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Practice Policy (Gone Bad): The Sign
Every once in a while, you see something and think to yourself, That's a really bad idea. Case in point: I went to see my medical doctor the other day. Just after being "roomed," as they say, the nurse checked my vital signs. Then she left.
The Zen Art of "One Point"
We were always told in our Zen Shiatsu training (by Japanese and Japanese American instructors) that our ultimate aim was to to find that "One Point." To be so focused we could touch just one point to transform Qi throughout a client's body.
Modernization of Chinese Medicine
Language – written, spoken, signed, or otherwise is learned as a means to express our individualized perceptions about the world around us. Language is designed to communicate our personal experiences.
Oriental Medicine on the World Stage
"Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." This simple, yet powerful statement was lived out time and time again by so many of the athletes from around the world during the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.
Help: A Need at Every Level
One of the great gifts of training in acupuncture is the ability to take good care of oneself. I recently had a bout of frozen shoulder — an inflammatory syndrome which can be debilitatingly painful and take years to resolve.
Harvard Health References Flawed AHA Position Paper
In its special health report, "Stroke: Diagnosing, Treating, and Recovering From a 'Brain Attack,'" Harvard Health Publications includes information from the American Heart Association's 2014 position statement on cervical manipulation and cervical dissection – a statement the American Chiropractic Association emphasized in a letter to Harvard Health mixes "scientific facts with half-truths."
Fertility and Poly-Unsaturated Fatty Acids
Starting or expanding one's family is a major milestone. It's something that more and more people seek out health care advice and support for.
Acupuncture Rising: From Acupuncture Anesthesia to Assisted-IVF, Part 1
Acupuncture's cultural and historical roots go back to the emergence of Chinese civilization. For more than 2,000 years, acupuncture needling has been continuously practiced on the largest population in the world.
Patient-Centered Care vs. Payer Restrictions: Your Ethical Obligation
Do you have an ethical obligation to evaluate your patients, make a diagnosis and provide evidence-based, patient-centered health care, irrelevant to the payer restrictions?
More Chiropractors Required
An intriguing study published in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine examines how "chiropractic care affects use of primary care physician (PCP) services."
News in Brief
Call for Abstracts Announced - Parker Las Vegas 2016; Logan Adds Doctorate Degree; New Role for Dr. James Edwards.
Practicing with Authenticity
To extrapolate from the above quote, patients love healthcare providers they can trust. One way to earn the trust of your patients is by practicing with authenticity. What does that mean, exactly?
Change Lives by Supporting Chiropractic Research: Are You In?
The Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR), in celebration of its 20th anniversary, has announced it is spearheading a fund-raising campaign to support chiropractic research.
The Short Leg Dilemma
When evaluating a new patient, it is common to note a relative shortening of one leg to the other. Some patients will even tell you they have one, and then pull out the store-bought heel lift they read about online.
Getting a YES: An Effective Strategy for Overcoming Patient Objections
Patients make more excuses for declining care from an acupuncturist than perhaps any other type of doctor. Various reasons hold them back from making a commitment to care.
Fish Oil: A Key Component of Positive Clinical Outcomes
Patients seem to be presenting with more complex problems, and many are responding to care more slowly or have completely unexpected results. Why?
Dorsiflexion Dysfunction: Evaluation & Manipulation Techniques
Almost every condition from the foot to the hip can be attributed to the inability to dorsiflex the ankle mortice and other joints that participate in dorsiflexion. Let's start by understanding normal versus abnormal dorsiflexion.
Healing Trauma: Cultivating Resilience and Presence Through Mindfulness, Part 2
In the last issue of Acupuncture Today, the first part of this article introduced the topic of trauma and resilience, and their relationship to the autonomic nervous system response and the concept of the spirit being grounded in the body, and suggested the importance of mindfulness as a tool for healing.
Improving Communication Between AOM and Biomedical Providers
How comfortable do you feel talking to Western medical providers? If you are like me, you may not feel as comfortable as you would like. Some of my interactions with MD's haven't been the fruitful steps toward integrative medicine for which I had hoped.
Nuts Reduce Risk of Heart Disease, Cancer and Other Health Problems
Several recent studies suggest regular consumption of nuts may provide a significant degree of protection against certain types of cancer, heart disease, possibly type 2 diabetes and some neurodegenerative diseases.
The New Age of Communication
In the age of technology, everyone, including the patient, is seeking faster, easier ways to communicate. With a wealth of social media, blogs, websites and videos, we are constantly barraged with information – to the point of overload.
The Food Conversation: Nutrition and Your Practice
It's morning and your first patient rolls in with a triple espresso steaming in one hand and a frazzled, desperate look in her eye. "You gotta help me, doc, I am constipated unless I drink one of these, and I am exhausted and anxious all the time."
An Acupuncturist's View of Medicinal Marijuana
The use of cannabis for medical purposes is very controversial. Use as a panacea by physicians uninitiated to the proper application of herbal medicine, as well as an excuse for recreational use have greatly confused the issue.
Surprising Reasons for Orthotic Efficacy
Clinical outcome studies show orthotics are effective in the management of a wide range of injuries, including plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendinitis and patellofemoral pain syndrome.
A Chiropractor's Guide to Yoga
"Doctor, can I continue to do yoga while undergoing your care?" "Is it OK for me to go back to yoga while I'm getting my back treated?" "It is safe to start my yoga classes again after my neck pain improves?"
Do Some Good and Grow Your Business with Cause Marketing
Cause marketing is truly one of the best ways that you can promote your services as a acupuncture professional. Cause marketing refers to a type of marketing where a business partners with a non-profit organization to help bring awareness to a charitable cause.
March, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 03
Introducing Yourself to Your Client's Health Care Team
By David Kent, LMT, NCTMB
When patients experience pain, they instinctively touch the area that hurts. Since opening my clinic in 1992, one statement I hear on occasion from patients is "feel this bump, it was never there before." Sometimes they are right, the bump is abnormal and they must consult their doctor immediately.Other times, the patient is pointing to a bony landmark. I want to share a few practice building tips for educating your patients about their "bumps," which can then provide ways for you to introduce yourself to their health care team.
The foundation of my practice continues to be medical doctors referring patients for the treatment of myofascial pain in the head, neck and back. The pain usually originated from injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident, while performing a home improvement or work related activity. So, in my clinic, patients most commonly report the following bony landmarks as "never there before:"
Pain affects every area of a patient's life: physically, emotionally, spiritually, financially, relationships at home and work, etc. Patients are scared and concerned about their pain. As health care providers, we must assume our patients do not know about bony landmarks or the structures that attach to them. This is a perfect opportunity to educate patients about form and function. To teach them about the roles bones and muscles play in providing structural support and movement.
I educate patients about bony landmarks using charts and models. I explain how and why bony landmarks form, why they might be tender after physical activity, stress or trauma and how we as health care providers use bony landmarks for postural analysis and other physical assessments. I also show the bony landmark on myself and on other people in the clinic. It is reassuring and comforting for the patient to understand the "bump" is normal and exists on everyone.
Some patients, when they are in pain, will see many different healthcare providers at one time. They will leave your clinic and drive directly to their chiropractor and or medical doctor. So, here is a simple and effective practice building tip. Write the name of the bony landmark with a note on the back of your business card and give it to the patient. For example "The External Occipital Protuberance is tender to palpation." You would be amazed how the patient will show your card to their doctors. This starts a conversation about your practice and the next thing you know, the doctor wants to meet you.
Patients are relying on you for guidance. It is important that you are familiar with normal human anatomy so you can identify abnormalities. Sometimes, the painful spot, is a "bump they have never felt before" and the patient is pushing into soft tissue, not a bony landmark and could cause potential harm. For example, if the spot is in the anterior neck region, running along the sternocliodmastiod muscle. The "bump" may not be the mastoid process, but a swollen lymph node or something more serious and the patient should be referred to a physician. The carotid sinus, body and vessels are in the same region and fatal circumstances could result from the patient randomly pushing deeply into the anterior neck.
Your knowledge of anatomy helps to protect your patients, improve assessment/treatment outcomes and build your practice by educating patients who then become raving fans. One unique way to learn about the skin, fascia, muscles, nerves, ligaments, vessels and other structures that compose the body is in an anatomy lab. Performing a human dissection is a unique opportunity to see, touch and learn about the body without any concern of causing harm. You can compare the same structure on multiple specimens of different gender, age, size, cause of death and occupation. You palpate diseased and normal organ tissue, examine surgical incisions to uncover pacemakers, artificial hips, or the rods, screws and connectors installed during a spinal fusion. You feel the elasticity, density, size and position of structures throughout the body like the spinal cord, heart, lungs, organs, etc. You leave the lab with a new level of confidence and knowledge that is integrated into your practice.
Be prepared when you here the words "feel this bump… it was never there before." If you laugh and make fun of the patient for pointing to a bony landmark, the odds of them scheduling follow-up treatments or referring others is very low. There is also the possibility you could identify an abnormality that ultimately saves their life. Apply your knowledge and turn the situation into a patient education and practice building opportunity.
Click here for more information about David Kent, LMT, NCTMB.
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