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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.
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.
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.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 2
A talented young woman presented herself with emotional mood swings, which included being nervous, anxious and jittery.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
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.
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.
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?!"
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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)?
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.
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.
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.
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.
September, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 09
Of Cabbages and Kings
By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB
The elections are coming, the elections are coming! Once again, a majority of the minority who vote will decide our fate for another few years. The candidates say it is the most important election of their lifetimes. Well of course they think that! How often does one get to run for president of the United States? They are trying to make this a very emotional election. Voting should never be emotional; it should be logical and rational. I want to share an e-mail I received from my 93-year-old Aunt Lynnette. She's not a "spammer." She sent the following bit of philosophy:
Where do you think we are now? My guess is number six or higher. You have the opportunity to make things better. Get involved in the upcoming election - vote. If you don't vote, don't complain. Better yet, get out and meet the candidates. Let them know that alternative-providers vote. Try to get them to promise to protect our right to practice and the people's rights to come to us, especially in any government-care program.
If you believe in herbs and supplements, you might want to urge the candidates to keep the government (the Food and Drug Administration) out of the supplement business, and protect our rights to purchase supplements and remedies freely. If you don't agree with me, urge them to do whatever you desire - just get involved. And remember, legislators write and pass laws; governors and presidents just sign them. Legislators are much easier to meet and talk to.
Both presidential candidates have their proposals to solve the "health care crisis." Neither of their proposals address the 700,000-plus people killed by the current "health care" system each year. Both candidates' proposals will increase this number by making more people dependent on the existing "traditional medical system." Only alternative health care providers offer true health care, and this will be lost if we are "integrated" into the traditional medical monopoly, either voluntarily (as is happening now) or by some government program.
If you think health care is expensive now, just wait until it is free. The government that controls the health of its people controls its people. Politicians will never bring about peace or health - they benefit from neither. Both peace and health begin in the heart of the individual and spread from there. Peace and health are individual responsibilities (not rights). Politicians are a reflection of the state of our society. Until individuals change, society and its politicians will not change, and violence will rage on.
So do not put much hope in any politician or party. Have faith in yourself and your fellow man. Study health (not sickness) care, and implement its principles. Learn the ways of peace and live them. Your example to those you touch can change your community; community by community, the world is changed. A yearly conference to help facilitate this movement has been organized. For information about it see: www.himalayaninstitute.org/slconference. Unfortunately, the ways of peace take time, so in the meantime, get out and participate! First think, and then vote.
The Medical Massage Debate
The term "medical massage" has become a popular subject lately. What I have seen recently in the pages of Massage Today, with the exception of Vivian Madison-Mahoney's excellent column in the July issue (www.massagetoday.com/archives/2004/07/09.html), is nothing more than individuals trying to gain control of the current "hot term" for their own individual gain. They are either trying to catch the wave or steer it. It's all about money and ego, and a form of "King of the Hill." Don't buy into it. What's the big deal about using the term "medical" in front of massage anyway? Could it be that massage doesn't kill enough people to be worthy of the term?
The last thing we need right now is another lowest-common denominator certification program. Therapists who are studying advanced techniques to better serve their patients do not need to be impeded by the political agendas that accompany every certification program I have seen in this profession. They do not need to have fear put into them, they need to be encouraged and commended. Further, other than a state license where available/required, nothing should be promoted as a credential for insurance billing. Whoever wants to work for an insurance company should be allowed to. They will more than earn their money. Anyone who tries to restrict access to insurance reimbursement by promoting phony-baloney credentials and certifications does not have the interests of massage providers or patients in mind. That's it in a nutshell.
Try This: The densely innervated fascia, which also has imbedded smooth muscle fibers, is really an actively adaptive organ, very much alive and quite responsive to massage techniques. Anatomy Professor J. Staubesand, University of Freiburg, Germany, states, "Any intervention on the fascia is also an intervention on the autonomic nervous system."
Last time, I suggested you add tangential pressure to help release a stubborn tender point or trigger point. In addition to the Ruffini endings that are responsive to lateral stretch, the fascia also contains Pacini and Paciniform mechanoreceptors (nerve endings), which respond to vibration. Their response is a Parasympathetic, or relaxation, response to the vibratory stimulation. So, if sustained pressure does not bring about the desired response in your patient's tissue, try adding vibration, either subtly while you hold the point, or as a separate stroke (stimulus) between applications of sustained pressure. See you in November.
Click here for more information about Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB.
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