Archive for tag: family

Happy Valentine's Day

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 the weekend.  

Strategy Class

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.

Top -kim

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 student. 

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.

Turkey Week

Top -turkey

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 successful.  

Stay tuned to see what happens!!!

What a Week!

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.

Top -fam

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 play!

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 requires balance.

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! 

Elizabeth -snowdays

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!


Herbal Practicum

Top -instructors

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 interns.

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), or tablets.  

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.

Elizabeth -herbs

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 from treatment.

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 family.