On the morning of Feb. 23, 2012, history was made when Dr. Fabrizio Mancini, a doctor of chiropractic and the president of Parker University in Dallas, Texas, and Dr. Patrick DeFazio, a Los Angeles doctor of chiropractic, were filmed for an upcoming episode of the “Dr. Phil” show at Paramount Studios in Hollywood, Calif. This was chiropractic’s first appearance on the popular daytime talk show, which is broadcast on 220 television stations across the U.S. and in more than 40 countries worldwide. Nearly 21 million viewers tune in weekly to hear the advice given by Dr. Phil McGraw, a clinical psychologist with 25 years in practice, and the show’s online presence is over 2 million unique viewers/followers per day.
The segment, which airs this Wednesday, March 14, began with Dr. Phil introducing Dr. Mancini as his chiropractor for 14 years and author of the book The Power of Self-Healing: Unlock Your Natural Healing Potential in 21 Days! This introduction set the stage for Dr. Mancini to talk about his book and the concepts of chiropractic. He stated that “the only way to truly fulfill your life potential is to fulfill your health potential.” Dr. Mancini added that the difference between chiropractic and what he called the “sick care system” in the U.S. is that “we see patients as [people, not just diseases].”
Dr. Phil reinforced this notion, telling viewers, “I got chiropractic treatment from you [Dr. Mancini] 2 or 3 times a week.” He went on to introduce his current personal chiropractor, Dr. DeFazio, who was given an opportunity to talk more about chiropractic and how it can, among other benefits, help relieve stresses on the body.
The show took an interesting turn when a man named Joe was introduced and came out in a wheelchair. Joe was only 5 years old when a drunk driver crashed into the family car, killing his father and sister, leaving both his legs paralyzed. It was clear that Joe was still very hurt and angry about the accident, particularly toward the woman who had caused him and his family so much pain.
After hearing Joe’s story, Dr. Phil asked Dr. Mancini how he would approach Joe’s situation using the concepts from his book. Dr. Mancini talked about the importance of chiropractic care for Joe, as well as the need to forgive the drunk driver. (At this point, the conversation addressed Joe’s emotional and psychological issues, consistent with the typical focus of the program.)
As the show wound down, Dr. Phil thanked both Dr. Mancini and Dr. DeFazio for taking care of him over the years. He then thanked the audience and let them know they would each receive a copy of Dr. Mancini’s book, which elicited a huge cheer from the audience.
After the show, a number of people working on the set asked about how to find a local chiropractor or remarked how much they had learned about the value of chiropractic. This was in addition to the many members of the audience who talked about chiropractic and asked Dr. Mancini to autograph their copy of his book.
This was an important positive event for chiropractic. The audience heard about chiropractic, the wellness philosophy and that Dr. Phil sees his doctor of chiropractic more than once a week. They were also taught that chiropractic can play a role in the health of everyone, including someone who is paralyzed. With its March 14 airing, a global audience will have the opportunity to learn about the power of chiropractic care.