What do we mean by “healing?” According to Dr.Rakesh Gupta, “Healing can be defined as alleviating pain andsuffering and restoring body functions to as close to normal as possible. This doesn’t necessarily mean total eradication of the patient’s disease,” he explains.

In a recent interview, Dr. Guptadiscussed the significant role that healing plays in his practice. Dr. Gupta contrasts healing with the traditional
disease-focused  model  of
medicaldiscusses  practice,several  of  and the
“principles of healing.” 
Why is it timely to talk about the “art of healing?”

According to Dr. Gupta, the Art of Healing, should complement the Science of Medicine. Like fine art, there is no hard and fast formula to achieve healing. Rather, healing is achieved through a combination of experience, creativity, and intuition.

“Consider the model of the disease Hepatitis C, Dr. Gupta says. “This is a serious and chronic disease. If left untreated over the course of many years, Hepatitis C can lead to cirrhosis of the liver, or perhaps even liver cancer. Even so, a patient may be presently experiencing no problem at all, or at most, some fatigue.

“Using the traditional model of disease eradication, we would try to eliminate the virus with medication, because of its potential devastation later on. In an ideal world, this would be the best choice.

“But there is a catch. Sometimes the medications used to kill the virus need to be given for months or even years. The patient often becomes sick with side effects over a long period of time.

“Most patients want to get rid of the disease. But more importantly, they want to feelbetter as quickly as possible.

“Therefore, we try to combine both the eradication of the disease with the art of healing,” Dr. Gupta explains.

“Through balancedmanagement, a significant improvement in quality oflife can be achieved, even in cancer patients.”

Explain this “work of art” to us, Dr. Gupta?

“Painting on the canvas of healing, like any work of art, is a complex manifestation of the creativity, sensitivity, and talents of the artist – in this case, the physician,” Dr. Gupta says.

Through observations made during 20 years in medical practice, Dr. Gupta has identified seven principles that affect the physician’s ability to practice healing as an “art”.

Principle #1
Disease eradication versus the art of healing

First and foremost, the physician or therapist must acknowledge and understanding the difference between the disease eradication model and the art of healing. “There has to be a focused commitment to understand how to blend the best elements of both models in treating the patient,” Dr. Gupta explains.

Principle #2
Understanding thePatient’s Nature

“The chemistry of every human being is different. The same diseases affect each individual in a different way. Through our experience we develop a sense of intuitiveness that helps us to choose the right approach.”

Principle #3
Making An AccurateDiagnosis

“There are two factors to consider here. First of all, the experienced physician must be able to diagnose multiple medical problems simultaneously, because in many cases that is what the patient is experiencing.

“Secondly, the physician must realize that every disease hasits own dimension.

Dr. Gupta points to ulcerative colitis as an example. “Some patients with ulcerative colitis experience no fever, minimal rectal bleeding, and in general, very little in the way of symptoms. In others, fatigue, diarrhea, fever are present, and may be also causing other complications in the liver or bones. Cancer may also coexist.”

The case of gallstones furtherillustrates this point. Dr. Gupta notes that gallstonedisease can manifest itself in many different ways …
A. In its mildest form, the  “In this scenario, the patient is 
stones may be in the gallbladder itself. They are causing indigestion, heartburn, and bloating. B. The patient may be experiencing gallbladder attacks, severe sharp  most likely suffering not from the original disease of cancer. But it could be secondary to the emotional stress causing underlying subclinical gastrointestinal disorders.  “Through balancedmanagement, a significant improvement in quality oflife can be achieved, even in cancer patients.”
pain in the upper abdomen that can last for  “In managing a case like that, we want to exclude the possibility of  Principle #6
hours. C. There may be an actively infected gallbladder. This  any cancer of any kind. But at the same time, by focusing on the above factors, we should be  Up Front Management of the Down Side of the
is known as cholecystitis. D. The stone may have  able to alleviate the suffering of the patient.”  Treatment Option
migrated from the   “It would be nice to be able to
gallbladder to the common bile duct and created jaundice. E. The stone may become stuck in the pancreas, resulting in an infection know as pancreatitis. F. The stone may be stuck in the small bowel, causing an intestinal obstruction.  “Failure to treat simultaneously and in a balanced manner is the reason why other philosophies of treatment fail.” Principle #5  say that each time you treat a disease, it goes away, and you have no further problems,” Dr. Gupta says. “However, that is not the real world. Every treatment has its down side. Every medicine has a side effect. By looking ahead, we can minimize the patient’s suffering from the treatment that we chose.
Principle #4  Filtering out investigator bias  “As an example, let’s say we are treating a patient with an
Finding the Key  “As clinicians focus on high  antibiotic for an infection. We know that if we continue this
“What is causing the suffering? What is making the patient ill or sick? This is not always a clear-cut answer. Quite frequently, a patient’s suffering has nothing to do with the underlying disease.  clinical success, the pros and cons of each treatment must be weighed without preconceived bias. This sometimes requires that we consult the medical literature to reach our own conclusions.  antibiotic for 2 weeks or more, 20% of the patients will develop colitis. “Do we wait to see if our patient is one of the unlucky ones? No. Prudent medical practice dictates
“As an example, consider the case of a woman with an older sister who died from breast cancer. She has a lump on her breast. It is surgically removed, and no cancer is left there. Also, the pertinent chemotherapy or radiation therapy has been administered.  “Drugs and treatments that are highly touted and heavily promoted are not always the best choices for our patients. Sometimes you have to dig a little deeper to find the right answers. By doing so, you provide effective treatment and do not expose the patient to  that we prescribe a medication in advance, to prevent colitis,” Dr. Gupta says.
ineffective or risky treatments.” 

Using recent technological advances and the art of healing, Dr. Gupta is able to
more effectively diagnose and treat his patients, bringing them relief and peace of mind.

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