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Expanding Access, Branch by Branch
The big news coming from Capitol Hill isn't merely the recent introduction of a pair of bills designed to expand chiropractic services in the Veterans Affairs and military health care systems; after all, similar legislation has made its way through Congress before, never reaching the Oval Office for presidential signature.
A Well-Kept Secret: 5 Element Acupuncture, Part II
Supervising acupuncture interns at a TCM college, it has always struck me how funny it is to hear the clinic manager tell the patients that the Five Element clinic specializes in treating emotions, as if patients with physical pain have no emotions!
Will You Be an Amplifer or a Mute?
These times are changing, and changing quickly. There have been many challenges to this profession throughout the past few years. The challenge is to talk, then talk and talk some more about this medicine.
Treating Beyond Pain
More often than not, when a patient presents to the office, it is for a pain complaint. Headache, neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel... The pain is often the focus of the patient's mindset, and they don't often have any thought of what comes after the pain.
Avoid Random Treatment of Trigger Points (Part 2)
We must acknowledge that the fascia, which surrounds literally everything in our bodies, including every muscle fiber, is more than just a covering.
TCM Congress in Rothenburg is Largest in Western World
In the medieval town of Rothenburg, deep set within the Bavarian countryside in Southern Germany, the TCM Kongress Rothenburg each year draws around 1.200 participants from more than 40 different countries to attend the biggest TCM conference in the Western world.
There Really is No Room for Sexism
Recently, Matteo* (a transgender male) approached me during a break in an advanced shiatsu class in Berlin where he was one of two men in a group of 20 women. "Pamela. Don't forget to remind the translator to include male endings."
The Need for a New Medical Model: A Challenge for Biopsychosocial and Ecopsychologica Medicine
Chinese medicine speaks of alignment between humans, heaven and earth. It is a complex view with a focus upon relationship. These are comprehensive ideas with no specific terms in contemporary medical practice.
The Dietary Supplement Research Dilemma
I do not care what the truth is, one way or another; I just want to know it. And when it comes to dietary supplements, the truth can be hard to find for a number of reasons.
Recreational Cannabis Use and TCM
Many people are drawn to cannabis for its effects physically, mentally and emotionally. Medically, cannabis has some legitimate uses, however the scope of this article is limited to the recreational use of cannabis.
An Excerpt from TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics
This excerpt is reprinted with permission from Jamie Wu. TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics was released in 2014 by People's Medical Publishing House.
Low Back Pain: Posture and Movement Analysis
When performing static and dynamic movement analysis of the lumbopelvic hip area, begin with standing visual posture analysis of the pelvis, and then perform lumbar range of motion and assess what you might see during normal versus abnormal lumbar flexion motion.
A Reality Check – and a Chance to Educate
Imagine working in the public relations department of nutrition retailer General Nutrition Corporation (GNC) and reading the The New York Times announce...
The Way We Are Designed: A Conversation with Gil Hedley, PhD
I was first introduced to the work of Gil Hedley by Tom DiFerdinando. He gifted me Gil's DVD series.
Primary Spine Care: Addressing Concerns & Criticisms
The Dec. 1, 2013 issue of Dynamic Chiropractic included an article describing the implementation of a training program for primary spine practitioners (PSP) within a metropolitan region and supported by a large BC/BS plan.
Help Update the LBP Practice Guideline
The Council on Chiropractic Guidelines and Practice Parameters has announced the release of an updated Clinical Practice Guideline for Chiropractic Management of Low Back Pain for stakeholder review and comment.
Atypical Femoral Fractures and Bisphosphonate Use: What to Watch For
Bisphosphonates (BP) are popular drugs, with more than 8 billion in sales in 2008; however, profits have declined as patents began expiring. Nonetheless, BP remain the most commonly prescribed drugs for patients at risk of osteoporotic fractures, with several million prescriptions written every year.
Interpersonal Skills 101: Enhancing the Value of Our Patient Interactions
Recently, I read an interesting article in our local newspaper titled "The Value of Human Interaction." The article presented comments from a senior editor for Fortune magazine who discussed "Civility in the Business World."
Synergy Doesn't Happen in Silos: Acupuncture in Hospitals and Other Healthcare Settings
As acupuncture and traditional East Asian medicine continue to intersect and integrate with biomedical approaches, the conversation about integration expands and becomes richer.
Impacting Chiropractic's Future With Technology
When it comes to electronic health records (EHR), Robert Moberg and Dr. Steven Kraus are two of the leading industry experts on the topic.
Converting More Patients to Your Practice
In 2013 and 2014, the theme was "the money is in the list." This meant that if you had a big email list, you were really making some "cha-ching." Unfortunately, having thousands of emails doesn't equate to thousands of dollars in profit.
March, 2005, Vol. 05, Issue 03
Womankind: Is Seasonale® Reasonable?
By Elaine Stillerman, LMT
Is there anyone else feeling disgusted and outraged at the latest assault on women by the pharmaceutical industry? Are women so gullible that we believe these mega-billion dollar giants have our best interests in mind when they claim that the female reproductive system is broken and needs fixing?
I was sitting home one evening, minding my own business, when a commercial for Seasonale® came on.In the ad, several 20-something waifs, clad in white dresses with pink polka dots, were kicking the dots as they fell of the dresses until there were only four left. The dots symbolized (menstrual) periods - one dot per period - get it? That's the gimmick. You would never wear white when you have your period (or after Labor Day), and this miracle contraception provides effective birth control protection plus cuts down the number of menstrual cycles to only four - one per Seasonale® . I wanted to hurl.
Brought to you by the same industry that labels menopause "estrogen deficiency syndrome" (and wanted to sell drugs to change that until the dangers of hormone replacement therapy became widely accepted), this birth control pill is made with lower doses of the same estrogen (ethinyl estradiol) and progestin (levonorgestrel) found in conventional birth control pills, but the usage is vastly different. Instead of taking the pill for 21 days followed by seven days of placebo, Seasonale® is taken for 84 days and seven days of placebo so the normal number of menstruation cycles, 13-14 per year, dwindles to four.
I suppose there are a number of women who applaud this innovation. Those who suffer from severe menstrual cramps, have extreme bleeding, or consider their monthly cycles an inconvenience would probably welcome relief from these symptoms. But these women are not the target population, and the strategy is to convince all women of childbearing age that it's okay to mess with Mother Nature and reduce the number of periods.
Approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in September 2003 to prevent pregnancy, this oral contraceptive acts like the traditional birth control pill by suppressing ovulation and making the cervical mucus hostile to sperm. It prevents the endometrium (uterine lining) from growing thick enough to support fertilization; however, the hormones of this drug prevent the endometrium from growing at all. As birth control, it is 99 percent effective if taken as directed, compared to the 95-percent effective rate of traditional birth control pills. Supporters also maintain that decreasing the number of periods can prevent anemia and incidences of endometriosis, which is often linked with pelvic pain and infertility. There is even some inference that this pill may reduce the risk of ovarian and endometrial cancers.
Conversely, as with any birth control pill, Seasonale® does not protect the user from HIV or any other sexually transmitted diseases. Its side-effects are similar to those of standard birth control pills and include nausea, vomiting, weight gain, breast soreness and breakthrough bleeding; however, users of Seasonale® may experience more breakthrough bleeding, particularly in the first few months. So, perhaps avoiding white garments should also be on the warning label.
Seasonale® is not appropriate for women with blood-clotting disorders or those who have risk factors for heart disease or stroke, such as elevated blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and high cholesterol, nor is it safe for smokers and women over 35. But these warnings are ubiquitous with all birth control pills.
There are a number of doctors who maintain that missing periods is not a good idea. It is a monthly hormonal cycle that should not be artificially controlled. Women who take Seasonale® ingest nine more weeks of estrogen and progestin every year; although clinical studies have not proven an increased risk to these women, long-term usage has not been evaluated.
But what upsets me is the way the marketing of this drug tries to suggest that having monthly periods is a mere inconvenience that can be safely eliminated. It plays into the idea that women, who rarely rejoice when they menstruate, can deny their womanhood and fool their own biology by ceasing to menstruate. It's a psychological ploy to convince us that our bodily functions are unnatural and need to be controlled.
Women of childbearing age bleed once a month. That's the way it always has been and that's the way it should remain. Trying to convince women that there is a better way to experience that which makes us uniquely women is doing a great disservice and borders on misogyny.
Click here for previous articles by Elaine Stillerman, LMT.
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