During an initial consultation, Dr. Grove spends time understanding the patient’s health concerns and goals. After a thorough medical history is collected, several different testing options and treatment approaches are discussed based on the patient’s symptoms and health goals. A treatment plan is prescribed during the first or second visit depending on the complexity of the case and number of labs order. Treatment plans typically consist of nutrition and lifestyle changes, acupuncture, IV therapy and/or hormones.
A three month follow-up appointment is usually scheduled to discuss effectiveness of current treatment strategies, retest and review labs and determine whether changes to the treatment approach need to be made. Treatment frequency for acupuncture and IV therapy are generally more frequent than consultations. See below for more information. For patients only wanted to do acupuncture or IV therapy, an initial consultation is not necessary.
IV Nutrient Therapy
IV nutrient therapy is the infusion of vitamins, minerals, amino acids and other nutrients into the same veins used to draw blood. Delivering nutrients directly into the blood stream allows higher concentrations of certain nutrients to be delivered to cells and tissues. The result is a stronger physiological effect. For example, the digestive system can only absorb so much vitamin C at a time, limiting its anti-viral effect. Glutathione, a strong anti-oxidant and detoxifier, is broken down by the digestive system, reducing its effectiveness. Intravenous administration of these nutrients bypasses the digestive system, increasing the benefits of these nutrients. Frequency of treatment varies but patients that respond well to IV therapy typically get one to four a month. With proper screening and administration, IV nutrient therapy is generally regarded as safe.
Laboratory and Nutrition Testing
After spending time understanding a patient’s health care concerns, Dr. Grove reviews with the patient a personalized battery of tests comprised of conventional and specialty labs. Labs evaluating the health of the red blood cells, immune system, blood sugar regulation, cardiovascular system, hormone systems (thyroid, male/female hormones, etc) and vitamin D are commonly ordered conventional tests. These labs are generally billed to insurance.
Specialty lab tests are used to assess whether nutrient deficiencies, toxicity, digestive dysregulation, genetic expression or a maladaptive stress response may be contributing to a patient’s symptoms. Individuals suffering from chronic fatigue, diarrhea, constipation, skin issues, anxiety, weight gain, insomnia or respiratory symptoms (post nasal drip, asthma, allergies, etc) are examples of individuals who may benefit from specialty testing. Examples of specialty labs include but are not limited to vitamin, mineral, fatty acid, heavy metal, food sensitivity and microbiome. Specialty tests vary on whether they can be billed to insurance.
Acupuncture involves the insertion of small needles into specific points in the body to regulate the nervous system. The needles send feedback to the brain and nervous system, which helps relieve pain, stress and digestive symptoms.
Acupuncture is best at relieving pain. There have been over 24,000 studies on using acupuncture for pain relief. In fact, acupuncture is the most highly researched method for pain relief.
The World Health Organization has identified several acute and chronic medical conditions which may benefit from acupuncture including:
- Pain syndromes: Headaches, migraines, low back pain, sciatica, neck pain, frozen shoulder, tennis elbow, tendonitis, tooth pain, TMJ, and arthritis.
- Conditions related to stress: muscle tension, insomnia, and digestive issues.
- Digestive disorders: Gastritis, IBS, constipation, diarrhea.
The body has an amazing ability to heal itself. The body’s self-healing ability is part of a larger bodily process of internal balance called homeostasis. Acupuncture works by stimulating the bodily pathways involved in maintaining homeostasis. Stimulating the innate healing pathways in the body allows acupuncture to have a more comprehensive healing effect on the body compaired to pharmaceuticals, which target specific conditions or diseases.
Specifically, acupuncture has the following effects on the body:
- releases the body’s natural painkillers, such as endorphins, generating pain relief.
- improves blood flow to an inflammed, painful area, restoring a healthy supply of nutrients to a damaged area, facilitating healing.
- relaxing tight muscles, which can contribute to pain.
- decreases swollen nerves, allowing the nervous system to recover.
Treatment sessions usually last 30-60 minutes. 10-20 needles are usually used per session. The number of sessions necessary varies on severity and duration of the condition. Acute, less severe issues may only take one session. Chronic and/or severe conditions may take 3-12 sessions. Pain Relief may be occur 5-10 seconds after needle insertion or it may take up to 24 hours to notice improvements. Sustained improvements should be noticed after three treatments. Initially, two treatments are done a week for the first 1-4 weeks, after which treatments are spaced further apart.
There are minimal side effects to acupuncture. There may be minimal discomfort on needle insertion. Once the needles are in place there should be no discomfort. Most individuals find the treatments relaxing. Individuals with bleeding disorders should be treated with caution.