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Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
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.
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.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
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.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
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.
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.
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.
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.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
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.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
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.)
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
March, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 03
The Korean Four Constitutional Types, Part I
By Barbra Esher, AOBTA CI. Dipl. ABT & Ac. (NCCAOM), LAc
Most students and practitioners love looking at the different constitutional types in Chinese medicine and find it very useful in their practice. People who have studied Asian bodywork are familiar with the Five Element constitutional types.Many also know the European Six Division way of assessing fundamental characteristics, as popularized by Yves Requena. But unless your teacher was Korean or you had the good fortune of studying with Alex Tiberi at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, you probably are not familiar with the Korean constitutional types. Most of this information grew from seminars with Alex. I am sure you will find it useful in understanding more about your clients' nature and selecting which meridians on which to focus. I will talk about taiyin and taiyang (greater yin and yang) constitutional types in part one and then shaoyin and shaoyang (lesser yin and yang) in the following issue.
Taiyang -- Greater Yang -- Small Intestine /Bladder
When we think of taiyang, we consider our most external structure and protective framework. This is created by the Small Intestine and Bladder meridians, on the back of the shoulders and down the back. Strong musculature in this area of the body forms our armor, our protection. It's also the framework that creates our upright position and propels us forward. So that is what we consider in assessing whether an individual is taiyang or not -- strong structure and forward movement.
People who are taiyang are large and muscular. They are stocky and appear strong and sturdy. Their complexion is usually reddish or ruddy, appearing "thick-skinned." Their movement is always forward, allowing nothing to get in their way or distract them. For this reason, they are great people for starting companies. You will find that often they are ambitious entrepreneurs. They love to be in charge and noticed, and often display aggressive and outgoing personalities. Nothing is ever a problem for them, except for minute details that they will quickly glaze over as unimportant. Taiyang people never get sick or goes to a doctor. When they do get sick, it is usually sudden and serious. They'll be going along and then "blam"; they get hit with a heart attack or stroke that kills them. But we don't see them in our clinics often because they never admit to anything ever being wrong. They may be totally stressed out, but they just don't feel the impact like most people do.
Sometimes their partner will drag them into your office. (They won't come on their own because they always "feel fine!") You will give them a medical history to fill out, and they'll check nothing: name, address, signature at the bottom, that's it. So when you do the interview, you ask again, "any problems?" and of course they'll say no, even though the girlfriend who made the appointment said that he passed out from a bleeding stomach ulcer and is living on Tagamet. When you ask about it, they'll say, "Oh that? That's nothing." Treatment for taiyangs must include deep, strong work on the SI and Bl meridians. They will absolutely love it for one reason: it helps to relax the taiyang structure that has been propelling them forward their entire lives! You will find that Nuad Bo Rarn (Thai bodywork) is very effective for taiyang folks, as well as barefoot shiatsu. Taigyang people feel so good afterward, they often say that they didn't realize that they were not relaxed. Book another appointment right then and there, before they get back into their taiyang routine. You'll find that after a thorough assessment, they may have imbalances with the Kidney or Heart meridians, which after treatment will bring more long-lasting results.
Gradually suggesting lifestyle changes also will increase the efficacy of your treatments. Suggest that they take time off without their cell phones or laptops. Could they possibly find another favorite vegetable other than French fries? If they eat meat three times a day, maybe they could cut down to two? The more you work with them, the more likely they will trust and follow your advice.
Taiyin -- Greater Yin -- Spleen and Lung
The taiyin meridians, Spleen and Lung, both help regulate the water/fluids in the body. Remembering that for this type of person, these meridians are their greatest strength as well as their greatest weakness. You will notice that a taiyin person tends to have water buildup. Combine that with the extreme qualities of a "Spleeny Weeny" Earth person: one that ruminates obsessively and that of a stuck Metal element person with the inability to let go, and you have the classic taiyin constitutional type.
Taiyin people are large, like taiyang, but not as firm. They tend to be soft and flabby, kind of like big phlegmy yin balls. Their complexion is yellowish and their flesh feels mushy when you work on them.
Both taiyin and taiyang have "greater" in their name; they are people with "large" conditions. But whereas the taiyang person is excess in yang: motion - activity - energy, the taiyin person has excess of yin substance and stagnation. Taiyin people tend to have accumulations and blockages, such as cysts and tumors. They not only have stagnation in their bodies, they also have it in their lives. They will stick with a job as long as it takes to get it done, no matter how boring it is. They are great people to have working for you, because they are loyal and pay attention to details. But they get stuck in jobs that they hate, relationships that they hate, and living situations they hate for years and years. They always have a million excuses for why they couldn't possibly change! That is classic taiyin: the inability to let go, with the tendency to stagnate.
Interestingly enough, after receiving shiatsu for a few sessions with a focus on the taiyin meridians, they will start to shift. It will still usually take more work, but as you strengthen the Spleen and move through some of their phlegm, they will be able to see the possibility of change in their lives. Diet-wise, they probably need to cut down on sugar and dairy. Walking would be an appropriate form of exercise to suggest.
The Korean constitutional types are one paradigm among many! I always utilize it in combination with a more detailed assessment, using the tongue and pulse. I love the imagery used in this system; it's so easy to see parts of others and ourselves in these classic types. Enjoy!
Click here for previous articles by Barbra Esher, AOBTA CI. Dipl. ABT & Ac. (NCCAOM), LAc.
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