Orthomolecular medicine consists of balancing the body's naturally occurring nutrients and chemicals through vitamin therapy and introduces other nutrients, often in megadoses. While a substantial body of evidence supports the medical benefits of this treatment, many in the medical community reject these findings as the result of the 'placebo effect.' As a result, finding an orthomolecular doctor can be challenging.
Learn about orthomolecular medicine before undergoing treatment. The practice, which originated as a way to alleviate neurological disorders in the 1950s, was later assimilated by Linus Pauling to treat a wider range of illnesses, like cancer, influenza and autism.
Know that the concept of treating patients with nutrients was first considered a last resort when traditional medicine failed. Today, doctors who practice this method consider it a safe, effective alternative.
Learn more when you visit Orthomolecular Medicine Online (see Resources below).
Use the search engine at the American College for Advancement in Medicine Web site to locate a practitioner (see Resources below).
Find a Web site dedicated to orthomolecular practitioners. Orthomolecular.org provides links to doctors in both the United States and abroad (see Resources below).
Call the offices of practitioners within a reasonable distance to schedule an initial consultation. Find out how long this consultation will last and whether or not you will be charged for it.
Make an appointment with the practitioner(s) who strike you as the most trustworthy and experienced. Arrive at your appointment with a list of questions.
Begin a course of treatment if the practitioner feels--and you agree--that you could benefit from orthomolecular medical treatment.
The cost for a visit with an orthomolecular doctor is dependent on your treatment received. Therefore, the cost is unpredictable, though generally moderate. Consult with your doctor for prices.
A major concern in the medical community is that many patients who would benefit from conventional medicine will be convinced to stop their treatment and visit an orthomolecular doctor instead. Consult your regular physician before switching treatments. Additionally, do not rely on orthomolecular medicine as your sole treatment. Visit an emergency room right away if you are bleeding severely and think you may need stitches. Before you start any alternative medical technique, be aware that many have not been scientifically evaluated. Often, only limited information is available about their safety and effectiveness. Each state and discipline has its own rules about how alternative medicine practitioners are licensed. If you decide to visit one, choose one licensed by a recognized national organization. Consult your primary health care provider and keep your doctor informed about the alternative medical technique you undertake.