Doctors have declared war on chiropractors following outrage over a video showing a Melbourne chiropractor manipulating a newborn baby’s spine.

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners has told its members to not refer patients to chiropractors and is calling for the federal government and private health insurers to stop paying them for questionable treatments.

They say they have taken a stand against chiropractors this week after a video emerged on YouTube of Melbourne chiropractor Ian Rossborough​ manipulating a premature baby’s spine to treat colic and reflux. (See it here)

President of the College of GPs, Dr Frank Jones, said there was no evidence to support the treatment which appeared cruel. He said it may have put the baby at risk of fractures and other soft tissue damage.

“You could rupture ligaments, muscles and even bone if they have underlying bone problems,” the GP obstetrician said.

He said there is no evidence they could effectively treat illnesses such as asthma, eczema, colic or reflux.

Melbourne surgeon John Cunningham said the video of the baby made his “eyes water”. He has previously called for the Chiropractic Board to be sacked over its management of chiropractors who run false and misleading advertising about their services.

In a new video posted on Youtube in response to all the backlash Dr Rossborough said checking and adjusting a baby’s spine was “gentle” and did not involve any “cracking”. “It is not a crack!”

“The reason we adjust the baby is because the parents bring them to us. They’ve usually already been to the medical doctors … they come to us in desperation,” he said. “It makes sense to adjust the spine … it’s the chassis, it’s the thing that everything is connected to. The head sits on the spine, the brain sits inside the skull and talks to the body.”

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  • This is just full stop wrong


  • Manipulating a baby’s spine after birth is so big in The USA and Mothers Swear by the treatment. I know that these Dr know what they are doing but I couldn’t take baby to have it done. That’s just me though.


  • I don’t think I’d take this risk with my baby.


  • I am not surprised as the video was quite disturbing to watch.


  • I think parents should be allowed to parent their children as they see fit. Most parents research something like chiro, its not a spur of the moment decision.


  • I cringe every time I see this video.


  • I have used a Chiropractor as an adult but I am not keen on young children/babies being treated this way. I have met those who have and some say that it has helped.


  • So many doctors, physios and massage people don’t like chiropractor. I think it’s because there are too many different types and they don’t all Xray before treating


  • I had major problems with my eldest with colic. She was honestly the worst case I have ever heard of. So bad that people would think I was being a drama queen when i would say that she would scream for 12 hours. She honestly did and we would go to the emergency room. after hours Doctors, several gps, etc….they all said the same thing. Colic and she will grow out of it.
    My Grandmother mentioned this to a friend of hers who was a chiropractor and he said that he would like to see her so i took her to see him. He was very gentle and it was more gentle massage and exercises. No loud cracking of the spine or anything like that. Even so what he did was no real help at all. She didnt calm down until she was well over a year old.
    Im amazed I had more kids have her but I did and they were so easy and blissful compared to my first. Thank goodness I had her first so i could devote time to her.


  • I’m not sure who to believe in this case.


  • I have to disagree with the doctir’s assertion that there’s no evidence… They choose not to accept the evidence in some cases.

    My daughter had terrible reflux, projectile vomited a large proportion of every feed, wasn’t gaining weight, refused to feed from a bottle (so thickened formulas or breastmilk weren’t an option) and I’d done everything the doctor and nurses suggested. After her visit to my highly trained paediatric specialist chiropractor she was completely better. He was gentle and caring, and I regretted not seeing him earlier.


  • I remember the first video we saw and I didn’t like the idea of manipulating the spine at all. I still don’t.


  • I have never known a Dr to refer to, or suggest chiropractors. Physiotherapists, OT’s etc yes – but never a chiropractor.

    • Yeah that’s what I was thinking too. I thought it was common opinion among doctors that chiropractors are non-scientific alternative practitioners.


  • I’m divided and confused :/ One professional says it works and does no harm, the other professional says it’s dangerous and there’s no evidence it works. Who are we to believe? If my Dr recommended a chiropractor, I would take my child thinking the professionals should know what they’re doing. If we can’t trust professionals, we’re all screwed


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