Functional medicine is a biological approach to investigating and consequently treating the underlying ROOT CAUSE of disease. This approach gives us a road map to understand what went wrong in someone’s physiology before they developed symptoms, which eventually led to their diagnosis.
Can a detective solve a crime by solely looking at a single photograph of the crime scene? No. He or she must painstakingly interview witnesses, gather clues, and piece together what happened. This process takes time and immense effort. Through this intensive process, there is great HOPE that the crime can be solved.
The practice of functional medicine is similar to the work of a detective. The functional medicine physician must first take the time to dive deep into his patient’s medical history, going back as far as the health of the patient’s parents and the prenatal care they received. Delving into the patient’s history makes it possible to identify the ROOT CAUSES of the symptoms so that these can be addressed and the patient’s health be restored.
The physician will also investigate the time prior to the onset of their symptoms in order to identify the triggers (e.g. infections, toxins, traumas, and stressors). He will also identify clinical imbalances in the following categories: hormones, neurotransmitters, inflammatory markers, environmental toxicity, as well as the structural and gastrointestinal integrity of the body.
Once a functional medicine history is gathered, the clinician can then begin to piece together what happened in the patient’s body on a cellular level. Diagnostic testing is used to uncover which areas of the body are not functioning properly and what clinical imbalances need to be fixed. Even with the most difficult-to-treat diseases, there is ALWAYS HOPE for better health!