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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.
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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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