CCE Councilor Ron Farabaugh Says X-rays Not Needed for Subluxation Care

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CCE Councilor Ron Farabaugh Says X-rays Not Needed for Subluxation Care

Says Millions of Patients Get Results Every Day Without X-rays

Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE) Councilor Ron Farabaugh DC recently weighed in on the controversy regarding x-rays in the practice of chiropractic saying they are not necessary to find a subluxation. In addition to being a Councilor for the profession's only accreditor, Farabaugh is the National Physical Medicine Director for American Medical Integration Group (AMI). AMI uses what it calls an Integrated Medical Data Information System (IMDIS®) to collect patient specific clinical and cost data. According to AMI this data is then used to identify medically unnecessary high-tech, high-cost procedures and managing the frequency of low-tech, low-cost, high touch, high patient satisfaction procedures in a patient-centered environment.

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According to AMI, "Farabaugh was hired into the role of AMI National Physical Medicine Director in the fall of 2015 after previously consulting with AMI during the development of the IMDIS® platform."

Given this it makes sense that Farabaugh would not be supportive of x-ray in chiropractic practice - especially subluxation based care.

Suggesting that the taking of x-rays to evaluate biomechanical improprieties was a "monumental waste of time" Farabaugh went on to state that if chiropractors x-ray machines broke down for a year ". . . you'd still be able to find the subluxation/articular dysfunction, still be able to adjust and still obtain great results."

Instead, Farabaugh asserts that much like a physical therapist, ". . . putting motion into the spine, providing exercise, and discussing nutrition" is all that's necessary and that x-ray ". . . is way low in importance."

In addition to being on the CCE and serving as National Physical Medicine Director for AMI, Farabaugh is a past chairman of the Council on Chiropractic Practice Guidelines and Practice Parameters (CCGPP). The CCGPP is the offspring of the Mercy Guidelines Committee which developed the first set of practice guidelines in chiropractic in the early 90's. The Mercy Guidelines were roundly rejected by the profession after publication and resulted in a series of scandals because the document was distributed to insurance claims cutters prior to being distributed to the profession. It was eventually removed from the National Guidelines Clearinghouse (NGC) of the United States Federal Government after it was revealed that the guidelines were not current though the NGC was told they were. 

The CCGPP has not been supportive of chiropractic care in the managment of non-musculoskeletal complaints. In fact, in their report on Wellness, health promotion and disease prevention the CCGPP stated that there was:

  • Insufficient evidence to make a recommendation for or against spinal manipulation for health promotion and/or disease prevention.
  • Insufficient evidence to make a recommendation for or against spinal manipulation for patients with non-musculoskeletal conditions.
  • Insufficient evidence to make a recommendation for or against chiropractic care or spinal manipulation for children with conditions other than asthma, infantile colic and otitis media.
  • Insufficient evidence to make a recommendation for or against spinal manipulation/mobilization for LBP during labor.

According to AMI's website they use best practice alerts based on two sets of guidelines: ODG (Official Disability Guidelines) and CCGPP (Council on Chiropractic Guidelines and Practice Parameters).

Elected to the CCE in 2015 Farabaugh serves on the Council that is responsible for all accreditation decisions. The Council also serves as the policy and decision making body for the CCE. The Councilors also elect the Council Chair.

While the CCE does have a Conflict of Interest Policy, apparently Farabaugh's service on these entities and his unscientific views regarding x-rays in chiropractic are not a concern for them. In the past several years the CCE came under significant scrutiny that individuals serving on their various Committees had conflicts of interest that benefited the extreme fringe of the profession seeking to eliminate subluxation based training. The CCE promised to correct this in order to retain their recognition with the US Department of Education. 

The x-ray issue in chiropractic raised its ugly head once again recently when the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) recently issued policy recommendations calling for the elimination of x-rays to assess the biomechanical components of subluxation as well as follow-up x-rays to measure post care outcomes.

According to his website, Farabaugh is a member of the American Chiropractic Association's Research Committee.

On his website Farabaugh claims his ". . . office utilizes the latest in technology, using one of the only Spinal Decompression Tables in the city of Columbus, to help patients avoid neck and LB surgery."

He does not provide any evidence to support those claims.

McCoy Press