Chiropractic medicine has developed sub-specialties similar to medicine. Chiropractic sub specialties currently recognized by the American Chiropractic Association include Neurology, Orthopedics, Radiology, Pediatrics, Pain Management, Internal Medicine, Forensics, Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation, Acupuncture, Occupational Medicine, and Nutrition.
Chiropractic neurology is a field of study for chiropractors interested in the study of the nervous system, diseases of the nerve system and conservative neurological treatments. Since chiropractic physicians do not use drugs or surgery in their treatments, chiropractic neurologists manage neurological conditions that respond to non-medicine therapies and procedures. Conditions requiring medication or surgery are referred to the proper medical specialist.
Chiropractic neurologists use manual therapy, rehabilitation and nutritional therapy in their treatments of neurological conditions. There are many neurological conditions that respond very well to conservative non-drug treatments such as: tension headaches, migraine, concussion, nerve entrapment syndromes like carpal tunnel syndrome, and spinal nerve root compression from disc lesions and stenosis just to name a few.
Sometimes chiropractic neurologists use standard chiropractic techniques on patient populations suffering complex neurological problems under management by medical neurologists like ALS, muscular dystrophies, and stroke.
A branch of Chiropractic Neurology termed Functional Neurology has been developed over the past few years. Doctors engaged in the practice of functional neurology use emerging rehabilitative techniques to improve brain and spinal cord function. This new area of interest has very limited research support and to date there are no standard protocols for treatment. However, research in this area is currently ongoing.