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Syncretism: Acupuncture and Public Health in Cuba
"Syncretism" is defined as a union of diverse tenets or practices. On a recent trip to Cuba designed to demonstrate the integration of Traditional Medicine and biomedicine, our group witnessed this union firsthand.
Dietary Fat and Prostate Cancer: An Important Update
K.M. Di Sebastiano and M. Mourtzakis published a review paper examining the role of dietary fat on prostate cancer development and progression late last year that does a stellar job of summarizing the available data on fat and prostate cancer.
Acupuncture Rising: From Acupuncture Anesthesia to Assisted-IVF, Part 2
Acupuncture's cultural and historical roots go back to the emergence of Chinese civilization. For more than 2,000 years, acupuncture needling has been continuously practiced on the largest population in the world.
The Concussion-Subluxation Complex
In the Aug. 1, 2014 issue of Dynamic Chiropractic, I reviewed some of the literature demonstrating the role of the chiropractic adjustment in post-concussive care.
Pro-Con: Swaddling for Newborns
The practice of swaddling has been used for thousands of years and was popular until the 1700s, when it was slowly abandoned by many cultures that considered it old-fashioned or barbaric.
Chinese Herbs and Pulmonary Fibrosis: A Case Study
"Mary M."* recently celebrated her 90th birthday. Even the former sheriff dropped by to kiss the hand of this diminutive retired teacher, to honor the years she interpreted for him during interviews with Latinas and Latinos.
Making Sense of an Increasingly Obvious Conclusion
Where's U.S. health care heading? Like it or not, the list of telltale signs is growing to a point that stands out to even the most myopic observer. Consider this list of facts as you look into the future of health care in the United States:
Designing a Fitness Plan (Part 1)
It doesn't matter if you come to my practice for pain relief, weight loss, healthy aging or something else. The formula I talk about for each patient's fitness strategy is pretty much the same.
F4CP Making a High-Impact Impression
The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress has released details of its 2016 strategy, certain elements of which are already in play. The strategy includes ads, posters and other resources available to all F4CP members.
Your Billing Questions Answered
I hear a lot of the following questions: I am afraid I may doing something illegal. I have heard I cannot have different fees for the same service.
Diagnose Sprain Injuries in MVA Cases With Dynamic X-Rays (Pt. 1)
Am I the only person to notice hospitals are doing a seemingly insufficient job lately in their initial radiological workup of motor vehicle accident (MVA) victims?
It's Time to Review
It is amazing to see the changes that are occurring in the acupuncture profession. Let's look at some of the news and events that have contributed to this growth and awareness.
Tailor-Made Knee Pain: The Sartorius Muscle
A patient was referred to my office after receiving treatment from various providers with no results. The patient was training for the Olympics as a marathon runner and was unable to run or walk without severe medial knee pain.
Too Many to Remember: Tips to Revive Your Ortho / Neuro Test Skills
When I was at Palmer in the mid-1980s, we were given a set of notes in one of our diagnostic courses. The notes covered approximately 70 orthopedic and neurological tests for various regions of the body.
Which Way is the Energy Going? Are You Burning Yourself Out?
One of the simple methods that I use to define Yin/Yang theory to patients is to ask the question, "Which way is your energy going?"
One Size Does Not Fit All: Exercise and Nutrition According to Your Yin/Yang Body Type
There are countless new exercise and nutrition plans out there, emphasizing the latest ground-breaking research and claiming to revolutionize the way we view health.
Mechanism: Experimental Approaches to Understanding Acupuncture, Part 1
The clinical benefits of acupuncture are difficult to ignore, but also can be difficult to explain to a Western audience. For nearly 50 years, relentlessly inquisitive scientists and physicians have been working toward a conceptual model to explain acupuncture.
North Carolina Acupuncture Board Files Dry Needling Lawsuit
In early September, the NCALB filed a complaint against the North Carolina Board of Physical Therapy Examiners over the issue of dry needling, a form of acupuncture that uses solid needles to puncture the skin and muscle tissue to relieve pain.
Targeting the Bad Apples in the Bunch
While everyone was focused on the conversion to ICD-10, the Office of Inspector General for Health and Human Services released a new report on chiropractic titled "CMS Should Use Targeted Tactics to Curb Questionable and Inappropriate Payments for Chiropractic Services."
Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine in the West
We know acupuncture and Oriental medicine as the indigenous medicine of East Asia; in particular China, Korea and Japan are the countries of origin of this wonderful healing system.
Omega-3 Fish Oil: An Underappreciated Element of Men's Health
As a clinician with many male patients -- and as a man myself -- I am all too aware of the fact that we like to convince ourselves that we are doing great, when that may be the farthest thing from the truth.
The Modern Application of Ancient Mei Rong
Chinese Medical Cosmetology (Mei Rong) has a well-documented and venerated history dating back to the Qin (221-206 BC) Dynasty.
Footsteps of the Sages: An Apprenticeship with Dr. Kezhan Zhang
When I met Dr. Kezhen Zhang in May 2013, I was his translator and the integrity, creativity, and passion he demonstrated as a practitioner and advocate of the medicine convinced me to travel to Beijing to study with him.
May, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 05
The Body's Core Line and Central Linkage
By Dale G. Alexander, LMT, MA, PhD
Consider the last ten clients on your treatment table. What were their somatic complaints? Now, imagine that you could loosen and lengthen the central linkage of the human body from occiput to sacrum.And, that the effect of this loosening and lengthening would assist and improve the therapeutic effect of almost any style of massage treatment.
Consider how this might simplify and potentiate the desired outcomes for these same ten clients? This is a premise I have been exploring and empirically testing for the past year and it seems to work exceptionally well for clients.
The Starting Point
Here are the anatomical ports of call I have been addressing: decompress the occiput upon the atlas, lengthen the esophagus, stretch each hemi-diaphragm and decompress the tissues around the heart/lung complex, stretch the ligament of treitz, mobilize the mesenteric root of the small intestine and finally, enhance the range of motion within the ankle/foot complex. These changes may be achieved using any manual therapy modality you have learned to effectively utilize.
There are numerous additional steps that could assist this proposed protocol to be even more effective yet, as described, it succinctly addresses the body's core line. It traces the linkage from the occiput to the sacral base to the ankles. It reduces the resistance to the heart's expansion. It eases the diaphragm's vertical and downward excursion and it revives and enhances the capacity of blood and lymph returning to the heart from all areas of the body below the diaphragm.
This protocol addresses the body's three major innate pumps for moving its fluids: the heart, the diaphragm and the ankle/foot complex. Mobilizing the heart/lung complex reduces compressive resistance to expansion of the heart muscle itself and stimulates the function of the root of the lung allowing more surface area for the production of new blood. Mobilizing the mesenteric root of the small intestine also increases its surface area, allowing for more absorption of nutrition. Increasing the mobility of dorsiflexion/plantarflexion of the ankle/foot facilitates the movement of blood and lymph back to the heart/lung complex. Osteopathy considers the ankle/foot complex as the body's 2nd heart.1 Together, these manipulations are proposed to reduce compression throughout the axial spine.
As a profession, I invite all bodywork educators to pool their collective intelligence and creativity toward developing other therapeutic protocols that facilitate the range and efficiency of these movements and functions. Also, consider how this proposal allows those in our profession to define what they do. Simply stated, "therapeutic massage stimulates your body's inherent capacity to move its fluids along their 60,000 mile journey from the heart and back again." Not a bad one-liner when speaking to a prospective client.
The philosophical shift here is to transform our therapeutic intent from manually enhancing the flow of venous and lymphatic fluids to specifically assisting the body to "re-calibrate its ongoing capacity" for self-perpetuating healthier function. The process becomes more analogous to tuning-up one's engine. The results continue with the client and contribute to their quality of life over a longer period of time. With the present emphasis on national health care, our ability to describe the benefits of what we do is what will make the difference in how we are regarded as effective health care practitioners. We know everyone benefits from bodywork and massage yet, we need simple ways of describing "how."
If any of these anatomical structures initially described are unfamiliar, please Google them, seek out your most recent continuing education teacher or ask around among your professional peers. Most of what has propelled me in this therapeutic direction was learned at the Upledger Institute from Drs. John Upledger, Richard MacDonald and Jean Pierre Barral. The Institute supports many excellent teachers.
Click here for more information about Dale G. Alexander, LMT, MA, PhD.
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