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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is Veterinary Medical Manipulation (VMM)?

Medical manipulation is a therapy that uses motion palpation to find joint restrictions and then uses a high velocity, low amplitude (HVLA) thrust directed in the plane of the joint to help restore normal range of motion to the joint. Medical manipulation restores freedom of movement, relaxes the muscles and relieves the pain of a restricted joint. 


2. Is medical manipulation and chiropractic the same thing?

No. Chiropractic, as defined by law, applies specifically and only to humans. A chiropractor is someone who has completed human chiropractic training and is a Doctor of Chiropractic degree (DC). When similar techniques are applied to animals, it is correctly called spinal manipulation or medical manipulation.


3. What are the prerequisites for this program?

The student must be a veterinarian, or a 3rd or 4th year veterinary school student.


4. I'm a licensed human chiropractor and am interested in expanding to animals. Am I eligible to take this program?

No, this program is only available to veterinarians, and 3rd or 4th year veterinary school students.


5. Why do you only accept veterinarians and 3rd or 4th year veterinary school students in your program?

IVMI is dedicated to providing the highest quality continuing education certification programs to veterinarians. Because of this, we only accept veterinarians and 3rd or 4th year vet students in our classes. This way, the material starts at a more in-depth level and is able to go even deeper and into more detail than would be possible if there were non-veterinarians in the program.


6. How does VMM differ from massage and Tui-na?

VMM uses a HVLA thrust to directly affect the joint and the mechanorecepters around the joint. Tui-na and massage do not use HVLA thrust, and affects the muscle. Both of these modalities work very well together and the combination can be beneficial for many patients.

7. Do I have to sign up for all 5 sessions, or can I just take one?

To receive the CVMMP certification, we do require you to sign up for all 5 sessions.

8. Do I need experience with spinal manipulation before taking this program?

No experience is necessary. But, because this program is very in-depth and equine-specific, even veterinarians who do have some experience with spinal manipulation will benefit. This program does assume some animal handling skills and basic knowledge of veterinary medicine.

9. Is it necessary to study between sessions?

There will be some study needed between the sessions. You will have a case report due before the end of the program, as well. Clear learning goals will be established for each session to guide your studies along the way. If you know the learning goals, you will have the course well in hand. There is a lot of material to learn and integrate, so we do everything possible to make it easy to learn and to minimize your at-home study time.

10. When is the tuition due?

There is a non-refundable $500 deposit due when you register for the program. The remaining tuition is due 30 days before the start of each session. A $50 late fee will be charged for any payment received after the due date.


11. Will I be listed in an online directory?

Yes, we offer listing in an online directory to all of our graduates so that you are easy to find for potential clients.


12. What kind of certification will I get?

You will receive the CVMMP (Certified Veterinary Medical Manipulation Practitioner) certification.


13. Can this program be taken without certification?




14. Is this program RACE approved?


15. Is there a class size limit?

Yes, because of the intense focus on hands-on practice and individual attention, each class is limited to 40 students in the equine track. 


16. Are there any required textbooks?

There aren’t any required textbooks for this class. However, the following books may prove helpful:


  • Foundations of Chiropractic:  Subluxation- Meridel Gatterman
  • Miller’s Anatomy of the Dog-Howard E. Evans and Alexander de Lahunta
  • The Dog Anatomy Workbook:  A Guide to the Canine Body-Gardiner
  • Color Atlas of Veterinary Anatomy:  The Dog and Cat-Stanley Done, Peter Goody et al.


17. What makes IVMI's Veterinary Medical Manipulation program unique?

This medical manipulation program is offered exclusively to veterinarians. It is this veterinarian only approach that truly sets the IVMI's program apart from many others. This is because, since the class being entirely composed of veterinarians (or 3rd or 4th year vet school students), the program material is able to delivered far more in-depth than it otherwise would be able to. 

Additionally, because the focus of IVMI and our programs is on integrative veterinary medicine, an all-veterinarian class means that there are more opportunities for discussing the conventional and integrative medicine diagnostics, as well as 32 hours of direct, hands-on wet lab experience with diagnostics and treating real cases. If human chiropractors were in the class, diagnostics would not be able to be discussed. Because of this veterinarian-only setup, the CVMMP program is able to focus on the hands-on wet labs and explore radiology, oxygen therapy, ultrasound therapy, dissection of equine cadavers and sport/discipline specific biomechanics.

18. Can I use acupuncture and VMM on the same day?

Yes! Acupuncture and VMM are synergistic. The greatest benefits to the patient are seen when they are combined into one treatment.

19. I would like to become certified in both Veterinary Acupuncture and Veterinary Medical Manipulation (VMM). Should I begin with the Certified Veterinary Acupuncture (CVA) program first or the CVMMP program first?

There is no requirement to take one of these programs before the other. It is suggested, however, to begin with the CVA program if your clinical cases are primarily small animal or mixed practice. If you are focused primarily on equine clinical cases, we suggest beginning with the CVMMP program first.