What is Integrative Medicine

Photo caption: Sierra Integrative Medical Center, Reno, NV



Integrative Medicine engages the patient as a partner in healing while utilizing the most appropriate resources in conventional and alternative medicine healing methodologies. Integrative medicine developed in the 1990’s, largely as a result of many alternative therapies being introduced into medical practices. Deepak Chopra, Andrew Weil, and Prince Charles helped to popularize the term integrative medicine and its concepts.


The Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine was founded in 1999. In 2013, the Consortium numbered 56 members, including Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Duke University School of Medicine, Georgetown University School of Medicine, and the Mayo Clinic.


The Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine defines integrative medicine as “the practice of medicine that reaffirms the importance of the relationship between practitioner and patient, focuses on the whole person, is informed by evidence, and makes use of all appropriate therapeutic approaches, healthcare professionals and disciplines to achieve optimal health and healing”.


Further demonstrating the growing acceptance of integrative medicine, the American Board of Physician Specialties, announced in June 2013 that in 2014 it is slated to begin accrediting doctors in integrative medicine. This organization awards board certification to medical doctors in the U.S. and as such, provides a uniform benchmark for credibility and best practices within many medical disciplines.


Defining principles of integrative medicine

· Patient and practitioner are partners in the healing process.

· All factors that influence health, wellness and disease are taken into consideration.

· Care addresses the whole person—body, mind, and spirit in the context of community.

· Appropriate healing sciences to facilitate the body’s innate healing response are utilized.

· Effective interventions that are natural and less invasive are used whenever possible.

· Good medicine is based in good science. Therefore, integrative medicine is inquiry-driven and open to new care modalities.

· In addition to the concept of treatment, the broader concepts of health promotion and the prevention of illness are paramount.


Benefits of Integrative Medicine


The patient and doctor establish an active partnership in healing. Integrative medicine seeks to treat the whole person, addressing health, lifestyles and root causes. Only by examining the entire complex nature of contributing factors can root causes be identified and properly treated.


Integrative medicine is a transformative process, rather than a temporary fix for secondary health risks. Many Western medical treatment approaches treat symptoms, not root causes. One of the most immediate benefits from integrative medicine is the reduction in side effects from costly pharmaceuticals.


Practice partner Sean Devlin, HMD, DO at Sierra Integrative is constantly engaged in making patients healthier, happier and more fit for a fulfilled life. “Each day at Sierra Integrative we see patients getting a new handle on their own health, taking guided corrective steps and healing. We are documenting new treatment options that in the long term we hope will provide overall improved medical choices.”


Why Choose Integrative Medicine


Integrative medicine offers a holistic treatment approach that minimizes negative side effects and undesirable impacts. It is based on treating root causes and as such has a very high success rate. Patients are engaged in the process, not passive recipients. Many patients come to integrative medicine because conventional medicine has failed.


Dr. Bruce Fong, HMD, DO, Medical Director at Sierra Integrative Medical Center in Reno Nevada, notes, “The overwhelming reason patients come to Sierra Integrative is the lack of successful treatment using conventional methods.”


Emerging autoimmune diseases and disorders do not have known cures within conventional medicine. Integrative medicine offers practitioners the opportunity to use the best resources within conventional and alternative medicine. Integrative medicine is developing treatment plans, which provide relief and hope to Lyme disease, HIV, cancer and heavy metal toxicity. Integrative medicine plans are consistently less invasive than entirely allopathic medicine.


At the end of day, “Patients want to be considered whole human beings in the context of their world,” says Esther Sternberg, MD, a National Institutes of Health senior scientist and author of The Balance Within: The Science Connecting Health and Emotions.


Learn more about Sierra Integrative by visiting www.SierraIntegrative.com or call 775-828-5388.

About Sierra Integrative Medical Center

Sierra Integrative Medical Center (SIMC) optimizes health service by drawing from all schools of medicine. SIMC utilizes scientifically proven conventional treatments in combination with alternative therapies that are designed to strengthen the body so it can heal itself.

Services are designed to provide a holistic healing approach with a broad range of healing modalities, including but not limited to homeopathy, natural and biological medicines, behavioral medicine, nutritional therapies, orthomolecular integration and neurotherapy.

If you have a specific request, please contact SIMC to discuss your health treatment or protection plan.


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