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Chiropractic manipulation, with a deliberate “double entendre”
  1. Edzard Ernst
  1. Professor E Ernst, Complementary Medicine, Peninsula Medical School, Universities of Exeter & Plymouth, 25 Victoria Park Road, Exeter EX2 4NT, UK; Edzard.Ernst{at}

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D D Palmer, the founding father of chiropractic, once stated that “95% of all diseases are caused by displaced vertebrae, the remainder by luxation of other joints”.1 This conviction is still shared, at least to some degree, by chiropractors today. It is thus understandable that chiropractors would treat children and adolescents for a range of conditions. A recent survey of UK chiropractors, for instance, suggested that 10–58% of the respondents considered conditions like infantile colic, childhood asthma, enuresis, otitis, epilepsy, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or cerebral palsy to be “effectively treatable by chiropractic methods”.2 Similarly, a survey conducted in 2004 by the General Chiropractic Council showed that a sizable proportion of UK chiropractors’ …

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  • Competing interests: None.