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New Mexico Chiropractors Reject FCLB X-Ray Resolution

Alliance of New Mexico Chiropractors Issues Position Paper on FCLB Resolution Regarding “Material Risks” of X-ray

The Alliance of New Mexico Chiropractors has issued a Position Paper on the recently adopted Resolution by the Federation of Chiropractic Licensing Boards (FCLB). The Federation of Chiropractic Licensing Boards voted on and adopted several resolutions on May 1, 2021. One of those is a Resolution regarding the taking of radiographs by chiropractors. In light of the recent amendments passed by the College of Chiropractors of British Columbia (CCBC) where x-rays for the analysis of vertebral subluxation have been banned, all chiropractors should be especially concerned by this action from the FCLB.

The use of x-rays for subluxation analysis and management has been under attack around the world and this latest action by the FCLB lends further credence to those who maintain that x-rays should be banned for subluxation analysis. 

The Resolution requires chiropractors to tell the patient of supposed "material risks" of x-rays.

Despite actions taken to warn the FCLB of the implications of such wording the FCLB went ahead and adopted the Resolution. Prior to the meeting the International Federation of Chiropractors and Organizations (IFCO) and the ChiroFutures Malpractice Insurance Program both sent letters to the FCLB urging them to reconsider the dangerous wording.

Since its adoption, the Chiropractic Society of Texas, the Foundation for Vertebral Subluxation (FVS) and now the Alliance of New Mexico Chiropractors (ANMC) have issued statements rejecting the Resolution and urging others to do the same.

Below is the full text of the ANMC statement.

The Federation of Chiropractic Licensing Boards (FCLB) recently passed a Resolution that prior to obtaining radiographic imaging, a treating Doctor of Chiropractic will inform the patient of the “material risks” of x-ray.

As state chiropractic organizations representing the interests of chiropractors and the patients they serve we reject the Resolution as written and passed by the FCLB.

This language imposes a duty upon the chiropractor and is a dangerous mandate from a risk management perspective. Those that wish to ban the use of x-rays for subluxation analysis will use this language and demand that chiropractors must disclose claims of oncogenic and genotoxic effects, they will claim that there is no evidence that patients x-rayed get better outcomes and that all of this must be disclosed to the patient. It also appears to require a separate informed consent and/or specific language to be added to already existing consent forms and processes.

We support the use of x-rays for the analysis and management of vertebral subluxation and we encourage an evidence-informed approach to the use of radiography in the assessment of vertebral subluxation.

Doctors of Chiropractic are trained to determine the safety and appropriateness of chiropractic care. This training includes the use of radiographs to detect and characterize vertebral subluxations, congenital and developmental anomalies which may affect the selection of chiropractic techniques, and conditions which may contraindicate certain chiropractic adjusting methods. Furthermore, radiography may reveal conditions requiring referral to another type of health care provider.

The FCLB is not a government agency, does not represent the interests of chiropractic trade organizations, their members nor the patients they serve and furthermore this language represents a threat to public health.

We encourage other state associations, chiropractic technique organizations, malpractice companies and chiropractic educational programs to join us in rejecting this Resolution.

Rod Justice, DC
Executive Director

McCoy Press