resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Essentials of Assessment: The Squat
The squat is a simple, fast and functional tool to evaluate patient symmetry and function. As simple and easy as it is to implement, it can yield considerable amounts of valuable, clinically relevant information.
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
The Power of Eccentric Exercise: Hamstring Injury Prevention and Rehab
For almost 20 years, I've worked with professional athletes who make a living by running really fast. It goes without saying that hamstring injury (HSI) prevention and rehabilitation is a big part of what they expect from a sports chiropractor.
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
Recording and Appropriate Billing of Timed Physical Medicine Services
There is a common misunderstanding about timed therapy services and although you do have some knowledge of timed service documentation, based on your comment on the 8-minute rule, your understanding is correct, but incomplete.
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
How to Find and Fix TL Nerve Impingements
The thoracolumbar junction (TLJ) and the peripheral sensory nerves that exit from it are frequent, important and rarely recognized sources of lower back, pelvic and hip pain. Let's outline a clear exam protocol for diagnosing the problem.
Musculoskeletal Disorders Take Center Stage
Looking for the latest on the musculoskeletal pain epidemic and the increasing premium placed on preventive strategies including chiropractic? Check out The Impact of Musculoskeletal Disorders on Americans – Opportunities for Action.
The IME System: A Current Public Health Risk and Solutions That Are Working
I strongly believe in the independent medical examination (IME) system. There are far too many doctors in every profession who are not following E&M protocols and never claim MMI (maximum medical improvement) has occurred for their patients, which has caused financial stress for many private and public carriers.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee OA? The Proper Perspective
The March 8, 2016 issue of JAMA includes a study about vitamin D supplementation for osteoarthritis of the knee. This is a really weird study.
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
Business Lesson #1: Adapt or Else
My wife and I recently enjoyed an excellent meal at a restaurant recommended by some friends. We often have concerns about restaurant recommendations, as many have been disappointing.
January, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 01
Massage and the Medical Community: MD Provides Answers
By Sharon Puszko, PhD, LMT
A lot has changed in the field of massage therapy since I entered it 30 years ago. We now have specialty areas to focus in, continuing education to pursue, conferences and workshops to attend and many wonderful products to support and sell.Most importantly, massage therapy is now viewed by the majority of healthcare practitioners as a viable method of treating and managing health issues. Massage therapists are now on staff at hospitals, doctors' offices and assisted living facilities. And I do believe in my lifetime, we will see health insurance start to cover massage therapy for certain health issues.
In fact, one of my most loyal clients, Sara McCracken, happens to be a doctor. She retired from her position as the Director of the Breast Center at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis after having a double mastectomy due to breast cancer. After experiencing the benefits of massage, she encouraged her mother (who was also a doctor) to start getting massages for herself as well. I decided to interview her, for a medical practitioner's view of massage in today's world. Below is part of our conversation.
Dr. M: Weekly, since 1996.
SP: Has your opinion on the benefits of massage changed over the years?
Dr. M: Yes, I used to see it as a mechanism for just pleasure and relaxation. However, after I had breast cancer and a year of chemotherapies, surgeries and radiation, I was too exhausted to do any exercise. I started getting massages soon after that on a regular weekly basis. It improved my circulation and really increased my energy levels which were abysmally low. I developed significant arthritis and joint pain from some of the drugs I was still taking to keep the cancer at bay. Massage helped me remain more flexible. After a few years, the radiation caused significant tightening of the musculature in my chest on the left side, as well as the left side of my neck. This caused significant imbalance of the intercostals and paraspinal muscles. I did have physical therapy for many months as well as therapeutic massage each week and the massage helped to slow down the contracture of the muscles.
SP: For what conditions/problems do you recommend massage to your patients?
Dr. M: I recommend it especially for people who have had radiation and many patients on cancer medications, both for stress relief and physical pain. I also suggest massage for people with arthritis and other joint problems.
SP: In your experience, what has been the most "misunderstood" concept about massage in the medical community?
Dr. M: That it has no medical benefit – that it is more like a pedicure or facial because so many therapists happen to be housed in beauty salons or spas.
SP: Do you have any thoughts on whether or not massage should or should not be covered by health insurance?
Dr. M: YES! I hope it is covered for therapeutic massage, such as geriatric massage, sports injuries and for conditions like arthritis and numerous other chronic health conditions.
SP: Anything else you would like to say about massage and its benefits?
Dr. M: My mother Margaret, now deceased, was a retired doctor with significant arthritis and poor circulation. Massage therapy really helped her circulation and arthritis pain. Again, she would not have risked a "salon" massage targeting the younger, healthier population. But after seeing my success with it and finding a massage therapist with continuing education skills that had a private practice, she was willing to try it, and ended up fully supporting it. We both frequently had leg cramps. Massage therapy helps to release the lactic acid build up. Some of my medications also give me quad and hamstring muscle cramps that can hurt for many days unless I get my massage. It seems to be the only thing that helps manage that pain. I just cannot stress enough how much massage has helped me and my mother. I whole heartedly recommend it to people suffering from chronic pain.
I didn't realize I had been working with Dr. Sara for almost 20 years until we started this interview! That is one of the many perks of this career: clients that end up becoming respected colleagues, good acquaintances or personal friends. As I reflected upon this, I realized how fortunate I am to have entered this career field. I have spent the past 30 years helping people feel better on a daily basis and now I get to teach the next generation of therapists to do the same!
Sharon Puszko is the owner/director/educator for Day-Break Geriatric Massage Institute. She may be contacted at
or through her Web site: www.daybreak-massage.com.
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