Mercy Medical Center opens Integrative Medicine Center

Center to combine conventional medicine, evidence-based complementary and alternative approaches

Mercy Medical Center's Integrative Medicine Center is now open and seeing patients.

The center will combine conventional medicine with evidence-based complementary and alternative approaches.

Sometimes conventional medicine doesn't always have the answers, said Suzanne Bartlett, who heads the center.  Integrative, or holistic, medicine emphasizes the therapeutic relationship and makes use of all appropriate therapies, both conventional and alternative, she said.

After a few experiences of her own, personally and professionally, Bartlett, who has been practicing in obstetrics and gynecology for 13 years, decided integrative, or holistic, medicine was the direction she wanted to take.

"The importance of my program, the University of Arizona, is that it's all evidence-based," Bartlett said. "That was very important to me. I'm a scientist first and a conventional western physician first, and yet I knew that there were studies being done on some of these complementary and alternative therapies."

The Integrative Medicine Center works with a patient and his or her primary care provider to identify the root of a condition, according to a news release. Medical treatment and resource options are available for conditions including chronic disease, gynecologic and hormonal issues, mood disorders, digestive conditions and cancer, among other issues.

Additional services include vitamin, supplement and herbal management, nutritional planning, mind/ body techniques, aromatherapy and massage therapy.

Bartlett said her program "strongly uses conventional medicine, but it also looks at simpler things, whether it be changes in lifestyle, changes in nutrition ... maybe mind body therapies that could augment the health care plan," she said.The center is in the Mercy Women's Center, 701 10th St. SE. It is open Wednesdays and Thursdays.

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