Posts Tagged ‘upper cervical’

Chris’ Story

Friday, June 8th, 2012

Kelly’s Story – Migraines and Chiari I Formation

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012

Kelly says she found her salvation from these headaches. Enjoy.

Multiple Sclerosis: Can Upper Cervical Help?

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a progressive degenerative neurological disorder where the ‘insulation’ around the nerves (called myelin) breaks down.  Without this insulation, neurological signals aren’t able to travel as quickly as they once were, and neurological symptoms set in.  These symptoms involve numbness and tingling, unsteadiness, loss of strength, and vision changes, to name a few.

Conventional medicine offers drug therapy, and recommends stress management, physical therapy, and supervised exercise for those who suffer with MS.  One article states, “Only 3% of those taking [a certain drug]…stopped taking it because of side effects.”  However, known side effects of this specific drug are fever, chills, muscle aches, tiredness, depression, abdominal pain, increased liver enzymes, and blood cell count decreases. Other people in clinical trials for this drug mentioned feeling sad, tired, hot or cold, they experienced hives, rashes, bruising, yellowing of the skin, and a change in body weight (some gained, some lost).  The study went on to mention there were things health care providers could do to lessen these symptoms.  Their suggestion: prescribe other medications to treat the effects of this specific drug.

Keep in mind, these lesions involving myelin sheaths are in the brain.  While the mechanism of actions of MS drugs in the interferon family are, “still being investigated,” we do know that natural interferons (not the synthetics ones used in drug therapy) are used in the body to respond to certain types of infections, typically viral infections.  The point here is that interferons are involved in our immunity.  So, at the very least, these MS drugs alter our body’s immune system.  Further, since MS affects cells in the brain, it would be prudent for researchers to find out the effects these drugs have on the brain itself.

The great news is, there is research supporting the efficacy of specific Upper Cervical Chiropractic care for patients with MS.  One article discussed a 46-year-old female whose symptoms had completely disappeared after just four months of Upper Cervical care.  Further, MRIs of her brain as late as two years after the initial care began actually showed a decrease in intensity of the original lesions.  The side effects of Upper Cervical care involve better, more restful sleep, better mood, more regulated heart rate and internal body functions, decrease in pain, plus more.

Another study concluded, “A causal link between trauma-induced upper cervical injury and disease onset for…MS…appears to exist. Correcting the injury to the upper cervical spine…may arrest and reverse the progression of…MS.”

While there is no way to know whether or not your specific situation will respond this well to care, it is a great first step.  The worst case scenario is simply that your body will be functioning better, and you’ll still have to find another intervention for your MS.  However, the odds are in your favor when you are free from neurological interference, and removing neurological interference is the only thing we do at Lazar Spinal Care.

To speak with me about your specific situation, please email my office at care@lazarspinalcare.com, or call us at (734) 274-5107.  I will be happy to speak with you.

“I Pick My Nose”

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

Headlines about health care, the economy, Obama, reform, socialism, vaccinations causing autism, and budget cuts are enough to make anyone go crazy.  Being in true health care (not sick care), people ask us in the office questions about this frequently.  My passion for educating people on how to improve the quality of life for their families puts me right in front of these headlines and statistics.  Just today, I was telling someone that 77% of the population (evenly distributed across party lines)  currently favors spending more money on preventative health care services.  That says a lot.

Well, in the middle of a very grown up conversation at our friends’ house, Daniel asked my wife, “So what do you think about politics?”  As if this should be common knowledge, our 2-year-old son responded in his mother’s place with a very profound statement.  His answer would change the course of history as we know it.  Who knew such wisdom could come from the mouth of a babe?  Well, clearly, we have a world changer on our hands, because our middle child’s answer was, “I pick my nose!”

Josiah, you have several followers out there, and Daddy is one of them.  The days of people thinking I’m going to live my life however I want, the doctor will fix it, and an unrelated party can pay for it are over, folks.  It’s time we collectively take responsibility.  Getting plenty of rest, drinking enough water, eating a well-balanced diet, exercising regularly, and receiving principled, wellness-based Chiropractic care will allow your body to work the way it was designed to work.  I challenge anyone reading this article to do what I suggested.  If you come into my office and do the other 4 items and need another doctor for anything other than an emergency (auto accident or the like), I will send you to dinner at no cost to you.

So as we continue to change lives here at Lazar Spinal Care, I admonish you to take a stand.  And next time someone brings up any of this stuff about the economy, jobs, healthcare, the 12 surgeries they have to have becuase their doctor told them so, respond (very politely, of course), “I pick my nose!”

Thank You Dr. S

Monday, May 25th, 2009

Just last week, as I interviewed a new practice member, I noticed on her intake forms that she was referred to us by, “Yellowpages :-)”.  During the review of her history, she revealed she had recently been to the Emergency Department at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Saline.  Having trouble connecting her trip to the ER, then her looking us up in the phone book, then coming in to the office, I asked her to clarify.  Her response put a huge smile on my face.

“Well, I went to the ER because I was in really bad pain.  The ER doctor there told me I need to find an Upper Cervical Doctor and then I found you in the phone book.”

“Who was the doctor who saw you?” I asked.

“Um..it was Dr…uh, it started with an ‘S'” she replied.

It abosolutely tickles me pink when other providers realize this novel concept: If this is better for the patient, that’s what I should do. At Lazar Spinal Care, we always act in the patient’s best interest.  And in this situation, Dr. S did the same thing.

So on behalf of the lives that will change because you are willing to do what’s best for your patients, “Thank you Dr. S!”

Ethics and Health care

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

Health care is an unusual industry.  And by health care, I mean the whole system (so sick care, too, even though many people call it health care).  In any other industry, a service is rendered, and the customer pays for it.  Last time I went to a restaurant, I ordered what I wanted, it was delivered with a smile, and I paid the bill PLUS a tip.  There were no negotiations, no, “let me take a printout home and show my wife and see if she’s ok with it.”  No, “You know what?  I usually pay for this from a different kind of account.  Will you send me a bill so I can pay out of that account, and then I’ll have a receipt with diagnosis codes so my employer can reimburse me for my deductible?  I’d really appreciate that.”  No way!  the bill came, I put cold, hard cash on the table, and I left.

People might respond, “Yeah, eating at a restaurant is optional, but my health care is not.  I need to take care of my health.”

While you’re close, you haven’t quite got it.  First of all, eating is not optional.  Eating in a restaurant is, sure, but I still had to eat, and I still had to pay for my food, even if it were preparerd at home.  Further, if you’re interested in taking care of your health, then take care of your health.  Don’t wait until you get sick, and then pay someone to help dig you out.

As a comparison, if we’re talking about wealth (instead of your health), it wouldn’t make any sense to lose all your money, and then pay someone to help you get more money, would it?  Of course not.  In the same sense, it wouldn’t be prudent to pay people to look at your financials while their only goal was to tell you early in the game how you’re going to lose all your money.

If that doesn’t make sense, then why would it be any different when people do abosolutely nothing to enhance or improve their health and then pay gobs of money to people to say, “Yep, you have _______osis and you’re going to die.”  Or, “It looks like you may be developing something in that breast.  We should fill you with drugs and then cut things out as a preventative measure.”

Preventative? Since when was early detection (finding something that’s already there) considered prevention (not allowing something to develop or happen)?

So, clearly, the system is flawed.  Doctors study hard for a long time, go into tremendous amounts of debt, serve communities whole heartedly, and then get asked to wait on getting paid by patients, get forced to negotiate their rates with insurance companies, and have to pay staff members just to make sure they’re getting paid.  It doesn’t make sense.

People come into clinics and say, “I want your help, but only if someone else pays for it.”  So the whole system is upside down.  We get that.  But what does that do to ethics?  Does it allow us to compromise our ethics, just because the system is flawed?

I recently went and saw an MD through the University of Michigan.  I don’t do this very often (see above), but I had some questions, and she’s a friend of mine, and I take care of her in my office.  We got into a decent conversation because I was concerned about some things, shook hands, and I left.  On my way out, I paid my copay for an office visit (without any fussing) and got back to my office.  A few weeks later, a bill came from UM Health Systems, and I noticed my insurance had been charged for the highest level office visit allowed (CPT code 99214).

This didn’t sit well with me at all, because I know how billing and coding works, and, frankly, based on evaluation and management guidelines, that visit would not qualify for the code for which she charged my insurance. In their defense, however, they did draw blood, so maybe it does.   Then I asked myself, did this happen because we get kicked around by insurance all the time, and this is one way to get paid a decent amount for an office visit? The charge was $144.00 (which I am not gawking at, it’s the code I have trouble with).  I paid a $10 copay, insurance covered $68.42, the practice wrote off $45.58, and I’m left with a balance of $20.00 (because of my 20% coinsurance).

So let’s look at this a little more closely:

Initial Charge: $144.00
Estimated cost to charge me (clerical staff, envelopes, printing, postage, return envelope): $4.61
Cost to re-bill me if I don’t pay my remaining $20.00 in a timely manner: $0.61 each

Now, what if I had offered to pay cash instead of them doing the insurance billing?  I had to pay $30.00 anyway.  What if I offered to pay the full $98.42 they received for the visit?  Maybe they would have offered a 15% prepay discount so they get their money up front instead of waiting weeks to months for it.  Would they still have up-coded (charged the highest allowable procedural code for the visit)?  Maybe they would have charged me for a lower code worth $48.72 instead of $144.00?  Do you think?  So my question is, did they charge the highest code solely because that’s what insurance would cover, or because that’s what they thought the visit was worth?

So there was another visit I had with another doctor within the same health system.  My agreement with his office was that I was coming in for a consultation and nothing else.  I got a report from that visit and it blew me away at what I saw.  The report stated, “No cervical lymphadenopathy was noted.  Thyroid was nonpalpable. Lungs were clear bilaterally to auscultation.  Heart, regular rate and rhythm, S1, S2.  No murmers.  No CVA tenderness bilaterally.  Abdomen is soft and nontender.  Bladder is nonpalpable.”

Here’s the problem with the above statements: nobody palpated my cervical lymph nodes on that visit.  Nobody touched my neck to know whether or not my thyroid was palpable or not.  Also, nobody listened to my lungs, or my heart.  The nurse practitioner that was doing this ‘consultation’ to which I had agreed before the doctor came in didn’t even touch my abdomen, so she couldn’t have possibly known it was nontender, nor that my bladder was nonpalpable.

I didn’t like this report when I read it because it’s unethical and illegal to falsify medical records.  For them to say they did something they didn’t do is blatantly illegal.  Upon checking out, I was charged a $10 copay.  “Why?” I asked, knowing this was just a consultation.  “Becuase you have a $10 copay on office visits, sir!” the clerk rudely retorted. “That was an office visit?” I asked.  “Yep!” she said, popping her gum in my face.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, I got my explanation of benefits from Blue Cross for that visit, and they had charged me for a new patient exam!  So, apparently, I owe them even more money than my initial copay, since that was a new patient exam.

So why the unethical behavior in health care?  Is it so providers can get paid?  Is it the insurance companies’ fault?  Or how about the patients’?  Does fault lie on Big Pharma?  What about the providers?

I’m not sure.  I’m also not sure what I’m going to do?  Am I, as a health care provider, morally obligated to report something like this, or am I expected, ‘as one of us’ (which I am not) to turn a deaf ear?  I don’t know.

What would happen if Lazar Spinal Care went to a cash basis and severed all ties with insurance?  I know practice members would get better care, because I could focus on them instead of juggling patient care with trying to get paid.  Maybe I could adjust my prices so people could afford the care, even though I’m a specialist.  Would that make it work?  I will say, this is the direction we’re headed.  I don’t know when.  But I’m sure we’ll end up there.

I would love to hear your thoughts.  Please post a comment or email me at blog@lazarspinalcare.com.

I Love It When People Get It

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

It makes me smile when people, “get it.” Whether it’s in a customer service setting and the representative does the right thing, or a doctor patient setting, when the light bulb goes on. No matter how you see it, when someone has an ‘aha’ moment, it’s a beautiful thing.

I was taking care of a lady yesterday and she has been suffering with intense hip and leg pain for the last 12 years. After one spinal correction, the irritation was removed from the nerve system, and she was able to bend over like never before, she could stand straight (instead of having one leg slightly bent to accommodate her misalignment), and she was ecstatic!

At the New Patient Orientation that night, she kept commenting on all the people she knew that would benefit from this type of specialty care. In other words, she got it. The light bulb went on. She realized in that moment that her health was a beautiful gift from God that she was just re-gifted. And now she wants to pay that forward.

We’re looking forward to helping more people. We’ve been re-thinking some of our systems in the office because people are having to schedule out into the future to get in, and some people have had to wait in our office (my biggest frustration to date). If you are a current practice member and like or don’t like something about your experience at Lazar Spinal Care, please let us know. We’ll do what we can to keep you smiling.

Thank you for getting it, everyone! You make it even more fun to take care of people everyday. And that’s exactly what we do best!

On purpose,

Dr. Lazar

Healthcare Gets A Facelift

Tuesday, April 28th, 2009

Take two patients.  One patient comes into our office and has already decided she WILL get better.  Period.  No questions asked.  How do I know?  Because she told me, for one.  Further, she had already listened to other people who did not have her best interest at heart.  By 27, she had undergone a cervical spine fusion.  “What kind of accident did you have that made this surgery necessary?”

“I didn’t have an accident,” she responded.

“What kind of trouble were you having?”

“I had numbness and tingling in my fingers and I had really bad neck pain.”

Because I have integrity, I didn’t go into the fact that she may have been cut on unnecessarily.  I left the conversation at that.  Doctors who resort to fear to get compliance out of their patients have small practices.  We refuse to do that here.

This young lady had tried just about everything else for her situation, and she admitted the surgery did little to nothing to help her feel better.  After her first spinal correction in this office, she was blown away at how much better she felt.  After just two corrections, she was feeling almost completely better and had gone golfing for the first time in a while.  That lasted until she got in a car accident the very next day.  After her collision, she called our office and came in for x-rays.  I asked her why she didn’t go to the emergency room and her answer shook me: “Because I knew who was really going to help me.”  Wow!

Another patient had come into the office for help, and,  even though we invested in him, he didn’t trust us.  It wasn’t me, it was him.  He came in for a headache, received one spinal correction, and then filled out a contact form on our website to tell us he wanted to cancel the rest of his appointments.  That’s like breaking up with your girlfriend by texting her.  Come on, people.  Let’s be grown ups here.

Anyway, when our staff called and asked him if everything was ok (because he had missed his appointment), he said, “I’m still having my headaches, so my wife wants me to see a neurologist.”  We informed him it may take more than one correction to fix something that has likely been there for years.  He refused to understand, which, technically, is his right.  The problem is, he went to his neurologist who scared him of chiropractors and said, “Don’t ever see a chiropractor again!”  What doctor in his right mind would say something so uninformed and unprofessional to his patient?  One who has to use fear to get people to believe him.  Instead of empowering his patients, he scares them and emotionally manipulates them so he doesn’t have to relinquish any of his ill-gotten power.  Way to go, Dr. Neurologist.  You have intimidated and scared another patient.  You should be proud or yourself!

I found all this out when I emailed him to check up on him and asked him how his headaches were going.  He responded, “My neurologist told me to never see a chiropractor again.”  So here’s the deal, I can only help people who want my help.  This guy obviously doesn’t want my help, and that is fine.  I would rather help people who want the help.  What isn’t fine, is that this guy lets other people make his decisions for him.

So remember the two patients?  Remember how one trusts the care she receives here and another lets his wife and neurologist (neither of whom have ever had the pleasure and good fortune of receiving care in this office)?  They both received the same level of care.  They both got an equal investment from Lazar Spinal Care.  It costs us the same amount to process any new patient.  Why?  Because we are initiating a relationship built on trust with every person who walks through our doors and asks for help.

Imagine going to a motorcycle dealership and asking about a part you need.  To your disgust, they respond, “We don’t keep that in stock.  We’ll have to order it.”

“Why???” you ask.

“Well, sir, because the economy right now is really bad and, blah blah blah…”  You decide in this moment you cannot bear to put yourself through the mysery of hearing one more person complain about the economy.   So you leave, and on your way out of the dealership, you notice  a sport bike that really peaks your interest.  You ask the salesman who approaches you, “Do you have a brochure on this bike?”  He responds, “Are you planning on buying it?  Because we only give out those brochures after you buy the bike.”

What???

So you leave immediately, because they don’t care enough about you to invest in you.  You pull into another dealership and they greet you with a smile.  When you express interest in one of their bikes, they say, “Here you go.  Here’s a 6 page glossy booklet.  That has a lot of great information in it.  Are you interested in this specific bike?”

“Actually, I am.” you reply, feeling a sense of gratitude for their kind actions.

“Great!  Why don’t you take it home for the weekend and see how it rides.  Bring it back Monday and we’ll talk about some promotions we have.”

Oh my goodness, what a world of difference between those two dealerships!  Well, at Lazar Spinal Care, you’ll be cared for like the second dealership.  We invest in our members before they have even given us a commitment.

So when someone tries to cause us pain, it works.  It actually hurts.  Why?  Because we trust other people.  That’s the only way we can be trustworthy is by placing our trust in other people.  And that trust is the substance on which we build relationships here.

We’re looking for people who want that trust and have a strong desire to do whatever it takes to live the best life they could possibly live.  If that’s you, please call us at (734) 274-5107 RIGHT NOW and let someone from our caring staff initiate your care.  It doesn’t matter to us what you have been told you have (does naming it make it go away?) or how many doctors you’ve seen for it.  If you are sick and tired of dealing with whatever you’re dealing with, WE CAN HELP.

Thank you in advance for the opportunity.  We are honored to serve you!

On Purpose & In Progress,

Dr. Lazar

Americans Want It, We Got It!

Sunday, April 26th, 2009

A recent survey done by National Public Radio suggests that nearly 67% of Americans think the quality of their health care would go up if their doctor used Electronic Health Records. Lucky for you, Lazar Spinal Care has used Electronic Health Records since we opened.

In response to the article’s claim that some patients feel Electronic Health Records pose a patient confidentiality breech risk, rest assured, your records are safe with us. We use military level encryption, double log in access restrictions, and triple redundant backup technology every 45 minutes. In other words, only licensed and trained health professionals in our office can access your records.

For the full article, click here: http://www.healthdatamanagement.com/news/EHR-28091-1.html?type=printer_friendly

Lazar Spinal Care Meets Web 2.0

Sunday, April 26th, 2009

It’s been a long time coming, and we’re proud to announce the release and launch of our Lazar Spinal Care blog: SYNAPSE.

Register with us to leave comments and post your own thoughts.

Just imagine what will happen when people value their health (not merely simply focusing on sickness, disease, and symptoms) and they can come together in one place.

Upper cervical care changes peoples’ lives, and we’re happy you have a place to learn more about it and discuss it.

Just imagine…if every man, woman, and child in this community were under upper cervical care, this would be the healthiest community on the planet.

Thank you and welcome!

Dr. Lazar