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Keywords:

  • Back pain;
  • chiropractic subluxation;
  • orthopaedic subluxation;
  • pseudoscience;
  • vertebral subluxation theory

Abstract

The chiropractic vertebral subluxation theory has confused the definition of the word ‘subluxation’; a common medical term. Unlike the mysterious, undetectable chiropractic ‘vertebral subluxation complex’ alleged to be a cause of disease, a real vertebral subluxation can be a cause of mechanical and neuromusculoskeletal symptoms, but has never been shown to be a cause of organic disease. The views offered in this paper may be helpful in clarifying this issue.