Albuquerque Prenatal Massage During Labor

Stages of labor: Baby, it’s time!

We were excited to see this article at the Mayo Clinic site today, because this very question came up in our practice recently. Albuquerque Prenatal Massage Therapist Karla Linden was asked whether it was appropriate to do a massage session after labor had begun. The patient was delighted that the answer was yes, and a wonderful session occurred that was beneficial in many ways to both the mother and the soon to arrive child.

Have questions about Prenatal Massage? Call Karla at 340-1107 for a free consultation.


Albuquerque Vegetarian Restaurants

There’s a darned good reason why Albuquerque was named by PETA as the number three large city in America for vegetarian food.  With the exception of a few evil BBQ places most of the restaurants here offer awesome vegetarian and sometimes vegan choices.  Because we’re so busy, and because massage therapist Karla
is committed to a healthy vegetarian lifestyle we have a meal at one of Albuquerque’s great vegetarian friendlyrestaurants nearly every day; here are some of our favorites: 
Thai Vegan:  Hands down our favorite vegan choice, the chef here greets and spoils us with amazing, almost impossible to believe choices.  Everything is fresh, creative
and BAM! seasoned to thrill.  We could eat here every day and never get bored.  We always begin with (soy) Chicken Satay, and then usually Karla has one of the
many curry choices, and I love the cashew stir fry.  This will be your new favorite. 
On Osuna near San Mateo.  Click here to check out the menu.

Flying Star: I’ve been in love with Flying Star for two decades, so I’m grateful they’re committed to having great vegetarian and vegan choices.  The quality is beyond reproach and remarkably consistent.  We eat at one of the many Star locations two or three times a week.  Karla often has the Buddha Bowl or the Greek Goddess Salad.  I lean towards the Veggie Burger or their special menu choices.  An added bonus is that some locations have “Petios” where Lulu the Massage Dog gets to join us for a meal.  There are several locations, all with a unique hipster vibe and a good chance of running into someone we know.  Click here for the menu.

Annapurna’s World Vegetarian Cafe: No list of healthy veg friendly choices would be complete without Annapurna.  The locations don’t work that well for us so sadly we don’t have it on heavy rotation.  That’s a shame because this independant, woman owned home of Ayurvedic cuisine is always excellent.  Dr. Andrew Weil raves about it, and eats there whenever he’s in ABQ or Santa Fe.  three locations; click for the menu.
Taj Mahal Cuisine of India:   We’re partial to the Taj Mahal since it’s on our “rabbit trail” between work and home, however we are head over heels in love with Malai Kofta, which is cheese and vegetable dumplings cooked in a cream and almond sauce.  I could seriously eat this every meal for the rest of my life.  I’d always been a
Saag Peneer fan, and the Taj does that well, however I now get the Malai Kofta every time.  The charming hostess (owner?) always makes us feel special.  It’s our home away from home…well, if home were India…   
Click for the Menu.

So those are our favorites, however we will make this page a work in progress so check back from time to time.   Before we go I want to note how grateful I am to have Trader Joe’s, La Mantanita Co-Op, Whole Foods, and especially the awesome, numerous farmer’s markets here.  Albuquerque is an awesome place to get healthy and be healthy and respectful of all God’s creatures.   WE LOVE WHERE WE LIVE!
Masterpiece Medical Massage is commited to being a part of your healthy lifestyle.  Call today for an appointment and a copy of our latest book on feeling GREAT:  340-1107

3 Things You Must Do BEFORE Your Auto Accident

Statistically, it’s not a matter of “if” you’ll be in a crash.  Even the most careful driver will be involved in a significant crash at least once.  I’ve met people that have a crash or two per year—that weren’t their fault.  The best time to minimize the impact a crash can have on your life is before it happens.  These three things will make all the difference:

 1.  Cover YOU and your passengers with the right insurance.  Don’t pick an insurance company based on who has the cheapest rate.  Find out which companies pay without hassle and treat you with respect when the time of need occurs.  Fortunately, many companies who have good rates, like State Farm, Geico and Progressive, AND are caring and more generous than others when you’ve been in a crash—even when it’s your fault.  In my state, New Mexico, nearly one out of three drivers don’t have insurance, plus we have a problem with hit and runs, so make certain that YOU will be covered.  NEVER waive uninsured motorist coverage and ALWAYS BUY MEDPAY.  MedPay covers you and your passenger’s medical bills quickly and in full—even if the crash is your fault.  MedPay is crucial is you want alternative medical care such as massage, chiropractic, counseling or acupuncture.  Some clinics, like Masterpiece Integrative Medicine  in Albuquerque, will provide care with no co-pay when MedPay is available.   Finally, choose the highest insurance limits you can afford.

2.  You need a crash kit.  Put two copies of all the docs (license, registration, proof of insurance, contact info) you would need to give the police and the other driver in an envelope in the glovebox.  Even in a little crash you’ll be dazed and grateful this info is all together and easy to find.  Keep a flashlight, camera, knife and notepad handy as well as a spare cellphone—yes, a spare: every phone, even without a service contract, will call 911.  Keep an old phone in the glovebox with a charger.  I also keep a blanket, water and snacks in the trunk, along with a basic toolkit.

3.  Be a “zen” driver.  Slow down, take a breath, put some space between you and the next car, and be aware of what your options would be if the car in front of you came to a sudden stop.  Minimize distractions as you drive,  choose a car with a good crash rating, and wear your seatbelt.  Did you ever notice that the dumb kid who impatiently races around you on the road ends up right beside you again at the next light?  Yeah, not worth it.

 I deal daily with people whose lives have been painfully and rudely disrupted by an auto accident.  Doing these three things will minimize the loss for you and your passengers when a crash happens.

Kelly Vickers, JD is the author of the book INJURED IN A CRASH?  What you don’t know CAN hurt you.   He is a mediator and holistic counselor to families in crisis.

Masterpiece Massage: Home of Lulu the Therapy Dog

My business partner and I have had the great honor of adding Lulu the Therapy Dog to our practice.  We adopted Lulu from the local Boston Terrier Rescue Association.  When she was removed from a puppy mill the vet said she was so thin that she was just a day or so away from death.  At two years old her life had been largely spent in a cage, having litter after litter of puppies.  Frankly we took a great chance on her…. her past life was not a particularly promising preparation for her being a great dog.   We are therefore delighted  that she is more than just a cute face.  She is the most loving and docile dog I’ve ever known.  Everyone who encounters her seems to be swept away by her charm.   In my medical massage practice many patients have asked that Lulu be allowed to stay in the room… there is something soothing about being in the presence of a very sweet and contented puppy.  In my partner’s mediation practice Lulu has several times been held and cuddled by divorcing spouses who were weeping through the stress of making very hard decisions.

With the exception of the occasional flatulence (a trait of Boston Terriers) she is just about the perfect dog.  We look forward to introducing you to this compassionate addition to our practice.

(We do need to note that while Lulu is awesome with people that she is still learning proper behavior with other dogs;  we welcome our patients/clients to bring their pets, however let us know so we can secure Lulu.  Also we are glad to accommodate those who have puppy allergies.  Finally we want to clarify that while Lulu functions perfectly in the role of Therapy Dog that a national certification as such is in process… so technically she’s an intern.)

Albuquerque Massage Therapist Karla Linden, NMT, LMT offers medically oriented massage therapy for people injured in auto sccidents  and also focuses on women’s health issues including pre-natal massage and Maya Abdominal Massage.  See or for more information.  Also, please see


Frankly, we can’t hear this enough. Our day is filled with messages from the media telling us what we lack to be beautiful—to be enough. Fuck that. Join us in the counter-attack. Imagine a world where we all believed—knew the present truth—that we are beautiful (or handsome if you prefer).
you are beautiful
Here’s the plan: get some post-it notes and a sharpie; leave messages of affirmation everywhere you go. OK, maybe we can’t change the whole world, yet we can change at least one person’s world, at least for a moment. Most important, everytime you/we/I write these affirmations and overtly share them, it bathes our own soul with the truth: WE ARE BEAUTIFUL. WE ARE ENOUGH. THE COLLECTIVE SOUL SEES ME AND SMILES.

Massage for Fibromyalgia

Robert Shmerling, M.D., an associate professor at Harvard Medical School and the chief of rheumatology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, in Boston, says that he often recommends alternative treatments, such as acupuncture and massage, to his fibromyalgia patients.

Masterpiece Integrative Medicine has worked with many people with fibromyalgia over the last twenty years.  Our patients report that regular therapeutic massage helps them tremendously with their pain and stress.  Karla Linden, NMT, LMT, our featured therapist, has extensive medical training in chronic pain and fatigue.   We are also pleased to announce that Dr. Clay Collins has joined our practice.  Clay Collins, DOM, can provide a variety of traditional chinese medical treatments for fibromyalgia, including acupuncture, acupressure and the Asian massage technique known as Tui Na.   Please call our office manager at 340-1107 today to schedule an appointment for your chronic pain and fatigue issues.

Study by the American College of Physician, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine

  • Academia and Clinic

A Review of the Evidence for the Effectiveness, Safety, and Cost of Acupuncture, Massage Therapy, and Spinal Manipulation for Back Pain

  1. Daniel C. Cherkin, PhD;
  2. Karen J. Sherman, PhD;
  3. Richard A. Deyo, MD, MPH; and
  4. Paul G. Shekelle, MD, PhD

  1. From Group Health Cooperative and University of Washington, Seattle, Washington; Greater Los Angeles Veterans Affairs Healthcare System, Los Angeles, California; and RAND, Santa Monica, California.


Background: Few treatments for back pain are supported by strong scientific evidence. Conventional treatments, although widely used, have had limited success. Dissatisfied patients have, therefore, turned to complementary and alternative medical therapies and providers for care for back pain.Purpose: To provide a rigorous and balanced summary of the best available evidence about the effectiveness, safety, and costs of the most popular complementary and alternative medical therapies used to treat back pain.

Data Sources: MEDLINE, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Controlled Trials Register.

 Study Selection: Systematic reviews of randomized, controlled trials (RCTs) that were published since 1995 and that evaluated acupuncture, massage therapy, or spinal manipulation for nonspecific back pain and RCTs published since the reviews were conducted.

Data Extraction: Two authors independently extracted data from the reviews (including number of RCTs, type of back pain, quality assessment, and conclusions) and original articles (including type of pain, comparison treatments, sample size, outcomes, follow-up intervals, loss to follow-up, and authors’ conclusions).

 Data Synthesis: Because the quality of the 20 RCTs that evaluated acupuncture was generally poor, the effectiveness of acupuncture for treating acute or chronic back pain is unclear. The three RCTs that evaluated massage reported that this therapy is effective for subacute and chronic back pain. A meta-regression analysis of the results of 26 RCTs evaluating spinal manipulation for acute and chronic back pain reported that spinal manipulation was superior to sham therapies and therapies judged to have no evidence of a benefit but was not superior to effective conventional treatments.

 Conclusions: Initial studies have found massage to be effective for persistent back pain. Spinal manipulation has small clinical benefits that are equivalent to those of other commonly used therapies. The effectiveness of acupuncture remains unclear. All of these treatments seem to be relatively safe. Preliminary evidence suggests that massage, but not acupuncture or spinal manipulation, may reduce the costs of care after an initial course of therapy.

Full Text here:

See also: and links to further corrobarating studies at that site.

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