To support physical, mental and spiritual betterment using the most natural, safest and most effective methods available. To employ drug or surgical therapies when judgment requires, with regard for individual circumstances and desires. To always respect each personís integrity and right to self-determinism.
Twenty-first century medicine in western societies is sophisticated, mechanical and intimidating. The rituals of care correspond to the hectic patterns of modern life. Not enough effort is spent communicating.
Aggressive approaches to diagnosis and treatment lead to complications and overmedication.We accept each personís individuality.
We are aware that people have different requirements and responses. Some decline all medications and all invasive procedures. Some will permit themselves to be managed at the will of the practitioner. We aim to inform each person of all relevant medical options. We are expert in approaches toward lifestyle changes, the adoption of life-promoting activities.Drugs and surgery may be necessary and useful, but can also be hazardous.
This is especially true in older people, who are more likely to be given these treatments because of their frequent ailments. Safer options exist than the routine prescribing of interacting pharmaceuticals. With care and good judgment, with knowledge of different approaches, we assist each patient in making the best choice.It is our desire that the treatment will not damage the patient.
Nor will we allow the extermination of hope. It is not for us to say when life will end or when therapy is futile. Medicine evolves, new treatments arrive, and we look for these as an opportunity again to help.We acknowledge the sovereignty of the human spirit.
Though we deal with bodies and minds, we see the dominance of the spirit in human affairs, and do what we can to nourish and heal the spirit. That is the only route to true health.
Our Philosophy of Care
Our philosophy is to support the mind and the body with as little use of artificial and invasive methods as possible. It has become customary in todayís medicine to intervene early with drugs and surgery, even in the absence of disease.
Thus men and women without disease are advised to take aspirin to prevent future heart attack and stroke, and take statin drugs for the same reason. Women have prophylactic mastectomies and ovariectomies to prevent cancer. Stents are inserted into partially blocked coronary arteries in the absence of chest pain. One hundred thousand men and women a year have gastric balloon or bypass surgery in order to lose weight to prevent disease. Insurance companies are paying for these procedures in the belief that future medical costs will be lower. From a certain perspective they are right.
Yet we see the damage done by this approach. Our medical costs per capita are the worldís highest, and exceed those of the country next in line by nearly 100%. Our longevity lags behind that of twenty other nations. We are enveloped by growing waves of disease we have been unable to alter: autism in children, Alzheimer disease in adults, cancers of obscure origin. We have a dreadful problem with addiction to legally prescribed medications, greater than the addiction to street drugs.
The result of assigning health to drug and surgical priorities is to place it under the jurisdiction of politics and business, and to subvert individual responsibility. Government becomes more powerful, and business more productive, while the individual loses the opportunity to fully determine what he can do for himself. At the same time, the individual exposes himself to the cost and complications of surgery, and the cost and unpredictable adverse effects of drugs.
It could be argued that the individual can assert himself even while he is taking medications or after a procedure. In reality, however, drug and surgical interventions mitigate the urgency for change. Since blood pressure is lowered by blood pressure medication, it is no longer important to restrict salt, take magnesium and exercise. Since the statin drug lowers cholesterol, it is allowable to eat fast foods and pizza. Drug side effects of impotence, fatigue and muscle pain are not attributed to their origins, instead are blamed on aging, or simply dismissed.
The mind and body are monitored by an elaborate web of interconnected happenings. Interventions aimed at altering a single focus of activity unavoidably impact other areas, seemingly unrelated because the threads connecting them are unknown, or the intervention itself has unrecognized diverse actions. Thus an antibiotic may cause confusion, and an antipsychotic drug may cause cardiac arrest. The entry of a foreign chemical into a balanced biochemical system, like a magnet into a clock, can mess up the works.
Much of our current plight is the unanticipated consequence of scientific and social revolution. Something new is found to help, but there is also a trade-off in the exposure to harm. Examples: farming grains averts starvation but engenders obesity; discovery of antibiotics cures infection but predisposes to other infection; psychiatric drugs reduce agitation but cause addiction and unanticipated psychosis; hospitals shelter the sick, but are fantastically expensive. Often, we really do not know what we are doing, and what the result will be. We need to be more careful about how we apply our inventions, and in how little regard we hold our basic strengths.
Human beings possess enormous capacities for self-determined change. Our dependence on drugs and invasive procedures invalidates those capacities, and renders people the effect, not the cause, of their conditions.
Our purpose is to promote the individualís ability to influence his own health, and to provide powerful tools to that end. We have been doing this for many years.
Allan Sosin, M.D.