Arthritis, depression, menopause, cancer—for millions of Americans, these and other health concerns are not being adequately addressed through conventional medicine. Many are turning outside the medical mainstream to approaches that embrace the whole person—mind, body and spirit. In fact, Americans spend more money for complementary and alternative medicine, or CAM, than for all other health care needs. From acupuncture to massage therapy to dietary supplements, CAM approaches are affordable and accessible, but largely untested. NCCAM’s Director, Dr. Stephen Straus, discussed current research on which CAM practices work, why and how they work and whether they are safe.
2003 Meetings and Workshops
NIH Medicine for the Public Lecture—Complementary and Alternative Medicine: From Promises to Proof
Date: Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 7:00p.m. ET
Herbal Medicine: Ancient Practice Meets Modern Science
Date: Wednesday, October 22, 2003
Dr. Farnsworth is a pioneer in the field of medicinal plants research and herbal medicines. He will discuss the challenges in this research, including plant collection and identification, isolation of active ingredients, understanding how botanicals work, and whether they are safe and effective.
Grantsmanship Workshop for Latin American and Caribbean Scientists
Date: Tuesday, July 1, 2003 to Thursday, July 3, 2003
Participants learned how to compete more effectively for NIH funding. The format was an interactive “how to” workshop. Experts addressed issues such as developing an NIH grant proposal, devising budgets, and the peer review process. The meeting was co-sponsored by NCCAM, Fogarty International Center, National Institute of Mental Health, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Cancer Institute, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Office of Dietary Supplements, the Mexican Council of Science and Technology, and the Mexican National Institute of Public Health.
Free Radicals: The Pros and Cons of Antioxidants
Date: Thursday, June 26, 2003 to Friday, June 27, 2003
The workshop was co-sponsored by NCCAM, the National Cancer Institute, the Office of Dietary Supplements, the American Institute for Cancer Research, and the American Society for Nutritional Sciences. This workshop summarized the current understanding of, and identified major gaps in our knowledge about, the role of antioxidants in cancer prevention and tumor biology, and their interactions with conventional chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
Date: Friday, June 6, 2003 to Monday, June 9, 2003
This conference on Nutritional Modulation of Aging and Age-Related Diseases was co-sponsored by NCCAM and the National Institute on Aging.
Hypnosis and Group Support in Medical Care: Altering Perception and Reality
Date: Tuesday, May 6, 2003
David Spiegel presented the mind/body interactions in medicine. He is a leader in the field of psychosomatic research treatment and development, Dr. Spiegel’s particular interest is the field of psychoneuroendocrinology/oncology, examining the relationship of stress and support to cancer survival time. He has also had a long interest in the use of hypnosis and treatment for medical symptoms and treatment effects.
Complementary and Alternative Medicine, from Acupuncture to Yoga
Date: Monday, April 21, 2003 to Monday, June 2, 2003
This enlightening course offered through the Smithsonian Resident Associate Program featured scientists and researchers directly involved in evaluating various complementary and alternative medicine practices and products.
Comprehensive Cancer Care 2003
Date: Wednesday, April 9, 2003 to Sunday, April 13, 2003
This conference will bring those who are conducting research on complementary, alternative and integrative therapies for cancer together with oncologists to evaluate promising therapies and the possibilities for integration into comprehensive cancer care.
Dietary Supplement Use in the Elderly
Date: Tuesday, January 14, 2003 to Wednesday, January 15, 2003
The National Institute on Aging and the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements held a 2-day conference/workshop to present current data/research about dietary supplement use by the elderly in both U.S. and international populations. The goals of the conference were to develop a focused research program in this area.
CAM Lecture at the Library of Congress
Date: Tuesday, January 14, 2003
Dr. Stephen E. Straus, NCCAM Director, spoke on complementary and alternative medicine at the Library of Congress. The lecture, entitled, “From Promises to Proof: Studying Complementary and Alternative Medicine,” was free and open to the public. A cybercast will be available on the Library of Congress Web site in the coming weeks.