Dr. Darlene Orvieto, a chiropractor and owner of Core Chiropractic Clinic in Easthampton, truly believes that knowledge is power, and she’s set out to prove it.
Beginning this month, Orvieto has added a new service to her repertoire — hosting informational and educational seminars discussing some of the lesser-known or often cutting-edge topics in health care.
The sessions, slated to occur quarterly at Core Chiropractic’s offices, will focus primarily on the prevention and early detection of various conditions, specifically those affecting women. Health care professionals with expertise in various areas will serve as presenters, covering topics ranging from breast screening to better nutrition.
“The presentations will offer information about the different things that are available to detect and prevent health issues among women,” said Orvieto, “and will focus on health, not disease. If you focus on disease, you’ll attract it.”
That’s a key tenet of Orveito’s business model as well, she said, in addition to a progressive attitude toward emerging health care trends and practices, especially those in her own field.
Orvieto graduated from New York Chiropractic College in 1997, and practiced conventional chiropractic treatment for seven years before discovering the Pettibon System, a rehabilitation program developed by Dr. Burl Pettibon for the spine’s hard and soft tissues using X-rays for diagnosis, assessing progress, and proof of treatment effectiveness. Both symptoms and overall posture are addressed, and patients are also trained in their own home care for faster correction.
Currently, Core Chiropractic is the only clinic in Western Mass. offering the Pettibon System, which Orvieto said reflects her mission to provide proactive, long-lasting treatments for her patients, which allow them to avoid surgery or pain-reducing drugs wherever possible.
“I’m passionate about discouraging invasive procedures when possible,” she said, “but more than that, I’m passionate about offering my patients information and advice to keep them healthy. It’s so important for people to realize that health care is not a spectator sport – we have to be involved, because these are our bodies to take care of.”
She hopes the educational presentations she’s launched will extend that mission, offering the community a new resource for health care information.
“Basically, this comes down to what women can do to take control of their own health,” said Orvieto. “We’ll discuss some options, and also present some real, cutting-edge technology.”
Each session will focus on a different topic. This month, it’s breast health, and a number of new and alternative screening, prevention, and overall wellness tools. Janice Anderson, a registered nurse from Amesbury, Mass.; Paula Barron, a licensed practical nurse based in Northampton; and Marta Martinez, a licensed acupuncturist and director of the Stay in Touch Center in Florence, will be on hand to speak.
Feeling the Heat
Orveito said some of the technology discussed will also be available for individuals to test-drive, including digital thermography, Anderson’s specialty, which she hopes will become a mainstay of the entire program.
A diagnostic tool that’s still emerging and finding its place in the health care landscape, thermography uses a heat-sensitive device that resembles a large camera to take a full-body scan, revealing any ‘hot spots’ that may exist. Orvieto explained that thermography works on the premise that any inflammation in the body, which often produces bright red spots on a thermogram, can alert health care professionals to potential problems.
“A thermogram will identify any areas in the body where there is increased temperature due to cellular activity,” she said. “That can mean there’s an inflammation, and typically, inflammation in the body indicates disease.”
Also scheduled for discussion this month is lymphatic health, including lymphatic drainage, a hands-on process that allows practitioners to detect and stimulate lymph and interstitial fluid circulation. The practice is thought to slow aging and detoxify the body, in addition to addressing other issues such as edema, sinusitis, and chronic pain.
“Paula Barron has a specialty in lymphatic drainage, as well as interests in physiology and cleansing,” said Orveito. “It’s not a well-known piece of health care in this area, but if you think of the lymph system as our bodies’ sewer system, getting rid of toxins, it’s easier to understand that when it slows, it’s not performing its basic function as it should.”
Martinez will speak to the benefits of acupuncture, as well as new developments, explaining how blockages can sometimes occur in the body based on lifestyle choices. Other lesser-known topics in the areas of chiropractic, routine screenings, and nutrition will also be covered.
Following the seminar, participants (and others) will be invited to schedule their own digital thermograms for the next day.
Continuing the collaboration with other wellness-based professionals, Orvieto will also host Anderson on Tuesday, Oct. 16, to conduct full-body thermograms, as well as Gail Bog-danovich, a certified bra fitter based in Belchertown. Bogdanovich will conduct a ‘bra clinic,’ offering fitting appointments for custom-made bras from Jeunique, an international health and wellness-based firm that hold patents on many of its products.
As the year moves on, Orvieto said similar clinics and informational sessions will continue to unfold, augmenting the proactive message she gives her clients and strengthening bonds within the health care community and the community at large.
“People only show up when they’re in pain,” she observed. “It’s my hope that we can start to change that, putting more people in charge of their health and getting them motivated to do the work to stay healthy.”
Through communication, Orveito said not only is that an achievable goal, but one that could have a lasting effect on the well-being of the people engaged in the conversation.