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Acupuncture's Essential Role
Acupuncture should play a more prominent role in U.S. healthcare during and after this post-Affordable Care Act era when chronic care and population health management are key concerns for all healthcare providers.
NBCE Fumbles Computerized Testing Process
Imagine being a student again, about to take one of the four tests required to become a doctor of chiropractic. You've studied almost nonstop for the past few weeks. You can feel your anxiety level rise as you sit down in front of the computer screen.
Six Things Every Chiropractor Should Know About Opioids
An increase in addictions and deaths due to opioids has raised significant concern and media attention. We offer this brief overview on this important public health problem for the practicing chiropractor.
Infertility: Managing Irregular Menses
Infertility is an area where Chinese medicine is particularly helpful. In the main, in women below the age of 38 without organic disturbance, the success rate using TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) should exceed 85%.
Physical Examination in an Evidence-Based World
I have always had a fascination with physical examination procedures, particularly orthopedic tests. The origin of my fascination began just after graduation when I began the chiropractic orthopedics program.
Dealing with a Pain in the Butt
The patient came into my office with the classic antalgic stoop. She was bent over almost to ninety degrees, leaning on her husband for support and staggering to walk. She had been under supportive care for a long time, but this new pain scared her.
The Lung Official
The Lung is known as the "Official Who Receives the Pure Chi From the Heavens." The act of breathing in, known as inspiration, brings oxygen into the body from the atmosphere. Each exhalation or expiration removes and releases carbon dioxide, a waste product of the body, into the atmosphere.
We Get Letters & Email
Our Medicare Challenges Aren't an Education Issue; Passion to Succeed: More Pivotal Than GPA?
Letter to the Editor
On December 7, 1999, the U.S. FDA reclassified the status of acupuncture needles from class III (investigative devices subject to investigative device exemptions...) to class II (special controls).
CE Regulations Are Hurting Chiropractic
During my 35 years in the chiropractic profession, I have been forced to attend available continuing-education programs that were occasionally incredibly beneficial, but frequently not worth my time.
The Drug Epidemic: Are You Guilty, Too?
Attention-deficit / hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has become epidemic among children in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the percentage of school-aged children diagnosed with ADHD has grown from 7.8 percent in 2003 to 11.0 percent in 2011.
Sacroiliac Joint Fusion: Where's the Wisdom?
We should be very skeptical of the purportedly less invasive version of the already defrocked sacroiliac fusion surgery, "minimally invasive" sacroiliac joint fusion; and concerned this procedure simply represents the device manufacturer's attempt to find yet another new market.
Acupuncture Earns BLS Unique Code
The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics recently announced that acupuncturists will have their own unique occupational code in the 2018 BLS Handbook. The new Standard Occupational Code (SOC) is 29-1291, will be included in the next edition of the BLS Occupational Handbook, which will be published in 2018.
Putting POLITE Into Practice
First came the acronym RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation), which eventually became PRICE (Protect, Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation). Then in 2015, we started hearing POLICE (Protect, Optimal Loading, Ice, Compression, Elevation).
Why We Need to Fix the Mechanoreceptors (Part 2)
The muscle spindle, a particular type of mechanoreceptor, is located deep within the muscle belly, encapsulated in fascia made up of intrafusal fibers, all within the extrafusal muscle fibers.
Concerns Regarding CDC Guidelines for Pain Management
In response to the epidemic rates of opioid and heroin addiction, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) set new guidelines for physicians regarding treatment for pain.
University of Bridgeport Acupuncture Students Make Rounds at Sisters of Notre Dame
Nuns are not stereotypical acupuncture patients, Dr. Jennifer Brett acknowledges with a laugh. But then again, acupuncture has gone mainstream, just like cappuccinos and recycling. "It's changed a lot from the '70s and '80s," said Brett.
Comparing Costs of Care: DCs, MDs or PTs - Who Costs More?
In a health care era where evidence is increasingly the benchmark for insurance coverage, patient care and even cultural authority, we get plenty of it courtesy of a retrospective cost analysis spanning 10 years, more than 660,000 "covered lives" and nearly 7.5 million claims from Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina.
HVLA Technique: Addressing Myths
In the annals of chiropractic history and literature, and in the imagination of the public, there is one manual adjusting technique that can produce a wide range of responses, both from patients and casual observers.
News in Brief
F4CP MEmbership Milestone Reached; ICA Challenging New California Vaccine Law; TCC Names New President; New Provost at UWS.
Case Study: 2-Year-Old Suffering From Urinary Reflux
A19-month-old female child presented to my office for treatment. Her mother reported the child had been diagnosed with urinary reflux and associated urinary tract infections, recurrent bouts of otitis media and inability to sleep.
Patience vs. Patients
How long have you been in practice? I began my journey more than 20 years ago and opened my first acupuncture clinic in 2008. Just like you, I've learned a lot over the years. Recently, I sat in an interview and was asked what made me successful.
The Most Important Vitamin You've Never Heard Of: K2
Imagine if one in every three patients who walked through your door was afflicted with a debilitating, yet completely preventable and treatable disease.
Forward Head Carriage and the Feet: What's the Connection? (Pt. 2)
Clinical evaluation of standing posture using relatively low-tech tools has been confirmed as valid and reliable by several studies. The original device used to evaluate posture was the plumb line, which served as a reference line for the effects of gravity on body alignment.
May, 2006, Vol. 06, Issue 05
By Cliff Korn, BS, LMT, NCTMB
I constantly am amazed at the variety of topics massage therapists discuss with me. This past month has been quite interesting, and I'm going to share some of the issues brought to my attention.I must stress, however, that I am not a definitive source of information on any of these issues. I have only opinions, not answers. If you want answers, you need to be contacting our "Dear Lynda" columnist, not the editor!
One prospective massage therapist from New York started his e-mail to me with, "This might be a dumb question but" I used to think there were no dumb questions, but I guess I might have judged too quickly, as the writer went on to ask my thoughts about breaking the law and working unlicensed. Apparently, "There isn't much opportunity for massage therapists that much anymore." Overlooking the fact, for a moment, that there has never been a better time to work as a massage therapist in the history of the whole wide world, does this writer think the editor of the largest touch therapy trade publication on the planet would advise that there are loopholes in the law that can be exploited so one can bilk the public by impersonating a massage therapist? My answers to this person would be to follow the laws in your jurisdiction, go to school, start your business and work hard to grow it, the same as you would if you were a carpenter, a Quiznos sub franchisee, a hot dog street vendor or a barber. The writer asked, "Could I maybe give massages (which I think in general I am good at) and accept only tips, plus have everyone sign a medical type release form in case someone tries to claim that I caused them harm or something like that?" No, you can't!
Another reader from California wrote, "I am contacting you to inquire into any new laws around licensing. I heard in November of 2005 that a new law was being implemented in January 2006. In this new law, statewide licensing would be made null and void by national licensing. Furthermore, well-seasoned MTs would be 'grandfathered in' by this law." She continued with, "I need to know EXACTLY what the truth is and any surrounding information to support me and my staff." I'm not sure where this information came from in November of 2005, but whoever was doing the talking was either uninformed or misunderstood. There are almost no national employment credentials, at least that I am aware of. Physicians, attorneys, bus drivers and licensed investigators are all credentialed by the state. As far as I know, only James Bond as 007 was licensed by a national entity. We at Massage Today try to diligently cover any and all state licensing news. Be sure to use the "search" function on www.massagetoday.com to see what has already been written on this topic.
Perhaps the most engaging communication I had this past month was from a New Hampshire massage therapist who wanted to recertify with the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork. She told me that after completing the recertification application, she called the NCBTMB to verify certain information so that she wouldn't have to resend the application. After several such attempts without getting a return call, she finally sent the completed application to the assigned NCBTMB lockbox. When she didn't hear anything in what she felt was a reasonable amount of time, she called again, and again, and again. She kept getting told her application had not been received and that she needed to speak with a particular individual to resolve the issue. That individual was never in the office and never returned her calls.
This massage therapist was on the verge of tears as she relayed to me her at tempts to recertify. The only advice I was able to suggest was to put her situation in writing and send it directly to John Page, NCBTMB's executive director. She had already gone through more effort to recertify than I would ever have done myself. As a former chair of NCBTMB, it pains me to admit that, but it's very true. I happened to be in the company of another former NCBTMB chair when this story was unfolding, and when I asked him his thoughts on it, he relayed to me that NCBTMB had never even sent him recertifying applications and that his certification had lapsed before he was even aware of it. If a private organization designed to serve the public and the profession cannot efficiently recertify those who support it, the decay has reached overwhelming proportion.
Another reader chose to remain anonymous, so I have no clue where she is from. Normally, I just delete communications that aren't signed, but I read this one and had a chuckle or two at the well-meaning, albeit opinionated writer. (Opinions are my job, after all!) She wrote, "I have a question. I am strongly aware of a massage therapist who is operating a disreputable practice. To my surprise, I am shocked at how many people are okay with it. They think it is funny, especially guys. Or they think it is just rumors. I know they are not rumors. I know for sure. I know facts but I cannot prove them to anyone. This leaves people to check it out for themselves. Who do I tell? This is what I know. She has told me things herself."
She went on to itemize a laundry list of alleged violations and her reasons for why she thought them an affront to her and her business. They were all important to her, but I shall not repeat them here, as it serves no purpose. She continued, "See, I find this all completely unethical and so wrong. No one seems to care or listen or want to get involved. How does such a situation get fixed when people seem to not want to get involved? If I talk to men, they kind of laugh and make comments about happy endings, etc. I personally don't want my name mentioned to her if she gets reported, either, so I understand why others don't want to get involved; I don't want to either. But this has to stop."
My response to this person is that the only place to send complaint information is to your state licensing board. It is the only entity that can send a cease and desist letter and actually stop unethical practice. If you are unfortunate enough to be practicing in an unregulated state, your only recourse is with the local police department if there are local laws being broken. Do not try to send a complaint without identifying yourself, though. If you aren't signing the complaint, it isn't really a complaint; it's gossip.
So, how would you have responded to these questions?
Thanks for listening.
Massage Today encourages letters to the editor to discuss matters related to the publication's content. Letters may be published in a future issue or online. Please send all correspondence by e-mail to , or by regular mail to:
Former editor of Massage Today, Cliff is owner of Windham Health Center Neuromuscular Therapy LLC. He is nationally certified in therapeutic massage & bodywork and is licensed as a massage therapist by the states of New Hampshire and Florida. Cliff is a member of the International Association of Healthcare Practitioners; a professional member and past president of the New Hampshire chapter of the American Massage Therapy Association; a certified member of the Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals, Inc.; and a past chairman of the board of directors of the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork.
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