Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

An EEG Only Scratches the Surface of the Brain

By Marko Petrovic

Chiropractors claim that “functional neurology” can treat conditions ranging from epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease to autism and stroke, but the technology they use isn’t up to the task.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

The Australian chiropractic community is being scrutinised more than ever before. Its private and public health funding has been questioned as this billion-dollar industry struggles to prove its effectiveness. Universities teaching chiropractic have also come under fire from lobbying groups that insist that pseudo­scientific “health” courses should be dropped.

In an effort to stem the bleeding, chiropractors in Australia are increasingly diversifying their services. Such attempts usually centre on techniques that appear complex on face value.

One example of this is functional neurology, practitioners of which claim they can treat a plethora of conditions by using electroencephalography (EEG) to locate and treat “weak” areas of the brain. These weak areas are then magically improved with a combination of chiropractic adjustments, brain training, massage and even diet.

The claims that practitioners make about health conditions they can supposedly treat are strange and dangerous. Such claims include Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, heart arrhythmias, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, peripheral neuropathies and strokes. These are all serious health conditions that usually require a team of trained medical personnel to diagnose and treat. If the treatment of any of them was left solely to an individual who practices functional neurology, the consequences would be...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.