Doctors, Chiropractors at Odds in Texas

AUSTIN, Texas, April 4 (UPI) — Doctors and chiropractors in Texas are in a turf war over what medical treatments chiropractors can legally offer in the state, observers say.

Chiropractors are moving into two areas of healthcare — new treatment technologies such as lasers, and America’s obesity epidemic — which doctors maintain are their rightful domain, The Austin (Texas) American-Statesman reported Sunday.

The Texas Medical Board and the state’s largest doctors’ organization, the Texas Medical Association, have brought a lawsuit against the state board that regulates chiropractors, charging that chiropractors using lasers to remove body fat are doing so illegally, the newspaper said.

Chiropractors in Texas can use lasers as long as the treatment relates to the musculoskeletal system, the spine or its nerves, Glenn Parker, executive director of the chiropractic board, said.

The use of lasers for weight loss or fat reduction “seems to be cosmetic in nature,” Parker said, “… but I have to see what they’re saying to the patient.”

There are no national rules defining what a chiropractor does, Parker said, and standards differ from state to state.

“We’re trying to develop a standardized approach to answering these questions,” Parker said.

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