Morreale Chiropractic


Are Chiropractors Real Doctors? Are They Medically Trained?


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We get this question quite often, are chiropractors real doctors? The answer is yes and no. There are differences between a Medical Doctor and Doctor of Chiropractic. Here at Morreale Chiropractic, we are Doctors of Chiropractic. This means that chiropractors are generally not allowed to prescribe medicines, except in a few states. However, these few states usually allow homeopathic and nutritional prescriptions.

To get a general overall sense of what the differences are between a Medical Doctor and Doctor of Chiropractic, check out the information we’ve provided below.

Comparison Chart

Doctor of Chiropractic

Medical Doctor

Residency & Internship

1 Year intership is required that coincides with clinical courses. However, no residency is require, though there is the option to complete one if desired.

1 Year internship is required, followed by 3-8 years of residency in a specialized field.


Most commonly private practices and clinics. There are some hospitals that employ chiropractors. Generally orthopedic or neurology related.

Private practices, with a larger focus on clinics and hospitals.

Can Prescribe Medications

No- Limited prescription rights for DCs in New Mexico


Medical Licensing Exam

National Board Exam (NBCE), Parts I, II, III IV State boards and practicals.

COMPLEX or USMLE, in addition to any specialty boards after completing residency.

Treatment Techniques

Grade I-V chiropractic adjustments. These can range from joint adjustments to soft tissue mobilization. Also includes pain management, acupuncture and electrical stimulation.

General medicine knowledge. Knowledge includes cardiac, gastrointestinal, vascular, HEENT, pulmonary, neurological, endocrine, musculoskeletal, psychiatric, genitourinary and dermatologic medicine.

Years of Schooling

4-5 years of undergraduate and Bachelor’s required/state dependent. 5 years Chiropractic school, 1 year residency. Overall- 10 years minimum.

4 years of undergraduate required. 4-5 years medical school with 3-8 years of Residency. If desired, additional fellowship for specialized medicine. Family Physicians- 11 years minimum. Specialty Physicians- 13-16+ years minimum.


Doctor of Chiropractic or DC. Although DCs are not medical doctors, in some states they are considered health care providers for insurance purposes.

All physicians are actual medical doctors. However, there are some who are considered Primary Care Physicians, while others may be specialists.


In some states, minor surgery. Although most DCs are non-surgical clinicians, some are are in a surgical setting, allowing for surgery.

Full surgical rights in their specific area of expertise.


Sports Medicine, Forensic Sciences, Orthopedics, General Rehab, Internal Disorders, Pediatrics, Neurology, Nutrition, Occupational Health

Family Medicine, ENT, Anesthesia, Neurosurgery, Ophthalmology, Orthopedics, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Pulmonology, Neurology, Cardiology, Endocrinology, Obstetrics & Gynecology, Urology, Gastroenterology, Pathology, Nephrology

Board Certification

Diplomate Speciality Boards, National Exam, Chiropractic Board at State level.

National specialty boards and Medical Board at State level.

To learn more about our specific practices here in Pittsburgh at Morreale Chiropractic, feel free to give us a call! Schedule your free consultation with myself, Dr. Morreale or Dr. Didomenico, and receive a free 15 minute massage!