 2011

Having been in practice now for over twenty five years I have been asked innumerable times “How much education does a chiropractor have?” My usual answer is a lot. A typical entering chiropractic student has four years of premedical undergraduate studies in chemistry, biology, physics and psychology, much the same as an entering medical student. I, myself, did graduate work in Biochemistry prior to entering chiropractic school.
The prospective student has a choice of many chiropractic colleges located throughout the United States and in numerous countries around the world.
Once enrolled he or she begins a four to five academic year program of professional study that encompasses a minimum of 4200 hours of classroom, laboratory and clinical experience that includes a minimum of a one-year clinical-based program dealing with actual patient care. In some areas, such as anatomy, physiology, and rehabilitation, they receive more intensive education than most medical doctors or physical therapists. Whereas in medical schools there is a focus of concentration on pharmacology; chiropractic schools have a focus on specific adjusting techniques and therapeutic modalities for the spine and the extremities.
After the successful completion of the above the graduating student is awarded the professional degree of ‘Doctor of Chiropractic’ or D.C.
Before entering practice, doctors of chiropractic must pass four national board examinations as well as individual state board examinations. Chiropractors are licensed as primary care providers (meaning patients have direct access without a referral needed) in all fifty states and many nations throughout the world. They are trained in diagnosis and treatment and have the knowledge to make appropriate referrals when necessary.
To maintain their license the individual states have yearly requirements for post-graduate continuing education. Many chiropractors choose to pursue advanced training in diagnosis, neurology, orthopedics, nutrition and rehabilitation. Thus my answer of “a lot” would be most appropriate.

Dr. Godwin has a recurring guest columnist
on Dr. Peter Gott’s website www.askdrgottmd.com
where you can find this and other
articles of interest.
Chiropractic Physician Salisbury Chiropractic
Salisbury, NC, 704-633-9335
www.salisburychiropractic.us 

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