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Meet Dr. Mark Friedman

Dr. Mark Friedman, Swampscott Chiropractic

Dr. Mark Friedman

Chiropractic focuses on structure and function…”

From the time I was in 8th or 9th grade to the time I went to college, I thought being a dentist was my destiny. Dentistry, to me, was like creating sculpture in someone’s mouth and I loved to sculpt, or making models, and these skills would surely translate to my future profession.

When I went to college, everything was great until sophomore year when a friend of mine, with whom I played baseball, hurt his back-while playing basketball – oddly enough. He eventually found his way to a chiropractor because nothing else was helping him, and the chiropractor fixed him. His problem resolved, without drugs or surgery and he was back playing baseball in no time. I remember him telling me that the chiropractor focused on structure and function. I researched the field and made the decision not to pursue a career in dentistry, but to become a chiropractor.

Once I made the decision, I had to let my parents know what I was doing. When I told my parents that I had changed my career path, needless to say they were a little disappointed, because chiropractors didn’t have the greatest reputation as far as they were concerned. I remember my parents giving me a look of confusion and saying, “You’re going to be a WHAT?” As if I just told them that I was going into some shady profession. At the time, my father was very ill with lung cancer, and he was spending a lot of time in Mass General Hospital recovering from various surgeries. It was,’t until my mother spoke with many of the nurses, and she heard the good things that they had to say about chiropractic that she accepted my career choice as a good one.

Education & Training

I was born and raised Marblehead. After graduating with honors from Marblehead High School, I attended Clark University in Worcester where I was a pre-med student while playing intercollegiate baseball and hockey. I did my chiropractic training at Los Angeles College of Chiropractic and although it was difficult, loved every minute of it. My favorite classes were Anatomy and Palpation/Biomechanics.

After receiving my Doctor of Chiropractic I went into private practice with a doctor in Saugus, Massachusetts, Michael Liberti, who taught me how to really care for patients. Dr. Liberti went through the Diplomate in Neurology program taught by Dr. Frederick Carrick and it completely changed his approach working with patients. I saw how chiropractic changed when looking at patients from a functional neurological perspective and decided that I needed to learn the same approach.

From 1993 to 1995 I took the program through Logan College of Chiropractic; and then in August of 1995 sat the Diplomate examinations (a four day test), passed and was granted my Diplomate, which I maintain through continuing education every year. In addition I have taken a program in Functional Medicine which integrates with the Functional Neurology that I have been doing for years.

Since 2005 I have been practicing Manipulation Under Anesthesia at the Pain and Wellness Center. My training and treatments make me unique among chiropractors in this area. Presently, I remain the only chiropractor actively performing Manipulation Under Anesthesia in Massachusetts.

I Want Patients to be Comfortable

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There’s a lot of satisfaction being a chiropractor knowing that when I treat a patient and they get better, it’s not because of a medication, it’s because I got to the root of the problem and directly helped their body change. I want patients to be comfortable with my practice. I will not “hard sell you. If you treat with us, you can rest assured that you will receive a treatment program designed to resolve your problem as fast as possible, with the most appropriate treatment. I have been a patient in other doctors’ offices. I understand the insecurity and concern that comes with having a health care problem. I not only tell you what is wrong and how it needs to be treated, but take into consideration the implications of the information I’m providing. What are the costs of treatment? How much of your time is it going to take?

I’ve had many patients over the years, but some just seem to stick out in my mind. I had a patient come in with a severe case of dizziness. He couldn’t afford to stop working because he had a wife and 2 small children at home. He thought he was going to have the dizziness forever. After ruling out significant neurological conditions or metabolic problems, I performed something called the Epley Maneuver and almost immediately his dizziness was virtually gone. A few more visits over the next week and his problem was entirely gone.

Manipulation under anesthesia is a wonderful procedure and I’m fortunate enough to be able to do it. I was referred a patient named Josh who had chronic back pain. He had several interventional pain procedures over the 10 years that he suffered with his pain, from facet injections to epidural shots –and he was on Vicodin constantly, which brought his pain from 10 down to a manageable 5 on a daily basis. He underwent MUA and after the first two procedures was still in a lot of pain and had to be medicated by the anesthesiologist just to sleep after the second day. We talked and I told him to hang in there and that the third treatment would make the difference for him. He had his third session, and a couple of days later, both he and his father walked into the office and came right over and hugged me because he had no pain and could walk without a limp for the first time in over 10 years.

When Away From RightSPINE Chiropractic Neurology

I am married to my best friend and have 2 wonderful boys, Ethan and Pierce. We live locally and are involved in many community activities. The kids play soccer, baseball, football and whatever else they can. We ski weekends and that truly is a great family activity. My wife and I are avid Patriots fans and love tailgating almost as much as skiing.

I think watching your kids grow and change is the greatest gift, it can be taken for granted. My oldest son was born almost 3 months early and it was touch and go for a while. He’s more than fine now and is a great student and a funny kid. I thank the medical profession every day for the lifesaving procedures for premature infants. I believe that for many conditions medical care misses the crux of the problem, and that’s where chiropractic care comes in.

I receive chiropractic treatment at least monthly, sometimes a little more often if I’ve been working out hard, or sometimes a little less if I’ve been busy (just trying to be honest). I take flax seed oil everyday and avoid red meat that is grain fed and eat only brown or wild rice. I gave up coffee two years ago and drink only green tea now. I run 2-3x per week, usually about a 5k run. My wife receives chiropractic care regularly, as she runs more than me and has a mild scoliosis in her lower back.

I check my kids from time to time but don’t have them on a formal treatment schedule. I think treatment of children is appropriate for things like ADD, ADHD, and other childhood disorders (see the book Disconnected Kids by Dr. Robert Mellilo), but I think at times my colleagues are too aggressive when it comes to children. Patients often ask me if I use medication. I have no problem with the occasional use of over the counter medications, as long as they are not used regularly for pain control. If pain is frequent, seek treatment to resolve it,by whatever profession you choose, don’t just cover the problem.

Well, that’s certainly enough about me. Thanks for visiting our site. Contact RightSPINE Chiropractic Neurology today to make an appointment.