Chiropractic is a relatively young profession in France. The first North-American educated chiropractors known to have practised in France arrived in 1920, and since then chiropractors could be taken to court for illegal practice of medicine. Some chiropractors probably reacted to this threat by claiming that they did not diagnose and treat diseases, similarly to how chiropractors in the US argued their defence when in the same situation in the 1920s and 1930s 
Chiropractic was no longer considered to be an illegal profession through a law passed in 2002 , and the final law text is in its final stages of completion, at the time of writing this. Compared to several other countries in Europe and elsewhere, this is a late development. Despite this difficulty, the French chiropractic profession has succeeded in establishing its own academic institution with a 6-year undergraduate program.
The number of chiropractors in France is unknown, as there is no registration board, and because not all chiropractors are members of the national chiropractic association. The number having graduated from the French chiropractic college, l'Institut Franco-Européen de Chiropratique (IFEC), between the years of 1984 to 2010 was about 500. It seems reasonable that most of these graduates would have set up their practices in France and that the vast majority of the chiropractors practising in France would be graduates from IFEC. In addition, there are some chiropractors practising in France, who graduated from other colleges elsewhere in the world, particularly before the French chiropractic college existed. In 2011 the Administration at IFEC estimated the number of actively practising chiropractors in France to be approximately 600, in a population of 65 million inhabitants.
It is possible that a small profession with such troubled history has had problems to develop its own "brand" and because the profession is so young it is understandable that it has not had the opportunity to perform research, for example, in order to establish its own demographic profile. Very little is therefore known about the French chiropractors' clinical practice. Further, being relatively isolated from the rest of the chiropractic community, because of the cultural differences and language barrier between England and France, it is possible that French chiropractors practice differently than chiropractors who were educated and/or practise in countries with a strong North-American chiropractic culture. It is therefore relevant to scrutinize the French chiropractic profession from several angles.
Students participating in a research course at IFEC were given the opportunity to perform surveys on the French chiropractic profession. One group decided to study the homogeneity of practitioners in relation to the management of brachial neuralgia emanating from the cervical spine. The cervical spine was an obvious choice for several reasons: Neck pain is a common condition in the general population , it is commonly treated by chiropractors  and, the neck being a fragile part of the spine, it requires a careful clinical approach in order not to induce injuries of various types. Further, neck pain can be very distressing, and the research team therefore suspected that it might be tempting for the chiropractor to attempt treatment also when this would be unsuitable.
Radiating pain from the neck can be very painful, indeed. An irritation or even inflammation of the nerve root would be the cause of most neck-induced arm pain. This irritation could be either directly or indirectly caused by a bulging or ruptured disc. In the early stages only localized neck pain may be present. As the condition progresses, one would expect to be able to reproduce the arm pain with certain neck movements, by compression of the nerve root within the cervical foramen or by traction of the nerve root. Eventually, if the condition worsens, nerve root signs would become obvious, and if the spinal cord were to be involved, there would also be signs of an upper motor neurone lesion.
The chiropractor is of course expected to diagnose such conditions, and should be able to decide whether manual or other conservative treatment is reasonable or not, and -- in particular -- to be aware of at what stage patients should be referred out for a second opinion or for other type of care. However, to refer out and ask for second opinions may be difficult for practitioners who have never been well accepted within the general health care sector.
There were three objectives of this study:
1. To investigate if French chiropractors' management choices appeared reasonable for various neck-scenarios. It was the opinion of the research team that chiropractic treatment on its own was acceptable in the early stages but more questionable as it became clear that this patient had a more serious condition with a likely disc involvement and totally out of the question when the patient showed signs of spinal cord involvement.
2. To investigate if there was consensus among the chiropractors on the patient management.
3. To ascertain to which degree and at what stages chiropractors would consider interaction with other health-care practitioners, such as physiotherapists, general practitioners and specialists.