Welcome Anna Ellenberger to CTS!

This month we welcome Anna Ellenberger, PT, DPT, MTC to CTS! Anna has been a physical therapist in San Diego for 6 years, specializing in outpatient orthopedics. Anna's specialties include a certification of advanced orthopedic manual therapy techniques, custom orthotics, and TMJ. Anna enjoys treating all body parts and post-operative injuries in any age group and is looking forward to expanding her pelvic floor practice.

I just finished reading the book " Mind Over Meds" by Andrew Weil, MD. For those of you who may not have heard of Dr. Weil, he is an integrative medicine physician who is the director of the University of Arizona Integrative Medicine Center. Before reading this book, I had heard of integrative medicine, but didn't really understand what it meant, but now I do. Integrative medicine is a medical specialty (just like other specialties such as gynecology and geriatrics), and physicians who are board-certified in integrative medicine have completed a residency and taken a rigorous board exam.

Like all physicians, integrative medicine physicians are able to prescribe medications to treat medical conditions, but are also trained in and familiar with non-pharmacological management methods, including nutrition, botanical (herbal) remedies, mind-body medicine, breath work, exercise, manual medicine (osteopathy, chiropractic, and massage), and traditional systems (Chinese medicine including acupuncture, and Ayurveda). Integrative medicine can also be combined with other specialties, such as integrative dermatology or integrative cardiology.

The main thesis of Dr. Weil's book is that in the US, we all take too many medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, for conditions that in most cases would be better treated with a variety of non-pharmacological methods.

One of his primary concerns is about drug toxicity (the more common term for drug toxicity is "side effects"). He writes, "The most widely used pharmaceutical drugs are extremely potent. Potent drugs may be necessary in cases of critical and severe illness, but we now use them for all disease conditions, even those that are not severe. Unfortunately, concentration of pharmaceutical power inevitably also concentrates toxicity; the two are inseparable" (p. 8). Another of his concerns is about drug effectiveness.

There are many commonly prescribed drugs that have been shown through good research studies to not be very effective at treating the conditions they are used for, but doctors continue to prescribe them, and patients continue to take them.

Dr. Weil also explains a problem with medication called the "homeostatic trap." Homeostasis is the body's tendency to seek equilibrium. If a medication suppresses one of the body's natural functions (for example, suppressing inflammation with anti-inflammatories), the body "reacts against the pharmacological actions, making it difficult to lower dosage or discontinue medication because of rebound symptoms" (p. 14).

" Mind Over Meds" has chapters devoted to the most commonly used drugs in the US, including antibiotics, statins, medications for GERD, antihistamines, medications for the common cold and flu, sleep aids, and many more. Each chapter includes how the drug works, a history of how its use became so common, the side effects, and examples of integrative medicine approaches that could be used along with, or could eventually supplant, the use of the drug. I read each chapter with interest, especially the ones on medicines that family members and patients of mine are currently taking.

I learned tons by reading this book, which is why I wanted to share some of the information in this book review. It made me think very seriously about my own health, and the health conditions of various family members and patients, as well. Because physical therapists are healthcare professionals who cannot prescribe medications, we tend to be well-versed in the philosophy of nondrug approaches to healing that is found in integrative medicine. We also understand how biomechanical problems such as poor breathing, posture, and movement can affect whole-body function and health, as well as poor sleep, poor diet, lack of conditioning, and variety of other things; conversely, improving those things (without drugs) can improve health conditions. I will be recommending this book far and wide and hope you will consider reading it!

To purchase " Mind Over Meds," CLICK HERE ยป
Katherine Dahl, PT, MPT, CD(DONA)
As of January 1, 2015 all 50 states, D.C., and the US Virgin Islands allow a patient to seek physical therapy treatment without a prescription or referral from a physician. There are 3 levels of access: limited access (6 states), access with provisions (26 states, DC, & US Virgin Islands), and unrestricted access (18 states). In California we have access with provisions.

This means that you, as a patient, can have an initial evaluation for a physical problem and 11 follow up treatments (if deemed necessary), within 45 calendar days (whichever occurs first) without a dated prescription/referral from your physician, surgeon, podiatrist, or dentist.

After the 12 visits, or 45 calendar days, if it deemed necessary for you to continue PT treatment you will be required to have an in office visit with you physician, surgeon, podiatrist or dentist who will evaluate you for the same condition. They will then, if they concur, sign the plan of care from your PT, or write a new referral for you to continue treatment.

When you come to Comprehensive Therapy Services, or any PT office, we will have you sign a form to choose between having us send your initial evaluation to your physician of choice, or not. If you do not have a primary care physican, surgeon, podiatrist, or dentist, then you will be required to schedule an in office visit and evaluation of the condition with a doctor to obtain a referral for continued treatment.

If you have pain or suspect an injury or condition for which you feel physical therapy would benefit you, please call our office directly to schedule an initial evaluation. We specialize in chronic pelvic pain, bowel and bladder dysfunction, sexual dysfunction, and orthopedic problems (sprains, strains, post operative treatment) as well. Whether it is an acute (recent) injury/condition, or chronic (longer than 3 months), we can evaluate it and decide together what the next step will be: continue PT treatment or see if you need to see a doctor/specialist.
Pam Dehne, MPT
(Pam's CTS bio coming soon!)

OIL SPOTLIGHT - Peppermint Oil

The peppermint plant is a hybrid of watermint and spearmint and was first described by Carl Linneaus in 1753. A high menthol content-like that found in the doTERRA Peppermint essential oil-distinguishes the best quality Peppermint from other products. Frequently used in toothpaste and chewing gum for oral hygiene, Peppermint also helps alleviate occasional stomach upset and promotes healthy respiratory function when taken internally.* Peppermint continues to be one of the best-selling favorites among doTERRA essential oils. Read More


  • Use a drop of Peppermint with Lemon in water for a healthy, refreshing mouth rinse.
  • Take one to two drops in a Veggie Capsule to alleviate occasional stomach upset.*
  • Add a drop to your favorite smoothie recipe for a refreashing twist.
  • Place one drop in palm of hand with one drop Wild Orange and one drop Frankincense and inhale for a mid-day pick-me-up.
Directions for Use
  • Diffusion: Use three to four drops in the diffuser of your choice.
  • Internal use: Dilute one drop in 4 fl. oz. of liquid.
  • Topical use: Apply one to two drops to desired area. Dilute with a carrier oil to minimize any skin sensitivity. See additional precautions below.

Possible skin sensitivity. Keep out of reach of children. If you are pregnant, nursing, or under a doctor's care, consult your physician. Avoid contact with eyes, inner ears, and sensitive areas.


Primary Benefits
  • When ingested, promotes healthy respiratory function and clear breathing*
  • Promotes digestive health when taken internally*
  • Repels bugs naturally

Aromatic Description - Minty, fresh, herbaceous

Collection Method - Steam Distillation

Plant Part - Whole Plant

Main Constituents - Menthol, Menthone, 1,8-Cineole

Please visit www.mydoterra.com/elizabethleeds to purchase



Interested in oils, but don't know where to start? Schedule a FREE 20 minute appointment to discuss your specific issues and how this natural solution can help. Email Kristin at kristin@comprehensivetherapy.com to schedule your free appointment today!