An initial consultation is required before any type of treatment is provided. During this first visit, we will work together to determine the underlying cause of the concern which brought you in for care. I will complete a comprehensive and detailed evaluation including past medical and family history, vital signs, general body systems and lifestyle habits.
Next, a diagnosis will be made, and we will discuss and decide if you would be best served as a functional medicine client or an acupuncture and integrative medicine client, or both. Acupuncture and integrative medicine visits are scheduled separately from functional medicine visits. You can be a functional medicine patient who occasionally is seen for acupuncture and integrative medicine, or vice versa. Please visit Services and read on to learn more about what each approach has to offer.
We will discuss your individualized plan of care — including frequency, duration, strategies, and goals.
Functional medicine visits are often provided every 4-8 weeks at the beginning of your care, and then may occur quarterly, on a semi-annual basis, or an annual basis based on your individual needs. Visits can be completed virtually and in-person.
Acupuncture and integrative medicine wellness care visits (routine preventive care for health maintenance) are often provided on a 6-8 week, quarterly, semi-annual basis, or annual basis. Length and course of treatment to address an existing health concern will vary depending on your diagnosis and how long you have had your concern, but is typically provided once weekly for a range of 4-8 weeks. Frequency and duration intensity is decreased in accordance with progress toward your stated goals.
After your initial consultation, we may move from the consultation room to an exam or treatment room where we’ll complete your first treatment session if it is indicated. The initial consultation will last approximately 1-1.5 hours, and follow up visits last approximately 30-45 minutes. Your treatment will typically include education in self care and health maintenance, and may include any combination of the following strategies or modalities:
Functional Medicine Visit
- Systems biology-based modern approach, which considers how all body systems work as a whole
- Evidence based demonstrated improvement in health related quality of life reported by patients
- Highly patient-specific and investigative medicine
- Considers biochemical markers, genetics, environmental, social, and lifestyle factors
- Identifies and addresses root cause of illness
- Addresses underlying functional imbalances, not just symptoms
- Often utilized to address chronic health concerns
- Often utilized by well patients for prevention and healthy longevity
- Functional medicine visits may include:
- Specialized functional diagnostic laboratory testing
- Prescription of nutraceuticals, herbal medicine customized formulation, supplements, topical medicinals
- Stress management education
- Lifestyle counseling
- Dietary and nutritional counseling
- Sleep hygiene education
- Instruction in breathing techniques
- Instruction in meditation and relaxation techniques
Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine Visit
- Laser Acupuncture (also known as low level laser therapy, LLLT, cold laser, or photobiomodulation; this is a non-needle and non-insertive painless and highly effective modern acupuncture method)
- Non-needle (non-insertive treatment of acupoints utilizing laser, electrical stimulation, pressure, or tapping)
- Insertive-needle (insertion of sterile, fine, surgical stainless steel filiform acupuncture needles; this is traditional acupuncture)
- Orthopedic trigger point acupuncture (acupuncturist expertise for release of trigger points; gentle, comfortable, and effective)
- Neuro-acupuncture (modern acupuncture technique with traditional Chinese needling, also known as scalp acupuncture and is informed by the conventional medicine concept of neurological function in treating neurological disorders).
- Acupuncture and integrative medicine adjunctive techniques, both modern and traditional, including:
- Chinese medical massage (tui na) and conventional massage, instruction in yoga and tai chi exercise or conventional therapeutic exercise and stretching for injury rehabilitation, wellness, and maintenance care; application of heat, ice, electrical stimulation, pulsed electromagnetic frequency therapy, and low level laser therapy (cold laser therapy)
You may choose to receive non-needle acupuncture or traditional needle acupuncture. Treatment with traditional needle acupuncture should be comfortable, and many patients find it to be relaxing.
Fine, surgical stainless steel sterile needles will be carefully inserted into the chosen acupuncture points during your treatment. The needles used are not reused on different parts of the body, are disposable, and the skin is swabbed with alcohol prior to insertion. The needles are very thin and have a rounded tip that is designed to comfortably and gently part the skin, unlike the sharp cutting end of hypodermic needles.
Acupuncture needles are far less likely to cause tissue damage, infection, pain, or bruising upon insertion than hypodermic needles. They differ from hypodermic needles in that they are solid and are ultra thin, similar in diameter to microfilaments or fiber optics.
Many patients experience positive results after their first session, but each individual patient responds in their own way. And of course, as with all therapies, results cannot be guaranteed. As a general guideline, we will know if acupuncture is going to help you within the first several treatments.
A common misconception is that you must “believe” in acupuncture in order for it to work. As with Western medicine, acupuncture will work equally with those who believe and those who do not. It is interesting to note that acupuncture is widely and effectively used in veterinary medicine, and animals are not able to judge or assess the efficacy of treatment.
Your care plan is always individualized to your specific needs, and a combination of modalities and strategies are utilized throughout the course of your care. We look forward to working with you and helping you achieve healthy longevity!