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How One Little Symbol (#) Gets You More Patients
Are you struggling to get more fans or followers for your acupuncture practice? Or are looking for ways to simply connect with your patients? Or do you just want to know how to keep them engaged (comments, retweeting, liking and sharing)?
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2-4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
Rethinking Musculoskeletal Pain – A Public Health Perspective
The American Public Health Association (APHA) is the world's oldest and largest association of its kind, founded more than 140 years ago and boasting over 25,000 members.
Reducing the Autogenic Inhibition Reflex: Making Weak Muscles Strong
The autogenic inhibition (AI) reflex is a sudden relaxation of a muscle in response to excess tension.
The Nectar of Plants: Essential Oils and Chinese Medicine
Essential oils are a very hot topic these days, especially with the likes of the Ebola virus and the resurgence of measles lurking in our awareness, but when I first became interested in Chinese medicine, essential oils weren't on the radar screen for acupuncturists.
Breath: The Movement of Oxygen and Energy
I remember with surprising clarity the first time a patient started crying during an acupuncture treatment I was giving. This is now quite a long time ago, back in 1999, when I was a student.
The Modern Acupuncturist
You studied ancient Chinese medicine, but I'll bet you don't practice it! Contrary to popular belief, our medicine has evolved A LOT over the years. Let's take a brief walk through history and discover the differences between ancient and modern acupuncturists.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
We Get Letters & Email
A House Divided? (May 1 issue) provoked significant response from readers. Here are several of the surprisingly similar comments we received.
Our Biggest Challenges to Compete in Wellness Care
In the first article in this four-article series [May 1 DC], I made the case that chiropractors should either embrace offering lifestyle wellness in their practices or face the possibility of losing their place in the wellness care marketplace.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 2
A talented young woman presented herself with emotional mood swings, which included being nervous, anxious and jittery.
ACA or ICA: Which Best Represents You?
Last June, I was honored to represent Texas ICA members as their representative assemblyman at the ICA Annual Meeting in Kansas City.
The Source-Luo Point Combination
The luo collaterals are part of the acupuncture channel system presented in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu (The Nei Jing). The function and clinical application of the luo mai are primarily presented in chapter 10 of the Ling Shu, however, they are also found in others chapters in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients, in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2 to 4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
Calculating Billable Units
I recently learned of an office that was audited based on the number of acupuncture sessions performed in one day. Is there a maximum number of sessions that can be performed in one day?
TMF 2015 Scholarships
The Trudy McAlister Foundation (TMF), a nonprofit organization established to support students who are on track to make contributions either to clinical practice and/or to the understanding of the role of Traditional Oriental Medicine, has announced the 2015 scholarship recipients.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
Acupuncture and the Pulse
In 1991, I attended a martial arts workshop hosted coincidentally by Sung Baek, a martial artist and the head of his lineage as a Korean trained acupuncturist. I was enamored by the details Sung could attain from the pulse, as told to me by some of his apprentices.
What Does Success Mean to You?
Recently, I was asked to speak to young, budding businesswomen about running a successful business — and at first I thought, "Me? You want me to speak to others about success?!"
Professional Credentialing and Board Certification: An Ethical Faux Pas
Because of the Affordable Care Act, health care systems are coordinating care through accountable care organizations (ACOs) in order to reduce the cost of care and improve quality of care.
Use Technology to Gain New Patients and Improve Efficiency
From the smartphone in your pocket to your microwave oven, advancements in technology have made almost every aspect of our lives easier.
Spieth Thanks His Chiropractor After Historic Masters Win
Jordan Spieth didn't just capture the hearts of golf enthusiasts worldwide with his record-setting, wire-to-wire victory at the 79th Masters Tournament.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 2)
As we noted in our previous article, with a positive Derifield (+D), the doctor observes the reactive (shorter) leg in the prone position that becomes longer or "crosses over" in the flexed position.
Acupuncture in the U.K. Today: A Personal View
When asked to write a short piece on the current state of the U.K. acupuncture profession, my first response was to say it has all been relatively quiet.
How Often Should You Treat?
Every now and then I get the urge to come down off my political soapbox and share some clinical and health related information with you. This is one of those times. I hope you enjoy another side of my "view." Fear not, the editorials will continue.
How Often to Treat?
One question I am often asked by clinical massage therapists is, "How often to treat?" In traditional medicine that was practiced for many centuries, therapies like acupuncture and massage were done in 15 to 20 minute segments, five days a week for about one to four weeks depending on the severity of the case. That gave the body a gentle nudge repeatedly to help it achieve health. That was proven from experience to be the best way.
More recently, Russian massage protocols, based on research considered invalid here because our research community didn't make any money from it and because it goes against the "Central Dogma," often utilize 15 to 20 minute sessions, several times a week. Years ago in physical therapy, it was not uncommon for a patient to have prescriptions to be seen two or three times a week for 12 appointments and then have a repeat 12 appointments before evaluating whether or not to continue. Such protocols have become totally impractical in our current modern world. Time and resource limitations of the patient, insurance limitations, and other factors have people receiving less care than they ideally need for physical conditions. Our profession has settled in on the 60-minute time slot as the standard, although shorter and longer sessions are often available.
"Sometimes the hardest part of our job is to motivate people to stay with the program long enough to get the healing they desire." Lawrence Woods – Developer of Neural Reset Therapy® (NRT)
So, how often to see a patient these days? Bottom line – I want to see the patient just as symptoms return or begin to worsen again after the previous appointment. I book a new patient 2 appointments one week apart. After the first appointment they are instructed to keep track of how they feel every 12 hours until the next appointment. They feel better when leaving my office. (If they do not, there is no charge and the next appointment is cancelled – feel better, I guarantee it!). Often they experience some post treatment soreness, but that is different from the original pain complaint(s). That goes away in a day or so and they usually feel better. Yet, then they usually start to experience their symptoms again at some point during the week. At the second appointment, I ask when symptoms returned or worsened. Let's say it was in four days. Then they need to see me every four days. By the way, that is how I phrase it, "You need to see me every four days." Never say, "I need to see you." The patient does not care at all what you need; they only care about what they need. They also expect you to be the professional and tell them what they need. Always frame your recommendations from the patient's perspective. When they can go from treatment to treatment without symptoms, start spreading the appointments further apart. Once they can go a month without return of symptoms, it becomes, "Call me when you need me.
If the condition is chronic, or is re-facilitated by work, home, or athletic activity, then we figure out at what interval intervention is needed to prevent the return of symptoms or to support their desired quality of life. That might be once a week to once every couple months. Every two or three weeks is a very common interval. This protocol has worked very well for me and for hundreds of my students. I hope it helps those of you struggling with this issue.
How Often Does Something New Appear?
I have been reading some blogs and forums lately. These days it seems a hot topic in medical research is that the nervous system is involved in pain and soft-tissue dysfunction. Stop laughing! This is big news to the "researchers" who are "discovering" this. Its making peer reviewed journals and all. Now who would imagine that what we are doing is not really affecting the individual tissues directly but instead is nothing more than stimulus–response. What a concept, but actually I (and a few others) have been teaching for a couple decades now, that our window to the body is the nervous system and that what we are really affecting is the nervous system which then in response to our stimuli gives us a positive (desired) response. This is often why massage does not elicit the desired response, because the therapists provided the wrong stimuli to elicit it. Sadly, too many patients equate the endorphin release from pain and pressure to be "relaxation" because endorphin is pleasant to experience. The tissue probably didn't change much, especially for very long. In the process, therapists are destroying their bodies doing "Deep Tissue Massage."
This comes at an interesting time, as there is a recently developed, unique new massage technology that deliberately and directly stimulates the nervous system to predictably and consistently reset (eliminate) trigger points, hypertonic and ischemic muscles rapidly and easily for the therapist and painlessly for the patient. (Really painlessly – not just "Hurt so good" or to "tolerance".) It is called Neural Reset Therapy® (NRT). It is the first significant advancement in soft tissue therapy I have seen since the 1980's when neuromuscular and myofascial techniques came on the scene. I have alluded to it several times in this column but I promise I will explain it in detail in my next article.
Thank you all for reading my articles. I'll be back this summer or before with some great new, non-political information before I get back onto politics!