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How do Chiropractors Diagnose Injuries?

Posted by Florida Spine and Injury | Jun 6, 2018 9:53:49 AM

When a patient visits a Chiropractor, it is usually because they are in pain and discomfort in their back or neck.

Many patients pain is being caused by an injury that they have suffered due to a car accident, or due to years of poor posture.

Thankfully, Chiropractors are experts when it comes to issues of the musculoskeletal system, and can use their training to determine what exactly is the cause of your pain and then develop a customized treatment program to correct the underlying issue.

However, in order to develop a treatment program that will be effective, Chiropractors must first arrive at an accurate diagnosis.

The diagnostic process that Chiropractors follow may slightly differ from doctor to doctor, but generally consists of three main phases:

  1. Patient Interview
  2. Physical Examination
  3. Diagnostic Imaging Tests

By using the information that they gather from these three phases of diagnostics, Chiropractors are able to arrive at an accurate diagnosis so that treatment can begin.

So let's take an in-depth look at each of these phases so that you know what to expect at your first Chiropractic Appointment.

Patient Interview

Chiropractor Discussing with Patient Their DiagnosisWhen you arrive at the Chiropractors office for your initial consultation, your Chiropractor will ask you a series of questions so that they can better understand what you are experiencing and arrive at a diagnosis.

This is an important part of the diagnostic process because by listening to the details of why a person has come in can help Chiropractors arrive at the correct diagnosis in a shorter period of time.

Some of the questions that your Chiropractor will most likely ask you include:

  • Where are you experiencing pain?
  • Describe what the pain feels like (stabbing, shooting, burning, etc.)
  • Is the pain constant or does it come and go?
  • Are their certain activities that make the pain better or worse?
  • Was their an injury that you are aware of?
  • Does your daily routine include any strenuous activities or do you sit at a desk all day?
  • What does your diet usually consist of?

The goal of asking all of these questions is so that your Chiropractor can familiarize themselves with you. The more information that they can gather about your lifestyle and body, the better they can treat you.

Getting answers to questions regarding your lifestyle is vital because there may be certain changes that need to be made in order to relieve your pain and keep it in remission.

The answers to questions regarding your symptoms and potential injuries are important to gather so that your Chiropractor knows what to look for and how to proceed with the next phases of the diagnostic process.

Physical Examination

Chiropractor physical examination of patientAfter completing the interview and getting the answers to important questions regarding the patient's symptoms and lifestyle, the next phase of the diagnostic process usually involves a physical examination.

During a physical examination, there are many things that your Chiropractor will be looking at. Usually, the physical exam includes tests that measure strength, range-of-motion, flexibility and your body's overall functionality.

Chiropractors are experts at treating conditions in the musculoskeletal system, which also includes the nervous system, which when corrected can lead to many other health benefits. 

When there is an issue in this system, it can lead to nerve interference and inhibit the body's ability to heal on its own.

This is why having a diagnostic process is so important to a Chiropractors ability to initiate the healing process.

When patients visit a chiropractor with pain in their neck and back, the Chiropractor uses these physical tests to help them determine where and why your mobility is being inhibited and what is causing the pain. 

After they complete their physical examination, your medical professional will usually take it one step further to ensure an accurate diagnosis by ordering Imaging tests.

Diagnostic Imaging Tests

Chiropractic Doctors Pointing to X-rays

The final step in the diagnostic process that Chiropractors generally follow involves having Imaging tests performed.

Although some Chiropractors have X-Ray machines in their office and can perform them on site, many times you will be recommended to a facility nearby to have your tests done.

Some of the common types of Imaging tests that a Chiropractor may order include:

  • X-Rays
  • MRI's
  • Cat Scan
  • Ultrasound

It is up to your Chiropractor to use his judgment along with his previous findings to determine which Imaging tests if any, each patient requires.

Once your Chiropractor has run all of their diagnostic tests and gotten the results back if they ordered further imaging, they will be able to develop a treatment program that is specifically designed to treat each individual patients hindrances.

The length of your chiropractic treatment program depends on the type of injury from which you are suffering and how well you respond to treatment.

No matter what type of musculoskeletal condition or injury you are suffering from, going through the diagnostic process with your Chiropractor is the best way to ensure you receive an accurate diagnosis and get the treatment that you need.

Learn more about the chiropractors at Florida Spine and Injury and make your appointment for a free consultation!

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Topics: chiropractor

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