The ABCs of Chiropractic Specialties

When it comes to deciphering the letters following a doctor’s name, it can feel as though you’re trying to read a bowl of alphabet soup. At the same time, though, those abbreviations can tell you a lot about the doctor’s education and experience. While every Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) is trained to perform a range of standard manipulation and mobilization techniques, many have also chosen to become experts in treating particular types of conditions, working with specific patient populations or practicing in certain kinds of settings. Like medical doctors, DCs increasingly choose to specialize in order to provide a higher standard of care to their patients.

According to Robert E. Dubro, DC, DACBOH, DABCO, president of the American Board of Chiropractic Specialties, “After graduating from chiropractic college, you have the basic skill set to treat patients presenting with average, everyday complaints and injuries. In general, you do not yet have the expertise to treat highly chronic illnesses and injuries or specific, complex occupational, sports or traumatic injuries. Specialty training is an important path to that kind of expertise.”

Below, we’ve provided a short explanation of the American Chiropractic Association-accredited professional specializations you’re likely to encounter as you learn more about chiropractic care and investigate which options may be best for you and your family.

  • Chiropractic Diagnostic Imaging (DACBR) Specialist – Has additional training in interpreting diagnostic imaging results, such as x-rays, CT scans, MRIs and ultrasounds.
  • Chiropractic Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation (DACRB) Specialist – Has extensive postgraduate training in physiologic therapeutics and rehabilitation to better treat injuries that may have resulted from an accident or a sports injury.
  • Chiropractic Acupuncture (DABCA) Specialist – Treats a wide variety of health conditions that include all body systems and tissues and focuses special attention on the relationship between the spine, nervous system, and the meridian system.
  • Chiropractic Nutrition (DACBN/CBCN) Specialist – Is specially trained to use advanced nutritional strategies to prevent and treat disease and to educate patients.
  • Chiropractic Diagnosis and Management of Internal Disorders (DABCI) Specialist – Is trained as a holistic primary care physician specializing in modern medical diagnosis, functional medicine, and natural therapeutics.
  • Chiropractic Orthopedist (DACO/DABCO) Specialist – Has special knowledge of both the normal function and diseases of the bones, joints, capsules, discs, muscles, ligaments, tendons, their complete neurological components, referred organ systems and contiguous tissues, and is able to diagnose and treat the conditions related to them.
  • Chiropractic Clinical Neurologist (DACAN/DACNB) Specialist – Is specially trained in the clinical evaluation and treatment of conditions involving the central and peripheral nervous systems.
  • Chiropractic Sports Physician (CCSP/DACBSP) Specialist – Is trained in chiropractic sports medicine and exercise science in order to treat sports injuries, enhance athletic performance and promote physical fitness.
  • Chiropractic Pediatrician (DICCP) Specialist – Has received special training in pediatrics to meet the chiropractic healthcare needs of children.
  • Chiropractic Occupational Health (DACBOH) Specialist – A DC trained in health care diagnosis and treatment choices for workplace neuromusculoskeletal injuries who is able to provide a broad range of work-related injury and illness prevention services for employee populations.

In addition to these professional specializations, chiropractic physicians may also receive other types of certifications related to their use of certain techniques or technologies in the care of their patients.

If you’re wondering what type of chiropractic care might be right for you, we encourage you to call or visit our office today. We’re always happy to answer any questions and to explain our approach!  We’re here to help!

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