How Two "Pediatric Chiropractic" Leaders Advise
to Undermine Pediatrician Credibility
Stephen Barrett, M.D.
Stuart Warner, D.C., and his wife Theresa Warner, D.C., operate a clinic in Point Pleasant, New Jersey, at which the majority of patients are children. They also run a "pediatric chiropractic" practice-management program called Future Perfect that teaches how to promote subluxation-based chiropractic care for children from birth onward. One technique they recommend is to use questions to subtly suggest that pediatricians are not thorough enough. The following article, posted on their Web site in 2004, included seven of their favorite strategies, each followed by my comment in boldfaced bracketed type.
Top 7 Strategies to Shift Credibility from the Pediatrician to the Chiropractor
Drs. Patricia & Stuart Warner
When most parents bring their children in for chiropractic care, they are faced with a pediatrician that is not supportive. Many times the parents trust in the allopathic system interferes with their chiropractic care. This list is part of a process that will more than level the playing field. It will plant doubt in the parents mind of their medical beliefs and increase their confidence in chiropractic. The thrust of this approach is to ask questions, be subtle and direct, not condescending and use proper timing.
You will appreciate that the parent will see that you do something very different than their pediatrician and that what you are doing is logical and makes sense. [It would only make sense if the practice of detecting and correcting "subluxations" from birth onward made sense.] The parent will realize that you are very thorough and informative compared to their pediatrician who did not ask the appropriate questions nor perform the necessary tests to detect vertebral subluxation. Remember, keep rapport with the parent and don't over do it. In our practice after parents get over the frustration and expense of having their kids sick and on drugs frequently, and now as a result of chiropractic care their kids are healthy and off the drugs, 75 percent of our patients never go back to their pediatrician unless it is for a life threatening situation. When parents answer questions instead of being lectured to, they begin to shift and own the concepts. These strategies will help parents adopt the chiropractic lifestyle for their children's health care. Obviously after a couple of weeks, chiropractic results will speak louder than anything but this will help get you there quicker. [There is no scientific evidence that "detecting and correcting subluxations" has any health value. In fact, as far as I can tell, no well-designed study has even tried to determine this.]
In 2008, the New Jersey Board of Chiropractic Examiners disciplined the Warners for rendering bills that "represented multiple charges for the same chiropractic services" to three children of the same family [4,5]. The agreements settling their cases required payment of a penalty ($3,000 for Stuart, $2,000 for Theresa) plus $1,591.50 each to the state for costs and $25 per incorrect billing to either the patient's parents or their insurance company. Stuart's agreement, which mentioned the above article, also required him to stop "engaging in unprofessional dialog with parents of minor patients that is intended to undermine the relationships they have with other health care providers."
- American Academy of Pediatrics Subcommittee on Management of Acute Otitis Media. Clinical Practice Guideline: Diagnosis and management of acute otitis media. Pediatrics 113:1451-1465, 2004.
- Homola S. Dubious use of surface electromyography (SEMG). Chirobase, April 15, 2005.
- Barrett S. How the Nervo-Scope and similar heat-detection devices are used to sell unnecessary chiropractic treatment. Chirobase, May 18, 2008.
- Barrett S. Disciplinary action against Stuart Warner, D.C. Casewatch, May 18, 2008
- Barrett S. Disciplinary action against Theresa Warner, D.C. Casewatch, May 18, 2008.
This article was posted on May 28, 2008.