The Difference Between Conventional & Functional Medicine by Dr. John Bartemus, Functional Medicine Practitioner
I am often asked, “What is the difference between Conventional Medicine and Functional Medicine?”
That is a great question and the short answer boils down to one word: PARADIGM. According to Dictionary.com; a framework containing the basic assumptions, ways of thinking, and methodology that are commonly accepted by members of a scientific community.
Another way of defining paradigm is to use an analogy. The analogy I like is a pair of glasses. The pair of glasses is the lens through which you view the world. Wearing a conventional medicine pair of glasses will cause you to view the world entirely different than if you were to put on a pair of functional medicine glasses.
To step into the very different paradigm/framework/focus/pair of glasses of a conventionally trained doctor compared to a functional medicine doctor, observe the table below:
I am sure that if you were born and raised in the USA, you are very familiar with and possibly still wear the conventional medicine glasses. As a Functional Medicine Practitioner, one of my roles is to empower people with the knowledge that:
1. There are other options/paradigms beside conventional medicine
2. Most complaints that you report to the conventional model with are due to chronic (lifestyle-induced) issues, not acute trauma, toxins, and/or pathogens
3. Conventional medicine is well equipped to help us with acute, life-threatening issues but poorly equipped to help us with chronic issues
4. Functional Medicine is the best model available for addressing chronic issues and is the future of healthcare
If you would like to learn more about Functional Medicine, please watch the video at the link above. I break down the case of a real person from my office from the perspective of both pairs of glasses. I believe that seeing and hearing the paradigm play out with a real case will really clarify the difference for you.