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Touching Spines and Saving Lives with Dr. Alan Wu

Do you ever notice that there are some people whose energies are infectious? As if being around them feeds energy to you? If you have had the pleasure of coming across Dr. Alan Wu, you might know what we are talking about. He is a Gonstead exclusive chiropractor in the Bay Area and has been practicing for 9 years. "What resonates with me about the Gonstead technique is the methodical approach and analysis, foundational theory, and combination of the structural and functional of the spine and nerves. "

He heard about the Tanaka Chiropractic Missions trip from one of the co-founders, Dr. Jennifer Liu where he says "she was (and still is) very passionate about it. You can literally see the smoke came out her head when she describes it." But what actually inspired him to join in was the idea of spreading specific Gonstead chiropractic around the world.

Here are some more of his personal thoughts and experiences in his own words:

What was a moment that you enjoyed most with the other doctors and volunteers?

"There were many enjoyable moments. Especially with like-minded doctors we always had good laughs on and off patient hours. It was a good group. I think it was the first day we arrived, and we all went out to a local pub danced salsa and had some drinks. It set the tone for the rest of the trip and the energy was awesome. Everyone was there to see patients, learn from each other and just have good times."

What was a moment that you enjoyed most with a patient?

"Also many enjoyable moments. Although I do not speak Spanish, but the body language spoke it all. Their facial expression was just priceless when they responded to the adjustment immediately. A handful of patients shed tears when they were able to walk normally after the adjustment. It was just a great experience."

What was the most interesting case that you had when you were there?

"The most interesting case…. Sure, one of the native lady came in with lower back pain, and upon history and examined turned out she was deaf on one side for 10 years. I adjusted her atlas after scoped and palpated, and kid you not, she was able to hear again. At that moment, I felt D.D. Palmer was channeling through me. It was the C1 but not the T1 in her case."

If you had some advice for a student or doctor, what would you say to them?

"Mission trip is not just about patient numbers but truly taking care patients. They are real people with real conditions, and we should treat them as such. You will see wide array of conditions and be ready to put on your doctor’s head and think what’s best for patients. And of course, have fun, tons of fun!"

What was your biggest take-away that you can apply/have applied to your practice coming back?

"Humility. It’s only after what you have seen then you can appreciate what we have. With that in mind, it pushes me to be a better doctor to continue serve patients in the right way."

Dr Wu currently practices in 2 locations: Campbell and San Francisco at Icon Chiropractic. He is open to be reached via email at or via facebook, if you are interested in hearing more from him!

We are so fortunate and proud to have such a big-hearted character as a colleague and can't wait for him to join us on another trip!

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