324. A Sore Elbow Brings a 180-Degree Turn
Dr. Chad Edwards
Equipped with a traditional medical education, he returned to the Army as an active duty physician. A commander came in complaining of elbow pain and requested prolotherapy, a procedure he’d never heard of. He began digging into the literature. What he found totally transformed his medical practice from that day forward.
Dr. Chad Edwards is an osteopathic physician practicing in Tulsa, Oklahoma. His primary interest is functional medicine using a holistic approach. His primary goal is to optimize health through all available means, including nutrition, exercise, rest, medications, acupuncture, chiropractic, and any other means available as appropriate.
How Did You Start Using Your Talents?
“I always wanted to be a physician. Some people would say, ‘How did you know you wanted to be a doctor?” I would say, ‘As far back as probably 5 or 6 years old, I always wanted to be a doctor.’ As Chad progressed along a path of traditional medical training, be began to have questions. “I feel that our approach to health for individual patients has completely gone awry. We need to turn it around 180 degrees. We need to focus on health and not on illness and disease, which is the way that our mainstream medicine seems to have gone. It’s been a process getting to this point, but we continue to drive in that direction. So, the mission of my clinic is simply to revolutionize health care.”
The Most Impactful Turning Point?
“After I graduated from my medical residency, I went back into the Army as an active duty physician. A commander came to me with elbow pain and said, ‘I need prolotherapy. I had no idea what that was. I found a guy who used *prolotherapy to show us what it was. It shocked me when he said, ‘Don’t use ice or anti-inflammatories.’ That really rocked my foundation! As an athletic trainer and a medic, those are the things that you use: ice and Motrin. It forced me to look into other things. Then I saw the literature that supports prolotherapy. Now, in my practice, I see a greater than 85% success rate with my patients, even though much of the literature says that it doesn’t work.”
*Prolotherapy, also called proliferation therapy or regenerative injection therapy, is a treatment using injection of an irritant solution into ligaments or tendon to relieve pain.
The Most Powerful Lessons Learned?
“It’s just a matter of getting out the word that functional medicine is available and here’s how it can help you. That’s really the only competition that I have is letting people know it’s out there. From my colleagues, I often hear, ‘What’s the proof that it works?’ and all I have to say is that the patient got better. I don’t need a study to prove something works if my patient gets better. What more proof do you need?”
Steps to Success from Dr. Chad Edwards
1. Find work that lets you feel you’re making a difference.
2. Set clear goals and commit to reaching them.
3. Don’t give in to distractions: they will always crop up.
4. Don’t quit! Complete the race, cross the finish line.
Connecting With Dr. Chad Edwards
Podcast: Against the Grain: againstthegrainpodcast.com
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