Functional Medicine

What is Functional Medicine?

Functional Medicine is a branch of medicine that evolved out of the healthcare needs of the 21st century. Current conventional medicine is disease-focused, and diagnosis and treatment are formulated around the standard sets of symptoms that are associated with that particular disease. Functional Medicine is patient-focused, addressing the whole person rather than an isolated set of symptoms. This approach is seen to be more compatible with the ailments and chronic conditions that are becoming increasingly prevalent today. This is due to the fact that most conditions that drive patients to seek healthcare these days result from multiple factors deriving from lifestyle factors, environment, and genetic predispositions. These conditions are characteristically chronic, having been developing over a long-term period. Unfortunately, standard medical practices are not personalized enough to address all these factors as medications are aimed to tackle a specific agent of disease.

Functional Medicine practitioners spend extensive time with their patients, looking into their histories, lifestyle, and environment. FM practitioners have a full understanding of genetic science, systems biology, and how environmental and lifestyle factors influence the emergence and progression of disease. They recognize and address the biochemical individuality of each patient. The patient and physician relationship is a therapeutic partnership.

Conventional medicine is focused more towards early detection of disease, rather than preventative care. Treatment for such acute diseases typically involve medication or other invasive medical practices that are not customized to the patient but rather the symptoms. These medications are often taken over an indefinite period of time, incurring high costs all the while not addressing the underlying cause of the problem. It is not uncommon that long-term use of such drugs have actually contributed to the development or aggravation of the patient’s condition. Functional Medicine is categorized as holistic and integrative, providing a more sustainable course of treatment that is solely geared toward addressing the root issue all the while promoting lifestyle changes that are necessary for the patient’s overall health. FM practitioners will discover precursors, triggers, and mediators to the signs, symptoms, and behaviors exhibited.

What does Functional Medicine course of treatment entail?

After the extensive initial intake of the patient where the lifestyle factors, habits, environmental exposures, and a multitude of other information is collected; the patient may be asked to complete further questionnaires on additional topics. These questionnaires enable the clinician to gather comprehensive and in-depth health information.

Discovering which biological processes are functioning properly and, especially, which are not are cornerstone to the Functional Medicine. As a result, laboratory tests are often recommended, and the clinician will determine which are necessary. Lab tests can include bloodwork, urine analysis, and even stool analysis. Such labs are essential to determining heavy metal toxicity, allergies, hormonal imbalances, adrenal depletions, and a myriad of other underlying biochemical status.

Treatments may include detoxification programs, nutritional supplements, therapeutic diets, and counseling on lifestyle management. Due to its integrative approach, Functional Medicine practitioners may elect to include certain drugs, although less common.

Lower Extremity Care

Foot – Ankle – Knee Clinic in Suwanee GA

Do you suffer from foot pain, ankle pain, or knee pain in Suwanee, GA? We all use our feet, ankles, and knees constantly. In fact, the joints in these areas are among the most mobile and frequently used in our bodies. This sets the stage for a wide range of possible injuries and sources of pain. The stability and function of our feet, ankles, and knees are, therefore, considered the “foundation” for our health. Pain and injury in these areas can result from a variety of factors including, overuse from the daily grind of work, a car accident, athletic competition, wearing ill-fitting shoes, and even old age. Whether immediate or gradual, pain and discomfort indicates muscle, bone, or nerve damage or irritation.

You may even be experiencing pain in your hips, pelvic, and spine because your feet, the foundation for your body, are not in balance. An imbalance with your feet will cause rotation in the knees, pelvic, and hips and ultimately affect your spinal stability. Such rotation and tilting prevent these structures from being able to move and function optimally, causing wear and tear that eventually lead to problems of their own.

Due to the individual complexity of the feet, ankle, and knees, it is important that you see someone who is trained specifically in these areas. Dr. Michael Hwang has used his expertise to successfully treat thousands of patients with their foot, ankle, and knee pain. He has become known in the local medical community as the expert to seek out for fast, effective, and lasting relief when all other methods have failed! He combines his knowledge and understanding of each structure and their training in treating sprained ligaments, damaged tendons and injured muscles to restore and keep your body at its optimal health!

What you can expect at our Foot-Ankle-Knee Clinic

Our chiropractor will use a detailed and complete approach to figure out what is causing your pain.  Pain perceived in the foot, ankle, and/or knee requires us to examine all related anatomical components, including the low back, pelvis, and hip. The state of your foot, ankle, and knee have a direct influence on the structural integrity of your low back, pelvis, and hip. Pain can be referred from these other structures in certain conditions, and they may also be treated in order to maximize the best long-term outcome.

We will conduct a comprehensive medical history, physical examination, and x-ray analysis in order to reach an accurate diagnosis of your condition. Our goal is to get to the root cause of your pain and symptoms; not just give you temporary relief.

Chiropractic treatment for your foot, ankle, and knee pain

In most cases where pain is perceived, there is some degree of inflammation and spasm present. Inflammation is more severe if the pain is caused by sudden trauma, such as a sports injury or a fall. Ice application may be implemented to reduce the inflammation and spasm. As part of the first stage of your care, your treatment protocol may include soft-tissue therapy, such as ultrasound, Class IV Laser, and electric muscle stimulation. These therapies are effective in reducing inflammation, reducing pain, reducing adhesions, and soft-tissue regeneration.

Your Suwanee chiropractor will perform very specific manipulation and mobilization of the joint and related surrounding structures to improve movement and function, thereby reducing pain. At Sugarloaf Pain & Rehab, your doctors are further trained in advanced soft-tissue therapies including, Active Release Technique (ART) and Trigenics. These therapeutic techniques are proven to quickly and effectively eliminate scar tissue while also reprogramming the communication between your brain and the affected body region to quickly relieve pain and increase muscular performance.

If your foot pain, ankle pain, and (or) knee pain is a chronic issue rather than a result of sudden trauma, these advanced therapies are especially suitable for treating your condition. Long-term conditions and pain is in part due to the accumulation of scar tissue that’s been restricting the musculoskeletal structures, which in turn aggravate all the related structures and create more issues and pain.

Common Causes of Lower Extremity Conditions:



Nerve Compression in low back, hip, and thigh

Referred pain from low back and hip

Biomechanical dysfunction

If you are experiencing pain and discomfort in your foot, ankle, or knee, call to schedule an appointment today! Don’t let pain hold your back from your favorite activities any longer.