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About Me
Dr. Fredrick Williams D.C. | Board Certified Sports
Chiropractor

​Sports Injury, and Prevention

Dr. Fred was introduced to chiropractic from a wellness and performance approach ... Read More


 

Fredrick Williams


https://www.blackvibes.com/iamdrfred
 

My Blog


chiropractic and webster

   

Chiropractic care benefits all aspects of your body's ability to be healthy. This is accomplished by working with the nervous system--the communication system between your brain and body. Doctors of Chiropractic work to correct spinal, pelvic and cranial misalignments (subluxations). When misaligned, these structures create an imbalance in surrounding muscles and ligaments. Additionally, the resulting nerve system stress may affect the body's ability to function optimally.

The Webster technique is a specific chiropractic analysis and diversified adjustment. The goal of the adjustment is to reduce the effects of sacral subluxation/ SI joint dysfunction. In so doing neuro-biomechanical function in the pelvis is improved.

Dr. Larry Webster, founder of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association discovered this adjustment as a safe means to restore proper pelvic balance and function. This specific sacral analysis can be used on all weight bearing individuals to determine S/I joint dysfunction/ sacral subluxation and is therefore applicable for the entire population. The assessment includes heel flexion to buttocks, with restricted flexion indicating the affected SI joint. Correction is made with a diversified, sacral adjustment. It is used on all weight bearing individuals presenting with this biomechanical restriction. Common symptoms include (but are not limited to) low back pain, sciatic neuralgia, and symptoms associated with sacral subluxation and/ or S/I joint dysfunction.

The ICPA recognizes that in a theoretical and clinical framework of the Webster Technique in the care of pregnant women, sacral subluxation may contribute to difficult labor for the mother (i.e., dystocia). Dystocia is caused by inadequate uterine function, pelvic contraction, and baby mal-presentation.32 The correction of sacral subluxation may have a positive effect on all of these causes of dystocia.

In this clinical and theoretical framework, it is proposed that sacral misalignment may contribute to these three primary causes of dystocia via uterine nerve interference, pelvic misalignment and the tightening and torsion of specific pelvic muscles and ligaments. The resulting tense muscles and ligaments and their aberrant effect on the uterus may prevent the baby from comfortably assuming the best possible position for birth.
In regards to pregnant mothers, Dr. Webster reported that when a mother sought care and her baby was in a breech position, the restoration of pelvic neuro-biomechanics with this adjustment also frequently facilitated optimal fetal positioning. There are cases published in the chiropractic literature that support this theory. More research is needed and is currently underway by the ICPA.

The obstetric literature has determined that correct positioning of the baby in-utero affect birth outcome and decrease the potential for undue stress to the baby's developing spine and nerve system. Obstetric literature has determined the importance of normal pelvic neuro-biomechanics including uterine function and pelvic alignment for the prevention of dystocia (difficult birth). It has also determined that correct positioning of the baby in-utero affects birth outcome and decreases the potential for undue stress to the baby's developing spine and nerve system. Chiropractic literature has determined the significance of sacral adjustments in normalizing pelvic neuro-biomenchanics.

It is therefore considered prudent that this specific sacral analysis and adjustment be used throughout pregnancy to detect and alleviate sacral imbalance and optimize pelvic neuro-biomechanics in the mother. Because of the particular female adaptations from the increase of hormones, weight gain and postural adaptations, pregnant mothers have a greater chance of sacral subluxation and neuro-biomechanical imbalance than the general population. Additionally, because of the effect the chiropractic adjustment has on all body functions by reducing nerve system stress, pregnant mothers may have significant benefit by having their spines checked regularly throughout pregnancy, optimizing health benefits for both the mother and baby.

The International Chiropractic Pediatric Association offers classes of instruction and awards qualified attendees a Certificate of Proficiency in the Webster protocol. Only those doctors on our site maintain recognized certification status for the Webster protocol.


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sports and concussions

   



ACBSP Position Statement on Concussion in Athletics


The management of concussion in athletics is an area of sports medicine that is clearly in
continued evolution. Several methods of evaluating and assessing concussion that were
once considered standards of care are now defunct. The importance of arriving at correct
clinical decisions regarding the assessment, management and return to play criteria of
individuals who have sustained concussion remains one of the greatest challenges to
sports medicine providers.

Regarding the qualifications of Doctors of Chiropractic and their involvement in
concussion management, it is the position of the ACBSP that:

1. Doctors of Chiropractic with current ACBSP post graduate certification(s) in
sport (DACBSP and CCSP) are qualified to manage the concussed individual in
any patient population.
2. Doctors of Chiropractic may evaluate, diagnosis and manage the concussed
individual. The prerequisite management skills for a concussed athlete can be
supported by additional education such as the ACBSP concussion registry.
3. All health care providers involved in the management of concussed individuals
have an obligation to maintain current knowledge regarding best practices in
concussion management. The ACBSP does not endorse any specific methodology
of concussion management because the methods of assessment and management
of concussion are in transition.

Regarding current best practices in concussion management it is the ACBSP
position that:

1. Concussion may be caused by a direct blow to the head or elsewhere on the body.
2. Loss of consciousness is a key but NOT a required factor in the diagnosis of
concussion. An individual may be concussed without a loss of consciousness.
3. Individuals with concussion may present with wide range of signs and symptoms
such as physical signs of neurologic impairment, or/and symptoms of impaired
brain function which may include abnormal behavior.
4. An athlete suspected of concussion must be removed from play and immediately
assessed.
5. The concussed individual must not be allowed to return to play the same day they
were concussed.
6. Any individual with signs or symptoms of concussion at rest or with exertion
should not be allowed to participate in sport until the signs and symptoms have
resolved.
7. Consultation with a qualified health care provider, including a DACBSP or
CCSP, is essential after suspected concussion. 8. Individuals with concussion should be directly observed, receive serial
examinations and not be left alone after the injury until their constellation of
symptoms are static.
9. Any increase of symptoms (especially increasing headache, decreasing neurologic
function, presence of any focal neurologic deficit, altered vital signs, or repeated
vomiting) in a concussed individual requires urgent evaluation of the individual in
a hospital setting.
10. A graded return-to-play protocol must be followed prior to resumption of full
sporting activity.
11. Clearance by a qualified healthcare provider must be sought prior to the athlete
returning-to-play.
12. An athlete must be symptom-free at rest and with exercise prior to return-to-play.

A recommended current reference for consensus based approach to concussion
management is the Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport: The 3rd
International
Conference on Concussion in Sport Held in Zurich, November 2008. Agreement exists
pertaining to principal messages conveyed within this document, the authors
acknowledge that the science of concussion is evolving and, therefore, management and
return-to-play (RTP) decisions remain in the realm of clinical judgment on an
individualized basis.

Sports Medicine providers are encouraged to copy and distribute freely the following
resources:

Zurich Consensus document - includes the Sports Concussion Assessment Tool (SCAT2)




















Copyright 2011 American Chiropractic Board of Sports Physician


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ADD and Chiropractic

   

Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD/ADHD) is the most commonly reported childhood behavioral disorder, affecting between between 3 and 7% of American children. It is characterized by poor attention span, impulsive behaviors, and hyperactivity in some children. The diagnostic criteria are strictly observational, and there are no objective laboratory tests to confirm that diagnosis. Subjective evaluations of annoying, distracting, or inattentive behavior makes the "diagnosis" of ADD/ADHD speculative at best.

The most common medical "treatment" for this controversial "disease" is prescriptions of Methylphenidate (Ritalin), a Class II controlled and addictive substance. The long-term effects of this drug on children is unknown, but the side-effects, including addiction, are becoming better understood.

What is ADD/ADHD? Although it's exact "cause" is unknown, major etiologic contributors include adverse responses to food additives, intolerances to foods, sensitivities to environmental chemicals, molds, and fungi, and exposures to neurodevelopmental toxins, such as heavy metals and organohalide pollutants. [ 1]

Nutrient deficiencies are common in ADD/ADHD. Supplementation with minerals, B vitamin complex, flavonoids, and the omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids have shown promising results, as are reported in the Abstracts Section section below.

A wholistic/integrative management program will include supplementation, dietary modification, detoxification, and removal of environmental toxins and toxic cleaners from the home.


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The Winsor Autopsies

   

The Winsor Autopsies
Chiropractic Validated by Medical Research

Since chiropractic's inception in 1895 there has been an understanding of the crucial relationship between the integrity of the spinal column and the function of the nerve system as a whole and specifically the tissues and organs that they supply. The interrelatedness of the spine and nerve system, even way back then, was evident in its simplest of understandings.

It was this basic observation that led to the profession of chiropractic focusing on the function of the nerve system and how it is the main source for transmitting the inborn intelligence and information one requires to express their fullest health potential. In essence, to the degree one maintained a healthy nerve system, one free of interference and aberrant communication in relation to the spine, is to the degree one was able to express the fullest potential for life and health.

Chiropractors influence the function of the nerve system through the spine and spinal subsystems thereby allowing the body to increase its own inborn ability to sef-regulate and self-heal.

Why Don't M.D.s Recognize the Importance of Nerve Function?

Fast forward 110 years later. I can't tell you how many times I have a person in front of me to whom I explain these simple workings of the importance of nerve function in the role of their health. I know I am not the only chiropractor who hears this next line all too frequently, "Why didn't my M.D. tell me that?"

My answer is usually something along the lines of, "Maybe they just simply don't know and you should explain it to them." In truth I do not know the answer, but my best guess would be that these understandings were firstly and continue to be associated with chiropractic and chiropractors. Their biasness professionally is that chiropractic ideas have not come from any medical research or any allopathic physician and therefore are not valid.

Well fret no longer; thanks to a wonderful M.D. who spent many long hours in the lab we have results that support the basics of the chiropractic view of a life and death relationship between the nerves and the function of the organs as they relate to the spine.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you:

The Winsor Autopsies

Henry Winsor, a medical doctor in Haverford, Pennsylvania, asked the question:

"Chiropractors claim that by adjusting one vertebra, they can relieve stomach troubles and ulcers; by adjusting another, menstrual cramps; and by adjusting others conditions such as kidney diseases, constipation, heart disease, thyroid conditions, and lung disease may resolve-but how?"

Dr. Winsor decided to investigate this new science and art of healing, chiropractic.

Dissections

After graduating from medical school, Dr. Winsor was inspired by chiropractic and osteopathic literature to experiment. He planned to dissect human and animal cadavers to see if there was a relationship between any diseased internal organ discovered on autopsy and the vertebrae associated with the nerves that went to the organ. As he wrote:

"The object of these necropsies (dissections) was to determine whether any connection existed between minor curvatures of the spine, on the one hand, and diseased organs on the other; or whether the two were entirely independent of each other."

University Permission

The University of Pennsylvania gave Dr. Winsor permission to carry out his experiments. In a series of three studies he dissected a total of 75 human and 22 cat cadavers. The following are Dr. Winsor's results:

"Two hundred twenty-one structures other than the spine were found diseased. Of these, 212 were observed to belong to the same sympathetic (nerve) segments as the vertebrae in curvature. Nine diseased organs belonged to different sympathetic segments from the vertebrae out of line.

These figures cannot be expected to exactly coincide ... for an organ may receive sympathetic filaments from several spinal segments and several organs may be supplied with sympathetic (nerve) filaments from the same spinal segments. In other words, there was nearly a 100 percent correlation between minor curvatures of the spine and diseases of the internal organs.

Diseases examined:

*Stomach Diseases
All nine cases of spinal misalignment in the mid-thoracic area (T5-T9) had stomach disease.

*Lung Disease
All 26 cases of lung disease had spinal misalignments in the upper thoracic spine.

*Liver Disease
All 13 cases of liver disease had misalignments in the mid thoracic (T5-T9)

*Gallstones
All five cases with gallstone disease had spinal misalignments in the mid thoracic.

*Pancreas
All three cases with pancreas disease had spinal misalignments in the mid thoracics.

*Spleen
All 11 cases with spleen diseases had spinal misalignments in the mid thoracics.

*Kidney
All 17 cases with kidney disease were out of alignment in the lower thoracics.

*Prostate and Bladder Disease
All eight cases with kidney, prostate and bladder disease had the lumbar (L2-L3) vertebrae misaligned

*Uterus
The two cases with the uterine conditions had the second lumbar misaligned.

*Heart Disease
All 20 cases with heart and pericardium conditions had the upper five thoracic vertebrae (T1-T5) misaligned.

Dr. Winsor's results are published in The Medical Times, November 1921, and are found in any medical library.

That's right, folks: 1921 !!!!!
_________________________________________
Modern Research Also Shows Benefits of Chiropractic

What is incredible is that there is much more research, a majority of it done in recent years, that shows the benefit of chiropractic care in many aspects of health such as the immune system. Wouldn't you want to know that chiropractic care could allow your family's immune systems to be as healthy as they are meant to be?

The latest research shows people without any symptoms at all who receive chiropractic care IMPROVE their health.

That means there is valid scientific documentation that as you incorporate chiropractic care into your lifestyle you continue to get healthier even if you don't have any current symptoms!

Now let me just acknowledge that many in our profession of chiropractic educate people to know that judging their health based upon symptoms is not wise and that even in the absence of symptoms someone can be quite sick. I am not disagreeing with that at all.

However, I am simply shifting the focus onto creating health, wellness and wholeness. We have no choice in that life is a continuous process that goes on with or without us. We do have a choice in either taking a passive and unaware role in the processes of creating a downward spiral of sickness and disease, or an informed and active one in creating an upward spiral of health and vitality. Which would you choose for yourself? How about for your child?

How Many of us Receive Chiropractic Care?

Our profession has been educating, talking about, asking, and sometimes pleading with people to get checked for nerve interference by a chiropractor for over 100 years. Over 85 years ago the medical community itself validated chiropractic's reasoning with science.

Sadly to this day only 10 percent to 18 percent of our country's population has gotten under some type of chiropractic care according to various statistics.

We continue to get sicker as a country that encompasses something like 5 percent of the world's population, who consume around 60 percent of the world's pharmaceuticals. This concept of better health through better drugs is not working and, more importantly, it is killing us. Conservatively speaking, the third leading cause of death in this country is the medical profession.

So whether you have a disease, an illness or symptoms, are without a symptom and want to create more health, or want to find out more about your body, the state of your spine, if you have nerve interference and more importantly how much or little you are expressing your health potential, you could benefit from a chiropractor.

Many of my colleagues across the country and world give health care classes, new patient orientations and speak to all sorts of groups. Please see the wonderful chiropractor locator and schedule yourself an appointment, or at the very least find out when the chiropractor nearest you is giving a talk about health, wellness and chiropractic as it relates to you and your family's lives.

I promise you it is the greatest gift you can give yourself and your family, now that you have started to understand how the body actually works!

Reference:

Much of this article was modified from an original article from Tedd Koren, D.C.

All quotes from: Winsor, H. Sympathetic segmental disturbances -- II. The evidences of the association, in dissected cadavers, of visceral disease with vertebral deformities of the same sympathetic segments, The Medical Times, November 1921, pp./ 267-271
Posted by idobcool at 1:52 PM
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The Winsor Autopsies

   

The Winsor Autopsies
Chiropractic Validated by Medical Research

Since chiropractic's inception in 1895 there has been an understanding of the crucial relationship between the integrity of the spinal column and the function of the nerve system as a whole and specifically the tissues and organs that they supply. The interrelatedness of the spine and nerve system, even way back then, was evident in its simplest of understandings.

It was this basic observation that led to the profession of chiropractic focusing on the function of the nerve system and how it is the main source for transmitting the inborn intelligence and information one requires to express their fullest health potential. In essence, to the degree one maintained a healthy nerve system, one free of interference and aberrant communication in relation to the spine, is to the degree one was able to express the fullest potential for life and health.

Chiropractors influence the function of the nerve system through the spine and spinal subsystems thereby allowing the body to increase its own inborn ability to sef-regulate and self-heal.

Why Don't M.D.s Recognize the Importance of Nerve Function?

Fast forward 110 years later. I can't tell you how many times I have a person in front of me to whom I explain these simple workings of the importance of nerve function in the role of their health. I know I am not the only chiropractor who hears this next line all too frequently, "Why didn't my M.D. tell me that?"

My answer is usually something along the lines of, "Maybe they just simply don't know and you should explain it to them." In truth I do not know the answer, but my best guess would be that these understandings were firstly and continue to be associated with chiropractic and chiropractors. Their biasness professionally is that chiropractic ideas have not come from any medical research or any allopathic physician and therefore are not valid.

Well fret no longer; thanks to a wonderful M.D. who spent many long hours in the lab we have results that support the basics of the chiropractic view of a life and death relationship between the nerves and the function of the organs as they relate to the spine.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you:

The Winsor Autopsies

Henry Winsor, a medical doctor in Haverford, Pennsylvania, asked the question:

"Chiropractors claim that by adjusting one vertebra, they can relieve stomach troubles and ulcers; by adjusting another, menstrual cramps; and by adjusting others conditions such as kidney diseases, constipation, heart disease, thyroid conditions, and lung disease may resolve-but how?"

Dr. Winsor decided to investigate this new science and art of healing, chiropractic.

Dissections

After graduating from medical school, Dr. Winsor was inspired by chiropractic and osteopathic literature to experiment. He planned to dissect human and animal cadavers to see if there was a relationship between any diseased internal organ discovered on autopsy and the vertebrae associated with the nerves that went to the organ. As he wrote:

"The object of these necropsies (dissections) was to determine whether any connection existed between minor curvatures of the spine, on the one hand, and diseased organs on the other; or whether the two were entirely independent of each other."

University Permission

The University of Pennsylvania gave Dr. Winsor permission to carry out his experiments. In a series of three studies he dissected a total of 75 human and 22 cat cadavers. The following are Dr. Winsor's results:

"Two hundred twenty-one structures other than the spine were found diseased. Of these, 212 were observed to belong to the same sympathetic (nerve) segments as the vertebrae in curvature. Nine diseased organs belonged to different sympathetic segments from the vertebrae out of line.

These figures cannot be expected to exactly coincide ... for an organ may receive sympathetic filaments from several spinal segments and several organs may be supplied with sympathetic (nerve) filaments from the same spinal segments. In other words, there was nearly a 100 percent correlation between minor curvatures of the spine and diseases of the internal organs.

Diseases examined:

*Stomach Diseases
All nine cases of spinal misalignment in the mid-thoracic area (T5-T9) had stomach disease.

*Lung Disease
All 26 cases of lung disease had spinal misalignments in the upper thoracic spine.

*Liver Disease
All 13 cases of liver disease had misalignments in the mid thoracic (T5-T9)

*Gallstones
All five cases with gallstone disease had spinal misalignments in the mid thoracic.

*Pancreas
All three cases with pancreas disease had spinal misalignments in the mid thoracics.

*Spleen
All 11 cases with spleen diseases had spinal misalignments in the mid thoracics.

*Kidney
All 17 cases with kidney disease were out of alignment in the lower thoracics.

*Prostate and Bladder Disease
All eight cases with kidney, prostate and bladder disease had the lumbar (L2-L3) vertebrae misaligned

*Uterus
The two cases with the uterine conditions had the second lumbar misaligned.

*Heart Disease
All 20 cases with heart and pericardium conditions had the upper five thoracic vertebrae (T1-T5) misaligned.

Dr. Winsor's results are published in The Medical Times, November 1921, and are found in any medical library.

That's right, folks: 1921 !!!!!
_________________________________________
Modern Research Also Shows Benefits of Chiropractic

What is incredible is that there is much more research, a majority of it done in recent years, that shows the benefit of chiropractic care in many aspects of health such as the immune system. Wouldn't you want to know that chiropractic care could allow your family's immune systems to be as healthy as they are meant to be?

The latest research shows people without any symptoms at all who receive chiropractic care IMPROVE their health.

That means there is valid scientific documentation that as you incorporate chiropractic care into your lifestyle you continue to get healthier even if you don't have any current symptoms!

Now let me just acknowledge that many in our profession of chiropractic educate people to know that judging their health based upon symptoms is not wise and that even in the absence of symptoms someone can be quite sick. I am not disagreeing with that at all.

However, I am simply shifting the focus onto creating health, wellness and wholeness. We have no choice in that life is a continuous process that goes on with or without us. We do have a choice in either taking a passive and unaware role in the processes of creating a downward spiral of sickness and disease, or an informed and active one in creating an upward spiral of health and vitality. Which would you choose for yourself? How about for your child?

How Many of us Receive Chiropractic Care?

Our profession has been educating, talking about, asking, and sometimes pleading with people to get checked for nerve interference by a chiropractor for over 100 years. Over 85 years ago the medical community itself validated chiropractic's reasoning with science.

Sadly to this day only 10 percent to 18 percent of our country's population has gotten under some type of chiropractic care according to various statistics.

We continue to get sicker as a country that encompasses something like 5 percent of the world's population, who consume around 60 percent of the world's pharmaceuticals. This concept of better health through better drugs is not working and, more importantly, it is killing us. Conservatively speaking, the third leading cause of death in this country is the medical profession.

So whether you have a disease, an illness or symptoms, are without a symptom and want to create more health, or want to find out more about your body, the state of your spine, if you have nerve interference and more importantly how much or little you are expressing your health potential, you could benefit from a chiropractor.

Many of my colleagues across the country and world give health care classes, new patient orientations and speak to all sorts of groups. Please see the wonderful chiropractor locator and schedule yourself an appointment, or at the very least find out when the chiropractor nearest you is giving a talk about health, wellness and chiropractic as it relates to you and your family's lives.

I promise you it is the greatest gift you can give yourself and your family, now that you have started to understand how the body actually works!

Reference:

Much of this article was modified from an original article from Tedd Koren, D.C.

All quotes from: Winsor, H. Sympathetic segmental disturbances -- II. The evidences of the association, in dissected cadavers, of visceral disease with vertebral deformities of the same sympathetic segments, The Medical Times, November 1921, pp./ 267-271
Posted by idobcool at 1:52 PM
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The Doctor of the Future

   

Doctor of the Future

Claim: Thomas Edison said that "The doctor of the future will give no medicine but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease."


TRUE

Origins: The original notion claimed for the health maintenance organization (HMO) concept that has come to dominate the U.S. medical care industry over the last few decades was that by providing patients with prepaid medical service for a set fee they would be encouraged to seek preventive or early care, thus saving money in the long run by helping to head off the hefty costs of treatment and hospitalization associated with serious and chronic illnesses. Although the HMO concept was not widely put into practice until the 1970s, prepaid health plans existed (on a small scale) before the beginning of the 20th century, and the idea of managed health care is of similar age, as expressed in this 1908 article:
The day is near at hand when the doctor will no longer be engaged to patch up the sick man, but to prevent him from getting sick. He will visit families, examine the premises, inspect factories and shops, and give instruction to his patients how to keep from getting sick. Each family will select its doctor and pay him so much a year per capita. The doctors will not lose by the arrangement, either.
Recent years have seen increased interest in alternatives to "traditional" medicine, such as holistic medicine, a system that focuses on areas such as personal accountability for one's health,

the human body's ability to heal itself, and balancing the body, mind, and spirit with the environment, as well as encompassing practices such as acupuncture, biofeedback, faith healing, folk medicine, meditation, megavitamin therapy, and yoga. Many people don't accept the efficacy of alternative forms of medicine, though, so having a famous and respected scientific commentator seemingly anticipate the rise of holistic medicine helps to lend credibility to that field, hence the popularity of the above-cited quote regarding the nature of the "doctor of the future" which is commonly attributed to renowned inventor Thomas Edison.

Indeed, this quote has been widely reproduced and distributed by chiropractors (a group of practitioners who have often been criticized as being outside the realm of "real" medical science) for many years, as evidenced by this 1964 newspaper advertisement:

But did Edison ever really say such a thing? Beyond the invocation of Thomas Edison's name, the "doctor of the future" statement typically appears unaccompanied by any other details, such as when, where, and in what context Edison supposedly spoke these words. And the authors of the 1989 book They Never Said It maintained that no one had yet been able to trace the quote back to Edison himself:
The doctor-of-the-future statement is popular with American chiropracters [sic]. It appears on their stationery and in frames on the walls of their offices. But it appears nowhere in the writings of the great American inventor. Neither the Palmer Chiropractic College archivist in Davenport, Iowa, not researchers at the Edison Historical Society could locate it. In the early 1980s the American Chiropractic Association offered a small reward to anyone who could provide the source in Edison's writings, but to date there have been no takers.
We decided to undertake the challenge, and we opted to start by trying to determine how long ago this statement first came to be attributed to Edison. If we found that the earliest references to this statement didn't start to appear in print until well after Edison's death, that would be a strong indicator the words were likely a false, post-mortem attribution rather than something Edison actually said. The oldest reproduction of this quote we initially found that credited the "doctor of the future" statement to Thomas Edison appeared in another newspaper advertisement placed by a chiropractor, this one published in 1920:

We gleaned two important leads from that advertisement:
Since the ad appeared well within Edison's lifetime (the famous inventor passed away in 1931), the quote could not easily be dismissed as words that had been put into Edison's mouth after his death (when he was no longer around to deny having said them).
The original statement, if it existed, might be worded in a significantly different fashion than the form in which it was now commonly circulated.
With those leads, and some additional searching, we turned up several newspaper articles from late 1902 and early 1903 that reprinted Edison's predictions for the upcoming year. Those predictions included some comments from him about the future of medicine, a portion of which incorporated the "doctor of the future" statement now attributed to him:
"Nineteen hundred and three will bring great advances in surgery, in the study of bacteria, in the knowledge of the cause and prevention of disease. Medicine is played out. Every new discovery of bacteria shows us all the more convincingly that we have been wrong and that the million tons of stuff we have taken was all useless.

"The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will instruct his patient in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease.

"They may even discover the germ of old age. I don't predict it, but it might be by the sacrifice of animal life human life could be prolonged.

"Surgery, diet, antiseptics - these three are the vital things of the future in preserving the health of humanity. There were never so many able, active minds at work on the problems of diseases as now, and all their discoveries are tending to the simple truth - that you can't improve on nature."
The bolded passage is rendered slightly differently in various newspaper accounts (e.g., "The doctor of the future - there will always be doctors - will instruct his patient how to care for the human frame and how to diet himself instead of giving him medicine"), perhaps due to the vagaries of reporters' having to transcribe an oral statement as it was being spoken (or later from memory), but it's clear that the gist of the statement in question was widely and contemporaneously reported as something Thomas Edison himself said in late 1902.

However, one should keep in mind the context in which Edison made this statement. He was speaking at a time when very little effective "medicine" existed: the drugs used for alleviating illness in his era consisted primarily of useless (and often harmful) "snake oil" concoctions, toxic bromides, and "patent medicines" based on narcotics such as heroin, opium, morphine, and cocaine. Aspirin, which might be considered the very first safe, effective, non-addictive drug to be widely used, had been introduced only a few years prior to Edison's remarks, and the development of antibiotics was still several decades away. In retrospect, therefore, it's hardly surprising that a scientist speaking at the dawn of the 20th century might have declared medicine to be "played out" and instead have advocated a focus on health maintenance, disease prevention, and surgical treatment over a reliance on crude drugs.

Read more at http://www.snopes.com/quotes/futuredoctor.asp#507w16JuaGzH4bBO.9


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