Training & Approach

Holistic. Balanced. Functional. Dedicated to providing real solutions to your wellness and healthcare issues.

Education & Modalities

I received my Master of Traditional Oriental Medicine (M.T.O.M.) degree from Emperor's College of Traditional Oriental Medicine (ECTOM). ECTOM is home to a fully accredited, four-year Master’s degree program in acupuncture and Chinese medicine. It's also one of the oldest and top-ranked Chinese medicine schools in the U.S. It's located in Santa Monica, California. I completed my degree in the spring of 2005, passed the California Acupuncture Licensing Exam six months later, and have been in practice ever since.

As a practitioner, my primary focus is acupuncture. However, receiving my license to practice from the California Acupuncture Board demonstrated my qualification with the following therapies: Acupuncture (including allied modalities such as cupping, moxibustion, and gua sha), Chinese herbal medicine, Chinese nutrition and dietary therapy, oriental massage, and self-cultivation practices among others.

My core training is rooted in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). However, my work is deeply influenced by the older, classical literature-based teachings known as Classical Chinese Medicine (CCM). Many of the instructors I was drawn to during my training were students of Jeffrey Yuen. Yuen is an 88th generation master of Daoist healing arts, and a leading proponent of CCM worldwide. His work, and the teachings of other CCM practitioners, continue to strongly influence my practice.

I've been interested in exercise and nutrition since my late-teens. I have extensive knowledge of both. I've been studying psychology, on an informal basis, for nearly 20 years. I am also a classically-trained chef.

Getting To Know You

I need to get to know you. So we'll spend nearly half of the initial 80-minute meeting doing just that. In Chinese medicine, this process is known as The Four Pillars. We'll start with your chief complaint. The we'll look at various aspects of your life-style, behaviors, and habits. We'll review your medical history. And we'll also look briefly at your family's medical history. Then we'll do a few diagnostic tests.

The purpose of all of this is two-fold. First, I need a clear picture of the your overall health status. What potential genetic issues are you expressing? What are your strengths, and weaknesses? Second, I need to get a sense of the imbalance/s underlying your current signs and symptoms. Chinese medicine endeavors to treat root causes. When the root imbalance is corrected, the symptoms simply cease to exist.

My job is to take all of the pieces of the puzzle that you provide, and put them together according to the paradigms of Chinese medicine. From that I will build a cohesive treatment plan. The second half of the initial appointment is reserved for your 25-minute acupuncture treatment.

I use distinctly Eastern approaches to evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment, But I always strive to understand any diagnoses you may have been given by your conventional doctors. After our initial meeting I will do as much research as necessary to make sure I'm up-to-speed on your issues.

Treat the underlying cause, and symptoms simply cease to exist.

By evaluating the full range of physical, emotional, mental, social, spiritual and environmental influences that affect one’s health, I strive to go beyond the treatment of symptoms to address the underlying causes of illness. My goal is to work collaboratively with you, and your other healthcare providers, to not only heal illness and infirmity, but to help you regain and maintain optimum health.

Individualized Treatment

Two people with the same issue, insomnia for example, can have completely different underlying imbalances. And each will likely require very different treatment approaches for resolution. A skilled practitioner must be able to diagnose accurately, and choose the proper treatment for that diagnosis. Still further, he or she must be able to intuit what particular treatment is appropriate for the patient at that moment in time. As a patient heals, treatment must adapt to the changes in their specific signs and symptoms.

Re-Evaluate & Address Emerging Issues

It's not at all unusual for other, often older, issues to surface as a one's initial problem moves closer to resolution. Emerging issues could be physical, or psycho-emotional, or both. Whether or not to address these issues is up to you. But the emergence simply indicates that you're healing, that internal imbalances are being rectified, that you're ready to deal with whatever it is that's coming to the surface. It's definitely not something to fear. To the contrary, it is an opportunity for greater healing.

Treatment Guidelines

I generally see patients at least once per week for anywhere from several weeks to several months. Patients with severe symptoms may require twice weekly treatments for at least a few weeks to get things under control. Once any crisis is averted, they usually switch to one treatment per week. Treatment more often generally results in quicker resolution of your problem.

As a rule of thumb, expect about one month of treatment for every year that you've been dealing with any given issue. For example, if you've been suffering from digestive issues for 10 years, the reality is that it's probably going to take about 10 months of treatment to correct. The amount of time required will depend upon the severity, complexity, and duration of your problem/s, as well as your responsiveness to treatment. Acupuncture is gentle and holistic, but it's also cumulative, so treatment is going to take time, patience, and commitment.