How chiropractic works

Treatments & procedures

How chiropractic works

Bernard Rupasinghe, Policy Manager for the Chiropractic Association of Australia, explains.

Health Agenda magazine
October 2016

According to the Chiropractor’s Association of NSW, chiropractic care has been used in Australia since the early 1900s.

Registered practitioners are trained in anatomy, physiology, differential diagnosis, musculoskeletal management, radiography and radiology.

What is it?

Chiropractic care involves the diagnosis, management and prevention of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system and their effects. The primary reason Australians seek chiropractic care is for treatment of spine-related disorders, especially back pain, headaches and neck pain.

Do I need a referral?

Chiropractors are primary healthcare practitioners so a referral isn’t necessary. GPs can refer a patient for chiropractic treatment under the Medicare Chronic Disease Management (CDM) program.

What will happen?

Your first session with a chiropractor involves a general health assessment, medical history and physical examination. X-rays may be taken. Once the initial assessment is conducted the findings are explained to the patient and a plan of chiropractic treatment may be recommended. This treatment usually involves hands-on manipulation techniques, focusing on the musculoskeletal system. You can expect sessions to last between 15 and 30 minutes.

The method

A common chiropractic procedure is an adjustment, where the chiropractor’s hands or a specially designed instrument, deliver a brief, accurate thrust to a joint that is fixated, locked up or not moving properly. The chiropractor may use a quick, firm approach or a slower, more gentle technique, and either can be modified for maximum comfort and results.

How can I find a chiropractor?

You can find a registered chiropractor through the Chiropractic Association of Australia

To find a chiropractor who participates in the HCF 100% back More For Backs program, log in to member services and go to Find a health professional.


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