Vertigo presents with many different symptoms and Western medicine tries to treat each. The approach of alternative health is about finding the underlying cause and providing a solution to it.
If one were to imagine the ideal Medical clinic for a modern society, it would be one where all of the different approaches to treatment would be practiced side by side. Western medicine offers procedures and lab work that is often helpful in the diagnosis of many conditions. Alternative medical practices offer treatments for many ailments that are totally unresponsive to Western treatments. In many cases, the answer is best found in Traditional Chinese Medicine. In other cases, a Chiropractor might be able to give instant relief.
Vertigo is a good example of this idea. A recent clinical report detailed the case of a patient who was working in a high stress job. He drank a lot of alcohol and had a very high intake of caffeine from soft drinks. He was not a smoker and did not use any other drugs. He had a sudden onset of dizziness and nausea. Western medicine pretty much eliminated most other diseases through examination and blood tests. The diagnosis was viral vertigo.
Viral vertigo is actually a generic name for the symptoms that the patient was suffering. It is thought that there was some problem in the inner ear where balance is controlled, but since there was no way of telling what that problem was antibiotics and anti-nausea medicine was proscribed. This is the normal Western medicine practice of treating the symptoms, crossing your fingers, and hoping for the best.
Acupressure for the vertigo was suggested by the clinic where the patient had gone to seek help. This was done because it was understood that Traditional Chinese Medicine had methods to look beyond the symptomatic diagnosis to the actual underlying unbalance. The patient’s lifestyle held the clues to the problem. The combination of stress, alcohol intake, and high levels of caffeine had created a stagnation of qi in the Meridians of this patient. The treatment combined with moderation of his lifestyle and the supplementation of herbal preparations would be able to directly address the qi problem and restore harmony.
Alternative health was the answer for this patient. A few short treatments coupled with faithful adherence to the supplemental suggestions produced a rapid cessation of the symptoms. If he had fallen a cut open his head, sutures would have been indicated and a doctor could have performed this procedure and administered a tetanus shot. If he had been wracked by lower back pain, a Chiropractor could have brought relief through spinal manipulation. As it was, his problem was in the flow of vital energy through the Meridians of his body brought on by an unhealthy combination of lifestyle factors. Eastern medicine was his answer.
The field of medicine is very complex and should not be an arena of conflicting philosophies. It should be, rather, a place where all that we have learned in both the East and the West is applied to the goal of restoring health.
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