This patient-centered philosophy promotes health as vitality rather than simply the management or absence of disease. Functional medicine practitioners optimize a patient’s health by taking a systems-oriented – not symptom-specific -- approach. By treating the body as one integrated system, functional medicine practitioners acknowledge the biochemical individuality of each patient.
This integrative, science-based philosophy to health care seeks to improve health by restoring individual balance. This approach involves talking to patients in detail about lifestyle and environmental issues while also considering genetics and biological factors. A functional medicine office visit is different in these ways:
- Your initial appointment may last longer.
- Medical history, health goals and current lifestyle habits will be discussed in detail.
- Internal (mind, body, spirit) and external (physical and environmental) factors will be discussed.
- Specific diagnostic tests may be recommended to identify root causes of symptoms.