With the rising trend towards a greener and more natural lifestyle, the latest issue of the British Medical Journal is making its reader aware of the continuing debate related to alternative approaches to health and well-being. Some say that including complementary alternative medicine (CAM) in the medical school curriculum is necessary in order for a medical professional to provide a wide range of options for patients while others caution the idea of teaching students to recommend treatments without evidence of efficacy or safety. Those in favor argue that lifestyle choices such as performing yoga and meditation has been shown to improve overall health while those against it portray CAM as “seductive yet utterly devoid of scientific merit”. Based on your personal knowledge and experience, should medical students be taught complementary alternative medicine? Why or why not?
For the article, visit BMJ
Lifestyle modification has been the corner stone in both preventing and treating type 2 Diabetes. However a recent Dutch study, published in the Journal of Radiologyconcluded that exercise alone may benefit type 2 DM patients with no other additional modifications; such as diet. The study included 12 subjects that were willing to do moderate exercise for six months. Outcomes were measured using an MRI that assessed heart function and the amount of visceral fat before and after the exercise. Results revealed that there were no changes in heart function, despite the significant decrease in visceral fat around the heart, liver and abdomen. How do you encourage your patients to exercise regularly?
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A recent study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine aimed to assess suggested benefit of acupuncture in the treatment of sexual dysfunction linked to SSRI and SNRI – antidepressant use. The study was conducted in Toronto/Canada for 12 consecutive week of acupuncture protocol treatment. Participants have been assessed throughout a weekly questionnaire that looked for symptoms of depression, anxiety and sexual function. The study concluded that integrating medical, complementary and alternative medicine would benefit the patient for both aspects of disease and side effect secondary to the drug being used. How often do you recommend your patients to see an acupuncturist?
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