John Hoffman's Story
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My 39 year old husband John suffered a major stroke on August 5, 2004. His stroke occurred about 3 hours after having a neck adjustment at his chiropractor’s office. John died August 11, 2004. Because of John’s age and the circumstances surrounding his death, his body was sent to the State of Maryland Medical Examiners Office for autopsy. According to the autopsy report and death certificate (attached), the cause of John’s death was listed as Stroke caused by neck manipulation. His death was ruled as an “Accident” and under the location of accident it shows the chiropractors office address.
The first time I had ever heard anything about this type of danger was when the Emergency Room doctor said after finding out John had been to a chiropractor that day– “Everybody knows you never let them near your neck”. I didn’t know and I didn’t know they weren’t doctors. Other victims I’ve spoken with also did not know before their strokes. Why doesn’t the public know? Why aren’t they obligated to tell people? The Chiropractic community keeps saying how rare this is… but it’s not as rare as they would like us to believe. Even if it were rare, don’t we have the right to be told? If I go to see my medical doctor and he wants to do a procedure that has risks, he tells me and usually has me sign a consent form. Why shouldn’t chiropractors be held to the same standards? Why are they so afraid of Informed Consent? Is it because if they tell people it could happen the recorded number of patients who have been injured, maimed, or killed would increase?
I became a widow at the age of 41 after losing my husband of 17 years. We have to find a way to educate the public on these dangers and begin demanding the chiropractic community treat us as living, breathing human being and not mindless cattle that they can experiment on.
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