What Is A Doctor Of Chiropractic?

A Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) is a state licensed and federally recognized healthcare specialist in natural (nondrug/nonsurgical) means of healing. Most insurances cover treatment by a DC, which is evidence of both its efficacy and cost-effectiveness in getting people well. In terms of college training, the hours and courses of Chiropractic and medical students are similar in many ways. However, where MDs study drugs and surgical intervention, DCs study a variety of natural healing techniques, with the correction of joint dysfunction being a primary focus.

What Does A Doctor Of Chiropractic Do?

While the primary means of treatment for Doctors of Chiropractic is the correction of joint dysfunction, this is only the foundation of what DCs actually do. The care rendered to a given individual is based upon the specific needs of that person. There are a variety of professional therapies available and a variety of Chiropractic adjusting methods. At this office, we utilize such recognized Chiropractic manual therapies as diversified, Gonstead, activator, Cox, drop-piece manipulation, and myofascial release. There is no cookbook approach used on every patient. Most patients get some form of therapy prior to treatment and one or more spinal adjustments to the problem area(s). In most cases, corrective exercises, posture modification, and home therapy are recommended to assist in the recovery. In addition to spinal manipulation, various therapies/services are offered at this office that include:

  1. Ultrasound

  2. Intermittent Traction

  3. Electrical Muscle Stimulation

  4. Interferential Current Therapy

  5. Diathermy

  6. Cryotherapy

  7. Heat Therapy

  8. Flexion-Distraction Therapy

  9. Therapeutic Exercise

  10. Posture/Ergonomic Correction

  11. Orthotics

  12. Supports

  13. Nutritional Supplements/Advice

  14. X-ray Imaging

  15. Informational Handouts

  16. Dietary Recommendations

What Type Of Conditions Does A Doctor Of Chiropractic Treat? 

For over three decades, Dr. Lewkovich has specialized in treating such conditions as:

  • Whiplash injuries

  • Headaches

  • Pain and/or stiffness in the:

    • neck

    • upper back

    • low back

    • shoulders

    • arms

    • hips

    • glutes

    • legs

    • and/or feet

  • Disc problems

  • Various neuropathies

  • Myofascial complaints

  • Vertigo

  • Nutritional disorders

  • Postural distortions

  • Muscle imbalances

  • Acute, chronic and recurrent musculoskeletal dysfunction

  • Conditions that have failed other therapies and interventions

Is Everyone A Candidate For Chiropractic Treatment? 

The great majority of people who come to our office are good candidates for Chiropractic care. However, some patients are better suited for other types of treatment. To determine if a person’s condition is well-suited for our treatment, a proper assessment needs to be performed. 

How Do We Assess Your Condition?

In order to properly assess your condition(s), we need to actually meet with you at the office. All candidates for acceptance for Chiropractic care must be properly assessed by the doctor. A typical assessment involves the completion of health-related paperwork, a thorough review of your past and current medical history, and an appropriate orthopedic and neurological examination. If necessary, x-rays may be taken to more accurately diagnose your condition. Only after we are satisfied that you are a good candidate for Chiropractic treatment will you be accepted for care.

If I Am Accepted For Treatment, Can I Be Treated That Same Day?

Absolutely. Unlike some offices, we rarely make you wait to the following visit before starting treatment. We know that people want to get out of pain as soon as possible and we believe there is little point in waiting for care to begin.

Can We Help? 

Our office policy is a simple one: If we believe we can help you, we will tell you. If we do not believe we can help you, we will tell you that as well. Even if you are not, in our opinion, a good candidate for Chiropractic care, we can help you with a referral to an appropriate healthcare provider. Overall, this office maintains a very high treatment success and patient satisfaction scores.

How Long Will It Take To Get Better?

This is a very good question. The simplest cases may take just one visit to remove the symptoms. Complicated cases may take weeks, even months to treat effectively. Remember, when a case is properly treated, the odds of ongoing and/or future problems is greatly reduced. Our promise to you is the same one we have made for the last 30+ years: You will be given only the treatment you need, nothing more, and nothing less.

How Much Will It Cost? 

We understand that the cost of healthcare is on the rise. It is our goal to make our Chiropractic care affordable to everyone. If you have been injured at work or as result of a motor vehicle accident, those costs are usually covered 100% by an insurance carrier. If you have health insurance, we are contracted with most large insurance carriers, including Medicare. If you do not have insurance, we offer an affordable cash option. Our staff is available to assist you in finding the best payment method for your particular needs.

Does the Chiropractic Adjustment Hurt?

Dr. Lewkovich has performed hundreds of thousands of spinal manipulations in his 30+ year career. He has adjusted patients as young as 1 day old and as old as 98 years. By employing only highly controlled, specific spinal corrections, the actual adjusting force is greatly minimized. We treat high-end athletes with astronomically high pain tolerances all the way to the most delicate of individuals. Under normal circumstances, adjustments do not hurt. If there is any discomfort experienced during the adjustment, it typically lasts only a few seconds. 

I Have Heard That Chiropractors “Crack Your Joints.” I Don’t Think I Would Be Comfortable With That. Are there Any Alternatives To Offer People Like Me?

The idea of “cracking joints” scares some people. Actually, the slight cracking sound heard with some joint manipulations is simply gas escaping from the joint complex. We understand that, for a variety of reasons, a small percentage of people may not be comfortable with the standard manipulation performed by hand. That is perfectly alright. There are alternative ways of correcting joint dysfunction that do not involve cracking sounds. We offer low force techniques that can also provide excellent relief for most people. 

My Friend Does Not "Believe" In Chiropractic. What Can I Tell That Person?

First off, remember that Chiropractic is NOT a religion, nor is it a belief system. Chiropractic is an evidence-based method of natural healing. Tell the person you got better with chiropractic treatment. It is difficult for even the most doubtful of persons to argue with true success. If that person needs more convincing, ask him/her the questions outlined below: 

Do you believe in performing a consultation?

Do you believe in performing an examination

Do you believe in the diagnostic value of radiographic studies, MRI, CT Scans, etc.? 

Do you believe in an accurate diagnosis

Do you believe in treatment such as ice, heat, ultrasound, muscle stim, traction, rehabilitation, etc.

Do you believe in the value of proper posture and corrective exercise

Do you believe in the value of proper nutrition

Do you believe that it is beneficial to have proper joint function?

The above approach constitutes the practice of Chiropractic! 

Is There Any Research Demonstrating The Effectiveness Of Chiropractic Care? 

A wealth of research exists pertaining to issues surrounding Chiropractic healthcare. The bottom line: Chiropractic has been proven to be a cost effective and extremely safe form of treatment. Regarding the effectiveness of spinal manipulation, there is more positive research on this topic than any other form of treatment for spinal-related pain. Patient satisfaction studies are extremely favorable to Chiropractic. Our office houses a large database of research. Simply inform the front desk or any of the doctors what you are interested in and we will be happy to pull specific literature for your review.

I Have Heard That Once You Begin Chiropractic Care, You Have To Keep Going For The Rest Of Your Life. Is There Any Truth To This Statement?

If that were true, every chiropractor would be so busy they could never accept any new patients. The majority of patients come in, get treated, get well, and it's over. Once you improve, it remains your sole decision to either re-visit the office for future acute episodes of pain, or place yourself on a maintenance program. 

What Are The Benefits Of "Maintenance" Care?

Maintenance care is no different than periodic visits to your dentist. Once you start eating right, do you always have to eat right? Once you start exercising, do you always have to exercise? Answer: It totally depends upon your personal goals. The care of your spine and nervous system is no different. We will help you meet whatever goals you set for yourself and help you understand the merits of your choice. Remember, we are here to help you.

How Safe Is Chiropractic Care?

Unequivocally, Chiropractic care is one of the safest forms of healthcare available for the treatment of spinal conditions. Compared to the risks of taking medication and the complications of surgery, risks associated with Chiropractic care are extremely low. Are you aware that approximately 16,500 people in this country die every year from the side effects of aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)? Add another 20,000 deaths due to Tylenol. The most serious risk associated (not causatively related) with Chiropractic care, occurs less than once in every 5 million spinal adjustments. Other studies indicate an even lower rate of serious risk.

I Heard That An Adjustment To The Neck Can Cause A Stroke Or Paralysis?

Again, Chiropractic care is one of the safest forms of healthcare available for the treatment of spinal conditions, including the neck. According to the most recent studies, you have less than a 1 per 5 million (one study even says 1 per 8 million) chance of experiencing a stroke following an adjustment to the neck. Paralysis is far more rare. Serious risks of spinal adjustments are so rare that researchers have a difficult time even predicting the odds. A recent large study in Canada found no evidence of a causative relationship between spinal manipulation and strokes. Statistically, an aspirin is far more dangerous. Despite the low risk, we perform a screening to even further minimize the risks to you before we ever perform that first adjustment.

Do Chiropractors Believe In Drugs?

Of course we do. We simply do not believe in drug abuse and misuse. We believe in Chiropractic first, drugs second, surgery last. When it comes to spinal care, with rare exceptions, Chiropractic should be your first choice, not your last choice. In complicated or difficult cases, we often recommend that the patient return to their medical physician for any medication they deem appropriate to assist in the recovery. We maintain an extensive referral list of medical physicians who work cooperatively with our office.

Do Chiropractors Believe In Other Forms Of Healthcare? 

Absolutely. No healthcare professional can cure everything. Doctors of Chiropractic believe that maintaining health often requires a team approach. If we cannot help you, we will make every effort to find someone who can!

Who Is Dr. Gary Lewkovich?

Besides being a licensed Doctor of Chiropractic, Dr. Lewkovich is also a:          

  • Chiropractic Orthopedist

  • Qualified Medical Evaluator for the State of California

  • Diplomate of the American Academy of Pain Management

  • Auto Crash Reconstructionist from the Spinal Research Institute of San Diego

  • Author of booklets on Whiplash, Work Injuries, and Posture Correction

Dr. Lewkovich currently holds the following positions:

  • Editor of the PI Review since 1998 ( a monthly publication for other doctors and attorneys). In this capacity, he has written over 220 articles on motor vehicle injuries)

  • Chairperson of the California Chiropractic Association’s Personal Injury Committee (a position he has held for over 18 years.)

  • Personal Injury Advisor for Empowering Chiropractic’s Business University

Dr. Lewkovich previously held the following positions:

  • Director of Athletic Injuries at Pasadena College of Chiropractic

  • Chiropractor for the Women’s Olympic Gymnastic Team (via SCATS)

  • Lecturer on Athletic Injuries at Palomar College for 14 years

  • Chairperson of the Personal Injury Review Group of California for 11 years

His Chiropractic profession:

  • Is 80% personal injury and medical legal work. He is often called upon to render second opinions and to testify in personal injury and malpractice cases.

  • Has been at the same location since 1983

  • Has never utilized advertising to increase his practice. He believes in a referral-based approach to attracting new patients.

  • Is dedicated to making patients more self-reliant, through the use of home therapy, postural/ergonomic correction, and rehabilitative exercise.

  • Is a source of seminars, webinars, and informational handouts to attorneys, patients and other doctors.

A well-adjusted family!

A well-adjusted family!

His personal life:

  • He is married to Wendy, who is also the office manager. They have a beautiful daughter named Angelina. They also have 2 large Shiloh Shepherd dogs, Donder and Dakota.

If you should have any other questions, comments or concerns, please contact the office at:

760.744.1881 or dr.gary@chiropiexpert.com