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032.4 Tracking The Wind_ A Look at Neurological Health and Chinese Medicine • Amy Moll
Episode 3219th May 2018 • Qiological Podcast • Michael Max
00:00:00 00:43:28

Shownotes

Lots of strange and curious patterns get chalked up to wind and phlegm in Chinese medicine. 

In this episode we take at look at the "curious organ" of the brain, as our guest of this episode gives us a glimpse into the power and usefulness of understanding modern functional neurology as a way to better understand and treat the effects and often hidden pathologies of concussion and traumatic brain injury.  

Transcripts

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Welcome to qiological mini series, dedicated to sports

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and orthopedic acupuncture.

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For the next few days, I'll be bringing you several podcasts a day

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from the sports acupuncture alliances conference in San Jose, California.

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In addition to interviews and discussions with speakers of the

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conference, you'll also be hearing from participants and you'll have

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a special front row seat at a round table conversation around the issues,

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running a sports medicine practice.

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The sports acupuncture Alliance was created to promote the study and practice

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of sports and orthopedic acupuncture.

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I'm delighted that they were willing to partner with qiological to bring you this

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mini series so that those of you who are not able to attend the conference could

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learn from the speakers as well as the.

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And to get a taste of what it's like to be here at this special events.

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Please enjoy these discussions and take what you learned here

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and use it in your clinic.

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Welcome back to qiological and to our mini series here from the sports

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acupuncture Alliance conference here in San Jose, California, I'm sitting down

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right now with Amy mall and Amy did a presentation yesterday on acupuncture,

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but more importantly, the neurological system in the brain and concussion, Amy.

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It's a brain geek.

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She's a neurology geek.

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Is that correct?

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That's fair.

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That's fair.

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That's a fair assessment.

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So, uh, we're going to get into this, Amy.

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Welcome to qiological.

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Thank you.

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Thank you.

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I'm really excited to be talking to you yesterday.

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I was busy in and out doing this podcast, so I caught bits and pieces of what

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you were talking about enough to know.

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I got to sit down at one of your classes sometime I'd like to begin with.

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What got you going down the path of looking at neurology?

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Certainly my own experience with both concussions and

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sub-concussive head trauma.

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I have a long history of doing martial arts, but also lots of high impact sports.

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And I received numerous concussions between the ages of 17 and 33.

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And two of them were 10 days apart.

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And that was what really started a lot of my, um, kind of ongoing

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chronic symptoms w what you could call post-concussion syndrome.

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And at the time I was so busy with work and busy managing my practice and.

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I kept thinking that all of my symptoms were simply due to stress and I

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wasn't making the connection between my history of multiple concussions.

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The fact that I was going into sparring every week and having these

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sub-concussive head traumas and.

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It wasn't until a book came out called the league of denial.

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And that book was essentially what the movie concussion was modeled on.

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But the book went into a lot more of the research and ins and outs

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of different parties involved with concussions and kind of this NFL cover

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up of the seriousness of concussions.

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And when I read that.

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It was this eyeopener.

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And I started to think back throughout my life of, oh, let's see, I got

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kicked in the head that one time and knocked out and oh, and then

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there was that wakeboard crash.

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And then there was that mountain bike crash.

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And then there was, oh, that, that happened 10 days later.

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And then I realized, oh, and then there was, you know, those three

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months where I literally didn't sleep.

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I'd go to bed and lay in bed all night long.

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And then the birds would start chirping at 500.

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And I realized, wow, I never actually slept.

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Yeah.

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I started to do a lot more research on concussions and post-concussion

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syndrome and recognize that I was a classic case of that.

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I started to do my own.

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Journey to heal my brain.

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And I started out very much with a functional medicine approach of

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what supplements are out there.

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And I was taking glutathione and that had a dramatic effect on my

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brain fog and my energy levels.

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And for the first time, in two years, I remember waking up and going, oh, I

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actually feel awake and have energy.

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And I feel like it was very clear.

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Supplements herbs, nutrition got me maybe half of the way there.

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And I needed this other piece.

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And the functional neurology that I discovered was the

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piece that got me fully healed.

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Now you'd been an acupuncturist prior to this?

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Yes.

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Correct.

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I've been in practice since 2006.

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All right.

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So you, you were already an acupuncturist.

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You've got these symptoms going on.

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You think I'm busy?

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I'm stressed.

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Yeah.

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Yes, and I have slowed down.

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I'd be fine.

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Yes.

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And also I had, I had chronic back pain from a snowboarding accident

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that also happened in 2006 and I kept again, blaming a lot of my symptoms

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on chronic pain and thinking of.

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I just deal with chronic pain I'll feel better.

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But the fact is is that when you get a concussion, you lose that

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top-down modulation of pain.

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And so all of my concussions had gotten me to a place where my central

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nervous system was not inhibiting pain.

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So I could do all the acupuncture, all the chiropractic, all the massage,

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all the physical therapy in the world.

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But because I hadn't fixed the brain injury.

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There was no pain inhibition happening.

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And so nothing I did helped my pain and it wasn't until I fixed my brain, that I'm

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now in a position where I don't have pain.

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And if I go do something stupid, like lift 24 heavy cinderblocks

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through the other day and my back hurts 24 hours later, I'm fine.

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You know?

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And so I have what I would call normal human pain that

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comes on when you do something.

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And then it goes away without me having.

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To pay too much attention to it.

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Right?

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I mean, this is one of the ways we can tell someone's actually better.

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They go out.

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Oh yeah.

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I work in my yard all day, Sunday and I was sore on Monday

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and I was fine on Tuesday.

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Exactly.

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Go great.

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Exactly.

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Your normal.

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Yeah.

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Yeah.

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Yeah.

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Tell us about the training that you did.

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I had never heard of functional neurology and when I went to.

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Texas to do my Daon program.

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One of the faculty members at the school was a chiropractor who had

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done functional neurology training, and he did some demos and taught

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some of our specialty clinic courses.

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And I think I was the only person in the room that was blown away and thought

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that was the coolest thing on the planet.

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I wanted to know exactly what he knew.

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And so he told me you already been tuned into, you had an issue

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with your neurology or did that.

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That had already happened that had already happened when I woke it up.

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Yes.

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And when I realized that I had all of these symptoms of post-concussion

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syndrome and that every single practitioner that I had gone to.

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To help with my pain.

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Nobody ever asked me, have you ever had a concussion?

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And I had been to neurologists and pain doctors and everything.

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I mean, I had six different PTs, like the best physical therapist in town.

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Uh, so many different chiropractors and again, not a single person

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over the course of all of this.

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Care ever asked me about head trauma and the neurologist that I finally got

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referred to because nobody could fix me.

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He spent maybe 10 minutes with me, never touched me, never asked me about head

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trauma through a sample of Lyrica at me and acted like he was doing me a favor.

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And he said, I'll give you a sample of Lyrica and we'll, you

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know, we'll see if that helps you.

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That was the best.

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That's all she had to offer.

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Yeah.

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And one of the side effects of Lyrica is suicidal thoughts.

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And so I took Lyrica and.

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That was what happened for two weeks.

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I wanted to kill myself and I was so confused.

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I was so confused.

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I, where are these thoughts coming from?

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And I was sitting at an oil change place one day, getting my oil changed and I, I

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didn't have a TV in my house at the time.

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So I don't watch commercials.

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And I'm sitting at this oil change place and a commercial for Lyrica comes on and

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at the very end, it says side effects may include suicidal thoughts and desires and.

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Oh, yeah.

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And then I called their office and I said, I need to get off of this.

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And they go, oh no, you can't just stop taking that.

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And I was like, um, yes, yes, I can.

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I'm on the lowest dose of your sample bottle.

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And I've been taking it for only three days and I'm done, like, don't

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tell me I need to stay on this stuff.

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It was the wake-up call that.

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And tire community of healthcare providers is often missing this component of head

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trauma and how head trauma can be at the root cause of so many other symptoms.

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And many of the patients have no clue that their symptoms are associated.

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There are concussions that may have happened five, 10 years ago

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in order to their practitioners.

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Exactly.

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Okay.

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So for us as acupuncturists, cause we see all the, you know, all, we

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see all the weird stuff, right?

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People come, they, they do imaging or they have tests.

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I mean, whatever.

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And you know, they come back, oh, you're clean.

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You don't have, they don't say we can't find what's wrong with you.

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They say you don't have a problem.

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Right.

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We see a lot of these kinds of people.

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We know they have a problem because they're in our office.

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For our listeners that weren't able to be here.

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What are some of the things that we'd want to look for that make us think.

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Hey, maybe there's a neuro a neurological issue.

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And you know, I need to look into this.

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I think that a lot of times the neurological signs and symptoms

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are staring us right in the face, but because we're not trained

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to see them, we miss them.

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And that can be as simple as when somebody says they have muscle cramps.

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Muscles.

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Don't just cramp up on their own.

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There's a nervous system component to that.

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So as soon as somebody says, they have muscle cramping,

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that's a nervous system symptom.

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As soon as you see somebody that might have a little facial tick,

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that's a neurological sign.

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Um, there's all these things that are sitting right in front of us

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that we're not paying attention to.

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And a lot of the.

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Kind of teaching that I do on the autonomic nervous system is trying

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to get people to pay more attention.

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Like when you're feeling someone's pulse is one of their

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hands sweatier than the other.

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I mean, people's hands should be warm and dry.

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And if there are anything else that person has lost their integrity

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of the autonomic nervous system.

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There's something going on.

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And so when we've got patients that just constantly have cold clammy

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hands, or, um, one of the things I see a lot are primitive reflexes and

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there's one called a spinal Galant.

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And so you should be able to take, you know, a sharp.

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Tool and run it down.

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Somebody's back along the Watteau judgey points and that person should

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not start to giggle or Twitch or move.

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They should be able to just let that happen.

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And so, as you know, as soon as you start touching people's backs and

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they start laughing or giggling or twitching or hitching their hip, you've

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got some primitive reflexes happening.

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I think I've seen something like this where I do some

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points on the back and in areas.

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You know, usually you can touch and there's no big deal, but I touch them

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and they like giggle and they Twitch.

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And in there there's, it's like, it's weird.

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It's really weird.

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Not the whole back.

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It's usually just certain spots, but they're extraordinarily sensitive.

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So that was.

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Fit into what you're talking to from, from a functional perspective, that clues me

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in, uh, the, the, the actual primitive reflex is called a positive spinal Golan

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and a spinal Golan, a French dessert.

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Well, the chocolate and bread.

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Uh, positive spinal Golan is, um, when you see this hip kind of hitch up when

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you run something down the back, but from a more functional perspective, if

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I see more of these subtle aspects of giggling or laughing, or kind of wiggling

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or increased sensitivity that still clues me in that there might be some

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level of primitive reflexes happening.

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And so there's again with functional neurology, you're really.

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Looking at these subtle signs that just clue you in that something might be

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there and they may not be as obvious as you know, kind of these original

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intentions of the primitive reflex.

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Right.

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I know he's an acupuncturist, you know, of course, I look at the tongue.

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One of the classic neurological signs for us is some quiver.

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Or deviation of the tongue.

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I mean, we'll see this on, on a regular basis.

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Do you tend to see this with, with the kind of neurological issues that

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I pay even closer attention to that back when I specialized in fertility,

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I think I was paying way more attention to the color of the tongue.

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And, you know, is there.

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She stagnation or heat or deficiency.

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And now that I am trained in neurology, I definitely pay very close attention

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to, is that tongue trembling and, um, what is the frequency of that trembling?

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And is it deviated left and right.

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And what does that indicate?

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So.

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Lot of attention to the tongue now and also the roof of the mouth.

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And so I have tongue depressors in my office and I will take a tongue

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depressor and a pen light and look in the back of their mouth and

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have them say, ah, like 20 times.

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And I'm looking at, does that pallet move?

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And if it moves.

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Is there a difference between the left and the right pallets.

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And so sometimes if people have immobility of the soft palate on one side versus

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the other, that gives me an indication that maybe that side of the brainstem

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is not working as well as it could be.

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And of course, I'm asking myself, does that finding match up with other

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brainstem findings and I'm looking for, so I pay a lot of attention to the.

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Interesting.

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So, I mean, there are a lot of people who do some osteopathy, you know,

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and they're often concerned about the sutures in the brain and the cranial

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base and all these kinds of things.

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So with this, connecting with that, that maybe there's, there's actually

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something going on, not just with the brain, but with the, uh, the way the

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skull is, and maybe the way the bones fit.

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I practice craniosacral as well.

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And certainly you can have neurological signs change from a cranial treatment.

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The cranial work that you do in cranio steak role is, can be extremely

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powerful and extremely deep and reach these deeper structures of the brain.

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And so I have a huge amount of respect for that kind of work when I am doing a.

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Cranial nerve exam.

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My intention is not necessarily thinking in terms of sutures,

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but just looking at no.

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What nuclei in the brainstem I'm analyzing.

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So if I'm looking at, you know, side to side movements, I understand that

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that involves certain cranial nerves.

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And I can then kind of triangulate that to certain parts of the

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brain you're looking for.

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What parts of the brain have damage or might be affected or have some kind of.

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Correct.

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Okay.

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In a very precise way, not just trying to triangulate.

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Oh, is this a cortical issue or a brainstem issue, but

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actually understanding, is this a prefrontal cortex problem or

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is this a right pontine problem?

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And so we are really trying to get to, is this a.

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Not just a brainstem cause the brainstem is the mesencephalon part of the brain.

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Stem is exactly the ponds and the medulla.

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And so you can really start to understand, is this a ponds problem?

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Is this amazing Cephalon problem?

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Is this a prefrontal cortex problem?

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Is this a somatosensory mapping issue?

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So you're looking to get incredibly specific.

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What are some of the tests that you do?

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I mean, how do you do this?

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How do you dial this?

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And you're not doing the polls to get this kind of stuff, right.

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I mean, using a whole different, this is all through functional neurological

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examination techniques and looking at eye movements, give you a lot of information

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about different parts of the brain.

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And, you know, our ability to smoothly track a moving object

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involves the parietal lobe, but also involves the brainstem our ability

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to rapidly move our eyes from one target to a next involves the frontal

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eye fields and the frontal lobe.

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Um, but also specific.

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Burst generators in the, in the brainstem as well.

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And so you can do all kinds of different tests to, again, kind of create a

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clinical picture of what you're seeing.

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And my tests are looking at the frontal lobe, the parietal

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lobe, the temporal lobe, the cerebellum, the vestibular system.

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And so we have different tests and numerous different tests for each part

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of these, um, each part of the brain.

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And then also this cranial nerve exam.

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It gives you all kinds of information about very specific

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parts of the brainstem.

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How long does this take?

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When I have a new patient coming in, and at this point I'm only accepting

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patients that have neurological disorders.

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And I would say right now about 60 to 70% of my patients have concussions and the

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other 30% are other neurological issues.

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I will do a comprehensive neurological exam in 45 minutes to an hour.

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And so a lot of times I book out two hours for a new patient.

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I spend 45 minutes to an hour doing my exam.

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I sit down, I tell them what my findings are.

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And then we spend the rest of the time doing different activities

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to see if we can create a change in their central nervous system.

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And so I'm using all of my findings from my neurological exam as benchmarks that

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I go back to to say, did this improve.

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Right.

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So again, Chinese medicine is a very functional system of medicine.

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We feel the pulse, we do a couple of points.

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We go back to the pulse or we go back to the tongue.

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And so the functional neurology fits in really well with that model

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because you're just constantly assessing, treating reassessing.

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And you're looking for these functional changes.

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How much of your treatment is acupuncture and how much of your

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treatment is other sorts of things?

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Good.

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I would say I'm including acupuncture as one of the tools in my therapy.

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Uh, 90% of the time.

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So I use it a lot, but I'm, I'm not doing what I used to do when I was in fertility.

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You know, people would come in, I'd put needles in them and I'd walk

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out and I'd go to the next room.

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And, you know, it was definitely a, you know, I want you to rest on the

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table for 20 minutes with needles in.

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And I still think that that's incredibly valuable.

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Um, I was laughing with somebody last night about how so many

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people need to just be pinned to a table so that they choose.

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Chill out.

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And I mean, for me, I can't sit still like, you know, like a butterfly, right.

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I need to be pinned to a table if I'm going to lay there and do nothing for 20.

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So lots of people need that.

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But I find that with all out of the time that I'm spending doing

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examination, I run out of time.

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And so a lot of my acupuncture treatments are maybe only 10, 15 minutes long, sadly.

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Um, I'd love to be able to have more time and have everybody come in for.

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You know, 75 minute appointments, but a lot of times I will do acupuncture

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while I'm doing craniosacral therapy, or I will do acupuncture while I'm also

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doing some eye exercises with somebody while they're laying on the table.

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And so I'm really kind of blending a bunch of things together

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at the same time I exercises.

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When you're trying to get certain parts of the brain activated.

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If you have an understanding of how different eye movements

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activate different aspects of brain function, you can use eye movements,

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therapeutically, like you would use the bicep curl to fire your bicep muscle.

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And so if somebody's left, posterior semicircular canal is under firing.

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You can actually do very specific eye movements down into the right.

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To activate that canal.

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And so there's just a lot of techniques that you can do with eye exercises,

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to fire into certain parts of the brain and get them active again.

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Would you say this connects in some with how what's it called?

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E D M R.

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I think that, that I moved my technique that helps people with,

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uh, PTSD and certain psychomotor.

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I have a number of patients that are also doing EMDR for PTSD and for past traumas.

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And I'm a big proponent of people trying EMDR.

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If they are dealing with past traumas and PTSD type situations, the neurological

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explanation that I've heard for EMDR.

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Thought was fascinating.

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And I could understand was that by you're doing these rapid movements with your

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eyes while you're recalling a traumatic event and in the process of doing this,

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you're bringing this traumatic event and all the emotions that you've stored with

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it back into your working memory and when sits in your working memory, you're now

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re and coding that trauma differently.

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And ideally without.

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Emotional drive.

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And so the EMDR is supposed to allow people to essentially re Incode the

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memory of the trauma in a healthier way so that it's not constantly creating

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the sense of anxiety and panic and fear.

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And I don't do any EMDR and I'm not a counselor.

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And so if people have PTSD and trauma, I'm not in my office trying to get people

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to relive these events, I'm doing other things, but that's the idea of EMDR.

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So it is different from what I do.

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Um, but also, but it has to do with how the brain functions

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and sort of swapping of memory.

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There's a huge connection between the ponds, the lower brainstem and

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connections into the limbic system.

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And so in the ponds we have what are called these lateral gaze centers

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that allow us to move our eyes left.

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And right.

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And I don't know if the neurological connections are such that as soon as you

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start moving your eyes left and right, you can fire into the ponds and the font

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ponds fires into that limbic system.

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And then that limbic system fires into the hippocampus and you're able to somehow.

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Rework this entire system by rain coding, these memories, I don't know.

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But once you learn a lot of these neurological pathways, you can start

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to have an understanding of this, you know, these highways in the

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brain and what might be going on.

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You're kind of a, a neuroanatomy geek.

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Aren't you?

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In order to do what I do, you have to be, and neuroanatomy is not easy.

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And so I still go back to my books and I'm still trying to, you know,

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peel off one more layer of complexity and go deeper and deeper and deeper.

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Uh, you know, Dr.

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Kerrick has this.

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Insane photographic memory of the brain and all of these different

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connections and pathways, and it's just phenomenal and completely inspiring.

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And he teaches these functional brain dissection courses that, uh, I, you

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know, only heard amazing things about would love to take one, one day.

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And in order to do neurology, you have to have a very deep

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understanding of neuroanatomy.

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Otherwise, you don't understand what it is that you're seeing in your exam.

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So you can't teach examination techniques until you understand the anatomy behind.

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So for folks that are acupuncturists listening to this, I mean, I know

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for me, it's, it's inspiring and daunting to be having this conversation

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because on one hand, I'm thinking, wow, there's some cool stuff here.

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I might be able to start picking up some things that I was missing before.

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And then there's the other part of me that goes, oh my God, how much

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neuroanatomy would I have to learn?

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To be able to really help people.

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So I'm wondering if there's some basic screens, some basic things

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that your everyday acupuncturist would be able to pick up quickly

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that might help to clue them in.

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I mean, I know we talked about this earlier, but are there a few things

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that you could share with the listeners that might help clue people in so that

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we could at least expand our sense of.

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There might be this and, and there's ways with my acupuncture

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might be able to get to it.

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It's a fair question.

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It's a daunting question for me, cause it's kind of like,

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how do I pick my favorite child?

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Uh, and certainly yesterday.

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Some basic exam techniques for different parts of the brain.

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So we looked at these rapid eye movements, the cods, and understanding that the

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frontal eye fields control eye movements.

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And so we looked at is somebody rapid eye movement from the center of vision, to

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the left, different from the rapid eye movement, from their center vision to.

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And so looking at differences between right and left frontal lobes, and

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then looking at pursuits and trying to understand, is there a difference between

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somebody pursuing a target to left versus pursuing a target to the right?

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And so we started to dive into some of that.

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I would say that the research shows that acupuncture is very good.

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Lighting up the parietal lobe and the pride of love is where

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we have maps of every body part.

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And a lot of times the example that I use is we treat a lot of frozen

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shoulders and we've probably all had the experience that somebody comes

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in with a frozen shoulder and wow.

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After a few treatments, they're so much better versus somebody that

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comes in and has a frozen shoulder.

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And it's like, we just, you know, Are are hammering away

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and they're not getting better.

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Well, if somebody has a frozen shoulder on the right and in their left parietal lobe,

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the map of that right shoulder is good.

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That person's going to get better faster.

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If this other person comes in with a right frozen shoulder and they have a

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blurred map of their right shoulder in their left parietal lobe, that person's

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probably not going to get better as.

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Because the map in their brain of that body part is poor.

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And one of the ways you.

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I understand if somebody mapping is blurred or poor is

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by doing parietal of tests.

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And so there are some simple parietal of tests that any acupuncturist could do.

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And it's as simple as just taking the Palm of their hand and drawing

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different letters on their hand and with their eyes closed.

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Can they identify what letter you're drawing on their hands?

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And if you're drawing letters on someone's right hand and they're getting

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them wrong, but you go to their left hand and they're getting them right.

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Then you start to say, okay, this person has a right shoulder problem.

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Um, they have, uh, Graphis on the right.

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These are all signs that left parietal lobe may not be working so well.

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And.

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The ability to follow a smooth pursuit to the left is a left pride lobe function.

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So then you can look at iron movements and you could say, how well can this person

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follow my thumb, moving to the right.

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And you go, oh, that looks pretty smooth.

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And then you go to the left and you start to see their

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eyes get jerky and you go, wow.

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Okay.

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So now I.

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A frozen shoulder on the right that can identify letters that I'm

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drawing on their hand, or they're getting a couple of them wrong.

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And then I look and I see these smooth pursuits to the left.

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Don't look very good triangulated.

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This you're triangulating, and you're starting to think maybe I

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should do some scalp acupuncture over that left parietal lobe.

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And by doing the combination of the parietal lobe activation.

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Yeah, whatever needling you're doing, you're going to start bringing more

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blood flow to that part of the brain that might not be working so well.

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And so this is how I've taken a lot of my functional neurology training

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and, and layer that on top of what I already know with acupuncture.

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And it's changed how I approach people and their issues.

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Wow.

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I think we've all had this kind of experience where sometimes we treat

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people and it goes really well.

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And there's other cases it's just.

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We're just not getting anywhere with it.

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So if the body map is stored in the private, all loaves, I

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mean, that could be shoulder.

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That could be knee.

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I mean, it could be, it could be anywhere.

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Yeah.

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And we also have our insular cortex, which has a map of our entire digestive tract.

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And so a lot of people coming in with irritable bowel syndrome, it's essentially

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a chronic pain pattern involving the maps of the digestive tract in the brain.

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Now I've heard some, some thoughts about pain that there may not be a

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physical obstruction anymore, but because they've had pain for a long

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time, it's kind of wired into the system.

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The system is just like hypersensitive.

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It thinks they're still an issue.

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So that's, that's where this kind of stuff would result.

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That is true, but there's a lot more to it.

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Our pain fibers in our body are always firing.

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'cause if they didn't they'd die a neuron that doesn't fire is going to die.

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And so all of our pain fibers are, are firing all the time.

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And it's the job of our spinal cord and our brain to make sure

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that though all of that pain information coming in gets inhibited.

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And again, when we have any kind of concussion or head trauma or

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just something neurologically happening in the brain, people with.

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Chronic pain is often a failure of the brain to inhibit pain from a

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top-down modulatory perspective.

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A lot of times when we have an injured body part, not only

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is that injured body part now misrepresented in that parietal lobe.

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And there's again, kind of a map.

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Problem.

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But we also, if there's this going to brain injury on top of it,

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we lose the top-down modulation or inhibition of that pain.

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And so people with chronic pain, like you said, yes, may not have a local

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tissue injury anymore, but their brain is just running these pains.

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And there's a part of the brain called the anterior cingulate cortex.

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And that's where we perceive suffering.

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And so people can have pain and the brain isn't attaching

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a suffering component to it.

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And so for me, like I might have some neck tension and be like, oh, my

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neck is tight, but I can ignore it.

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And I can move on with my day and it doesn't bother me,

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but there are some people.

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That pain is now linked to the anterior cingulate cortex into the suffering loop.

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And so a lot of chronic pain is actually a suffering loop in the brain involving

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the amygdala and the limbic system and the anterior cingulate cortex.

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And again, one of the reasons why I think acupuncture can be helpful

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is because when we're doing certain points, it lights up other parts of

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the brain and the brain says, maybe I need to get out of this suffering

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loop and start activating other parts.

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And do something different and then that can modulate and

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dial down the pain as well.

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Yeah.

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Wow.

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And I'm, I'm, I'm not making this up.

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This is me reading the research and the research that's looking at

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from a functional MRI perspective.

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What happens when we insert needles in the body and what parts

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of the brain are, are active.

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And so this is me just regurgitating the actual research that's out

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there is that how most of the research has done is with FMR.

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Well, there's a lot of different kinds of research, but I pay a lot

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of attention to the FMRI research.

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Cause I'm trying to understand, is there specific point specificity

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do certain points, activate certain parts of the brain?

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And so I read a lot of that kind of research.

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What about the role of inflammation?

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Inflammation can also be neurogenic inflammation so we can have

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inflammation as a result of the brain failing to work properly.

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So our, our basic Chinese medicine, ways of thinking about things.

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And this modern, functional neurology that you're doing, where, where

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are the connections that you see between these two I'm speaking

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next week at the international symposium of clinical neuroscience.

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And I'm going to be speaking to a room of doctors.

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And the topic of my talk is acupuncture and Chinese medicine

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parallels in functional neurology.

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And I'm starting my talk by telling a story about the Hong Dean aging.

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And in chapter 80 of the Hong Dean aging Quang D says to Chibo I was climbing.

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At altitude up to east park and suddenly I find myself on the

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ground feeling very disoriented.

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What do you think happened?

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And essentially if you are climbing at altitude and suddenly next thing you know,

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you're on the ground feeling disoriented, that means that you passed out and you

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likely hit your head on the way down.

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And what Chibo says is very interesting.

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He says when evil cheese strikes the back of the head,

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it causes the brain to rotate.

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And when the brain rotates, it pulls the eye connections and the

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eye connections becomes strained.

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And when the eye connections become strained, you will experience

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visual dizziness and the world.

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And you'll feel like the world is spinning.

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And then you'll have double vision.

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So I'm reading this and I'm understanding what's happening

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when somebody gets a concussion.

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And I understand that the brain rotates and that the medial longitudinal

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fasciculus, which is the neural pathways that link our eye movements

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together can often become damaged.

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And often people develop nystagmus, which is where the eyes start bouncing around

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on you creating visual dizziness and.

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After a concussion, people often have vertigo and vestibular issues

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and blurry and double vision.

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And so I'm reading this and I'm going, wait a minute.

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Holy smokes.

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Chibo basically has lined out the pathophysiology in a very precise way

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of what happens when somebody gets the concussion and develops double

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vision and vertigo and nystagmus.

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And this was written 3,500 years ago.

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And then there's another path.

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Where in chapter 64.

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They describe a protocol for bringing somebody out of a coma and they say,

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first you pierced the big toe, and then you Pierce the middle toe and then the

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bottom of the foot, and then the thumb.

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And if the person hasn't woken up yet you blow air into their.

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And now because of my functional neurology training and my vestibular

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training, I understand that when you blow warm air into the ear, it

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activates the vestibular system.

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And that vestibular system is going to fire into the vestibular

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nucleus in the brainstem.

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And so I'm looking at this going okay.

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If I understand the hum.

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In the sensory cortex.

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And I understand that the hands and the feet have the greatest amount of

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real estate in that sensory cortex, you're creating a pain stimulus to

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the feet and the hands and in hopes of driving enough information up

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the spinal cord into the brainstem.

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And then you're layering that with warm air activation of the vestibular

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system, to see if you can get enough activity happening in the brainstem

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to fire into that reticular activating system to wake the patient up.

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That is an amazing functional neurological strategy for bringing somebody out

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of a coma written 3,500 years ago.

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And so for any of us to say, why should I have to do a neurological exam?

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Why should I have to understand neuroanatomy?

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I'm like, I'm sorry, but the founders of our medicine knew

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this stuff better than we did.

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And it's time that we step up and own the knowledge and apply it.

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I think I need to pull out my and my anatomy book and get back to work here.

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Amy.

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Anything else that you'd like to share with our listeners before

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we head back to things here?

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Um, I think we covered a lot of information.

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I think we do too.

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Yeah, my brain's a little numb.

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Yeah.

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Um, I have a lot of blog posts that are free available on my website.

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If people want to read more about concussions and neurology, and I try

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to update that information as well.

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So I'll make sure your website's on the show notes page.

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