Monday, June 15, 2015

Medical Services Offered at ACN

            A joint injection (intra-articular injection) is a procedure used in the treatment of inflammatory joint conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, gout, tendonitis, bursitis and occasionally osteoarthritis. A hypodermic needle is injected into the affected joint where it delivers a dose of any one of many anti-inflammatory agents, the most common of which are corticosteroids. Hyaluronic acid, because of its high viscosity, is sometimes used to replace bursa fluids. The technique may be used to also withdraw excess fluid from the joint.

            Diagnostic ultrasound, also known as Medical sonography (ultrasonography) is an ultrasound-based diagnostic medical imaging technique used to visualize muscles, tendons, and many internal organs, to capture their size, structure and any pathological lesions with real time tomographic images. Our Vienna and Ashburn area team uses this successfully to help many of our patients understand the extent of their condition.

            Ultrasound has been used by radiologists and sonographers to image the human body for at least 50 years and has become one of the most widely used diagnostic tools in modern medicine. The technology is relatively inexpensive and portable, especially when compared with other techniques, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT). As currently applied in the medical field, properly performed ultrasound poses no known risks to the patient. Sonography is generally described as a "safe test" because it does not use mutagenic ionizing radiation, which can pose hazards such as chromosome breakage and cancer development. However, ultrasonic energy has two potential physiological effects: it enhances inflammatory response; and it can heat soft tissue.

            Ultrasound energy produces a mechanical pressure wave through soft tissue. This pressure wave may cause microscopic bubbles in living tissues and distortion of the cell membrane, influencing ion fluxes and intracellular activity. When ultrasound enters the body, it causes molecular friction and heats the tissues slightly. This effect is typically very minor as normal tissue perfusion dissipates most of the heat.

            Call our office today to learn more about the services we offer.

Services and Techniques

At ACN Wellness of Vienna and Ashburn we take great pride in providing the finest chiropractic wellness care to our patients. Below is a sampling of the different chiropractic services we offer in our Vienna and Ashburn offices:

Corrective Exercises: We spend time with each of our patients to teach them special exercises designed to help strengthen and remedy their specific problem. In addition to skeletal misalignment, muscles and connective tissues can be out of place or strained by improper alignment and use. Specific exercises and stretches can help your body stay in balance and in health. These exercises can be performed at your leisure in the comfort of your own home and can improve the effectiveness of your spinal correction by as much as 30-40%.

Lifestyle Advice: We take pride in coaching our patients on which activities they should avoid or do differently to avoid aggravating their particular health challenge. We strive to help each and every patient achieve a happy lifestyle, full of the activities they enjoy most.

Nutritional Counseling: Knowing which foods and nutritional supplements are best for your body can provide a structured nutritional program which is based on your needs. We provide specific recommendations on healthy food choices as well as nutritional supplements to ease our patient's return to optimal health.

Spinal & Postural Screenings:  Spinal and posture screenings can reveal important health information and open the door to beginning to feel your best. ACN Wellness goes the extra mile by providing screenings at area malls, community events, health fairs and places of employment. If you would like us to set up a screening at your mall, event, fair or office, email us today.

Massage Therapy: Massage therapy is defined as the scientific manipulation of the soft tissues of the body for the purpose of normalizing those tissues and consists of manual techniques that include applying fixed or movable pressure, holding, and/or causing movement of or to the body. Massage therapy has a number of documented clinical benefits, including reduced anxiety, improved pulmonary function in young asthma patients, reduced psycho-emotional distress in persons suffering from chronic inflammatory bowel disease, increased weight and improved motor development in premature infants, and may even enhance immune system functioning.

            Medical conditions that can be improved by the use of massage therapy are: allergies, anxiety and stress, arthritis, asthma and bronchitis, carpal tunnel syndrome and other repetitive motion injuries, chronic and temporary pain, circulatory problems, depression, digestive disorders, tension headache, insomnia, myofascial pain, sports injuries, and temporomandibular joint dysfunction.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Functional Medicine

Functional medicine plays a vital role in how ACN Wellness Centers treats patients. Functional medicine relies on an interdisciplinary approach toward patient treatment. The team at ACN combines traditional medicine with a holistic approach that looks at how the mind and body work together when it comes to the healing process.

As conventional medicine has evolved, there has been too much emphasis on addressing disease with non-natural prescription medications. There has not been enough emphasis on using more natural means such as nutraceuticals, defined as foods containing health giving additives and having medicinal benefit. After laboratory analysis of nutrient imbalances and deficiencies, a customized nutraceutical regimen will be recommended for each patient.

By taking a functional medicine approach to treating patients, the team at ACN can help patients address many health conditions including:
Oxidative stress-an imbalance between the production of free radicals and the ability of the body to counteract or detoxify their harmful effects through neutralization by antioxidants
Glycation-a process where sugar and protein bond together, involved in aging
Silent inflammation-usually painless and only detected by specific blood testing, this is the underlying cause for chronic disease
DNA damage-alteration of the chemical structure of DNA, caused by exposure to toxins
Neurohormonal decline-a huge drop in the hormones released by neuroendocrine cells
Immune dysfunction-the immune system is not functioning at optimal levels
Methylation-a permanent DNA alteration by the addition of certain chemical groups, changing gene expression.

Using a functional medicine approach to treating patients, ACN can help patients address many illnesses including:

Heart disease
High cholesterol
High blood pressure
Autoimmune disorders
Vitamin and mineral deficiencies

To learn how functional medicine at ACN Wellness can help achieve the healthy life you deserve, please contact us to arrange an initial consultation today.

Monday, February 16, 2015

ACN Massage

 What is a massage? Massage involves working and acting on the body with pressure – structured, unstructured, stationary, or moving – tension, motion, or vibration, done manually or with mechanical aids. Massage can be applied with the hands, fingers, elbows, knees, forearm, feet, or a massage device. Massage can promote relaxation and well-being, and can relieve pain from injury or chronic disease, lessen anxiety and eliminate depression. It can also be used to treat neck and back pain, headaches and migraines, carpal tunnel, numbness and tingling, fibromyalgia, and a host of other maladies.

The word massage is believed to come from the root word “massa” (found in the French, Arabic, Latin and Greek languages) meaning "friction or kneading, to touch, feel or handle". Archaeological evidence of massage has been found in many ancient civilizations including China, India, Japan, Korea, Egypt, Rome, Greece, and Mesopotamia. There are many different types of massage: Acupressure, Shiatsu, Balinese, Cranial-sacral, Lymphatic drainage, Reflexology, Stone massage, Tuina, etc and many different methods of practicing these types of massage.

Tuina is a form of Chinese manipulative therapy practiced by ACNWellness massage therapists and often used in conjunction with acupuncture, moxibustion (a dried root used to warm the body), fire cupping (a local suction is created on the skin using heat and a small cup), Chinese herbalism, t'ai chi (an internal Chinese martial art practiced for both its defense training and its health benefits), and qigong (a practice of aligning body, breath, and mind for health, meditation, and martial arts training).  Tuina is a hands-on body treatment that uses Chinese taoist and martial arts principles in an effort to bring the eight principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) into balance. The practitioner may brush, knead, roll/press, and rub the areas between each of the joints, known as the eight gates, to attempt to open the body's defensive chi and get the energy moving in the meridians and the muscles. Techniques may be gentle or quite firm. The name comes from two of the actions: tui means "to push" and na means "to lift and squeeze." Other strokes include shaking and tapotement (to tap with the fingers in a thrumming motion). The practitioner can then use range of motion, traction, with the stimulation of acupressure points. These techniques are used to aid in the treatment of both acute and chronic musculoskeletal conditions, as well as many non-musculoskeletal conditions.

In professional settings, massage involves the client being treated while lying on a massage table, sitting in a massage chair, or lying on a mat on the floor. The massage subject may be fully or partially clothed or unclothed. Sessions may last 30 minutes up to 90 minutes and are performed by a Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT). Be sure that your LMT is licensed and insured, that the facility providing the massages is also licensed by the state (we are), the massages are overseen by a physician, you are comfortable with the therapist you are working with, and your LMT is current in continuing education (CE) credits.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Custom Orthotics

Orthotics, which comes from the Greek word orthos, meaning "to straighten" or "align", is a specialty within the medical field concerned with the design, manufacture and application of orthoses. An orthosis is a device used outside of the body to make minor changes to the structure and function of the muscular and skeletal system. An orthosis may be used to:

*Control, guide, limit and/or immobilize an extremity, joint or body segment for a particular reason
*To restrict movement in a given direction
*To assist movement generally
*To reduce weight bearing forces for a particular purpose
*To aid rehabilitation from fractures after the removal of a cast
*To otherwise correct the shape and/or function of the body, to provide easier movement capability or reduce pain

Orthotics combines knowledge of anatomy and physiology, pathophysiology, biomechanics and engineering. Patients benefiting from an orthosis may have a condition such as spina bifida or cerebral palsy, or have experienced a spinal cord injury or stroke. Equally, orthoses are sometimes used preventatively or to optimize performance in sports.

The feet are the foundation of the spine and the body. This is true whether a person is standing, walking, or running. Thus, balanced foot structure is vital to ankle, knee, hip and spinal health. If the foot structure is misaligned then the rest of the body will be thrown off balance, causing pain and/or problems with general movement.

Orthotics is the common name for shoe inserts that are intended to correct abnormal walking patterns, mostly caused by foot pronation (the inward roll of the foot), or a collapsed medial arch (in laymen's terms: flat feet). It is estimated that over 80% of people have some type of foot pronation. They are either under-pronators (not enough roll), or over-pronators (too much roll). Over time this can cause severe problems such as plantar fasciitis, heel pain, knee meniscal degeneration, hip pain and back pain.

Dr. Le at ACN Wellness can evaluate and make recommendations to help balance your foundation with comfortable, custom-casted orthotics, heel lifts and arch supports manufactured by Foot Levelers. Call for an appointment today!

Friday, January 9, 2015


Acupuncture is a therapeutic specialty of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) used to treat illness, prevent disease, and improve well-being. It can also be used to help a patient to stop smoking, lose weight and to alleviate chronic pain, for example with migraines and low back pain. Acupuncture uses sterile, ultra-thin filaments to stimulate precisely defined, specific acupuncture points along the skin of the body involving various methods such as penetration by thin needles or the application of heat, pressure, or laser light. A common treatment plan for a single complaint usually involves six to twelve treatments, planned out over a few months. A typical session entails lying still while approximately five to twenty needles are inserted into various areas of the body. For the majority of cases, the needles will be left in place for ten to twenty minutes.
Unlike needles used to give vaccines or other pharmaceutical injections, the ultra-thin filaments used in acupuncture are extremely fine, about twice the width of a single hair. In a typical session, the skin is first sterilized with alcohol and the needles are inserted, frequently with a plastic guide tube. Needles may be manipulated in various ways, including spinning, flicking, or moving up and down relative to the skin. Often, the needles are stimulated by hand in order to cause a dull, localized, aching sensation that is called “de-qi“, as well as "needle grasp," a tugging feeling felt by the acupuncturist and generated by a mechanical interaction between the needle and skin.

Once de-qi is achieved, further techniques might be utilized which aim to "influence" the de-qi; for example, by certain manipulation the de-qi sensation can be conducted from the needling site towards more distant sites of the body.

The skill level of the acupuncturist may influence how painful the needle insertion is, and a sufficiently skilled practitioner may be able to insert the needles without causing any pain. Many of our acupuncture patients are surprised to discover that acupuncture involves little or no pain. Some patients even describe their treatments as relaxing.
At ACN Wellness, we offer a full range of health and wellness services in addition to acupuncture services including herbal formula, yoga and QiGong, massage therapy, nutrition guidance and mind-body counseling.
Acupuncture can be effective as a primary treatment therapy or as part of an integrated approach. Our clinical practitioners are licensed acupuncturists and have extensive knowledge and training in the use of acupuncture as a primary treatment therapy or as part of a comprehensive integrated treatment plan.
Dr. Francisco Fernandez is one of the best doctors who utilizes Diversified Technique, Activator, Acupuncture, and Flexion/Distraction. With these techniques he is able to gently and effectively treat back pain, sciatica, neck pain, shoulder pain, headaches, sports injuries, motor vehicle injuries, and work-related injuries.
Call the front office and schedule your appointment and begin your path to healing today!

Friday, December 26, 2014

ACN Nutrition Part 2

With current banking woes and financial instability, Americans need to begin investing in themselves. All the money in the world is useless without one’s health to enjoy it. Sometimes paying out of pocket to get additional preventive health services that are only partially covered by insurance is worth the investment.

"Health is wealth" is a great motto by which to live. Many complementary medical items and services need to be reintroduced into every day life so that you can "live younger". Supplements, vitamins, osteopathic doctors, prolotherapists (people who practice prolotherapy, use an injection technique that stimulates growth of cells and tissue that in turn stabilize and strengthen weakened joints, cartilage, ligaments and tendons), chiropractors, and preventive- aging doctors are often only partially covered by your current insurance. There is no better time to put increased importance on your health through prevention than now. In the larger picture of things, your mind, body, and spirit are the only "sure bet" investment. It’s worth paying out of pocket so that you may optimize your health.

A health care facility should evaluate the toxins in your body so that the doctor can give you advice as to how and what to eliminate from your environment or foods. This personalized medical aspect is an evaluation that is typically underemphasized given our home and workplace exposure to potentially harmful chemicals everyday in our food, air, and water. Your health care facility should know how to use natural tonics, supplements, and foods to purify your body and blood of these harmful toxins. This will help to reduce a dangerous killer called "silent inflammation" as your body wages war at a microscopic cellular level against these agents of disease. These toxins can increase your risk for heart attack, stroke, cancer, and autoimmune diseases (lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, inflammatory bowel disease, etc.) as they potentially cause silent inflammation that you do not feel until it is too late. A health care facility should know how some important health markers including blood and urine pH should be tested and evaluated. It is vitally important to choose a preventive-aging physician to recognize how manipulating these basic perimeters subtly through diet and exercise can optimize your mood, energy, and health.

One of the greatest toxin reservoirs in the body is the stored residue in your colon. This is the last stop in your digestive system, and the undigested pieces of food and waste sometimes are not eliminated properly. This waste can build up like a clogged pipe in your kitchen sink. The western diet of Americans is filled with foods that slowly clog the pipes of our colons, causing decay, which then leads to silent inflammation. This can impact your overall health and lead to premature disease. Colon cleansing via fasting dates back centuries to our ancestor’s religious and cultural rituals to rid the body of impurities. This has slowly been de-emphasized in our current society, and thus we have lost all the medical benefits associated with this ritual. You should choose a health facility that uses this approach to re-vitalize your colon. Various modified fasts including raw diets and juice-fasts can be individualized so that each person gets a customized way to improve their digestive health.

Call 703-729-5600 to learn how the staff at ACN Wellness can help you integrate a nutrition management program into your overall wellness plan.