Primary Care Today Expo and a Soapbox Moment

As a health care professional, I feel it is very important to continually update my knowledge and to be at least aware of the different health issues my patients could be facing. From May 10-12, I attended an amazing conference/expo at the International Centre called Primary Care Today. This conference was not only educational, but a lot of fun. Top physicians in their field gave lecture series on the relevant topics from updates on certain conditions, opiate prescription, cognitive behaviour training/lifestyle management in managing chronic pain, dermatology, to even the benefits of taking vacations.
I particularly enjoyed the keynote by Dr. Lin about the “good, bad, and ugly” of the prevalent use of technology in society and how it impacts health care as well as several of the case-based lectures. I also enjoyed all the “free swag” from the exhibitors.

In attending this conference, I also realized how important chiropractors are in relation to our knowledge of musculoskeletal complaints. The presentation by the sports medicine physician pointed out several diagnoses and imaging findings that were considered “newer” diagnoses; however as some of my colleages pointed out, we have been aware of these conditions since our first differential diagnosis class in first year!

So what does this mean? Okay. Now it’s time for my soap box moment: Almost every person will experience some type of biomechanical pain in their life time, whether it be generalized back pain, a shoulder strain, carpal tunnel syndrome, or a sprained ankle. In any of these cases, a chiropractor can make a difference! Similar to what Dr. Hibbert from the Simpsons says, MD’s are more than occupied with whats on the “front” to worry about the “back.” In that line of thought, MD’s often overlook biomechanical/musculoskeletal diagnoses. These are the issues that MD’s should refer to DC’s for. This would not only decrease the workload, but it would also decrease the number of patients being over-medicated on opiates and/or muscle relaxants for conditions that can properly be managed with manual therapy, rehabilitation, and other non-pharm pain relief/anti-inflammatory protocols.  I guess what I’m trying to say is, MD’s find a chiropractor that you can trust and include them in your circle of care. Your patients will thank you! [/soapbox moment]

All in all, I had an amazing time at the conference. I learned a lot, and am pleased with the health trends being suggested such as the patient being more aware of health issues and taking control of their health through lifestyle changes including better nutrition and exercise. I’m definitely looking forward to next years conference!

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