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Loren Fishman, MD
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LOREN FISHMAN, MD is Medical Director of Manhattan Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation in New York City, author of seven books and author or editor of more than 70 academic articles, and a world-recognized pioneer in the treatment of piriformis syndrome and rotator cuff tear and an expert in curing back pain. He is Associate Editor of Topics in Geriatric Rehabilitation, on the staff at Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons and a past president of the New York Society of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.

Dr. Fishman has written four books about yoga and medical conditions. They are: Relief Is In the Stretch: Cure Back Pain With Yoga (with Carol Ardman, WW Norton, 2006), Yoga for Multiple Sclerosis (with Eric Small, Demos Press, 2007), Yoga for Osteoarthritis (with Ellen Saltonstall, WW Norton, 2008), and Yoga for Osteoporosis (with Ellen Saltonstall, coming in March, 2010).

Other books include: Back Pain: How to Relieve Low Back Pain and Sciatica (with Carol Ardman, WW Norton, 1999), Sciatica Solutions (with Carol Ardman, WW Norton, 2007) and Functional Electrodiagnosis (forthcoming from Springer). He is currently working on Trust: The spiritual impulse after Darwin.

After graduating from Christ Church, Oxford, Dr. Fishman spent a year in Pune, Inda, studying Yoga with BKS Iyengar, attending every public and private class and taking daily instruction. At that time, Mr. Iyengar gave Dr. Fishman permission to teach his Yoga. Dr. Fishman then went to Rush Medical School, did a residency in a Tufts-Harvard program, and served as Chief Resident in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Throughout his career, when appropriate, he has incorporated Yoga into his medical practice and has watched its healing effects. He is also an enthusiastic practitioner himself and has been doing Yoga daily since 1973.

Dr. Fishman has been included in numerous “Best Doctors” lists and has lectured in the United States and abroad. He is an officer of the Manhattan Institute for Cancer Research, with his wife in New York City.

Entries by Loren Fishman, MD

Back Pain: Is It All in Your Mind? No, and Yoga Helps

(8) Comments | Posted October 15, 2013 | 12:41 PM

There was a time when the common wisdom went along with the teachings of John Sarno, M.D.: that low back pain -- and much of all spinal pain -- results from repressed emotion and unresolved issues, especially anger. Patients were encouraged to stop physical therapy and chiropractic and to write...

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Beyond the Pill: Physicians' Trend for 2013

(38) Comments | Posted January 9, 2013 | 7:40 AM

One of the big health trends for 2013 is drug companies and insurance giants looking beyond drugs patients take to behavioral, "outcome-based" approaches -- like United Health Group's partnership with YMCAs and Walgreens for a program to help prevent and control diabetes. Money-saving ideas may also be health-creating ideas. And...

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Yoga Fixes From Head To Toes: Poses For 8 Common Conditions

(10) Comments | Posted August 13, 2012 | 8:20 AM

Scientific research into what medical conditions yoga can heal and how it does its work is blossoming. Last year the National Institutes of Health funded 30 clinical trials covering everything from yoga for back pain to cognitive function, blood pressure, irritable bowel, and cardiovascular disease risk. Others in my community...

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Mix and Match Several Alternative Therapies to Ease Back Pain

(44) Comments | Posted December 7, 2011 | 7:38 AM

Non-invasive alternative therapies are often compatible with conventional treatments for back pain, have a relatively lower cost and can sometimes be done at home. Trying one or a combination (medicine, yoga and pilates, for instance) may significantly reduce pain. Remember, alternative therapies are not a substitute for medical diagnosis and...

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Another Health Benefit Of Yoga: Easing Back Pain

(11) Comments | Posted October 28, 2011 | 8:25 AM

When a major medical journal such as the Archives of Internal Medicine publishes a clinical trial showing the effects of yoga for low back pain, the yoga community (and increasingly, the medical establishment) sits up and takes notice. The study, which came out yesterday, was long awaited and...

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A New Yoga-Inspired Technique To Help Your Shoulder Injury

(11) Comments | Posted September 22, 2011 | 8:12 AM

A painful surgery with a long recovery time and often disappointing results costing in excess of $12,000 is the standard treatment for rotator cuff tear, an upper extremity injury so common it showed up in almost 61 percent of shoulders in one study. Many patients with rotator cuff...

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How To Help Back Joint Pain

(3) Comments | Posted June 22, 2011 | 8:32 AM

Yesterday, several people called my Columbus Circle office with urgent appointment requests. It turned out three of them had a common, suddenly severely painful condition some doctors don't believe exists -- sacroiliac joint derangement.

Like several other back problems, sacroiliac joint derangement is difficult to diagnose and while...

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New Method Diagnoses Chronic Unexplained Nerve Pain

(0) Comments | Posted June 6, 2011 | 5:14 PM

Last Tuesday, a 40-year-old communications expert came to me for help with the intense pain in his back and awful, lightning-like sensations going down his leg. It was worst when he walked and not so bad when he rode his bicycle. An MRI showed two problems: spinal stenosis (a narrowing...

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6 Healing Tips for Back Pain

(18) Comments | Posted May 23, 2011 | 8:24 AM

Back pain is a common condition that most of us will experience at some point in our lives. Here are a few tips that may relieve the pain.

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Carpal Tunnel Treatment: Clamping Down On The Problem

(4) Comments | Posted May 16, 2011 | 6:00 AM

A couple of years ago, a friend of mine, who was head writer for a television soap opera, came to me saying she needed to write more than 40 pages of script every week, but she could not push down the keys on the computer. Her right thumb, index finger,...

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The 10 Commandments of Back Pain

(128) Comments | Posted May 10, 2011 | 8:14 AM

Twenty years of treating people whose backs ache, trying to help thousands find its cause and deal with its crippling challenges, I have developed my own set of ideas for what to do when your back hurts, when you have a pain in the butt or when nasty sensations radiate...

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Complementary Osteoarthritis Treatment: What Works, What Doesn't

(28) Comments | Posted May 4, 2011 | 8:41 AM

There are many types of arthritis, but osteoarthritis -- the wear-and-tear-condition that affects us all to one degree or another as we grow older -- is mainly a problem with the cartilage within joints. When a joint works properly, bones, bathed in lubricating synovial fluid, slide along each other smoothly....

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Osteoporosis Drugs: The Good, the Bad, the Natural Alternatives

(40) Comments | Posted April 25, 2011 | 8:47 AM

Women (and men!) of a certain age who have been diagnosed with osteoporsis are frequently prescribed a bisphosphonate like Fosamax, Boniva, Actonel, Altevia or Reclast. In 2009 more than 5 million prescriptions for these drugs were written. But, as time has gone on, the dangers of long-term use of these...

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Piriformis Syndrome: A Pain In The...Back

(35) Comments | Posted April 11, 2011 | 8:16 AM

About 5 million of the 26 million Americans who suffer from low back pain each year have piriformis syndrome. Piriformis syndrome produces an intense, sometimes crippling pain deep in the butt cheek, usually just on one side. It's caused by jogging for miles, marathon sessions with the computer and with...

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Alternative Therapies for Back Pain

(166) Comments | Posted April 6, 2011 | 8:43 AM

Your back is killing you. You've gone to your internist. You've gotten a diagnosis and possibly medications and an injection. Still it hurts. You're ready to try just about anything. Alternative therapies are effective and can often be used in conjunction with conventional medical treatments.

Just as...

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Pilot Study And New Book Prove Yoga's Benefits In Treating Osteoporosis

(7) Comments | Posted December 8, 2009 | 1:43 PM

As a physician and advocate of integrative medicine, I have shown that Yoga can improve upon or substitute for traditional Western medical treatments for osteoporosis, which affects 200 million people worldwide. And I have co-authored "Yoga for Osteoporosis" (scheduled for publication by WW Norton on March 29, 2010) to provide...

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