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An Integrative Approach to Crohn's Disease

Karen Werner, PhD, MEd's picture
BA in Health Arts and Sciences Blog
An Integrative Approach to Crohn's Disease

Four years ago, Carina Rockland (BA HAS '13) was hospitalized for six weeks with an unknown diagnosis. She had severe abdominal pains and was malnourished, vulnerable to septic shock, and showing no signs of improvement. Just after Carina’s last surgery, weak and perilously underweight, a gifted acupuncturist visited her hospital room and helped Carina feel the first glimmers of healing.

After a serious relapse that forced her to be homebound for over a year and a half, Carina was eventually diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease, a form of Inflammatory Bowel Disease. In fact, out of the last four years, Carina was completely homebound for nearly two and a half of them. Crohn’s is a chronic and debilitating disease, though popular awareness of it is still minimal. While there is currently no cure, Carina is now in remission. Through research, trial, and error, she has developed a treatment regime that combines a biologic drug called Remicade with bodywork, a strict diet and supplements, exercise, and acupuncture.

Carina is now passionate about sharing what she has learned with others, particularly those who have Crohn’s disease.  Drawing on an exhaustive review of scientific studies, interviews with practitioners, and personal experience, Carina is writing a book about treating Crohn’s. She underscores the value of an integrative approach –combining the best of allopathic and alternative healing modalities.

Carina did prior undergraduate work at Hampshire College and at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN), where she received certification as a Health Coach. Thanks to a new institutional agreement between Goddard and IIN, this training and certification has translated into a semester of Goddard credits for Carina. She is currently training in massage therapy and, at the end of this academic year, Carina will be completing her BA degree in Health Arts & Sciences (BA HAS) with a book manuscript about treating Crohn’s in hand.


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