Clinic Location: 4737 N. Clark Street, Ground Floor
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Contact and Clinic Hours

Appointments are available on the following days each week. Please call the landline at 773.506.8971 or email at to schedule.

Sunday: 2 – 7PM
Monday: 2 – 8PM
Tuesday: 2 – 8PM
Wednesday: 12 - 6PM
Thursday: 2 – 8PM

Some Health Issues We Treat

Entries in breathing (2)


Asthma and Chinese Medicine

At the Northside Holistic Center we see many respiratory problems, ranging from acute diseases like colds, flus and bronchitises to more chronic issues like asthma. Bronchial asthma effects more than 17 million people in the USA and, by some estimates, 7.7% of the population. Over the last half a century, rates of asthma have been dramatically escalating with the Center for Disease control reporting that the rates had increased by 75% between 1980 and 1994.Consequently we are seeing many more cases in the clinic.

Satisfyingly, Chinese medicine can be quite effective in mitigating asthma for our patients and most clients find themselves to very satisfied with this holistic and long lasting approach. Asthma, like most conditions in the Chinese medical view of the body must be differentiated into what we term patterns. Patterns are constellations of symptoms and physical propensities which, when considered as a whole, give a trained practitioner insight into how to treat both the condition and the root of the problem simultaneously. It is what gives Chinese medicine it's considerable power in treating chronic issues, such as asthma.

Research Links on Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture and Asthma:


  • A German study on in-patient pediatric patients found significant benefit to adding acupuncture to western interventions. (an article about the study can be read here):


The addition of acupuncture to an inpatient asthma rehabilitation programme results in improvement in bronchial hyper-reactivity and reduced anxiety for paediatric patients.

In the post-treatment acupuncture group, peak expiratory flow variability (a measure of bronchial hyper-reactivity) was found to show significant improvement compared with that of control patients. In addition, the acupuncture group was found to show significantly reduced levels of perceived anxiety on discharge from hospital.


  • This article comes from a Chinese journal on pulmonary research and is titled, Effects of Acupuncture on Clinical Symptoms and  Pulmonary Function in Patients with Bronchial Asthma.  The study looks at 104 people suffering from asthma and being treated by acupuncture using a specific protocol with constitutional modifications. It concludes that acupuncture can be very useful in treating asthma, with a good immediate outcome. However the researchers also followed the study cohort for six months afterwards and was able to determine that even after treatment had ended the patients were dramatically less likely to suffer asthma attacks and used far less medication then those who had not been treated by an acupuncturist.
  • A research study from a hospital in China, following 100 patient admissions showed a dramatic effect using acupuncture to treat an acute asthma attack. While we in the USA rarely treat this situation because patients' usually already have inhalers and access to the emergency room, it is exciting to see research supporting the contention that acupuncture can be useful to treat all stages of bronchial asthma.



  • A 2006 study from the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences in Beijing is very interesting, despite being rife with the specific terminology of Chinese medicine. In essence it demonstrates a strong response to acupuncture revealed by an dramatic increase in pulmonary function and significant decrease in heart rate variability during an acute asthma attack.



  • This article is more of a biomedical discussion of how some of the acupuncture points that we might choose to treat asthma may work, from a western perspective. Still very interesting.




Mesothelioma and Acupuncture

I was contacted yesterday by the Mesolthelioma Center who asked if I wouldn't mind creating a link to their noteworthy foundation. I am all too glad to do so given the often horrific after effects of asbestos exposure in the form of mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma is a cancer of the mesothelium - the lining covering many parts of the inside of the body, in particular the outer covering of the lungs, chest wall and abdomen.  It is almost always caused by exposure to asbestos although other risk factors, such as smoking, can increase risk for disease and worsen the prognosis. Symptoms may not appear until decades after the exposure, which can often obscure the origin of the symptoms that the individual is experiencing and make the eventual diagnosis more difficult to achieve.

Symptoms of mesothelioma depend upon the area of the body affected. I have lifted the following directly from since the symptoms possible are so lengthy. However, see the Mesothelioma Center's page here for a more in-depth breakdown of the parts of the body affected and the ways in which the disease can manifest.


Symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma include weight loss and cachexia, abdominal swelling and pain due to ascites (a buildup of fluid in the abdominal cavity). Other symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma may include bowel obstruction, blood clotting abnormalities, anemia, and fever. If the cancer has spread beyond the mesothelium to other parts of the body, symptoms may include pain, trouble swallowing, or swelling of the neck or face.

These symptoms may be caused by mesothelioma or by other, less serious conditions.

Mesothelioma that affects the pleura can cause these signs and symptoms:

  • Chest wall pain
  • Pleural effusion, or fluid surrounding the lung
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue or anemia
  • Wheezing, hoarseness, or cough
  • Blood in the sputum (fluid) coughed up (hemoptysis)

In severe cases, the person may have many tumor masses. The individual may develop a pneumothorax, or collapse of the lung. The disease may metastasize, or spread, to other parts of the body.

Tumors that affect the abdominal cavity often do not cause symptoms until they are at a late stage. Symptoms include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Ascites, or an abnormal buildup of fluid in the abdomen
  • A mass in the abdomen
  • Problems with bowel function
  • Weight loss

In severe cases of the disease, the following signs and symptoms may be present:

  • Pulmonary emboli, or blood clots in the arteries of the lungs
    Severe ascites

 As I have described in other parts of this website, I often work with people with cancer - for the management of the side effects and symptoms of the chemotherapy, surgeries, and radiation therapies, as well as for immune system regulation. As such, I have seen many people going through the treatments associated with mesothelioma at the Northside Holistic Center. What the Mesothelioma Center asked me to do was to print the following code block below, which I am happy to do. Please contact them for additional information on this disease and it's associated symptoms. I would be happy to serve as an information and treatment source on the acupuncture and Chinese medical side of the equation.



Acupuncture has been linked to alleviating the nausea associated with chemotherapy and the pain incurred from the constant surgeries that cancer patients undergo. The Mesothelioma Center offers the most comprehensive and current information on asbestos exposure and a complete list of mesothelioma causes.

Another great resource is the website Mesothelioma Symptoms which gives a good sense of symptoms, treatments and resources for those working through mesothelioma.