D.C.: This is the abbreviation for Doctor of Chiropractic.
Davis Series: Usually taken if the patient has experienced some sort of head or neck trauma. Seven X-ray views
of the cervical spine are taken including AP, Lat, Open Mouth, Flexion, Extension, Right Oblique and Left Oblique.
Deductible: The out of pocket expense a patient must pay before their insurance benefits kick in. After the
deductible is met co-pays or co-insurance may then apply.
Degenerative Arthritis: The wearing away of cartilage that protects and cushions joints including those in the
spine and extremities.
Degenerative Disc Disease: A general term applied to degeneration of spinal discs which serve as cushions
between the spinal vertebrae. The inner core of the vertebral disc becomes brittle and dry leading to a narrowing
of the disc space. Your entire spinal column loses its balance, flexibility, stability, mobility and strength. Your
nerves, body chemistry and internal organs can also be affected.
Deposition: A statement made under oath for obtaining evidence for court and legal related matters.
Derefield Leg Check: This test is used by chiropractors to detect and treat pelvic imbalances. The test measures
the length of the legs to detect imbalances that need to be corrected.
Dermatomes: Spinal nerves have motor fibers and sensory fibers. The motor fibers innervate certain muscles,
while the sensory fibers innervate certain areas of skin. A skin area innervated by the sensory fibers of a single
nerve root is known as a dermatome. Although slight variations do exist, dermatome patterns of distribution are
relatively consistent from person to person.
Diabetes Mellitus: A disease that occurs when the body is not able to use blood glucose. Blood sugar levels are
controlled by insulin, a hormone in the body that helps move glucose from the blood to muscles and other
tissues. Diabetes occurs when the pancreas does not make enough insulin or the body does not respond to the
insulin that the body makes.
Diagnosis: Diagnosis is a fancy name given to the process of identifying diseases and is a Greek name. Break it
down; "dia" means "by" and "gnosis" means "knowledge". A Diagnosis is sometimes made by process of
elimination. This is called a "differential diagnosis". Through investigation of symptoms and consultations with
other doctors or physicians, they are able to tell what you do not have, thus leaving them with your most likely
Diagnostic Imaging: Any use of X-rays, MRI, CAT scans, EMG thermography and other tools to determine what is
structurally or functionally wrong with the patient in order to determine a proper and accurate diagnosis.
Diarthrosis: A joint that permits a variety of movements. All diarthrosis joints are synovial joints. Examples
include the shoulder, hip, elbow and knee.
Diathermy: The use of high frequency current to create a therapeutic heating of an affected area of the body.
Diet: In nutrition, diet is the sum of food consumed by a person or other organism. Dietary habits are the
decisions an individual or culture makes when choosing what foods to eat. With the word diet, it is often implied
the use of specific intake of nutrition for health or weight-management reasons.
Disability: The partial or total loss of physical or mental capacity and to perform abilities or duties.
Disc: Between each vertebral body is a cushion called an intervertebral disc. Each disc absorbs the stress and
shock the body incurs during movement and prevents the vertebrae from grinding against one another. Each disc
is made up of two parts: the annulus fibrosis and the nucleus pulposus. The intervertebral discs are the largest
structures in the body without a vascular supply. Through movement and osmosis, each disc absorbs needed
Disc Annulus: The annulus is a sturdy tire-like structure that encases a gel-like center, the nucleus pulposus.
The annulus enhances the spine’s rotational stability and helps to resist compressive stress. The annulus
consists of water and layers of sturdy elastic collagen fibers. The fibers are oriented at different angles
horizontally similar to the construction of a radial tire.
Disc Degeneration: This is a thinning and wasting of the spinal discs as a result of excessive wear and tear.
Discectomy: Surgical removal of piece of the intervertebral disc. In some cases entire removal is necessary.
Disc Herniation: A spinal disc herniation is a condition affecting the spine due to trauma, lifting injuries, or
idiopathic, in which a tear in the outer, fibrous ring of an intervertebral disc allows the soft, central nucleus
pulposus to bulge out. This bulging out often places pressure on the spinal nerves and leads to pain and
Disc Nucleus: The center portion of each intervertebral disc is a filled with a gel-like elastic substance. Together
with the annulus, the nucleus pulposus transmits stress and weight from vertebra to vertebra. Like the annulus,
the nucleus pulposus consists of water, collagen and proteoglycans. However, the proportion of these
substances in the nucleus pulposus is different. The nucleus contains more water than the annulus.
Disease: A disease is an abnormal condition affecting the body. It is often construed to be a medical condition
associated with specific symptoms and signs.
Dorsal: Refers to the posterior or back side.
Dynamic Thrust: Chiropractic adjustment delivered suddenly and forcefully to move vertebrae, often resulting in a