Welcome to Integrative Practitioner
Integrative Practitioner is the leading online resource for integrative healthcare practitioners and professionals, providing its users with access to the most up-to-date information in integrative health news, events, and resources. We aim to support the wide spectrum of integrative healthcare practitioners with educational and informative content that is relevant to their patients and beneficial to their practice.
Where Next for Microbiome Research
presented by Karen Nelson, PhD, et al.
The development of high-throughput sequencing technologies has transformed our capacity to investigate the composition and dynamics of the microbial communities that populate diverse habitats. The short pieces included here briefly consider the challenges and opportunities awaiting microbiome research.Read More >>
Free On Demand Webinar Presented by: James Greenblatt, MD Recorded: October 20, 2014 Fatigue is a familiar obstacle in daily life that can negatively impact work performance, family life, and social relationships. Stress, inactivity, physical and emotional health, and nutrient deficiencies are among the major contributing factors. As energy levels are determined by multiple physiologic and environmental factors, an integrative, comprehensive approach is prudent. James Greenblatt, MD is an integrative psychiatrist and Chief Medical Officer of Walden Behavioral Care in Waltham, MA, and a faculty member in the Department of Psychiatry at Tufts Medical School. In his 24 years of clinical practice, Dr. Greenblatt has guided countless patients to optimal energy levels, mood and overall well-being through both allopathic and nutritional strategies. In this webinar, Dr. Greenblatt will present recent clinical research findings and practical solutions to relieve occasional fatigue and maximize energy levels in any patient.*
Gain the Whole Perspective
Make plans to attend the upcoming Integrative Healthcare Symposium focus on: the microbiome taking place October 9-10 in Hollywood, Florida. Learn from leading speakers and take a deeper look into the topic of microbiome and how it impacts you and your patients. Visit the EVENT SITE today to learn more.
Botanical and Nutritional Compounds to Optimize Neurocognitive Health
Adaptogenic botanicals, an elite group of herbs, promote natural, healthy function and replenish depleted energy reserves that are essential for cognition, positive mood and restorative sleep. Chronic stress, whether environmental, internal or social, has significant impact on our emotional and mental health because of its adverse effect on the neuroendocrine system. Botanical medicines offer a profound alternative or adjunct to pharmaceutical medicines, especially when used in combination with nutrients and natural compounds to support foundational issues and optimize healthy function of cognition and mood.Read More >>
MORE WHITE PAPERS & REPORTS
New NIH Research Initiative to Test Treatments for Menopausal Symptoms
- Written by Lindsay Aouled Ezzine
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Clinical Trials to Target Hot Flashes, Night Sweats
Women troubled by hot flashes and night sweats during the years around menopause want safe, effective treatment options. A new research initiative from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) will establish a multisite research network to conduct clinical trials of promising treatments for the most common symptoms of the menopausal transition.
The initiative—Menopause Strategies: Finding Lasting Answers for Symptoms and Health (MsFLASH)—is led by the National Institute on Aging (NIA) in collaboration with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) and the Office of Research on Women’s Health (ORWH), all parts of the NIH. The MsFLASH network will be coordinated by principal investigators Andrea Z. LaCroix, Ph.D., and Garnet Anderson, Ph.D., both of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle. The network centers will collectively receive approximately $4.4 million each year of the initiative, which is projected to run for five years.
“Studies such as the Women’s Health Initiative, which raised concerns about the safety of using menopausal hormone therapy, underscore the urgent need for treatments that have been proven safe and effective for alleviating menopausal symptoms,” said NIA Director Richard J. Hodes, M.D. “MsFLASH will speed the evaluation of treatments deemed promising by an independent panel at the recent NIH State-of-the-Science Conference on the Management of Menopause-Related Symptoms.”
In addition to the Data Coordinating Center, five clinical research centers make up the MsFLASH network, which will conduct randomized clinical trials to test a variety of approaches for treating menopausal symptoms. “Different approaches will be studied for efficacy against hot flashes and night sweats in diverse groups of women in trials with either placebo or usual-care control groups. Investigators will also look at possible effects on other symptoms at middle age, including sleep disturbance, mood disorder, vaginal dryness and sexual function,” said Judy Hannah, MsFLASH program official from the NIA’s Division of Geriatrics and Clinical Gerontology.
The MsFLASH centers and principal investigators are:
- Harvard Medical School, Boston; Lee Cohen, M.D., and Hadine Joffe, M.D.
- Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis; Janet S. Carpenter, R.N., Ph.D.
- Kaiser Permanente, Northern California, Oakland; Barbara Sternfeld, Ph.D., and Bette Caan, Ph.D.
- University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia; Ellen Freeman, Ph.D.
- Group Health Center for Health Studies, Seattle, Katherine Newton, Ph.D.; and University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle; Susan Reed, M.D.
A number of different treatment strategies are under consideration. Possible treatments to be studied during the five-year project period include:
- Antidepressants such as paroxetine (Paxil) or escitalopram (Lexapro)
- Paced respiration (slow deep breathing also known as relaxation breathing)
- Low-dose estradiol patch and low-dose estradiol gel
- Exercise programs, both moderate and vigorous
“For decades, estrogen with or without progesterone has been the treatment of choice for relieving menopause-related symptoms because of the lack of alternative therapies of comparable proven efficacy,” noted Sherry Sherman, Ph.D., NIA project scientist for the Menopause Strategies Network. “The collaborative, multidisciplinary, multicenter approach of MsFLASH will enable researchers to test other options—including behavioral and complementary and alternative medicine approaches—to determine whether they are also effective against hot flashes.”
Currently, menopausal hormone therapy is still considered the most effective way to control moderate to severe menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats. Experts recommend that when it is used, physicians prescribe the lowest effective dose for the shortest period necessary, but some women are reluctant to use menopausal hormone therapy because of possible side effects. Women can experience menopausal symptoms for several years before menopause—the date of their last menstrual period—and sometimes for many years after. For some women with severe menopausal symptoms, the resulting discomfort can greatly diminish their quality of life.
The 2005 NIH State-of-the-Science meeting featured presentations from experts on the biology and symptoms of the menopause transition and on established and potential new treatments for symptomatic relief. An independent panel evaluated the data from the presentations and from an evidence-based search of the literature and published its recommendations on the NIH Web site and in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
The NIA leads the federal effort supporting and conducting research on aging and the medical, social and behavioral issues of older people. For more information on menopause, go to Menopause: Time for a Change, www.nia.nih.gov/HealthInformation/Publications/Menopause. For more information on research and aging, go to www.nia.nih.gov or call toll free 800-222-2225.
The NICHD sponsors research on development, before and after birth; maternal, child and family health; reproductive biology and population issues; and medical rehabilitation. For more information, visit the Institute’s Web site at www.nichd.nih.gov.
The NCCAM’s mission is to explore complementary and alternative medical practices in the context of rigorous science, train CAM researchers and disseminate authoritative information to the public and professionals. For additional information, call NCCAM's Clearinghouse toll free at 888-644-6226, or visit the NCCAM Web site at http://nccam.nih.gov.
The ORWH serves as a focal point for women’s health research at the NIH. For further information, go to http://orwh.od.nih.gov.
The NIH—The Nation's Medical Research Agency—includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.