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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.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
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.
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?!"
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.
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.
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.
The Year to Make Things Happen
It is hard to believe that the Year of the Ram – 2015 is half over. Time seems to be moving especially fast. This is the year for things to happen for the acupuncture profession.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 2
A talented young woman presented herself with emotional mood swings, which included being nervous, anxious and jittery.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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)?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
October, 2003, Vol. 03, Issue 10
By Cliff Korn, BS, LMT, NCTMB
I was recently read an online newsletter with the following statement: "Jared Adair, Director of the Office of HIPAA Standards at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, has written 'Alternative Link' to clarify the status of participants in the ABC codes demonstration project.'His letter essentially says that all contractual trading partners of registrants for the federally authorized demonstration program are eligible to use ABC codes commercially in HIPAA transactions with those registrants,' says Synthia Molina, Alternative Link CEO."*
Jargon, in general, is confusing to those not schooled in "the code." There are so many acronyms and terms we use that were developed to increase understanding and provide specificity of meaning; unfortunately, many do just the opposite. I came up with the following incomplete list that applies to our profession. Many rolled off the tip of my tongue in a heartbeat.
If this were in a quiz, could you define these?
ABC ~ ABMP ~ AMTA ~ CAM ~ CEU ~ CMT ~ CPT ~ CST ~ HIPPA ~ IMA ~ LDT ~ LMP ~ LMT ~ MFR ~ NCBTMB ~ NCETMB ~ NCTMB ~ NMT
The following are the 'unofficial' definitions, some from the owners' Web sites!
ABC is the Advanced Billing Concepts code set developed by Alternative Link, Inc., for use in alternative and integrative medicine. It's a group of five-character alphabetic codes, with two-character practitioner modifiers (and a topic for a future column!).
ABMP (Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals) is a membership organization serving the massage, bodywork, somatic and esthetic professions.
AMTA (American Massage Therapy Association) is a 60-year-old professional association representing the field of massage therapy.
CAM (Complementary and Alternative Medicine), as defined by the National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), is a group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices and products that are not presently considered part of conventional medicine (also referred to as allopathy; Western; mainstream; orthodox; regular and bio medicine). Although some scientific evidence exists regarding some CAM therapies, key questions have yet to be answered as to whether CAM practices are safe and whether they work for the diseases or medical conditions for which they are used.
CEU is Continuing Education Unit. Frequently used synonymously with contact hour, this actually falls under the International Association for Continuing Education and Training's (IACET) continuing education terminology and definition for credit hours. According to the IACET, one CEU is awarded for each 10 contact hours of organized approved continuing education experience.
CMT (Certified Massage Therapist) is a title sometimes awarded and/or allowed by a state, county or municipal regulating entity.
CPT is a billing code system owned by the American Medical Association. It stands for Physician's Current Procedural Terminology.
CST stands for CranioSacral Therapy, a gentle, noninvasive method of evaluating and enhancing the function of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. Developed by Massage Today columnist John E. Upledger, DO, OMM, this therapy enhances the body's natural healing processes and has proven effective in treating a wide range of medical problems associated with pain and dysfunction.
HIPAA is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (see www.massagetoday.com/archives/2002/12/10.html; www.massagetoday.com/archives/2003/02/09.html; www.massagetoday.com/archives/2003/01/05.html).
IMA is the International Massage Association, which provides insurance services for massage, complementary and healing arts, and health and beauty.
LDT (Lymph Drainage Therapy) is an original hands-on method of lymph drainage developed by French physician Bruno Chikly. It offers a highly efficient approach to working with the lymphatic and other fluid systems. While its concepts are based on traditional procedures, LDT is the first modality to teach practitioners how to manually attune the specific rhythm, pressure, quality and direction of the lymph flow by using a combination of precise anatomical science and distinct manual techniques.
LMP (Licensed Massage Practitioner) and LMT (Licensed Massage Therapist) are titles sometimes awarded and/or allowed by a state, county or municipal regulating entity.
MFR (Myofascial Release) is a gentle and effective hands-on manual therapy technique that uses sustained pressure into restrictions in the fascial system to eliminate pain, and restore motion and function to the body.
NCBTMB is National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (the organization!); NCETMB is National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (the test!); NCTMB is Nationally Certified in Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (the credential!).
NMT, (Neuromuscular Therapy or Technique) is a program of soft tissue manipulation and recovery from acute and chronic pain syndromes which uses specific massage therapy, flexibility stretching and home care in an effort to eliminate the causes of neuromuscular pain patterns. It is designed to bring about balance between the musculoskeletal system and the nervous system. NMT enhances the function of joints, muscles and biomechanics (movement), and it releases endorphins, the body's own natural pain killers.
I hope this list has been helpful. I find that we frequently use and misuse these terms, and that misuse can undermine communication greatly!
Thanks for listening!
*CHRF NEWS FILE #52, August 18, 2003; The CHRF News Files is a product of the Collaboration for the Healthcare Renewal Foundation.
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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