Chiropractor in Amarillo Discusses How Much The Run-Of-The-Mill Medical Student Knows About Musculoskeletal Issues

Chiropractor in Amarillo lays outlines what you need to know

Before I get into this paper, I am a chiropractor in Amarillo myself and I want to share a story of my own that happened recently. I went to the emergency room just recently. I had diagnosed myself with three different issues. I had a pretty good idea of what was going on but I decided to go just as a precaution.  I’m getting to that age where the ticker can get sketchy on some guys so I wanted to play it safe and make sure it wasn’t getting funny on ME!

Anyway, I told the ER doctor that I felt like I had a bulged/herniated disc. He pushed down on my head to test but that was really about all that he did. Our disc testing and classification are leaps and bounds more advanced than theirs! We have five different tests for a disc in the cervical spine.  

Eventually, he was honest and said, “You’d probably know better than me if it’s a disc.” I thought that was great to get a little credit and some amount of recognition. He was good and very thorough on what he knew and what he was comfortable with. I am not trying to disrespect him here. I think he was very competent in what he has been taught. 

But, according to research, he is 100% correct. 

Why They Did It

A basic understanding of the musculoskeletal system is considered to be essential when practicing medicine. It made sense to the authors to survey a portion of the healthcare practitioners try to assess the level of understanding of the musculoskeletal system. 

How Did They Do It?·     

  • An exam was issued to 334 volunteers·     
  • The volunteers had to be medical students, residents, and/or staff physicians. 

What Did They Find?

  • The average score was a 57%·     
  • 69 of the 334 (21%) scored a 73.1 or higher·     
  • Of the 69 people that scored a 73.1 or higher, 58% of those were orthopedic residents and staff physicians. 

Wrap It Up

  • 79% of the participants failed the basic musculoskeletal cognitive examination

Suggesting that training in the realm of the musculoskeletal system is woefully inadequate in medical school as well as non-orthopedic residency programs

- Matzkin E, e.a., Adequacy of education in musculoskeletal medicine. J Bone Joint Surg Am, 2005 Feb. 87(2): p. 310-4.


Dr. Jeff Williams, DC, FIANM is a Fellowship-trained Neuromusculoskeletal specialist and chiropractor in Amarillo, TX. As an Amarillo chiropractor, Dr. Williams treats chronic pain, disc pain, low back pain, neck pain, whiplash injuries, and more. Dr. Williams is also the host of The Chiropractic Forward Podcast. Through the podcast, Dr. Williams teaches fellow chiropractors and advocates weekly for evidence-based, patient-centered practice through current and relevant research. If you have any questions for Dr. Williams, feel free to email at [email protected]

Learn more about Dr. Williams and his practice at https://www.amarillochiropractor.com. Dr. Williams's full-time Amarillo chiropractic practice is Creek Stone Integrated Care at 3501 SW 45th St., Ste. T, Amarillo, TX 79109


Jeff S Williams, DC, FIANM, DABFP

Jeff S Williams, DC, FIANM, DABFP


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