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Update from the International AIDS Conference
The 21st International AIDS Conference in Durban, South Africa, brought together more than 15,000 of the world's leading scientists, activists, funders, policy makers, and consumers from 153 countries.
National Board Apologizes for Testing Issues
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) has issued a formal apology following a series of computer-based testing malfunctions that impacted two separate examinations (March and June 2016) and caused "widespread confusion and frustration" to the nearly 1,500 examinees taking the tests.
Workers' Back Pain: Causes, Costs & Solution
You will want to share two important papers published in the past several months. Why? When read separately, each provides valuable information relevant to your patients, community and practice; together, they tell a compelling story.
Going Beyond Just Feeling Good
We all know that most patients come to us for some pain complaint: neck pain, back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel, etc. We also all know that acupuncture is a great first-line care for these issues, as well as supporting overall health and wellness.
Decoding the Mystery of Medical Insurance Acceptance
In the constantly evolving profession of acupuncture, one of the least understood areas is medical insurance acceptance. The profession is filled with controversy surrounding this topic: Is it ethical?
Getting Paid by Medicare Is Getting a Major Adjustment
The 2015 Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) was signed into law to implement a new approach to clinician payments and replace the Sustainable Growth Rate formula.
First Annual ICD-10 Updates Take Effect
Yes, there was an update to ICD-10 codes on Oct. 1. It was a regular update to the diagnosis coding system and will take place every Oct. 1, just as it did when the ICD-9 system was in place.
Six Things Every DC Should Know About the Zika Virus
The Zika outbreak continues to spread across the continental United States and U.S. territories. We offer this brief overview on this important public health problem for the practicing doctor of chiropractic.
Dysautonomia: The Medical Condition You May Already Be Treating
TCM practitioners have spent thousands of years healing patients without knowing or needing the names of their diseases as defined by allopathic medicine. We have syndrome names that are both poetic and efficient.
Upgrade to "Parker 2.0" in Las Vegas
Continuing your education and refining your practice: two key elements of a successful chiropractic career. Parker Seminars promises both as it celebrates its 65th anniversary in Las Vegas next February, according to Parker University President, Dr. William Morgan, and seminar consultant Dr. Mark Sanna.
Pediatric Footwear: Function Over Fashion
As practitioners, it is not uncommon for parents to bring us their children to treat or ask us questions related to the pediatric population. Children's feet tend to be a perplexing region for parents and practitioners alike.
Treatment Success at the Won Institute
According to the World Health Organization's 2003 report titled, "Acupuncture: Review and Analysis of Controlled Clinical Trials," acupuncture has been shown to improve many physical, emotional, and mental conditions.
Using the Lens of Chinese Medicine
One of the most common medications I see in clinical practice on a daily basis is fluoxetine or Prozac. Consequently, I hear many complaints concerning the side effects of this medication and am frequently asked by patients to help manage these side effects with acupuncture and Chinese medicine.
Power to the Patient
Against a backdrop of splintered political parties, polarizations within nations, civil unrest, and distrust of established government (such as the growing anti-Washington, D.C. sentiment) comes the not-so-surprising finding that health care authorities and practitioners (with perhaps the exception of insurers) are turning over more and more powers to the individual patient.
ITB Syndrome: Treat the Tensor Fascia Latae
Iliotibial band syndrome is usually the result of repetitive knee flexion, such as in runners or cyclists. Pain may be experienced in the knee and/or the hip. The patient may express a sense of the hip dislocating, popping or snapping.
Pediatric Asthma: A Case Study
I have had very good success with pediatric asthma, combining acupuncture with Chinese herbal products. Treatment is given over four to eight months, twice monthly, with herbal formulas rotated every month.
Four Ways to Attract Patients
Acupuncturist A has been in practice for six years and has struggled since day one. She spends as much time and money on marketing as she can, but since her practice is slow, her budget isn't that big.
Treating Peripheral Neuropathy: Multi-Faceted Approach Including Laser Therapy
Peripheral neuropathy affects at least 20 million people in the United States1 and nearly 60 percent of all people with diabetes suffer from diabetic neuropathy. Many suffer from the disorder without ever identifying the cause.
Integrative Cancer Care: Chiropractic for Chemotherapy-Induced Hiccups
Hiccups (singultus) are a frequent occurrence during cancer treatment. The cause of the hiccups may be the chemotherapy drug itself, such as Cisplatin; or the prophylactic use of corticosteroids such as Decadron, which is used to prevent nausea and/or vomiting.
Natural Cancer Prevention: Pomegranate for the Prostate
In recent years, the ingestion of pure pomegranate juice (8 ounces per day) has been shown in clinical studies with human subjects to slow, and to some degree, reverse, the progression of prostate cancer – the second leading cause of cancer death in North American men.
July, 2005, Vol. 05, Issue 07
PMS: Please Make It Stop
By Elaine Stillerman, LMT
The first time I menstruated my mother slapped me across the face.
"Whadya do that for?!" I demanded, rubbing my sore cheek.
"So the blood should never leave your face."
This and numerous other old wives' tales have plagued women throughout our unique reproductive lives.PMS, premenstrual syndrome, is another set of symptoms that had to struggle to gain respect and acceptance in the medical community. First described as a set of symptoms in 1931 by an American neurologist, women who exhibited irritability, headaches, bloating, tension etc., a week or two before their periods were considered mad or hysterical. At the very least, the syndrome was "all in our heads."
Then in 1953, Dr. Katharina Dalton, a very brave English doctor, and her colleague Dr. Raymond Greene coined the term PMS in a paper they published. She recognized that during her own (four) pregnancies her premenstrual-related headaches disappeared. She knew that high levels of progesterone during pregnancy contributed to her calmness and freedom from these crippling migraines. In her practice she had great success in treating women who displayed migraines, asthma, irritability and epilepsy with progesterone. She (rightfully) concluded that hormonal imbalances - and not madness - prior to menstruation were responsible for the wide variety of symptoms so many women suffered.
PMS is a disorder brought on by hormonal shifting that triggers mild to severe disruptive symptoms in almost 40 million (40 percent to 80 percent of menstruating) women. Almost 5 million require medication for intense mood and behavioral changes. Over 150 symptoms have been ascribed to PMS, with the most common being headaches and fatigue. The symptoms are often physical as well as emotional. Physical symptoms might include headache, migraine, fluid retention, fatigue, constipation, joint pain, backache, abdominal cramping, breast swelling and soreness, food cravings, heart palpitations and weight gain. Emotional changes may include uncontrollable crying spells, depression, anxiety, panic attacks, tension, clumsiness, failure to concentrate and diminished libido.
Hormonal influences have not been examined until recently. Right after menstruation, estrogen levels start to rise and peak around mid-cycle, or ovulation. If a woman does not become pregnant, levels rapidly drop off only to slowly rise again just before her period. Estrogen holds fluid and with an increased level of estrogen, women tend to bloat. (I had one client who needed two sizes of clothes - one set for after her period and one set just before because she gained as much as 15 pounds of fluid.) Estrogen has a central neurological effect and can cause increased brain activity, including seizures. This hormone can also create a cycle of salt retention and drop in blood sugar. PMS and migraine sufferers benefit from a diet that restricts salt and sugar, and includes a mild diuretic to reduce the excess swelling.
As if PMS wasn't bad enough on its own, a more severe, disabling form of PMS is PMDD - premenstrual dysphoric disorder. Here, the emotional symptoms are depression, anxiety, tension, persistent anger and rage, and irritability. With PMDD, these symptoms often lead to intense problems with relationships and social functioning. Physically, PMDD is accompanied by headaches, joint and muscle pain, bloating and breast sensitivity. According to the American Psychiatric Association, PMDD is diagnosed if at least five of the usual symptoms are present two weeks before menstruation and are extinguished after the period starts. Antidepressants are used to treat PMDD.
What else can we do for our clients to minimize PMS? A general massage will alleviate joint and muscle pain, treat headaches and migraines, reduce swelling (using lymphatic drainage), and elevate her spirits. Other suggestions include
PMS goes away with the onset of menopause. Oh great, something to look forward to...
Editor's note: Elaine Stillerman recently signed on with Mosby Publishing to write Prenatal Massage: A Textbook of Pregnancy, Labor and Postpartum Bodywork. Elaine is also the developer of MotherMassage®: Massage During Pregnancy, a professional certification workshop, and author of MotherMassage: A Handbook For Relieving the Discomforts of Pregnancy and The Encylopedia of Bodywork. Congratulations, Elaine!
Click here for previous articles by Elaine Stillerman, LMT.
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