Today, I received one of the coolest comments. It’s the entire script leaked by a former Maximized Living doctor who turned against them and released the proprietary scripts they furnish their franchisees (the doctors).
Unfortunately, I can’t post it, because the last blogger who did immediately (and unfortunately) got his entire blog yanked out from under him in the midst of a lawsuit launched by none other than Maximized Living themselves.
Not because the scripts were false or misleading, but because by posting them verbatim, the blogger opened himself up to a copyright lawsuit, which was promptly served. I don’t want this commenter nor myself to land in hot water. So, to protect both of us, I’ll refrain from publishing the comment.
However, what I will do, since people have the right to know the truth and I’m all for the minimization of censorship (usually), is to summarize the bulk of the script so that you can get a feel for the general flow of what you’re about to encounter should you walk into a Maximized Living-based office.
Before I get started, I will say this out of fairness: the doctors who buy into the Maximized Living franchises are usually good people. Most of them aren’t out to scam you, per se. Several classmates from my graduating class opened up Maximized Living practices. They’re passionate people, and pretty hardcore about doing things naturally. Some of them even get slightly theological about the whole thing, adding a God aspect to body healing and whatnot. There isn’t necessarily any harm done there.
What I do find fault with is what will become apparent as I post the synopsis of how this franchise recommends/instructs its people (the doctors) conduct business. I don’t agree with the idea that most people are prescribed “x” (large) number of visits no matter what their problem is. I don’t agree with their use of the word “subluxation”, which in itself is a highly controversial word at best. Truthfully, there is plenty of evidence to suggest that an adjustment has global nervous system effects (altering the central integrated state by increasing the frequency of firing), and that the rest of the body relies on impulses from the motor branch of the nervous system to function. However, Maximized Living spiels never take the explanations that far. They’d rather scare people with the idea of unfounded impending disease instead.
So here is a basic rundown of the process.
Day 1 is apparently the new patient exam. God is brought up first. The importance of patient education is brought up, with vague claims of having seen “so many miracles”. I don’t have any problem with that philosophy, but I do think that it’s a bit cheesy to bring religion into healthcare.
Then they talk about the importance of the position of the brain and spinal cord and if it deviates from its normal position, this puts pressure on the brainstem and damages the spinal cord and nerves. Since it’s been a while since I’ve dealt in the structural realm, but I would venture to say that this claim is questionable. The main reason is, our spines are always shifting. They shift every time we move. They’re supposed to; they’re built that way. Are we to remain in the same position all day every day? There’s a larger body of evidence to suggest that the nervous system depends on movement, a neurological link much stronger than the benefits of maintaining the same proper “position”.
Then they talk about how the pinching is called subluxation. Ah yes, the whole bone-0n-nerve thing. About how we’re all going to become quadriplegic if we don’t get adjusted three times a week for life. The bone-on-nerve idea originated with chiropractic founder DD Palmer’s First and Second Theories circa 1902 and although it has been disproven, old-school chiropractors continue to cling to it, whether they truly believe it’s correct or they know it’s inaccurate but appreciate the convenience of the explanation to patients. True bone-on-nerve pinching occurs less than 5% of the time and when it does, it typically requires surgical correction, and isn’t something a DC is ever likely to address.
After that, the patient has x-rays taken. No harm there, except for the fact that the word “convince” is actually used, as in, convincing the patient to go through with the x-rays. This implies that they may not otherwise want to, which I have to wonder about. Whenever we have recommended x-rays, we’ve never encountered any resistance from the patient. If we truly feel a patient needs x-rays, we may reserve the right not to render treatment until we have them, but then again, we will also always have a reason–other than demonstrating the presence of “subluxation”–for taking them. If patients object to x-rays often enough to warrant the word “convince”, that’s a clue to a potential flaw in the logic of the system. And besides, whether or not one can accurately detect a chiropractic “subluxation” via plain film x-ray is up for debate.
Then the doctor calls the patient the night after the Day 1 exam to tell the patient that sure enough, the x-rays revealed a problem that wasn’t a simple one and that it was indeed a subluxation as the doctor expected. (Whodathunk?) See you tomorrow.