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spinal cancer
9/26 8:41:20

QUESTION: Thank You for your time:
My mother-in-law, was up and about pretty much normal, 6 weeks ago, taking care of her self with the normal 64 yrs young pains, today she is in Hospice with spinal cancer, (sorry dont know the exact kind), since her last procedure was 5 adjustments at a chiroprator(without performing a MRI) could that have been the issue with aggravating the tumors, since she has been to regular Dr's since i;ve known her 7yrs.. any advice, will be helpful, im not going to or asking for you to get anybody in trouble. i would like to know the procedures for a chiroprator to have the correct diagonstic done. thank you very much god bless in all you do,,

ANSWER: Chuck,

I am not clear about what you are describing here.  Regardless, if you mother has cancer that has spread to the bones of her spine, she must not get manual therapy to her spine by a chiropractor or physiotherapist.   It's just not safe to do as far as we know.   

Dr. Gillman

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I guess what i'm asking is should the chiropractor have done a MRI first before adjusting her spine, instead of using a xray from their office.could this adjustments sped up her demise(she passed yesterday)

Hi Chuck,

I'm sorry about your mom.   Frankly, without knowing all the details about your mother's case with the chiropractor, it's hard to know what to tell you.   On on hand, some people show no signs of illness and have negative x-rays, and thus seem fine for receiving joint manipulation procedures by a chiropractor, only later to find out that there was cancer or a benign tumor and the x-rays did not pick it up.  On the other hand, if a patient shows any positive neurologic signs or systemic symptoms, then it warrants caution on the doctor's part, and consideration of additional tests or referral to another specialist (I had a case like this once, where a tumor was found in a patient's lung).   Also, until MRI's cost the same as an oil change, it is not feasible to do MRI on everyone.  It's doubtful that manual therapy, if carefully performed, would affect tumors except to cause vertebral facture if the tumors were in the bones causing them to become frail, or if the tumor was in the spinal cord and caused cord damage.  In general if it is known that there is cancer then it is wise to not do anything to the patient.  

Sorry again for your troubles.  Feel free to respond if you have more questions.

Dr. G

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