After you have filled out a few patient-friendly forms to prepare a chart, I’ll sit with you to discuss your health condition and concerns. We’ll cover all the basics: how and when it began, what makes if feel better or worse and how it impacts your daily activities. We’ll discuss prior accidents and any other health conditions that may complicate your problem.
In the exam, I look at your standing posture and aligment, checking for distortions and imbalances. I measure in degrees how far you can bend and twist your back and neck.
I will then challenge the integrity of the joints with orthopedic tests, and measure the conductivity of the spinal nerves that go to your limbs with neurological tests, such as reflexes and strength and sensory testing.
I will then have you lie down on the exam table and palpate (inspect with my fingertips) your spine and related tissues. How much tension is there in the body? What tissues are tender and tight? Where is the pain? Is it in the joints, muscles, nerves, etc?
Once the exam is complete, I may need to refer you for X-rays, MRI’s or other diagnostic testing. I do not order tests in all cases; it all depends on what I find in my clinical exam.
Once all the results are in, I tell you what is wrong, whether or not I can help you, and if I can help you, what we need to do to get you better. If I cannot help you, I will tell you the type of care you need.
I do not routinely give a chiropractic adjustment on the first visit, but I do make exceptions when a patient is suffering in great pain.