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Synergy Doesn't Happen in Silos: Acupuncture in Hospitals and Other Healthcare Settings
As acupuncture and traditional East Asian medicine continue to intersect and integrate with biomedical approaches, the conversation about integration expands and becomes richer.
Optimism = Compassion = Trust
A randomized clinical trial recently published online in JAMA Oncology examined how patients viewed their doctor based upon how the practitioner presented bad news to the patient.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
The Need for a New Medical Model: A Challenge for Biopsychosocial and Ecopsychologica Medicine
Chinese medicine speaks of alignment between humans, heaven and earth. It is a complex view with a focus upon relationship. These are comprehensive ideas with no specific terms in contemporary medical practice.
A Well-Kept Secret: 5 Element Acupuncture, Part II
Supervising acupuncture interns at a TCM college, it has always struck me how funny it is to hear the clinic manager tell the patients that the Five Element clinic specializes in treating emotions, as if patients with physical pain have no emotions!
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
An Excerpt from TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics
This excerpt is reprinted with permission from Jamie Wu. TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics was released in 2014 by People's Medical Publishing House.
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
Converting More Patients to Your Practice
In 2013 and 2014, the theme was "the money is in the list." This meant that if you had a big email list, you were really making some "cha-ching." Unfortunately, having thousands of emails doesn't equate to thousands of dollars in profit.
Will You Be an Amplifer or a Mute?
These times are changing, and changing quickly. There have been many challenges to this profession throughout the past few years. The challenge is to talk, then talk and talk some more about this medicine.
There Really is No Room for Sexism
Recently, Matteo* (a transgender male) approached me during a break in an advanced shiatsu class in Berlin where he was one of two men in a group of 20 women. "Pamela. Don't forget to remind the translator to include male endings."
The Dietary Supplement Research Dilemma
I do not care what the truth is, one way or another; I just want to know it. And when it comes to dietary supplements, the truth can be hard to find for a number of reasons.
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
Recreational Cannabis Use and TCM
Many people are drawn to cannabis for its effects physically, mentally and emotionally. Medically, cannabis has some legitimate uses, however the scope of this article is limited to the recreational use of cannabis.
Turning a Blind Eye to History – and Reality
The American Medical Association is taking the Supreme Court's Feb. 25, 2015 decision exactly as it always does – by turning a blind eye to history, legal precedent and reality.
TCM Congress in Rothenburg is Largest in Western World
In the medieval town of Rothenburg, deep set within the Bavarian countryside in Southern Germany, the TCM Kongress Rothenburg each year draws around 1.200 participants from more than 40 different countries to attend the biggest TCM conference in the Western world.
The Way We Are Designed: A Conversation with Gil Hedley, PhD
I was first introduced to the work of Gil Hedley by Tom DiFerdinando. He gifted me Gil's DVD series.
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
April, 2001, Vol. 01, Issue 04
What's in a Name?
By Cliff Korn, BS, LMT, NCTMB
As I write this on a Saturday morning in March, I imagine most of you are enjoying the approach of spring. Here in New Hampshire, I gaze out the window and see snow flurries drifting through the light filtering through the gray skies.The weather report is calling for the worst storm of the year with possibilities of up to three feet of snow before it's over. So much for spring! I guess I'll rejuvenate later!
So how is Massage Today doing so far? Most of the letters and e-mail I am receiving are positive. Due to volume, I am unable to respond individually to most of your communications, but I do want you to know that almost everything you send me is considered for inclusion in the publication's "We Get Letters and E-mail" section. Please don't stop communicating our thoughts and ideas if your initial communication wasn't acknowledged or published!
One complaint that I hear more often than I like is that you all aren't getting your monthly copy of Massage Today. I want every massage therapists to be able to get the benefits of this publication. If you know of colleagues who we seem to be missing, please send an e-mail to our circulation desk with name and mailing address (be sure to specify Massage Today!). The address of the circulation desk is: . Changes of address can also be handled this way!
I have also received some interesting mail about the differences between "massage" and "bodywork." Thus the title of this month's editorial, "What's in a Name?" I'm fascinated that so many of us have so many different definitions, and resent others who define terms differently than we ourselves do. I received one e-mail from a practitioner who resented being called a massage therapist because she was exclusively practicing energy work and preferred to be called a bodyworker. She said massage therapy assumed "fixing something" instead of just looking out for a person's well being as she did in her practice.
Another person wrote that he was surprised to see a column on pathologies in a massage therapy publication because massage therapy couldn't be used to treat medically necessary conditions. He stated that "Medical Massage" was just another term for bodywork, and that only bodyworkers should be included in discussions of pathologies. Could two people have more diverse definitions of bodywork? And these definitions don't even begin to address the Asian bodywork world. I'm going to suggest that most of us are very aware that there are differences in the techniques and methodologies of this field. structural integration, reiki and shiatsu are very different things, but depending on where you live, they might all be regulated as massage therapy. Massage Today strives to serve all of the practitioners of structured touch. To that end we will honor the definitions of all. When reading the thoughts of Massage Today contributors please keep in mind that someone might be defining a term differently that you do. In many cases we say the same things with different words.
We do however have a responsibility to be accurate when using service or trademarked terms such as Feldenkrais, Trager, etc. The associations and institutions that hold claim to legally protected terms have spent significant time and money in promotion of the terms for the benefit of their members and the public, and take protection of the terms seriously. We should, too. I recently spoke with an individual who said she was seeing a local Rolfer with whom I wasn't familiar. Upon checking I found that the "Rolfer" had attended four weekends of structural integration continuing education. Acquaintances of mine who are Rolfers get justifiably hot under the collar when they hear stories like this.
Even when not dealing with trademarked terms, one of the great difficulties in efforts to establish standards is defining our terms. If more than two of us are in the same room at the same time we can't agree on what "high standards" means, let alone turf threatening terms like massage and bodywork.
So let's lighten up on one another. When speaking let's say what we mean, remembering that others may draw different conclusions from our statements than we intended. Let's not stop sharing ideas because of these different definitions. I happen to personally feel that standards are desirable and important to our field. I see more growth in touch therapies from consumer, regulator and practitioner agreement on standards. I see more people with robust practices now than ever before, and I also see practitioners just entering the field building sustainable practices quicker than they used to. Honoring one another by enjoying our similarities as opposed to our differences can go a long way to keep increasing growth and acceptance in a slowing economy.
Massage Today encourages letters to the editor to discuss matters relating to the publication's content. Letters may be published in a future issue of Massage Today. Please send all correspondence by e-mail to , or by regular mail to the address listed below:
Former editor of Massage Today, Cliff is owner of Windham Health Center Neuromuscular Therapy LLC. He is nationally certified in therapeutic massage & bodywork and is licensed as a massage therapist by the states of New Hampshire and Florida. Cliff is a member of the International Association of Healthcare Practitioners; a professional member and past president of the New Hampshire chapter of the American Massage Therapy Association; a certified member of the Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals, Inc.; and a past chairman of the board of directors of the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork.
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