Chiropractors — or doctors of chiropractic, as they are called inside the profession — attend an accredited four- or five-year chiropractic college or university after completing an undergraduate degree program that includes typical premedical courses.

According to the American Chiropractic Association, the course of study to become a chiropractor includes 4,200 hours of classroom, laboratory and clinical experience in “orthopedics, neurology, physiology, human anatomy, clinical diagnosis including laboratory procedures, diagnostic imaging, exercise, nutrition rehabilitation and more.”

The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine says that all states require chiropractors to complete a doctorate from a college accredited by the Council on Chiropractic Education and to pass an examination administered by the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners.

According to Gerard Clum, a chiropractor with the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress, spinal manipulation is usually covered by health insurance. “There are some nuances state by state, but for the most part chiropractic is covered in most plans with very few exceptions,” he said.

In some cases, according to the ACA Web site, a patient may need a referral from a doctor to get coverage.

Susan Berger