Type of Practice
The practice of Dr Lee could be characterized as a general practice in that he sees all conditions and all ages of patients, but it could also be called a specialty practice in that he utilizes highly specialized alternative methods in both diagnosing and treating ailments. Patients often come to Dr Lee seeking alternative treatment for conditions for which conventional medicine offers only pharmaceutical drugs and/or surgery. Sometimes alternatives are clearly an advantage and sometimes there are no alternatives whatsoever. Because Dr Lee has also practiced conventional medicine (See “About Dr Lee.”) he has a good perspective to recommend whether conventional methods or alternatives would be preferable. Often combinations of conventional methods with alternatives offers the best healing.
The basic element of Dr Lee’s practice is cranial manipulation, the most esoteric of all the varieties of osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT). Although Dr Lee is skilled in all forms of OMT, he uses cranial osteopathy the most for its thoroughness. Through palpation, Dr Lee identifies an area of the body that does not have healthy motion and then corrects it at the same time. He can feel how one area of the body with poor motion characteristics relates to others. Thus the whole system becomes well integrated with this form of treatment, whereas other forms of manipulation might only address a single vertebra or a single muscle, for example. Furthermore, using cranial osteopathy, no part of the organism is excluded from treatment, because it includes the head and the whole nervous system as well as organs and important fascial layers such as the diaphragm. When one applies the cranial concept, the body’s ability to heal itself is utilized to its fullest.
Cranial osteopathy is the method through which one engages the primary respiratory mechanism (PRM). Although one can palpate the PRM without doing cranial manipulation, it is essential to feel the fluid tide of the PRM in order to perform cranial osteopathy. The PRM is what distinguishes cranial manipulation from all other forms of treatment. One can feel the tissues “breathe” very subtly and slowly when one’s sensitivity to it is tuned by training and experience. Dr Lee speaks of his training and experience as essential to the development of his skill, although a certain propensity to feel the tide is also helpful in the process of learning this method. The PRM is a fluid expression of tissue respiration. Tissue respiration is that part of respiration that delivers oxygen and other nutrients from the blood vessels to the cells of the body. This activity has a dynamic, vitalistic quality that can be felt. (See “About Dr Lee’s Book.”)
Cranial osteopathy and all forms of OMT are based on osteopathic principles: The body is a unit of function; structure and function are reciprocally interrelated; the body contains all the necessary elements to heal and maintain itself; and treatment is derived from these first three principles. Organ dysfunctions have a somatic component; that is, if one looks one can invariably find some imbalance of the body’s structure related to the organ through neurological reflexes, vascular compromise, or fascial continuity. Whether the organ dysfunction is primary or secondary, there will be an associated joint, muscle, ligament, blood, lymph, or nerve dysfunction, and this can feed back into and exacerbate the organ dysfunction. If the osteopath can alleviate the muscle, ligament, or joint problem, it will temporarily or permanently cease making the organ problem worse. Healing forces within the tissues can more easily have there way. Blood flow is enhanced; nerve function is normalized; lymphatic drainage from the area of concern improves.
Indications for OMT
Using OMT, the osteopathic physician is able to address the fascia, muscles, ligaments, and joints, as well as the organs directly and thus enhance the normal, healthy function of the body. Increased levels of energy, freedom from pain, improved mental clarity, enhanced feelings of well-being, and improved function of various organs are common consequences of OMT. Cranial osteopathy is especially useful in recurrent otitis media (middle ear infections) in children, perception issues (including vision), attention problems, headaches (including migraines), seizures, and sinus congestion. Birth trauma and other head injuries all deserve a thorough evaluation by a practitioner of cranial osteopathy. It is also very useful in other common problems in which other forms of manipulation are used: low back and neck pain; numbness, pain, and weakness in the extremities; sciatica; pleuritic chest pain; digestive problems; asthma; and traumatic brain injury. Chronic degenerative conditions of the nervous system (Parkinsonism, Multiple sclerosis and the effects of concussions) respond favorably to cranial manipulation.
How does Cranial Manipulation work?
(See “About Dr. Lee’s Book.”) The fluid tide in the tissues delivers health to the cells. The body’s ability to heal itself, no matter what form of treatment is employed (pharmaceuticals, surgery, homeopathy, acupuncture, etc.) is based on the PRM. The PRM is how the body maintains its health. Working with the PRM assures that the body achieves whatever level of health it is capable of at that moment in time. The PRM is a fluid drive that is a physical manifestation of Qi (Chi) that the Chinese speak of as the energy that the body employs to heal and maintain itself, and that which is accessed by acupuncture. The PRM is also the medium through which homeopathics, herbs, and drugs do their work. This fluid tide has a potency demonstrated by several characteristics: hydraulic power of water; electromechanical forces of the connective tissues; and information delivered by the structure of water, elements dissolved within water, and patterns of energy flow in the connective tissues. Essentially, the fluid drive normalizes the connective tissue structure and rebalances the system. The osteopathic physician observes the fluid tide to understand where it is not working at its optimum; he then observes its action to correct the problem; and finally observes a return to balance in the system. Cranial osteopathy is an allowing method of healing rather than an intervention that forces something upon the patient’s body. With the assistance of the osteopathic physician the patient’s body is capable of making changes that it could not make without the attention and the intention of the physician. Working with the PRM, Dr Lee works with the body’s own healing capacity.
Diagnosing using PRM
Not only does Dr Lee use the PRM to treat ailments of the body, but he also uses it to diagnose. Besides a useful means for treatment, the tide is also a truth-telling mechanism. One can approach the body with a chemical that is not healthy for the body, and the PRM will stop its fluctuation. If instead, one brings a healing substance to the body, the PRM will demonstrate enhanced fluctuation. Dr Lee utilizes several types of interactions with the body to cut through mazes of information to isolate a specific imbalance in the system that can then be approached with OMT. Dr Lee uses the PRM as a guide to choose homeopathic remedies, their dosages, and other therapies. He treats the individual for what is out of balance in the moment with whatever will afford the patient the best outcome at that time. Whatever interferes with optimum health is removed in layers, over time, according to the manner that the body chooses.