American medical training is referred to as "Western Medical Practices". In this training, academic proof and scientific methods are emphasized. Unfortunately, there is a concominant "demonizing" of traditional or folk medicine practices. Folk medicine practicianers have been arrested for "fraud" (impersonating a licensed professional) and methods that are accepted by the masses are called antedotal and not allowed into serious discussions. Folk medicine is taboo.
Pharmaceutical companies who have exploited traditional cures are revered and "obeyed" without question. Lobbists for pharmaceutical companies go to Washington and spend money, run televisiion commercials, go to doctor offices and give out gifts with the net effect of American people not getting a balanced view of healthcare choices.
There are cures with historical roots outside of conventional western medicine practiced by naturopaths, homeopaths chiropractors, yoga, tai chi and accupuncturists. Western medicine guardians are beginning to accept that acupuncture is helpful for osteoarthritis pain, tai chi for fibromyalgia pain, spinal manippulation and yoga decreases chronic back pain. Because the western medical establishment has be so penalizing to traditional methods for curing ailments, the American public has taken matters in their own hands. There is widespread use of herbals today.
St John's Wort is used for major depression, glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate for knee osteoarthritis, silymarin for chronic liver disease, saw palmetto for benign prostatic hyperplasia, ginkgo for early cognitive decline, and vitamin E and selenium to prevent prostate cancer.
Herbal and alternative medicine focus on a cure and not the treatment of symptoms. Traditional medical practices require lifestyle changes that are incorporated into the treatment modality.
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