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8 hours $7.98
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20 hours $5.98
30 hours $4.98

Understanding Chiropractic Care

1.0 Contact Hours
Target Audience: Nurses, healthcare professionals, and interested individuals
Purpose/Goal: The outcome of this course is for the learner to describe the scope of chiropractic practice; examine the philosophies that are part of chiropractic; list key milestones in the development of chiropractic care both in the United States and internationally; and conditions that are commonly treated.
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Chiropractic is often considered a complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapy. Chiropractic care commonly uses spinal manipulation therapy as a main treatment modality to address back and neck pain, as well as pain in the joints of the arms or legs, and headaches. The goal is to correct alignment problems, ease pain, and support the body's natural ability to heal itself.

Upon completion of the course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Describe the scope of chiropractic practice.
  • Identify the philosophies that are part of chiropractic practice.
  • State key historical milestones in the national and international development of chiropractic care.
  • List health conditions that are commonly treated with chiropractic care.
  • State contraindications to chiropractic treatment.
  • Describe education requirements for chiropractors practicing in the United States.

Chiropractic is a health care profession that focuses on disorders of the musculoskeletal and nervous systems, and the effects of these disorders on an individual’s overall health. Most often used to treat neuromusculoskeletal conditions, chiropractic care usually focuses on--but is not limited to--back and neck pain, as well as pain in the joints of the arms or legs, and headaches (American Chiropractic Association [ACA], 2015).

Chiropractic is the third largest independent health profession in the Western world, following conventional (allopathic) medicine and dentistry. Chiropractic has evolved and matured toward mainstream status in the United States with an increasingly strong scientific base and insurance coverage. There are approximately 65,000 chiropractors in the United States and 90,000 in the world. Chiropractic providers are considered “portal of entry” providers and are licensed to both diagnose and treat clients. Chiropractic practice is limited not only by anatomical regions (like dentistry or podiatry) but by procedures as well. Chiropractors cannot perform surgery or prescribe pharmaceuticals (Redwood, 2015).

Chiropractors use hands-on spinal manipulation and other alternative treatments. The practice is based on the theory that proper alignment of the body’s musculoskeletal structure, especially the spine, enables the body to heal itself without surgery or medication (National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health [NCCIH], 2012; U.S. National Library of Medicine, 2014).

The World Health Organization [WHO] (2005) defines chiropractic as a health care profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disorders of the neuromusculoskeletal system and the effects of these disorders on general health. There is an emphasis on manual techniques, including joint adjustment and/or manipulation, with a particular focus on the subluxation.

Complete the course post exam (CE Test) with a score of 80% or greater. Complete all fields of the course evaluation form. Certificate of Completion is provided once the course post exam is passed per criteria above.

  • American Board of Managed Care Nursing
  • ANCC - American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • AOTA - American Occupational Therapy Association
  • ASWB - Association of Social Work Boards
  • California Board of Behavioral Sciences
  • California Board of Registered Nursing
  • California Department of Health, Aid, and Technician Certification Section
  • District of Columbia Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing - Certified Nursing Assistants
  • Florida Board of Respiratory Care
  • Florida Council of Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Florida Council of Licensed Midwifery
  • NAADAC - The National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors
  • NCBTMB -National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork
  • Florida Board of Massage Therapists


Practice Level:


Content Focus:

Domain of OT

Course Expires:

December 15, 2020

  • Cyndie Koopsen, RN, BSN, MBA, HNB-BC, RN-BC, HWNC-BC
  • Caroline Young, MPH
Jurisdictional Requirements:

Continuing education (CE) licensing requirements vary by jurisdiction, are not well defined, and may change. These CE requirements may vary in terms of the number of hours required to the types of courses that must be taken. ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC recommends you contact your licensing board or accrediting organization for the latest continuing education requirements of your state or territory. Compliance with CE requirements is the responsibility of the individual health care provider. Health care providers must understand the CE requirements in their jurisdictions, and be sure they are up-to-date on any rule changes that affect their license. For further information, please see our Accreditation Information.

Accommodations for Disabilities:

Every effort will be made to accommodate your special needs. To request accommodations, please contact us.

Conflicts of Interest and Relevant Financial Relationships:

The authors/planning committee members have no conflicts of interests or relevant financial relationships to declare relevant to this activity.

Commercial Support:

No commercial support has been received for this activity.

Non-endorsement of products:

Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing nursing education only and does not imply ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC approval or endorsement of any commercial product.

Off-label Use of Products:

None of the authors intend to discuss off-label uses of drugs, mechanical devices, biologics, or diagnostics not approved by the FDA for use in the United States.