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New doctor offers alternative medicine August 11, 2007

Posted by Dreamhealer in Healing.
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New DoctorAs a doctor of osteopathy in Crawfordsville, where most physicians are medical doctors, Dr. Andrew DeSonia is concerned with his patients’ overall body instead of only the system or body part that ails them.

He uses a treatment called manipulation, a hands-on approach to making sure the muscles and bones can move freely and do not hinder the body’s ability to get better.

When DeSonia moved his practice to Crawfordsville six months ago, he wanted to go somewhere his type of medicine was needed. In addition to osteopathic manipulation, DeSonia does alternative medicine, where he prescribes vitamins, minerals and natural herbs to treat illnesses for which most doctors will only prescribe modern medication.

“By being open to alternative medicine, there are a lot of people who could be helped that couldn’t with traditional medicine,” DeSonia said.

However, DeSonia doesn’t make alternative medicine the primary focus of his practice, which mainly acts as a traditional family physician. When he came to Crawfordsville, the doctor who previously owned the practice practiced only alternative medicine, so DeSonia decided to give it a try, although he doesn’t think it’s always a better option than traditional medication, he said.

“If they’re going to work, they take longer to work,” he said. “But I give people a choice.”

DeSonia also developed a weight control program he offers to his patients, which combines traditional weight loss medication, as well as a shot of vitamins three days a week and herb supplements. DeSonia teaches his weight control patients how to eat properly.

“The idea is to stimulate metabolism and curb the appetite,” he said. “I had one patient who lost 22 pounds in two weeks.”

DeSonia also does addiction therapy to help those addicted to pain medication, and joint injections for arthritis. The injections are made of steroids and an anesthetic and help those who are in severe pain from arthritis but don’t require surgery. The injections are better than oral pills because arthritis sites don’t get enough blood flow for pills to really be effective, so it’s better to inject the medicine right into the area, DeSonia said.

Finally, DeSonia sees patients with urgent care needs. He can suture, cast and splint, as well as treat dehydration and check for heart-related problems. After he assesses the problem, he sends urgent patients to the appropriate care facility if necessary.

DeSonia is now accepting new patients and plans to accept every new patient, from newborn to elderly, with any type of insurance, including the military’s Tricare insurance, which most Crawfordsville doctors don’t accept, DeSonia said. His office also accepts Medicare and will eventually accept Medicaid. The office will also try to work with patients regarding their finances, such as placing them on a payment plan, he said.

DeSonia said Crawfordsville has been the ideal place to practice medicine so far, since the small city is near a medium city, Lafayette, and a large urban area, Indianapolis. Crawfordsville needed a physician that would take new patients because many citizens were going way out of town for doctors, he said.

“This was a small town, but a small town that needed a doctor,” DeSonia said. “I really wanted to be someone who was needed, not just wanted.”

Unlike other doctor’s offices, patients can get in to see DeSonia without an appointment if they are really sick, he said. He also takes to time to fully help the patient instead of going through patients as fast as possible to make more money, he said.

“Traditional offices see you for your sickness and out the door they go,” DeSonia said.

DeSonia practices medicine in a way that shows he thinks it a privilege to see patients instead of the patients having to feel as if it is a privilege to see the doctor, he said.

“My goal here is to try to practice medicine the way it was meant to be practiced,” he said.

asandley@jrpress.com

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