I've tried herbs from the grocery and they didn't help my condition.

Many store brand herbs have no standardization in their content. They are not regulated. They often contain binders and fillers that reduce the products bio-availability and absorption. A product that says it contains 100% of a substance may actually contain 20% on chemical evaluation. We use Pharmaceutical grade products that are safe and effective. No herbal or nutritional products are from China, where there have been numerous implications in Lead, Cadmium, and Mercury contamination from toxic dumping. We use organic or wild-crafted herbs from Weed and Pharmaceutical grade, hypoallergenic, products from Thorne or Pure Encapsulations. We do not mark our products up like other vendors and since the nutrients are for medical purposes you do not pay taxes (Texas State Law). Consider this: Our Nordic Naturals Omega-3 fatty Acids, run $22. The same bottle at Central Market runs $26.75 + 8.25% tax = $28.96. Also, some people may require an IV or injection of nutrients to bypass altered gut absorption.

Is acupuncture safe?

Absolutely. We use Clean Needle Techniques and have an absolute understanding of anatomy. With extensive training, cadaveric dissections, and having taught Anatomy and Physiology for years at both Austin Community College and at the Academy of Oriental Medicine, we can be certain that the needle is in the place it should be without harm to underlying tissues or organs. The NIH (National Institute of Health) has shown acupuncture to be effective in endorphin release and pain-management, hormone regulation, cortisol production (anti-inflammatory hormone effecting asthma and allergies), and improving circulation.

How does acupuncture help with pain?

"Over two-thirds of the pain specialists reported having either used or referred patients to acupuncture treatments."
     — Pain 2000;85:313-315

"Acupuncture...is no more experimental as a mode of treatment than is the Chinese language as a mode of communication. What is experimental is not acupuncture, but Westerners' understanding of it and their ability to use it properly."
     — US District Court of Southern Texas, July 1980

"I can't see a better solution to long term chronic pain. There is no question in my mind that acupuncture is safer than surgery or drugs because it stimulates the natural chemical changes in the body."
     — Dr. Bruce Pomeranz, neurosurgeon, University of Toronto

The most dangerous words a patient can say are, "Maybe it will go away." Consider that pain is a warning signal to the body, and that ignoring that signal, or covering it up with pain killing drugs, may lead to bigger health issues. If fact, chronic pain has been associated with brain shrinkage (atrophy, J Neurosci 2004; 24:10410-10415). There are many ways that pain can be handled, and at Diagnostic Natural Medicine of Austin, we have experience in many pain resolving modalities.

Should I go to my MD first?

We advise coming to see us first and see if we can offer a less expensive, natural approach to your health problem. Medical providers are trained in the use of drugs and surgery primarily. We have extensive allopathic (medical model) training, from hospital rotations programs in Neurological Surgery to Orthopedics, to working in the Houston Medical Center after graduation. With the Advance Practice Chiropractic Physician status we will prescribe drugs if needed (N.M.), but we always try to use all natural formulas and products as a first approach. We work hand-in-hand with a close group of medical providers and refer and accept referrals from medical providers. If there is a need for a consultation or medical referral, you will be sent promptly to one of the best in Austin (or Dallas & Houston & Germany). We offer family practice natural medicine, including full physical exams, blood workups, cancer screening, cholesterol screening, etc. We offer affordable pricing and a natural, drug-free approach.

How do you afford to offer inexpensive service that is state of the art and top of the line? Other providers charge a lot more for these services. Are your services different or inferior in any way?

Providers, laboratories, etc. all mark up services. We have chosen to keep costs as affordable for our patients as possible. We have taken a stand against rising costs and unaffordable healthcare. We make less money per patient, but we believe that by offering high quality and exceptional service, people will keep coming to us. We believe that cutting edge AND natural medicine should be available to everyone. We could mark our services up another 100-500% as many providers and laboratories do, but we choose to keep costs low. Our malpractice insurance is very low due to the fact that our treatments are very safe compared to drug therapy and surgical interventions. We try to treat others as we would want to be treated and that includes offering affordable, top notch services. We are also members of a cooperative that allows us to offer lower pricing than non-members due to the volume of services purchased in the co-op. If you can find less expensive blood testing, urinalysis, hormone testing, cancer screens let us know. We don't think you can.

Why Drug-free?

Natural medicine is powerful, safe, and effective when done correctly. It requires patient compliance, exceptional knowledge on the part of the doctor, and precise training in diagnostics and use of natural medicines. There are not a lot of competent natural medicine doctors available to reliably and safely guide a patient with natural medicine. It is important to know when a referral to a medical specialist is required and to also have a thorough understanding of what natural and allopathic (conventional medicine) treatments are available. The body is built with nutrients, plant-based phytochemicals, amino acids, natural fatty acids, and enzymes. These are things that the body uses in growing new cells or repairing damaged tissues. They are incorporated into the cells and improve their function. These are the things that people need for proper health. By restoring homeostasis in the body, we restore health to the person.

As a side note, statistically, the third most common cause of mortality in the U.S. is not heart disease, pulmonary disease, or cancer. It is drug-related death. Drugs are powerful, they have side-effects, and they should not be used as a first-line of intervention. They should be carefully considered and prescribed as a last resort. However, they can be needed in life saving situations. With our training in both natural medicine and pharmacology/prescription drugs, we are the preferred first choice for your health issues.

My other doctor did blood testing and said it was normal. Why don't I feel well?

Most providers look for overt pathological conditions. By the time laboratory results show pathology you need aggressive intervention. Most laboratories calculate "normal" values by including the sickest and most normal values and then take the mean values. This makes for a very large range of values that are not "normal". The values are very wide. We look at blood chemistries in a unique, homeostatic way that allows us to make nutritional recommendations to improve health before pathology arises. We have seen this many times: a patient brings in blood work from their other providers and we help them get better with a nutritional intervention. If you are trained to see biochemical needs at the earliest sign, you can intervene and truly have "preventive medicine".

Why are some services not covered by insurance?

Insurance covers many services, but often a doctor disagrees with an insurance company on what is needed for a patient. Not all patients fit into one "cookie-cutter" mold. Some services are considered "experimental" by licensing boards or the FDA. Cutting edge research and technology is often 15-50 years ahead of what is covered by insurance. For instance, Botox injections have been around a long time and almost everyone has heard of this type of therapy for anti-wrinkling of the face, nerve-pain syndromes, migraines, or trigger points. Its been around over 15 years, used by millions of people, and is still considered "experimental". Drug companies can also play a role in directing therapeutic studies. Many safe, inexpensive therapies such as ozone, hydrogen peroxide, ultraviolet blood irradiation, and ascorbates have been documented and used by millions of patients in other countries or here in the U.S. since the 1920's Yet, they are still considered "experimental" or are not FDA approved. Consider the fact that in Europe, millions have been treated successfully with intravenous hydrogen peroxide therapy, and yet the FDA, under the influence and direction of drug company board members and lobbyist, prevent these non-patentable (non-profitable) substances from being used on a regular basis. Many providers must charge cash for these therapies that they deem appropriate and needed for their patients.