Brigham and Women’s Hospital Is Merging Conventional and Alternative Medicine

The hospital is hosting an inaugural 'Integrative Medicine Research Forum' November 3.

Eastern and western medicine photos via shutterstock

Eastern and western medicine photos via shutterstock

Claiming to be “cutting edge” means more than just having the latest technological equipment. Hospitals and research institutions can say they’re at the forefront of medicine, but it’s not until you embrace the past and look for new ways to treat and connect with patients that you can truly be cutting edge.

That’s why Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), which is consistently ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the top 10 hospitals in the nation, has embraced both conventional and alternative forms of medicine with its Osher Center for Integrative Medicine. The center provides a unique combination of care that combines both Eastern and Western medicine to treat the whole patient, meaning: mind, body, and soul.

Reps at BWH say that although there are benefits to both conventional and alternative medicine, the two fields “don’t usually converge.” That is, until now.

On November 3, the Osher Center will host the inaugural “Integrative Medicine Research Forum” which, hospitals reps say, will be a first-of-its kind “in-person gathering.” The purpose of the event is to break down the walls between different research labs. Nine institutions that are currently doing independent research in integrative medicine in Boston will come together on one stage to present and discuss their work.

The forum will include a “rapid fire pitch session” where researchers will compete for $500. And when they say “rapid fire,” they mean it. Each pitch will only be one minute in length and presenters can only use one slide to explain their work. Below, a list of who will be showcasing their research:

Longitudinal Changes in Brain Structure After Two Different 8-week Meditation Training Programs
Gaelle Desbordes, PhD, Instructor in Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital.

Acute Effects of School-Based Yoga on Student Mood
Bethany Butzer, PhD, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School.

Changes in Healthy Lifestyle: When anxiety and depression symptoms get in the way
Claudia Trudel-Fitzgerald, PhD, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard School of Public Health.

Complexity-based Measures Inform the Long- and Short-term Effects of Tai Chi Training on Standing Postural Control
Brian Gow, Research Assistant, Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Respiratory-gated Auricular Vagus Nerve Stimulation Modulates Brainstem Activity in Migraine
Ronald Garcia, MD, PhD, Visiting Professor, Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, Department of Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital.

Integrative Medicine Group Visits (IMGV) for Patients with Chronic Pain: A Qualitative Perspective
Paula Gardiner, MD, Assistant Director of the Program of Integrative Medicine, Boston Medical Center.

Psychiatric and Physical Outcomes following the Relaxation Response Resiliency Program
Adam Gonzalez, PhD, Assistant Professor, Stony Brook University School of Medicine.

Tai Chi Treatment for Depressed Chinese Americans: A Randomized Trial
Run Feng, Research Assistant, Depression Clinical and Research Program, Massachusetts General Hospital.

Fronto-striatal-limbic Markers of Clarity in Advanced Meditators during Open Monitoring Meditation Practice
David Vago, PhD, Instructor, Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School.

Mechanotransduction Response of Connective Tissue Fibroblasts to Static Tissue Stretching
Lisbeth Berrueta, MD, PhD, Research Associate, Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

A Preliminary Comparison of Primary Care Expenditures by Refugees Before and After Acupuncture
Mckenna Longacre, MD Candidate 2017, Harvard Medical School.

Catechol-O-methyltransferase Associated Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Modified by Treatment with Vitamin E
Kathryn Hall, PhD, Research Fellow, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

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