Objective: The purpose of this article is to present an overview of the key medical and surgical specialties most likely relevant to chiropractic practice in the United States. Understanding the similarities and differences in the training and typical practices of these medical providers may enhance a chiropractor's likelihood to collaborate and increase participation in team-based care.
Methods: This was a descriptive analysis to develop preliminary content on US medical physician specialties. Selection was informed by the authors' clinical experience with medical collaboration, along with results of previously published work on medical specialties most commonly reported to be involved in referral patterns with US chiropractors. Data from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education and individual specialty boards were synthesized through an iterative process, and supplemented by qualitative input from subject matter experts. Data were entered into tabular format for review and analysis.
Results: We propose that the medical and surgical specialties most relevant to typical US chiropractic practice are internal medicine, family medicine, emergency medicine, physical medicine and rehabilitation, neurology, pain medicine, rheumatology, radiology, orthopedic surgery, and neurological surgery. There is overlap in scope of conditions and diagnostic and therapeutic tools utilized by various medical specialties.
Conclusion: This work describes 8 medical and 2 surgical specialties proposed to be most relevant to general chiropractic practice in the United States. The results may have relevance to interprofessional education and collaboration.
Author keywords: Chiropractic, Education, Medical Specialties, Interprofessional Relations
Author affiliations: LEAM, AJL: VA Connecticut Healthcare System, West Haven, Connecticut, United States; LEAM, AJL:University of Bridgeport College of Chiropractic, West Haven, Connecticut, United States; AJL: Yale Center for Medical Informatics, Yale School of Medicine, West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Corresponding author: LEA-M—Lauren.Austin-McClellan@va.gov
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