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Mindbody

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Dcc001, Oct 5, 2011.

  1. audreymonroe

    audreymonroe
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    The most powerful cervix... in the world...

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    I just thought of another I-guess-you'd-call-it-holistic-approach story that happened with me, thanks to that same wacky dance teacher. When I was in middle school, I fell off something and landed really hard on my ass and totally messed something up in my tailbone. I never went to a doctor about it, but for the next handful of years I couldn't sit too long without it starting to really hurt again. Then, when I started working with that teacher, she taught me a whole new style of dance/warming up that was really focused on alignment and posturing. It was basically being a chiropractor on yourself. A few months later and, voila, no more aching in my bones and I haven't had a problem since.

    Yes,

    I healed myself

    THROUGH THE POWER OF DANCE.
     
  2. klky

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    Like most, I definitely believe that there's a link. My last year of graduate school was one of the most stressful times of my life and I must have gotten sick every other week. It wouldn't be anything major, but it felt like I went through my entire last semester with a headache, sore throat, stuffy nose, and body aches. For me, stress and especially lack of sleep really screw with me. With that being said, some people are just unlucky. I'm sure we can all point to friends or family that weren't particularly stressed or unhappy and still got cancer. I think my view can be summed up by: it's a factor, but not by any means the only factor.

    Alt. Focus
    My views on "alternative"/holistic medicine are mixed. I think that a lot of the holistic stuff often boils down to taking care of your body. Yoga, as a form of exercise, is good for you. The fact that it allows you to decompress and turn your mind off is an added benefit. Interestingly, most of the folks that I know who meditate are doctors, although that might just be my experience. As previous posters mentioned, the extent that the body reacts to the placebo effect is almost frightening and there's clearly a lot that we still don't know, so I don't think that something should be discounted just because it's not western medicine. That being said, it's really incredible what today's medicine has been able to accomplish. Entire diseases have been wiped out due to vaccines and certain injuries that would have been life threatening (or at least caused you to be ostracized from society) can now be fixed relatively easily.

    I just finished reading Mornings on Horseback by David McCullough about Teddy Roosevelt*. While it doesn't seem like this would be relevant, the book discusses how a huge part of TR's life was shaped by his asthma. Part of the book focuses on recent research into asthma and what could trigger an attack. I'm sure that I will explain this poorly, but I believe that the point was that, if there was something that a child was dreading (for TR it was going to church on Sundays), this could inadvertently cause the body to react (thus allowing him to skip church and get quality time with his father). The book wasn't saying that this is the only cause for an attack, merely that many attacks had psychological components. I'm probably overly simplifying this concept, but I found it really interesting to consider.

    *Side note: Mornings on Horseback was a great read for anyone who likes history or is interested in TR's early life.
     
  3. bewildered

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    Oh yeah, there's a link. The link of stress on your health is through hormones that your body produces when you're in that state. Hormones are huge, and I think that's why mental state is important to getting better. There's also a difference between acute and chronic stress. Chronic stress can be due to disease and a number of other things, but having a negative mental state can make your reality even worse.

    That's the over simplified version, but that's basically what I think.
     
  4. Dcc001

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    Some points of thought, plus things I want to clarify:

    The FDA

    In theory, an independent governing body that oversees drug and food safety is a noble, necessary cause. The reality of the FDA today, IMO, is that they are a bureaucratic mess bullied by the big lobby groups and big pharma to disallow some things and allow others. A drug being FDA approved is no more something to hold dear than a restaurant that posts its license.

    The Term 'Holistic'

    I think some people are under the impression that when I say holistic medicine I mean patchouli oil, crystals and chanting. I did not mean to be so vague.

    Yes, certain "natural" remedies are no more than snake oil, and you can't treat HIV with herbs and honey. When I say holistic, I mean an approach to medicine that encompasses everything: your mental state, your emotions, your life experiences, your physical state. THAT, I think, has merit. Buying scented oils to heal yourself, maybe not so much.

    How Stress Affects the Body

    I read a great quote in Tim Park's book Teach Us To Sit Still. At his wit's end to diagnose inexplicable lower abdomen dysfunction and pain, he sought an Ayurvedic doctor in India. He worried aloud to the doctor that the pain was psychosomatic, to which the doctor responded, "I do not like the term psychosomatic. It implies that the mind and body are separate." This struck a chord.

    To expand upon my earlier post, I don't simply mean that you have to be in a good frame of mind or happy to affect your mental state. I mean that your lifelong, learned responses to emotions and stress can cause physical manifestations within your body. (I can further expand on the word 'stress' in this context, if anyone wishes.) I think there are VOLUMES that modern science does not understand about us. Not the least of which is how the nervous system functions and interacts with the body and the brain. Chronically inhibiting the body's natural response to stress manifests somewhere, and I think there is a great deal of merit to the study of this.

    Modern Medicine's Current Approach

    There are many flaws in our current system which do not bear on this discussion. One flaw that does deserve mentioning, though, is the idea that the body can be physically examined and treated purely through physical means, just like you could examine the engine in my truck and fix it.

    Our knowledge of finely nuanced things such as emotions, brain chemistry and the central nervous system and how they interact with one another and the body has not progressed at the same speed as our knowledge of the body itself. Yes, it is satisfying to hold up a smoking gun blood test that shows a diagnosable ailment, but there are so many people out there with very real pain and symptoms that current diagnostic procedures cannot detect. Are those people crazy? Attention seekers? Drug addicts? Maybe some, but certainly not all. Our current system is based on the idea that the body acts alone and that anything not testable with physical means is not valid. I disagree with this approach.

    A Quote

    From Parks, a raging skeptic who treated his condition successfully with meditation, relaxation exercises and lifestyle/emotional changes:

    There is nothing mystical about this. If I think back to when I started, I see there was a desire for extraordinary experience, for waves of cosmic healing. One lived torn between a determination to be reasonable, pragmatic, scientific, true to one's culture and the desire to transcend reason, to escape from pragmatism and science. The two attitudes called to another, like old sparring partners. Always on edge.


    [​IMG]
     
  5. goodfornothing

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    I have always found that the best way to treat something is not by additive measures (more drugs, etc.) but rather by removing things from your life (stress), diet (sweets, carbs), etc. Obviously this does not apply to everything, you will need some medications for certain ailments, but I believe those ailments are harder to get if you have a proper lifestyle and diet.
     
  6. ghettoastronaut

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    Do you even know what effective and efficacious mean? There's an important but subtle difference. Efficacious means it works under ideal, study conditions, and effective is under real world, go to the pharmacy every month and take your pills every day conditions (nb if you think people would rather take a pill every day than go exercise, don't worry; they would rather do neither). To say that something is effective but has not been proven efficacious is to put the horse before the cart: you can not say that something "just works" without some evidence behind it. Because that is exactly what everyone's least favorite doctors do, is make shit up (where shit is your dose of atorvastatin, or why he chose perindopril over Ramipril despite the lack of any evidence for it). Or why you get antibiotics vs not getting antibiotics, r why you get pip tazo and vancomycin when all you need is ceftriaxone.
     
  7. scootah

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    I've had doctors prescribe Arnica for sports injuries. As in after going to the hospital with suspected broken arm, the ER doctor looked at the x-rays, told me it wasn't broken and sent me home with Arnica to bring the bruising and swelling down.

    My dad was assaulted a few years ago and ended up in hospital getting cosmetic surgery on his ear to repair the damage. The plastic surgeon sent him home with Arnica. I know a couple of people who've had voluntary cosmetic procedures and had the plastic surgeon recommend arnica for managing the post surgery bruising.

    I have a great deal of faith in science. Or rather in the logical integrity of the scientific method. If there's clear evidence that something works, then as far as I'm concerned it's medicine. FDA evaluation and certification is an expensive process, so for products that can't be patented, there's no reason for things like Arnica (a tree root extract) or other essential oils to be certified. But they're well evidenced to have therapeutic benefit in medical circumstances.

    There is clear evidence that your bodies ability to resist, or deal with illness or disease is impacted by your mental state. IE stress, depression, anxiety etc all demonstrably reduce your ability to cope with poor health and make symptoms more severe. It's well supported that your mental state could be a tipping point, or the straw that breaks the camels back and leads too severe illness where you might not have otherwise developed symptoms/severe conditions. But there's no strong evidence or even clear and rational argument for your state of mind causing an illness.
     
  8. Dyson004

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    The subtle difference is my entire point. For something to be effective, we might not understand the rationale or the mechanism for why it works, but there is evidence demonstrating that it works. When there is a tremendous amount of research still left to be done but people experience some measures of success with a treatment regimen, FDA approved or not, then I see no issue with using in conjunction with modern medicine.

    I present to you Dr. Seligman's The Effectiveness of Psychotherapy: The Consumer Reports Study. To summarize the study very quickly, Dr. Seligman uses the data collected from Consumer Reports to report on the effectiveness of various types of therapists and how the clients reportedly felt after the intervention. Most people benefited, and it didn't matter why type of theoretical orientation was used or what kind of therapist was employed (Psychologists vs. Psychaitrists vs. Social Workers) so long as they weren't marriage therapists or long term family doctors. Patients whose length of care or type of care that was limited by insurance choices fared worse than those that weren't.

    We don't understand how talk therapy exactly results in a change in neurochemistry. But we know it helps, provides relief to people in tremendous pain, and allows folks to continue on with their lives. The case that I am making is that while more research is necessary to isolate the mechanisms in various holistic approaches, if individuals experience some measure of success or recovery with a more holistic approach, than by all means, have at it. To think that holistic approaches have nothing to offer is extremely narrow-minded, but you're welcome to your opinion.
     
  9. TX.

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    When people talk about the mind-body connection, there's mostly talk about how stress has a physical manifestation. There isn't as much speculation about something physical affecting the mind. I say that because I've spent time with many people who had both mental and physical dysfunctions, and sometimes it's unclear which came first.

    The examples I think of are along the lines of chronic pain, fibromyalgia, and pelvic floor dysfunction. (Fibromyalgia is controversial, but these diagnoses are what come to mind because I've worked with these patients/clients. There are probably better examples.) In general, the people with chronic pain and fibromyalgia are passive-aggressive, manipulative and unpleasant, to put it nicely. Whenever I spent time with them I frequently thought, "You need counseling. Musculoskeletal pain is the least of your problems." The woman I worked with who had pelvic floor dysfunction was 33 years old, incontinent and unable to have an orgasm. She had difficulty focusing and frequently made inappropriate comments and gestures. I felt like I was working with someone who had frontal lobe damage.

    All of that is to say that I often wonder what came first for those people: the mental issues or the physical ones. I can easily understand how being incontinent for months or having inexplicable, on-going pain could make someone turn into a completely different person. But, you can just as easily argue that their mental issues and stress were the last straws setting off a genetic predisposition. That's why I think you have to treat these problems medically and holistically. I'm not sure if most people are self-aware enough to realize that the mental aspect needs to be addressed. It seems like these populations cling to their diagnoses and abuse them for personal gain. Some of them are seeing 5 different specialists, chiro, etc, but they become defensive if psychological counseling is brought up as part of the solution.
     
  10. scootah

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    I just think we need to come to terms with what holistic medicine is.

    I thoroughly agree that both physiology and psychology are often relevant in patient treatment plans, especially in patients with chronic conditions. And if we used holistic medicine to describe addressing both psychology and physiology in a unified approach, that would be wonderful. But we don't. We use 'holistic' as a catchall to describe stupidity, witch doctor bullshit, voodoo and the sale of crystals. People who are too stupid, too sick, or too let down by the failure of western medicine to address physiology and psychology in a fashion that adequately addresses their requirements, have bought into 'holistic' medicine en masse and fund a massive industry of crystals, tie dyed skirts, books on witch craft, and color therapy treatments. And as a result, asking anyone with a functional intellect to take holistic medicine seriously is just implausible.

    There are elements of holistic medicine that have very valid application to health care. And they're usually lumped under holistic medicine because there's no way for an equipment or chemical manufacturer to make a profit from them. Massage is obvious, acupuncture, and activities like yoga or stretching have clear and indisputable theraputic benefits. Charcoal, ginger, arnica, Psyllium husk, green tea, garlic, St John's Wort, and a few other products are supported by clear evidence as doing things that have clear benefit. Crystal therapy, colour therapy, distance energy healing (reiki) and tarot are unarguably bullshit and anyone who buys into them is stupid. There really needs to be a term for a doctor who deals with physical and mental health, and gives due consideration to treatment options that can't be patented, but doesn't include stupid hippy nonsense and snake oil in their recommendations. I wish that term was 'Medicine' and the name we used for people who did it was 'Licensed doctor'.

    There's really no reason on earth to section yoga, stretching and massage away from physical rehabilitation. Low impact, non prescription treatments like ginger and green tea are still fucking medicinal if they're used like a drug. They aren't part of holistic medicine. They're just part of physiological medicine. But I'm honestly at a loss why psychology and psychiatry aren't bigger parts of medical school, and why medical school isn't a bigger part of psychology and psychiatry. I think in general, psychology and psychiatry should be areas of specialization for doctors, and treatment of psych conditions should be as much an expected skill for every doctor as treatment of gynecological or orthopedic health issues. I recognize the practical reasons (to some extent) why that isn't the case. But in a perfect world, I don't understand why any doctor would consider themselves capable of treating anyone's health without enough skill in both physiology and psychology to be useful in the treatment of both.

    Psychological treatment is still disturbingly close to witchcraft and voodoo for a lot of things. IE there is clear and indisputable evidence of the efficacious and effective nature of electro convulsive therapy for many psychopathological conditions. Not even a good fucking theory on the mechanism of action, or why it fucking works. But still clear and indisputable evidence that it does. And for a lot of anti-depressants - there's equally clear evidence that they work, and equally little understanding of why they work. I'd be much more comfortable with the whole field if there was a bit more of the obsessive compulsive need to understand why things work before prescribing them to patients, that is usually seen in conventional physiological focused medicine.
     
  11. ghettoastronaut

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    I'm not sure what your point is. Just because something hasn't has it's mechanism of action elucidated doesn't mean it's holistic. We don't exactly know the mechanism of action of Tylenol, or hydrochlorothiazide, and plan b (high dose levonorgestrel) has a few different mechanisms, some theoretical and some known. None of these are holistic. Is aspirin holistic? It came from a tree bark initially. Actually, salicylic acid came from a tree bark, then some smart guy acetylated it so it was actually safer.

    From what I've seen in this thread, holistic is a word people define by who he treatment is prescribed by, or if the establishment has yet to Lay its hands on the effectiveness of a certain treatment, or they talk about how western medicine is ineffective for certain things when they don't quite know what they're talking about. By it's strict definition, it means to consider the person as a whole, or to consider every avenue of treatment for a given problem. Now go back and read the trial I posted. It's the hope trial, a seminal trial in cardiology that is the cornerstone of antihypertensive therapy. You have a blood pressure pill that is proven to reduce cardiovascular outcomes, reduce heart failure, reduce mortality, and reduce diabetes complications. Now, drink green tea all you like, it hasn't got a lick of evidence to support an overall reduction in mortality. I contend that ramipril is the more holistic method, as using it actually helps people live longer and with a better quality of life. Some "holistic" method from some quack might reduce blood pressure, and it might even be safe, but until you can prove positive outcomes, all you're doing is treating a number and using it as a surrogate marker for health.
     
  12. Dyson004

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    I've intentionally used the term holistic approach for the very reasons you specify. I'm not stating that an intervention is holistic because the mechanism is unknown, but I'm referring to interventions that address underlying issues that contribute to the primary problem. Only in my last post did I start to branch out to the more specific Complementary/Alternative Medicines(CAM). I don't think we're necessarily arguing different things, but we have different scopes. It's fairly obvious you have a pharmacological background. My background is primarily psychological but with a grounding in health psychology. When we speak about holistic treatments in psychology, we are traditionally talking about treating a person psychologically, physically, and socially (though recently some folks have included spiritually in that mix.) That being said, illnesses don't develop in a vacuum, and prescribing medicine without addressing the underlying issues is crude at best. You need to teach the patient/client coping behaviors, assist in cultivating or bolstering their social supports, and examine what cultural influences may be moderating the illness. Simply giving a person a pill doesn't do these things. Some doctors do address these issues, but some don't or they do so in an ineffectual, meaningless way (such as giving a patient/client a stack of literature with little explanation or not explaining it in a way that is digestible to the patient/client.) As I type this, I realize this might be my own personal bias, but my own experiences (personal and professional) are typified by doctors hurriedly rushing about. So it might be a question of socioeconomic status, quality of care, and access to care- as I come from a lower SES and primarily work with populations that have a lower SES. That being said, I still think the relationship between the practitioner and the patient/client is just as important as the intervention itself. What good is ramipril if the patient/client fails to adhere to the medication schedule? I have no issues with a patient/client electing to supplement their treatment regimen with a CAM that (hopefully further) engages the patient/client in their own recovery.
     
  13. TX.

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    I don't think you know much about physical rehab because those things aren't excluded. Unless they're contraindicated, stretching and massage are more often utilized in an intervention than not. Even the worst PT in the world is going to frequently include stretching and massage. I know several occupational and physical therapists who are certified yoga instructors, and that's just in a small part of the metroplex where I live. Others have additional non-PT knowledge and expertise that they regularly use with patients. It's pretty common. Will most insurance companies and Medicare reimburse a Yoga class? No, but they all regularly reimburse "therapeutic exercise". Ther-Ex is at the therapist's discretion. Almost anything can be utilized as ther-ex. A PT can have someone stand on his head and sing the ABC's if it's beneficial and bill for it as ther-ex. Or, someone can use Yoga alone for ther-ex. A competent PT draws from a variety of methods and techniques when treating someone.

    I can understand why the majority of insurance companies and Medicare draw a line when it comes to reimbursing massage, and Yoga and Pilates classes. There is a lot of evidence-based research supporting the thought that they can effectively treat a specific condition or used as preventative care. The issue is with the administer.
     
  14. Trakiel

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    Call me Caitlyn. Got any cake?

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    Well this is probably the dumbest thing I've read today. Care to explain why you think one of the most critical providers of healthcare are "worthless"?
     
  15. Revengeofthenerds

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    I'm a bit of a doctor snob. You know how some people are wine, beer, scotch, or cigar snobs? Like that. I have a general practitioner, whom I've known forever, that I see yearly to check the basics and will sign off on any test I request. But beyond that, I see a specialist for damn near everything. And usually I go through two or three or more specialists before I find one that fits. My lone requirement is that their approach to practice falls perfectly in line with my approach to my health, and I'm either the patient from hell or the ideal subject depending on which side of my fence they fall:

    I'm an advocate of any type of medicine that works. Herbs, surgery, acupuncture/pressure, prescription pharmaceuticals, therapy, whatever cures me the most effectively while creating the fewest side-effects. It's a constant cost/benefit analysis. My belief is that the only wrong way to view medicine is if you take a hard line stance one way or the other -- straight naturals or straight "modern" medicine, without even researching/trying/being open to the possibility that a solution may exist on the other end of the spectrum.

    Now in general, I tend to avoid putting chemicals in my body if at all possible, for a variety of reasons (some of which may be correct, others based on incorrect beliefs). All things being equal, and barring reasons for a financial bias, if there is a "natural" cure to an ailment for which their is also a "chemical" cure, I'm going to err on the side of the natural. That being said, if I have an illness or disease, I'm going to fucking take whatever fixes it.

    The other thing I'm big on is that I would much rather spend 10x as long trying to locate and solve the origin of a problem, rather than simply medicate the symptoms.

    A good example is when I threw out my back and I began having chronic back pain. One doctor put me on muscle relaxers, another put me in a brace. Both eased the pain, but the pain was just a symptom. My physical therapist used acupressure around the muscles that were strained, then released tension in my pelvis (we found one leg was longer than the other and thus my gait was causing issues), gave some exercises to correct my posture, and told me to take ibuprofen to ease the pain after the therapy sessions. Whatever works.
     
  16. RCGT

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    I think, considering how much of modern medicine comes out of extracting and perfecting chemicals from plants and the like, it would be stupid to completely discount herbal medicine. I also think, considering the vast amount of evidence for a connection between the mind and physical state, it's dumb to assume that it's one or the other. Ghettoastronaut seems to be saying that the refined form of one treatment is better, without considering that the unrefined (i.e. herbal) form of a different treatment, as yet not subjected to scientific study, might nevertheless prove as beneficial or more so.
     
  17. ghettoastronaut

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    What the hell? I'm saying that we should use things that have the best evidence to support their use. Among the multitude of problems with the world of complementary and alternative medicine, we have the following:

    -indications are literally pulled out of people's asses
    -there is little good evidence to show that the products actually work for what people claim; even less to prove that they are safe
    -the standardization and quality of the products is just horrible

    If Pfizer pulled even half of the shit with its products that the CAM world does, there would be front page headlines decrying their shoddy business practices, putting money before medicine, trying to make money off of gullible sick people, etc. Imagine Pfizer putting out a commercial tomorrow saying that lipitor (a cholesterol drug that's been proven to reduce the risk of having a second heart attack, something which niacin and apple cider vinegar are not) could be used to treat infertility, menstrual cramps, depression, low libido, arthritis, vitamin deficiency, infant colic, liver problems, and help maintain your energy levels. You'd think that they were fucking nuts, and even if you had those problems, you wouldn't bother trying lipitor to treat them because it would be fucking retarded. But go have a look at all the purported uses of St John's Wort or echinacea. Any one product can have hundreds of "uses". Am I supposed to suspend judgment until a randomized, double-blinded placebo-controlled trial is done? No. The ones making these claims should be the ones to come forward with evidence, and until they can, they should be ignored.

    Now, you can either use medicine that has been proven not only to be safe, and effective, and available in a reliable, high-quality dosage form, or you can use something that was probably cooked up in some guy's bathtub and hope, without any actual reason to do so, that it might turn out to be as good. The odds aren't in your favour.
     
  18. TX.

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    Not really. To my knowledge, my friends, family and I have gone through life without incidence with GP's.

    I disagree with the "role" most GP's have in healthcare. To me, they're the epitome of reactive, Western medicine that throws meds at patients. I believe that a general practitioner should be a trusted family doctor who is chosen because you agree with his or her approach and philosophy. I think they should be the practitioner of choice when it comes to the average person seeking general health advice, and they should be a reliable source of information who plays a long-term role in your health. I don't think most Americans think of their GP's that way. I don't consider my GP to be an educational resource. I make an appointment when I can't breath and feel like crap. I'm paying a co-pay for someone to come in, look up my nose and write a prescription. If I started talking about how my sickness may have been brought on by stress and asked about effective stress management strategies, he'd probably give me some general, vague tips he overheard from his nurses.

    The scope of most GP's practice has been narrowed down to writing scripts and referring out to specialists. I feel like we should expect more from a "trusted, family doctor". I think they should be advocates for preventative health and education. Most just don't have the tools right now; nutrition and exercise are minimally addressed, if at all, in med school. Plus, a larger, more preventative role with a holistic approach would require spending more than 5 minutes at a time with a patient. That's never going to happen.
     
  19. fuzzzy

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    I'll chime in, since I'm currently a medical student. There most certainly is a connection between mind and body. There is also a connection between a lot of parts of the body. For a bit of background, I'm a DO student. I went the DO route not because I couldn't get into an MD school (I rocked my MCAT and had solid grades), but because their approach lines up with my (and it seems a lot of board members') opinions. We are taught to treat the whole body, not to treat symptoms or body parts; to treat people, not just diseases. The body is a very complex machine, and rarely does one thing go wrong and not affect the rest of it. It is absolutely amazing to look in detail at how things like stress (or happiness) cause long term physical and chemical changes in the body.

    I'm gonna go ahead and spoiler the rest for length, for those that don't want to read a novel about my thoughts on the current state of medicine.

    Sadly, there is still a little bit of a stigma with osteopathic medicine because it has historically been a smaller sect and hasn't been lobbied and advertised as well as allopathic medicine. As a result, it is less competitive to get into osteopathic schools, and a lot of people who can't get into allopathic schools go into osteopathic schools instead, and the MD>DO perception gets reinforced.

    Working with practicing DOs who are affiliated with my school, they all are very into getting to the underlying causes of problems and fixing them through whatever means will get them there. Hypertension can certainly be treated with drugs, and we certainly use them. At the same time, however, our goal is to get people back to being healthy without constant intervention, so we push extra hard on exercise and proper diet and hope to get them off the meds.

    We also learn a lot of manipulative techniques, which are essentially a mix of smart massage, stretching, and chiropractic medicine, and that stuff is pretty amazing. Now, granted, we aren't going to use that kind of stuff for a heart attack, but it is fantastic for knee pain, hip pain, back/neck pain, etc. That stuff, while some people have been calling it "holistic", really is a part of western medicine. So are herbal supplements. I've seen plenty of DOs recommend herbal supplements, and a lot fewer MDs. This probably has a lot to do with the way the FDA and lobbying is set up (not to knock it, because a lot of what the FDA does is very important, but there are still problems). Just recently I sat through a lecture discussing some of the problems with "evidence based medicine". The lecturer made the point that there were no scientific studies, at least that he could find, proving the health benefits of using a parachute vs. not using one while sky diving. A lot of things that scientifically make a lot of sense can't be tested in accordance with the FDA's double blind standard because it just isn't possible (ex/ how do you do a double blind study on a manipulative technique to help back pain?)

    And as always, there is the issue that, just because you have a certain job, doesn't mean you are good at it. For as many good doctors that I've worked with, there have been close to as many bad ones(MD and DO alike), just like any other job. Use your brain when interacting with them, just like you would when taking your car to the mechanic. If your doc rules out a treatment that you think makes sense, grab a second or third opinion. Your doc might just make more money off of doing a certain procedure over another and be motivated by that, or has a bias, or a hundred other reasons.

    If you look at the statistics on the rates of increase in allopathic medicine versus osteopathic (osteopathic is growing like crazy, allopathic, though currently much larger, is not growing) it seems to line up with the increase in people's frustrations, many of which have already been voiced in this thread, with the way medicine is being approached. Hopefully this will force both sides of the field to take a look at what kinds of things they are doing right and wrong, and adjust accordingly so as to increase overall our ability to treat and care for patients.

    And TX. I agree with your frustrations with the role of GPs, and can say that, at least at my school, we have taken notice of those frustrations and spend a lot of time discussing them, and working on solutions to them. I'll end up being a GP for a while before specializing, and plan on remaining bright eyed and bushy tailed enough to be the right kind of "trusted, family doctor". Hopefully that trend starts picking up more.
     
  20. lust4life

    lust4life
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    Focus: Absolutely believe there is a direct connection. Great book on the subject with some techniques for mindful meditation is "Minding the Body, Mending the Mind."

    There is also empirical evidence showing the use of spirituality as a resource resulted in improved overall physical outcomes:

    Prayer, devotional reading, & church attendance were found to ameliorate the autonomic consequences of stress and its effects on health (Tanzy, 1991).

    Byrd (1988) conducted a double-blind study of 393 hospitalized cardiac patients that demonstrated that intercessory prayer was beneficial to recovery. The experimental group (those who were prayed for) had better outcomes requiring less ventilatory assistance, antibiotics, and diuretics than those in the control group (those not prayed for).

    Mind, body, and spirit.