• FM is an evolution in the practice of medicine that better addresses the healthcare needs of the 21st century.

 

  • By shifting the traditional disease-centered focus of medical practice to a more patient-centered approach, FM addresses the whole person, not just an isolated set of symptoms.  FM practitioners spend time with their patients, listening to their histories and looking at the interactions among genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors that can influence long-term health and complex, chronic disease.  In this way, FM supports the unique expression of health and vitality for each individual.

What is Functional Medicine?

  • Our society is experiencing a sharp increase in the number of people who suffer from complex, chronic diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, mental illness, chronic pain, and autoimmune disorders.

  • Our current model of medicine is very good at treating acute conditions like strep throat, urinary tract infections or poison ivy, ones that have a short duration, or emergencies like appendicitis, heart attack, or broken bones.

  • Unfortunately, our acute care approach doesn’t work with complex chronic disease, as is indicated by the increasing number of people who suffer from them.

Why do we need Functional Medicine?

  • Patient-centered care promoting health and vitality, not simply the absence of disease.

  • Integrative, science-based healthcare that considers the complex interactions of the patient’s history, physiology, and lifestyle that can lead to illness.  It also considers the unique genetic makeup of each patient along with both internal (mind, body, and spirit) and external (physical and social environment) factors that affect total function.

  • Modern medicine also likes to “separate”.  If you have high blood pressure, there is a pill for that and another pill for the side effect that your first medicine caused.  We have separated the body into individual pieces and try to ignore the fact that it all works together (or breaks together).  FM treats the entire person, recognizing that the autoimmune disorder a patient might develop to their thyroid will have cause and affect in the gut and other tissues.

  • FM searches for, finds, and treats the root causes of the disease and oftentimes, once the cause is treated the expression of the “disease” no longer exists.

  • An analogy would be looking at a tree with a few dying leaves.  Traditional medicine would try and fix the dying leaves; Functional medicine looks to see what in the soil or the environment might be causing the leaves to die.

  • It requires a collaborative relationship between the patient and the provider.  Gone are the days when the provider simply tells the patient what to do.  FM strives to educate the patient, so that together, the provider and the patient can come up with suitable plans that will work for that individual at that time in their life.

How is Functional Medicine different?