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Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
Musculoskeletal Disorders Take Center Stage
Looking for the latest on the musculoskeletal pain epidemic and the increasing premium placed on preventive strategies including chiropractic? Check out The Impact of Musculoskeletal Disorders on Americans – Opportunities for Action.
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
How to Find and Fix TL Nerve Impingements
The thoracolumbar junction (TLJ) and the peripheral sensory nerves that exit from it are frequent, important and rarely recognized sources of lower back, pelvic and hip pain. Let's outline a clear exam protocol for diagnosing the problem.
Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee OA? The Proper Perspective
The March 8, 2016 issue of JAMA includes a study about vitamin D supplementation for osteoarthritis of the knee. This is a really weird study.
The Power of Eccentric Exercise: Hamstring Injury Prevention and Rehab
For almost 20 years, I've worked with professional athletes who make a living by running really fast. It goes without saying that hamstring injury (HSI) prevention and rehabilitation is a big part of what they expect from a sports chiropractor.
Business Lesson #1: Adapt or Else
My wife and I recently enjoyed an excellent meal at a restaurant recommended by some friends. We often have concerns about restaurant recommendations, as many have been disappointing.
The IME System: A Current Public Health Risk and Solutions That Are Working
I strongly believe in the independent medical examination (IME) system. There are far too many doctors in every profession who are not following E&M protocols and never claim MMI (maximum medical improvement) has occurred for their patients, which has caused financial stress for many private and public carriers.
Recording and Appropriate Billing of Timed Physical Medicine Services
There is a common misunderstanding about timed therapy services and although you do have some knowledge of timed service documentation, based on your comment on the 8-minute rule, your understanding is correct, but incomplete.
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
Essentials of Assessment: The Squat
The squat is a simple, fast and functional tool to evaluate patient symmetry and function. As simple and easy as it is to implement, it can yield considerable amounts of valuable, clinically relevant information.
September, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 09
Bye-Bye Hormone Replacement Therapy, Hello Alternative Medicine
By James P. Meschino, DC, MS
On July 9, 2002, researchers announced they were stopping the American Women's Health Initiative (WHI) trial of 16,000 women taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT). The reason was that after a little over five years of the study, there was a 26 percent increased risk of breast cancer in women taking HRT, compared with those receiving the placebo.Women taking HRT also showed a 41 percent increased risk of stroke, and a 29 percent increased risk of myocardial infarction.
Prior to this, the Nurses' Health Study indicated that for each year a woman remained on HRT her risk of breast cancer increases by 2.3 percent. Thus, after 10 years she had a 23 percent increased risk of breast cancer, and after 20 years, a 46 percent increased risk of breast cancer compared to postmenopausal women who did not use HRT.
Adding to the alarming results of the WHI trial is the study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (July 17, 2000 issue). This follow-up study of 44,241 former participants in the Breast Cancer Detection Demonstration Project showed that women taking estrogen replacement therapy (with no progesterone, known as unopposed estrogen) had an increased risk of ovarian cancer. For women who had used estrogen replacement for 10 to 19 years the relative risk was 1.8, which increased to 3.2 for women who used estrogen replacement therapy for 20 or more years.
These latest findings are changing the way the medical profession views the use of HRT and estrogen replacement (ERT). Doctors are now encouraged to use HRT only in cases where there is an absolute need, and ERT, which was commonly prescribed for women who had undergone hysterectomy, is no longer the treatment of choice. As the results of these findings begin to emerge in the popular media, patients themselves are voluntarily terminating their use of HRT and ERT in large numbers, and this movement is anticipated to continue at a predictable pace.
The question on the minds of consumers and practitioners is if there are natural alternatives to the use of HRT and ERT that are safe and effective in the management of menopausal symptoms. There are three clinically proven natural supplements that all practitioners should be aware of: black cohosh extract, gamma-oryzanol, and soy isoflavones.
In head-to-head studies against HRT, diazepam, and placebo, black cohosh extract (containing 2.5 percent triterpene glycoside content), has been shown to reduce hot flashes, insomnia, nervousness, anxiety, and a host of other emotional and physical menopausal symptoms. The triterpene constituents have been shown to act like the body's weakest estrogen (estriol), and serves as a precursor from which the female body can synthesize progesterone. Black cohosh extract has been widely researched and is a medically approved intervention in many European countries as a treatment for menopausal symptoms. In Germany, it has been in use for over 40 years, with no evidence of serious side effects, contraindications, or harmful interactions with other drugs.
Gamma-oryzanol is a substance derived from rice bran oil, which is a prescription drug in Japan and is used to reduce hot flashes associated with menopause, and to reduce high cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood stream. As heart disease is the number one killer of postmenopausal women, it is convenient that gamma-oryzanol can reduce bothersome symptoms of menopause, and help to lower risk of heart disease by reducing cholesterol and triglycerides by 12-15 percent. Recall that when people with high cholesterol lower their blood cholesterol level by one percent, there is a corresponding reduction in risk of heart disease of two to three percent. Thus, a 12 percent reduction in blood cholesterol translates into at least a 24 percent reduction in risk of heart attack and related cardiovascular events. The dosage of gamma-oryzanol required to contain menopausal symptoms and lower blood lipids is 150 mg, twice daily. Soy isoflavones have also been shown to reduce hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms, and lower cholesterol by 9-12 percent in hypercholesterolemic patients.
Soy isoflavones are also associated with a reduction in risk of breast cancer and have recently been shown, along with black cohosh triterpenes, to help support bone mineral density in postmenopausal women.
These are all attractive features for the postmenopausal woman, who is prone to heart disease, breast cancer, and osteoporosis. For this reason I recommend to postmenopausal female patients (who have no prior history of breast cancer) that they use a combination supplement product that contains all three herbal and accessory nutrients reviewed in this update, in one capsule, at the following doses:
The dangers of HRT and ERT will likely prompt a flurry of questions about the use of safe, and natural alternatives to these drugs. Health care practitioners will be called upon to help postmenopausal patients make informed decisions about the management of menopause, anti-aging and disease prevention strategies, based upon the existing scientific evidence. It is vital that patients be made aware of the evidence-based research in this area, which should help to avoid their reliance upon less effective or ineffective dietary supplements in the management of their menopausal years.
Black Cohosh References
Estrogen Replacement Therapy and Breast Cancer References
Click here for previous articles by James P. Meschino, DC, MS.
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