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Apple Takes a Bite Out of Research
The more than 700 million iPhone users have just been given the opportunity to "do their part to advance medical research."
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.
Teach Your Patients About External Healing Applications
Since the skin is the body's largest organ, and is able to respond to both internal and external stimulations, communicate sensations to the brain, protect the body, breathe and even excrete toxins, it can be an excellent source of healing.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Make Every Day Mother's Day
May is a special month for many reasons. After a long, harsh winter, spring is at last in full swing. Memorial Day helps us honor those who have fought and fallen in the name of freedom.
Functional Impingement of the Hip (Part 2): Rehab Exercises
I find functionally impinged hips that don't move properly on so many of my patients. (See part 1 of this article for a description of the condition.)
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.
If Your Pro-Chiropractic Governor Resigned, Would You Be Prepared?
John Kitzhaber, MD, recently re-elected to a historic fourth term as Oregon governor, has resigned among alleged ethics violations by his fiancée' and first lady, Cylvia Hayes. I developed a personal friendship with John and consider him a good friend.
News in Brief
Dr. Frank Nicchi Receives Award at ACC-RAC; Sherman College Expands International Influence.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
Trouble in the Wellness Waters?
Call me old-fashioned, paranoid or just old, but I do remember graduating from chiropractic college in the late '70s in the midst of the Wilk v AMA lawsuit.
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.
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.
Talking to Patients About Medial Branch Neurotomy (Part 2)
Even when lumbar facet denervation (medial branch neurotomy) is successful, relief is rarely complete or permanent. Smuck, et al., reviewed 16 articles and found the average duration of >50 percent pain relief for an initial procedure was nine months.
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.
Applauding a Legacy of Leadership
Founding Palmer West President, John Miller, DC, HCD (Hon.), FICA (Hon.), a 1954 graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic, passed away March 8, 2015 at age 83.
June, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 06
By Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB
There's nothing like a bit of personal involvement to motivate learning.With a disposition to burning the candle at both ends, a semi-addiction to exercise, and a tendency toward upper-respiratory allergies, I'm all too prone to catching a head cold from a school-bound offspring or world-traveling colleague. Generally, it's not the respiratory symptoms that impact me most, but the mental fog, tendency to nod off, and general malaise that comes with them. It's the immune system chemicals called cytokines, believed to result in the systemic response, that are the focus of this article. What's particularly fascinating about cytokines is that they show up in the literature on infections, allergies, exercise, stress responses, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue syndrome.
The local response to infection or tissue injury involves the production of cytokines, which are released at the site of inflammation. Cytokines facilitate an influx of lymphocytes, neutrophils, monocytes and other cells, which participate in the clearing of antigens and healing of tissue. The local inflammatory response is accompanied by a systemic response, known as the acute phase response.6
Similar to explicit tissue injury, strenuous exercise is also accompanied by an increase in circulating proinflammatory and inflammation-responsive cytokines.7 This effect is observed both from long events, such as marathons, and from shorter, intense episodes of eccentric exercise. The cytokine response following exercise is also affected by nutritional factors such as carbohydrate loading or restriction.6
Cytokines are potent mediators of immune activity. These chemicals carry messages from one cell group to another and invoke the most powerful of whole-body defense responses. The cytokines include the interferons and interleukins, which cause many of the symptoms of bacterial and viral infections - fever, headache, generalized aching, fatigue, weakness, and clouded consciousness.3 Injection of proinflammatory cytokines has reproduced many of these acute phase symptoms.
Cytokine production also responds to stress. It is now well established that the central nervous, endocrine and immune systems interact with each other; psychological stress can down-regulate the immune response by affecting the interplay of these systems. The interactions are complex, involving both the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA) and the autonomic nervous system.4
It's been proposed that cytokines, reacting to partial protein production by latent viral infections, could be a mechanism involved in chronic fatigue syndrome.4 The viruses could be partially reactivated; that is, viral proteins could be produced at levels high enough to cause a low-grade infection, but too low to be seen using current laboratory assays.5 Stress is also thought to play a role in viral reactiviation.
Cytokines may also play an important role in the more systemic effects of allergic rhinitis, symptoms that include fatigue and difficulty concentrating. One possibility is that allergy stimulates the release of cytokines, which have been shown to produce achiness and fatigue, as well as cognitive impairment. It may also interfere with adrenergic and cholinergic activity in the central nervous system, thereby impairing attention.1
In my December 2002 article, "Flushing Out Myths" (www.massagetoday.com/archives/2002/12/08.html) I advanced the opinion that post-massage reactions similar to flu might be due to an induced response of normally subclinical fibromyalgia; a concept advanced by Leon Chaitow.2 I noted: "I tend to think of a body's neurochemical system on the edge of its ability to adapt being pushed temporarily beyond the edge by accommodating to the work being done. This reaction may be exacerbated by effects of athletic overtraining or by a genetic metabolic predisposition." The post-massage production of proinflammatory cytokines would be a possible mechanism leading to this result. Chaitow has also noted the involvement of cytokines in fibromyalgia.
The possibility of inducing a proinflammatory response should caution us not to probe too deeply, too fast into the unknown client. It is better to start a first session moderately and then adjust based on following up the client's response. On the other hand, since the immune response is impacted by stress, reducing perceived stress and its effects within the musculature may help the client's body to cope with the otherwise unmanageable. Sometimes our lesser effort is more. It's all in the intention and the attention we bring.
Editor's note: Due to the transient nature of the Internet, some links may not be operational.
Click here for previous articles by Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB.
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