The 1918 Influenza History and Chiropractic

Chiropractors are all taught the history of chiropractic including the account prepared by Wayne R. Rhodes, DC in writing about the history of chiropractic in the state of Texas. While this is not a scientific paper, it was published by Dr. Rhodes’ peers in the Texas Chiropractic Association. “The 1917 -1918 influenza epidemic swept silently across the world bringing death and fear to homes in every land. Disease and pestilence, especially the epidemics, are little understood even now and many of the factors that spread them are still mysterious shadows, but in 1917-1918 almost nothing was known about prevention, protection, treatment or cure of influenza. The whole world stood at its mercy, or lack of it.” He continues, “Chiropractors got fantastic results from influenza patients…” The statistics speak for themselves: In 1918, a time when there were no validated treatments for flu, the epidemic killed millions world-wide.



Chiropractic is a health care discipline which emphasizes the inherent recuperative power of the body to heal itself without the use of drugs or surgery. The practice of chiropractic focuses on the relationship between structure (primarily the spine) and function (as coordinated by the nervous system) and how that relationship affects the preservation and restoration of health.
It is founded upon the principle that the body’s innate recuperative power is affected by and integrated through the nervous system. The current global health crisis surrounding the COVID-19 Pandemic has resulted in changes in our everyday lives and has created increased levels of stress and anxiety, and fear. Scientific evidence has validated that long-term exposure to stress negatively effects the immune system.

As an essential health care provider, the chiropractor is in a unique position to assist their patients during this time of heightened stress. Although there are no clinical trials to substantiate a direct causal relationship between the chiropractic adjustment and increased protection from the COVID-19 virus, there is a growing body of evidence that there is a relationship between the nervous system and the immune system.


Dr. Frank E. Kaden, D.C.
1927 Artesia Blvd., #7
Redondo Beach, CA 90278
(310) 251.0862


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