17 October 2005

Introduction

While I was in medical school, I heard the following quote about the speciality of internal medicine, "we don't get anyone better, but we have a lot of fun." As a general internist, I’ve found that the first part of this statement has a ring of truth to it. My medical training has been valuable in terms of offering me skills in interviewing patients, examining them, and working them up with diagnostic testing, but if I really want to get anyone better, I'm on my own.

Quite honestly, most of my successes in practice have come through the use of targeted nutrition and exercise interventions. Arguably, these should be part of the toolbox of any doctor but most often are not. I’ve found that these things have enabled me to do good, but I’ve often been frustrated by patients with crippling physical or emotional symptoms, who don't seem to fit into any diagnostic pattern I can identify. With these folks, I've tried the lifestyle approaches without any success and have referred to multiple specialists without reaching any definitive diagnosis or any useful therapy. In studying homeopathy, I’m looking for an effective approach to these “difficult” patients.

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