resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
AOMA Strengthens Leadership Team
AOMA Graduate School of Integrative Medicine, a leading college of acupuncture & herbal medicine, announced the appointment of Donna LaPoint Hurta, MBA as the new VP of Finance & Operations this Fall.
Understanding and Identifying Pediatric Growth-Plate Fractures
In general, fractures in children heal well with little intervention as long as the alignment is good. Fractures involving the growth plate, however, are a different issue. In fact, growth-plate injuries are the primary reason for the subspecialty of pediatric orthopedics.
Jingei Diagnosis: An Effective and Powerful Diagnostic
I graduated from the Kotatama Institute under the direction of Drs. Masahilo and Katsuharu Nakazono in 1984. As a student, I was exposed to the practice of most of the various theories and modalites of Oriental Medicine.
Help Patients Achieve Optimal Vitamin D Levels
Much research has been done on vitamin D levels and their impact on health; optimal levels have been correlated with a reduced risk of developing numerous conditions.
5 Ways to Occupy Occupational Health
Despite the progress that has been made to better protect workers, occupational health and safety remains a priority area for many national governmental organizations due to the widespread problem of occupationally related morbidity and mortality.
To The Finish Line With the Help of TCM
When acupuncturist Eddy De Smedt pursued a career in Traditional Chinese Medicine, he knew he wanted to make a difference.
Healing With TCM at San Quentin State Prison
For the prisoners at San Quentin State Prison, life-sentences are the reality of every day life. It is not often that prisoners get the opportunity to use alternative medicine to deal with common ailments they encounter behind bars such as, depression, anxiety and pain.
The Tao of Gender
If you think gender is as simple as having a new client check off the "male" or "female" box on your intake form, we hope this article will expand your understanding and thus the reach of your health care.
The Heart Protector
On the physical level, the Pericardium is a double-layered sac of fibrous tissue that envelops the Heart. The space between the layers is filled with serous fluid that protects the Heart from external shock or trauma and lubricates to allow for normal Heart movement.
Pulse Diagnosis: What We Know
I am still finding pearls of wisdom from the books and papers that I inherited from my pulse diagnosis mentor Jim Ramholz.
Web Marketing: Content Is King
Google's sweeping updates to its search algorithms over the past few years have brought a paradigm shift in how you can optimize your chiropractic website to gain maximum marketing leverage.
Managing Today's Fertility Patient
I recently received an email from one of my fertility patients: "Got my lab results back. FSH is 11, AMH is 0.7. My doctor said these numbers aren't good. I guess I'm infertile. Just as a thought. Just set up an appointment to speak with an adoption agency."
Talking to Patients About Healthy Aging
I've noticed that a particular category of patients seems to make up more and more of my practice – they work out, but still experience lots of degenerative joint disease (DJD) issues.
Blaming the Gluteus Medius, Overlooking the Deltoid
The gluteus medius (Gmed) is commonly written about, strengthened and blamed for many conditions, and rightfully so. After all, the Gmed plays a role in pelvic stability, hip motor control and lower-quarter dynamic movements.
Lime Jello on Morphine
Taste is in the eyes... actually the mouth... of the beholder. My food preferences have changed, lightening from the food of my youth. My parents loved heavy eastern European cuisine and I loved it as a child. Now I enjoy leaner, healthier whole foods.
Saying No to Medicine
An interesting article recently appeared in Men's Journal titled "When to Say No to Your Doctor." The article begins with the summary statement above and effectively arms readers with information that will help them "take more responsibility for your own health care, because you can't be sure anyone else is.
The X Factor in Clinical Research: The Patient
It was the great baseball legend, former New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra – he of countless aphorisms, each with a mind-bending twist – who once declared, "You can observe a lot by watching."
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
The Wonders of Light Therapy: An Interview with Wes Burwell
I first met Wes Burwell in 2011 when he was teaching a class on light. Since then, every time I hear him speak, his understanding of the benefits, function and capacity of light has evolved.
Simple Ways To Find True Happiness
Patients in our clinics are always seeking happiness. As their health advocate, we need to ensure we inform them that in order to find happiness, they have to make sure to identify what makes them happy in the first place.
Managing Patient Expectations About Acupuncture
Last year, I attended the Pacific Symposium in San Diego for the first time in six or seven years. It was the 25th anniversary of this event, and on one evening there was a panel discussion with the title; "What is Qi?."
June, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 06
Heating Up Your Practice Safely: Feedback From Readers
By Dixie Wall, Contributing Editor
After receiving many compelling comments to the two-part series, "Heating Up Your Practice Safely," I was inspired to publish some of the common questions and insightful comments I received. As always, I appreciate your questions and comments and am always open to being educated by my readers.
"Thank you for the much-needed article on safety while using heat during massage therapy. I would just add multiple sclerosis to your list of conditions in which to avoid heat. Though it is considered to be an auto-immune condition, some may not know that and cause great harm. Thank you so much."
Thank you for your response to my article. Multiple sclerosis is an important addition to the list of diseases contraindicated for heat therapies. Multiple sclerosis is a chronic, often disabling auto-immune disease that attacks the central nervous system, which is made up of the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves. More specifically, the body's own defense system attacks the myelin sheath (the fatty substance that surrounds and protects the nerve fibers in the central nervous system) leading nerve fibers vulnerable to damage. The injured myelin forms scar tissue (sclerosis), which gives the disease its name. When any part of the myelin sheath or nerve fiber is interrupted by scar tissue, nerve impulses traveling to and from the brain and spinal cord are distorted or incomplete, producing the variety of symptoms that raise a red flag for heat therapies. Among these are numbness, tingling, weakness, spasticity and unsteadiness of a limb. Fever, hot baths, sun exposure, and stress have all been associated with triggering or exacerbating an attack. Thanks for your contribution.
"I enjoyed your article in this month's Massage Today on hot stone therapy. I practice in Florida and as of March of this year my liability carrier (International Massage Association) announced that due to the increase in claims due to burns, they will no longer cover hot stone therapy. I have talked to other massage therapist with different carriers and they have had the same response. I've also noticed in various spa advertisements that they have dropped hot stone therapy from their ads as well, and one has changed from hot stone to warm stone.
"I have wanted to take a course for some time now but am shying away from doing so because of the change in policy. My question to you is, if the client signs a consent form and ends up with a burn and the therapist is not covered, what the legal ramifications would be. Of course this would have to happen now! Thanks for your input and I look forward to your forthcoming articles."
It appears as though your current massage malpractice insurance policy no longer meets your individual needs. I don't give legal advice, but I do know it's never wise to gamble with one's livelihood by carrying a policy that does not cover all the modalities you practice. It may be time to switch insurance carriers.
"I think you have pointed out a lot of great things in your article about hot stones. I would have liked to have seen something about the hygiene, i.e., how to care for the stones, cleaning and sanitation, since the stones are kept in the perfect environment for bacteria to flourish."
Thank you for your response. You bring up a crucial issue. Due to the increase in bacterial and virus outbreaks over the last decade, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) has put a major emphasis on hand washing and routine sanitary procedures, especially in health care settings. Hospital and clinical settings are a major cause of the spread of many of these "super bugs." Unlike the common cold or a flu virus, these new super bugs spread by direct skin-to-skin contact or with contaminated objects. Carelessness or lack of proper sanitation procedures may make the massage therapist a perfect route for transmission of infection.
According to the South Carolina MRSA Infection Protection Act: "Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a common staph infection which is resistant to many antibiotics and which is increasingly prevalent in health care settings. A study published in the 2007 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, found that MRSA infections occur in approximately 94,000 persons each year and are associated with approximately 19,000 deaths; approximately eighty-six percent are health care associated."
In our practices, we have an obligation to ensure each client is protected from these "super bugs" with the safest routine clinical procedures. Different practitioners have their own unique way of sanitizing and/or cleaning their stones and massage tools. Some boil their stones in salt water or wipe with alcohol, others scrub the tool with soap and hot water. I've even heard of therapists using the dishwasher to sanitize the stones. With all the different methods of sanitation what is the safest standard procedure?
One of my teachers, Jenny Ray at Sacred Stone Therapy, has provided me with the latest information on sanitary procedures from the Geothermal Therapy Association (GTA). According to Ray, "The CDC has recently approved GTA recommendations as sufficient for protecting the client from H1N1, HIV AIDS, MRSA and other staph infections. The recommendations are as follows:
Stones should be washed as soon as possible after treatment, as the longer the oils and bacteria stay on, the harder they may be to remove. The critical issue is that the antiseptic routine must be done between each individual client. For more information, refer to the GTA Web site at www.stonewalkersassociation.com which will soon be moving to www.geothermaltherapy.com.
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