Complementary and Alternative Medicine

The use of alternative and complementary medications and dietary supplements has become more popular in the United States in the last decade. Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) encompasses non-conventional approaches to healing, beyond traditional medicine.

Defining CAM

Complementary medicine and alternative medicine are two different approaches. Complementary medicine is any form of therapy used in combination with other alternative treatments or conventional medicine (treatments that have been scientifically tested and found to be safe and effective). Complementary therapy usually serves to relieve symptoms and improve quality of life. Alternative medicine is used alone, without recommended standard treatment.

Other people may decide to pursue either complementary or alternative therapy. It is highly recommended that you consult your physician before beginning any treatment regime, as these treatments are not scientifically tested or proven.

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