In 1931, Sir George Newman wrote in the prestigious British medical journal, The Lancet, that there are four questions which, in some form, every patient asks of his doctor:
1. What is wrong with me?
2. Can you put me right?
3. How did I get it?
4. How can I avoid it in the future?
These four questions, simple as they are, remain timeless and universal. Sadly, they are no longer being answered in a satisfactory way for most patients today when they visit their doctor.
Today, the fine art of medical diagnosis has been reduced to a system reliant on numbers which the doctor studies on a computer screen rather than looking directly into the eyes of the person in front of him and inquiring into the patient’s life. Superficial and lacking in intuition, conventional diagnosis is focused on naming the supposed disease and suppressing its symptoms as quickly as possible. It explores neither the hidden causes nor the real cure for the patient’s suffering. This type of diagnosis is based on short term thinking, not on long term solutions.
We diagnose at a deeper level. While we generally look at blood work and medical imaging such as X-rays and MRIs, this will never be enough information to properly understand the patient’s issues. For example,, in many cases of back pain, MRIs do not correspond at all with a patient’s level of pain or loss of function. Excessive reliance on analytical data to the exclusion of intuitive observation leads to erroneous conclusions.
Analytical and intuitive skills must be carefully combined.
At the most basic level of health, the mind must be addressed. Inevitably, there are emotional or perceptual problems entwining with the patient’s physical issues, or illness. By clearly investigating the patient’s thought patterns, assumptions, emotional traumas and core beliefs, it is possible to arrive at a much more precise understanding of how the patient’s body has succumbed to illness, infection, weakness or other state of poor health.
Instead of trying to fit the patient inside the name of a disease, we provide deep inquiry and true understanding of what is really going on underneath their symptom presentation.