Jefferson-Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine Launches Integrative Pediatrics Program

Released: 1/17/2012 5:25 PM EST
Source Newsroom: Thomas Jefferson University
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Newswise — (PHILADELPHIA) –Integrative medicine, the field of medicine which combines the use of conventional and complementary techniques in reaching health and wellness goals, is now available for pediatric patients through the Integrative Pediatrics program at the Jefferson-Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine. Under the guidance of a board-certified pediatrician, the program combines the best evidence-based conventional medicine with a variety of proven lifestyle therapies and complementary techniques for pediatric patients from birth through 21 years.

Integrative Pediatrics program director and board-certified pediatrician, Christina DiNicola, MD, FAAP, offers conventional pediatric medicine in addition to evidence-based complementary therapies to facilitate the natural healing process in children and teens.

“Integrative medicine’s natural and comprehensive approach can help young people feel better, perform better and thrive at their fullest potential. An integrative approach acts to enhance conventional pediatric care,” said DiNicola.

Integrative medicine “integrates” conventional medicine with those complementary therapies for which there is high-quality scientific evidence of safety and effectiveness. Integrative medicine differs from alternative medicine in that alternative medicine refers to therapies that are typically excluded by and used in place of conventional medicine. The distinction between the two is critical to understanding the philosophy and approach of integrative medicine.

Dr. DiNicola works in concert with each child’s existing pediatrician to create an integrative health plan for each child or teen, and offers pediatric integrative medicine consults to parents interested in healing their children through both conventional and complementary therapies.

The Integrative Pediatrics program treats a wide range of medical conditions, including ADD/ADHD, allergies, asthma, behavioral and developmental concerns, digestive disturbances, cancer care support, emotional health, eating problems, chronic headache, sleep problems, weight management and more. Using a whole-child approach, Dr. DiNicola also works with families to optimize overall health for children and teens and minimize the risk factors for future health problems. The program also offers comprehensive consultations to expectant parents.

“We created this program to address the unique issues that most affect children and young adults,” said Daniel Monti, MD, medical and executive director of the Jefferson-Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine and a leader in complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) research and treatment.

“As with all of our programs, it is led by a board-certified medical expert who also possesses intense training in the use and application of CAM therapies,” adds Monti.
As a pediatrician in private practice, DiNicola found herself becoming more curious about CAM therapies, partially brought on by her patients. “Families were growing more curious about alternative therapies and their use as a complement to traditional medical care,” she says.

A rigorous two-year Fellowship in Integrative Medicine followed. DiNicola studied as a Bravewell Scholar at the University of Arizona College of Medicine in the Arizona Center of Integrative Medicine under the direction of noted integrative medicine advocate, Andrew Weil, MD. The prestigious program is operated through the Bravewell Collaborative, a consortium of the most notable academic centers of integrative medicine, Jefferson among them.

Dr. DiNicola holds an undergraduate degree from Stanford University. She received her medical degree from University of Medicine and Dentistry- Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and completed her internship and residency at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. She is board-certified in pediatrics and is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Her integrative approach considers each child or teen’s physical health history, social and family dynamics, lifestyle, academics, personal strengths and spiritual and emotional health in developing a personalized, integrative prescription for long-term wellness.

Editor’s Note: To make an appointment with Dr. DiNicola, please call 1-800-JEFF-NOW.
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Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals
Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals (TJUH) are dedicated to excellence in patient care, patient safety and the quality of the healthcare experience. Consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report among the nation's top hospitals, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, established in 1825, has over 900 licensed acute care beds with major programs in a wide range of clinical specialties. TJUH is one of the few hospitals in the U.S. that is both a Level 1 Trauma Center and a federally-designated regional spinal cord injury center. TJUH patient care facilities include Jefferson Hospital for Neuroscience, the region’s only dedicated hospital for neuroscience, Methodist Hospital in South Philadelphia, and additional patient care facilities throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. TJUH partners with its education affiliate, Thomas Jefferson University.


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