Valentine's Day is on Monday this week and I have clinic in the
afternoon (1pm-5pm) and then class (5-10 pm), so my husband and I
celebrated on Saturday. We wanted to try a new restaurant and I had
heard good reviews of a Mediterranean restaurant called Reza's. We
made reservations and a good thing we did because it was busy.
The food was very good with an excellent variety of vegetarian
dishes. We had more than enough to eat with plenty to bring home.
Yum! Saturday's dinner was a nice way to end a long day of class on
This was the second weekend of two that we held our Acupuncture
Treatment Strategy class. The class is taught by Dr. HB Kim, who
resides in Kentucky. The two weekend hours equal the same amount of
hours if we had held the class every week for two hours of the
trimester. Those who have clinic on Saturday are excused from
clinic for those weekends.
In addition to his PhD, Dr. HB Kim is a licensed acupuncturist
and herbalist. He teaches both the Acupuncture and Herbal Treatment
Strategy classes. National students are blessed to have this class
because it is very good preparation for the Acupuncture and Herbal
boards. If you memorize everything he teaches, you will pass the
boards. Sounds easy enough but in reality it is a review of
everything about acupuncture that we have learned in our seven
trimesters of school.
Technically the class is a fourth trimester class but I waited
till my eighth tri to take it. I figured I would have most of my
classes completed and it would be a nice review. The class provides
new two point strategies that some might have heard of and I can't
wait to use them. Having it in fourth tri might be a little
overwhelming for some. However, if a student wishes to wait to take
it, they should be aware that the acupuncture class is offered
every other trimester with the herbal class offered in the
alternate trimesters. If a student is confused on when to take it,
I would recommend talking to Dr. Kwon or an upper tri
Happy Chinese New Year!
Happy Belated Chinese New Year (February 3)! It's the year of
the Rabbit! If you are interested in astrology, you can
search for your birth year to figure out what animal you are. After
talking with one of my Asian professors, I learned that their
birthday is determined by how many days it falls from the date of
the New Year. Therefore, their birthday may be celebrated on
different days each year. How interesting!
'Til next week. Email me with any questions.
Thanksgiving week was a much-needed break after the previous
week. The school week was only Monday through Wednesday.
Unfortunately, I lost a day in clinic but my extra patient numbers
will make up for the loss. I will also be making up a day of clinic
during the break, when we're sure to have plenty of patients.
This Thanksgiving, I went down to Greenfield, Ill., to visit my
grandpa and his second wife's family. It was wonderful to see my
84-year-old grandpa and family. We enjoyed catching up around the
table with great home cooking. This visit was short but sweet as my
family returned on Friday back to Elgin.
Site Team Visit
This coming week at National we are hoping for a short but sweet
visit from the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and
Oriental Medicine. The board members will be visiting from December
1-3. The last time they were at NUHS was in 2008 after which we
were granted candidacy status toward accreditation. Since then, our
program director and school have since been making the necessary
moves to obtain full accreditation.
Our current candidacy status allows graduates of the MS in
acupuncture or oriental medicine to sit for the National Boards and
receive their license with passage of the boards.
However, we are all anxiously awaiting the arrival of the board
members and are very anxious to reach full accreditation! The
members will be visiting classes and clinic and various department
heads and administrators. They will also meet privately with
students. I personally believe the program will be accredited. Both
Dr. Kwon and Dr. Yurasek have worked hard to make the program
Stay tuned to see what happens!!!
Wow, what a week it has been. Clinic seems to be crazier than
ever. I blame it on the full moon after the spring solstice!
It never fails but no matter how hard you try not to be like
your parents, one way or another you will take on at least one of
their traits. And mine is time management. In clinic we have a time
slot of one hour and 20 minutes for each patient, and double that
for new patients because their intake takes longer than a re-exam.
As much as I try, my intake always takes longer then I allot
myself. I don't think this bothers patients unless they are in a
hurry, but I do get teased by fellow classmates or clinicians.
I guess, I know how much I hate the typical question-answer
intake, and like one of my professors put it, "get a narrative from
the patient." I find by letting the patient talk about their week,
they will answer my questions but I will also learn more than if I
just asked a serious of questions. Dr. Cai knows me by now and
often pops her head in to see how everything is progressing.
But, this is a concern of mine especially when I start my own
clinic with my husband. It seems like a double edge sword. A
patient's comfort is important, but time management is as well
because underneath there is a business to run. I haven't had
business class yet, but when I do, I hope time management will be a
portion of it.
Monday I had a new patient who came in for sinus congestion and
phlegm accumulation. As I was taking his intake with the
chiropractic student, I learned he could not take a deep breath
without coughing. After listening to his lungs, the chiropractic
clinician decided the patient needed X-rays of his lungs and blood
tests to rule out cancer, tuberculosis, pneumonia, or infection of
any kind. This was an awesome learning experience because even
though I haven't had radiology class, I am in lab diagnosis and
knew what we would be looking for on a CBC (complete blood count
panel). I also was able to observe the process involved in setting
up and taking X-rays. It was really cool!
Needless to say I was scrambling to jumble treating him and my
last patient. I still needed to fill out the 'first time patient'
paperwork and make my herbal preparation and fill out my S.O.A.P
notes for my second patient. After all was said and done, I didn't
get out of clinic until 1:15 and my shift ended at noon. Wow, I am
out of breath just writing about it.
This weekend I did get to relax by going shopping for my
upcoming Hawaii trip!! Yay!! And on Sunday, my husband and I
celebrated Easter with our families at our favorite Hungarian
restaurant, The Epicurean. (I am part Hungarian.) It was nice to
visit with family and have a few good laughs.
Hey there, this week I wanted to write about the balance between
school, work, family, and fun. You can't always be all work and no
For the last four years, since I started at National for my
bachelor's and now master's, I have spent most of my weeknights and
weekends studying at a coffee shop. Most people might think I am
crazy, but unless you have photographic memory you must make the
time to study. Some classes may require more time than others. Many
instructors in the AOM program give you a taste of the material,
but expect you to read or do research on your own. Don't take this
the wrong way, you will have time for family and friends, but it
This is the fourth week of school and many instructors give
quizzes, but my instructors this trimester are changing it up and
giving them during the fifth week.
So instead of studying, since it was my husband's birthday last
week, we decided to spend last weekend in Chicago for the Annual
Snow Days. We enjoyed walking around Grant Park and took in the dog
sledding demonstrations and expansive ice sculptures carved by
local organizations. They were so beautiful and large, probably 7
or 8 feet tall! We also enjoyed a warm meal at an eclectic
restaurant called Aria. The weekend was a lot of fun!
However, this weekend was SUPER BOWL Sunday and I spent it at a
coffee shop studying for two exams. But I wasn't disappointed
because I had fun last weekend and I realize it's a balance. You
have to give and take. I have a supportive family that understands
my commitment and desire to succeed and they realize I won't be
able to participate in every "get together."
The Oriental Medicine program, as well as the other programs
offered at National, requires time and dedication, but I believe it
will allow one to evolve into an exceptional practitioner!
Last week I mentioned that I am not enrolled in an herbal class
this trimester, but I am enrolled in Herbal Practicum. Herbal
Practicum is spent entirely in the Herbal Pharmacy in the clinic
and is not a class itself. I spend a total of 30 hours over the
whole trimester in the herb room preparing formulas for the
OK, let me back track. As an MSOM student, once you are in
clinic, you will eventually be formulating a "prescription" for
patients (with faculty supervision) based on their diagnosis and
symptoms. The herbal formulas may be "raw" formulas using the live
herbs itself, tinctures (a prepared liquid extract of a formula),
I like preparing the "raw" formulas. Not only do I learn to
memorize what the herb looks and smells like, but also its
properties - hot, warm, cool, bitter, acrid, sweet, etc. As I am
preparing the formula by pulling the herbs and weighing them, I can
recognize a basic formula but with modifications based on the
patient's individual symptoms. Each formula has a chief herb(s) and
deputy herbs to assist the chief herb(s). Some herbs are aromatic,
meaning they loose their potency quickly in boiling water and
should not be cooked for more than five minutes; they are packaged
separately for the patient. Likewise, minerals that need to be
cooked for at least 30 minutes prior to adding additional herbs,
also need to be packaged separately.
This sounds like a lot to remember and indeed, no kidding, it
is. Herbs are not an easy feat but require a time-consuming
dedication that is very rewarding in the end because they just add
to a great acupuncture treatment. Herbs are useful when a patient
is needle-shy or when the patient wants to achieve ultimate results
Last week was also a very exciting week! My cousin had a
beautiful healthy baby GIRL, 6lbs 10oz and 19 inches long, on
Tuesday morning which brought a flood of emotions upon me
especially it being the first baby in my generation of the
• Clinic Success
• Rainy Saturday
• Business Planning
• Bee Venom Therapy
• Kinesio Taping
• SACA Seminar
To read older blog posts, scroll to the bottom and click the "Older Posts" button.