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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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
U.S. Olympians Have a DC in Their Corner
It's probably old news to you that doctors of chiropractic play an increasingly prominent role in treating athletes, from youth sports participants to weekend warriors, to elite / professional competitors.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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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