Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Health & Balance

Font Size

The New Language of Medicine: Part I

Cancer and Treatment

The Cheering Section

Fortunately, Duhl had the support of her husband, who was no stranger to integrative medicine. As a professor in the University of California, Berkeley's School of Public Health, Dr. Len Duhl had always encouraged his medical students to open their minds to the world of unconventional health practices and to integrate them into a more complete approach to healing.

"We depended upon the best and most advanced chemotherapy protocols available," he said. "We also found that while conventional medicine was important and excellent, it ignored certain issues that were important.

"The alternative practitioners supplemented Lisa's treatment, and as a team they were formidable."

Redefining Medicine

This formidable combination of conventional and alternative medicine is fast gaining mainstream acceptance. In fact, insurance companies and HMOs now provide coverage for acupuncture, massage and other treatments that were considered "unconventional" when Lisa Duhl was diagnosed with breast cancer.

As early as 1993, researchers at Harvard Medical School reported in the New England Journal of Medicine that one-third of all Americans used some form of unconventional medicine, such as mind/body therapies, chiropractic, massage, spiritual healing, nutritional and herbal medicine, homeopathy or acupuncture.

Most medical universities and hospitals are now incorporating many of these practices. At the same time, patients are demanding them. And, under the direction of integrative-medicine guru Dr. Andrew Weil, the first formal training program in integrative medicine for physicians is in full swing at the University of Arizona. With this atmosphere, medical students across the country are appealing for more education in the alternative arena.

By Any Other Name...

The pleas of patients and medical students are not without basis. Since the 1980s, researchers have been mounting scientific evidence that integrative medicine often works better than conventional treatment alone.

Dr. Dean Ornish's program at the Preventive Medicine Research Institute in Sausalito, CA, is famous for reversing heart disease with a combination of diet, moderate exercise, stress management, meditation, group support, yoga, and conventional diagnostic procedures and drugs, as needed.

At the Stanford University Medical School, Dr. David Spiegel and his team of researchers have found that women with advanced breast cancer doubled their survival time by participating in group therapy while undergoing conventional treatments.

People living with AIDS are also benefiting from integrative medicine. Dr. Jon Kaiser at the Davies Medical Center in San Francisco, California, starts his patients on a program of diet, nutritional supplementation, herbs, acupuncture, exercise and mind/body medicine. He then incorporates drug therapies only if the rest of the program proves not to be sufficient. Almost 90 percent of Kaiser's patients improved or have been able to keep the disease at bay.

1 | 2

Today on WebMD

woman in yoga class
6 health benefits of yoga.
beautiful girl lying down of grass
10 relaxation techniques to try.
mature woman with glass of water
Do you really need to drink 8 glasses of water a day?
coffee beans in shape of mug
Get the facts.
Take your medication
Hand appearing to hold the sun
Hungover man
Welcome mat and wellington boots
Woman worn out on couch
Happy and sad faces
Fingertip with string tied in a bow
laughing family