Functional medicine is a proactive, collaborative, science-based model of medicine that seeks to identify the root cause of symptoms.
Historically, there has been little coordination across multiple settings, providers, and treatments of chronic illness care. In addition, the treatments for chronic disease are often complicated, making it difficult for patients to comply with treatment protocols. At BioFIT Medicine, your physician will talk with your specialists personally and take the necessary time to also explain it to you. Effective medical care usually requires longer visits for more patients with more complicated medical histories requiring more physician involvement in the coordination of care of the patient. Fragmentation of care is a risk for patients with chronic diseases, because frequently multiple chronic diseases coexist. Necessary interventions can require input from multiple specialists, it requires considerable coordination and communication. Patients with advanced chronic diseases may choose to become BioFIT Concierge member in order to obtain more thoughtful management of their many needs—which can only be obtained when a physician has abundant time. Our concierge practice is not for acute care services, but rather for the care treatment of chronic illness like hypertension, heart disease, COPD, hyperlipidemia, and diabetes on an outpatient basis only. Regardless of individual motivation, patients who join our concierge medical practice desire to partner with a physician in order to optimize their health, stay out of the hospital, and live life to the fullest. Your physician will be your health coach – making sure you’re the best “you” possible. Your health is our sole priority.
Much of traditional medicine is reactive in nature. That is to say, many times a symptom is identified, and that symptom is treated (often with medications). Functional medicine practitioners work to act proactively looking at the big picture of disease, identifying the root causes of symptoms and working preventatively to stop chronic sickness before it becomes worse.
One of the primary focuses of functional medicine is looking at the root cause of disease and treating accordingly. One example is hypertension, more commonly known as high blood pressure. Many patients will go to the doctor, their blood pressure will be elevated, and then medication will be prescribed to help control this. Over years, the dose may be increased to respond to persistently elevated blood pressure readings.
The symptom is treated, but what about what is causing the symptom? What is this person eating on a daily basis? Are they exercising? How about stress? Could there be a contribution to this condition by some sort of nutritional deficiency? There is more to the story that needs to be gathered and addressed. When we ask you to start your story at the beginning, we mean it! Yes, your health as a baby, child and adolescent matters for you today – it’s important to look at the big picture.
When treating patients, we go beyond the “this for that” mentality. If you have “that” condition, it’s not as simple as prescribing “this” medication. Many medications can be helpful and may be necessary for various health concerns. But, medications are prescribed in the context of a larger treatment plan that may include lifestyle adjustments and supplements.
Functional medicine requires an in-depth approach that includes both doctor and patient as co-creators in health! Some issues are complicated and demand a certain level of effort from everyone involved. The journey to better health requires a partnership. We will work to craft an individualized treatment plan to treat your specific health concerns, and in turn we ask you to work hard and assume a level of responsibility towards health as well.
As The Institute for Functional Medicine says, “Functional medicine practitioners are early adopters of innovative knowledge and practices.” The treatment methods used are on the cutting-edge and are scientifically-based. Many years can pass between the discovery and implementation of medical advances. Functional Medicine practitioners can help to “reduce that gap by using solid scientific foundation to translate breakthroughs in scientific understanding into clinical practice in real-time.” (from ifm.org)
A systems-based, systematic and personalized approach to your health not only is effective, but it saves money too! As healthcare costs are increasing and patient outcomes are ultimately becoming worse, there is a clear problem that exists. Functional medicine may be part of the answer. By identifying the root cause of disease and treating accordingly, it saves you money from expensive hospital visits, medications that might not be helpful, or other costly long-term medical interventions.
We believe in what we do and think it can help you, too. If you think functional medicine may be right for you, please call our front desk to schedule an appointment at 512-297-2386.