Complementary therapies becoming mainstream?


Question from Liz: Typically, are complementary therapies prescribed by the physician or self-prescribed?
Answers - Lorenzo Cohen The majority of the U.S. population is engaging in complementary practices, whether they are mind/body, dietary supplements, or special diets, not under the guidance of a physician. However, the field of complementary medicine is growing dramatically year by year and there are more physicians who are getting continuing education in this area. In addition, the majority of the more prestigious medical schools in the country now offer education in complementary and integrative medicine, so the newer generation of physicians will graduate with much more knowledge in this area. It is important to always share the practices that you engage in with your physician, to help start an open dialogue.
Beth Baughman DuPree, M.D., F.A.C.S. We are clearly in a time of change, and the integration of complementary therapies is becoming more widely seen in standard medical practices. It is very important to be a partner with your health care provider so there are no secrets about what therapy, supplements, herbal remedies, or other therapies you are seeking or participating in. Many physicians are beginning to be much more open-minded about the role the complementary therapies play in the healing processes of patients and by physicians and patients partnering in this way. Take for example our new facility which will open in a few weeks, where our holistic spa is the same square-footage as our operating rooms. As a surgeon trained in Western medicine, I have learned to embrace the importance of healing modalities and have become a Reiki master practitioner myself in order to help my patients before, during, and after their surgical treatments. This is certainly not the norm, but more and more physicians are becoming open and inquiring about how they too can incorporate these aspects into their practices.

On Wednesday, March 21, 2007, our Ask-the-Expert Online Conference was called Complementary Medicine Techniques. Lorenzo Cohen, Ph.D. and moderator Beth Baughman DuPree, M.D., F.A.C.S. answered your questions about different types of complementary techniques and how they can help during and after breast cancer treatment.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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