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Patients’ Use of Natural and Alternative Treatments to Manage Chronic Disease: Emerging Trends in Healthcare

Vanessa Ruiz, ND, RN-BSN
6 Hours 15 Minutes
Mar 28, 2019
PESI, Inc.
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Imagine a patient, who has been admitted to your floor, has family bring in bottles of vitamins and supplements that he has been taking. Have you felt equipped in these circumstances to really know what these natural treatments were for? Could they be beneficial? Have you felt confident in the medication teaching with these patients? With the rising trend in natural therapies, nurses and allied healthcare professionals need to be equipped with the knowledge of alternative therapies to be able to assess for medication interactions and side effects, and advocate for patients on natural or conventional therapies.

During this enlightening recording, you will also learn natural approaches to common conditions (diabetes, coronary artery disease, post-surgical management, hypertension…) as Dr. Vanessa Ruiz, Naturopathic Doctor and Registered Nurse, shares from her expertise to propel your own practice forward!

Consider This Patient Story…

A 64-year-old female patient presented with intermittent subconjunctival hemorrhaging for two months. Prior medical history positive for Hypertension with V/S 138/82, P 82. She had been taking Diovan twice daily. PT/INR, aPTT, platelet count and von Willebrand factor were WNL. Platelet aggregation was decreased. When asked what supplements were new to her, she reported taking daily multivitamins, magnesium citrate 500 mg daily and vitamin E 500 IU daily.

The patient was advised to discontinue vitamin E due to its risk for increased bleeding. After cessation, subconjunctival hemorrhaging resolved within a few weeks. Patient case studies, like this one, will be interspersed through the day so you are ready to advocate well for patients when you return to work!


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**Materials that are included in this course may include interventions and modalities that are beyond the authorized practice of your profession. As a licensed professional, you are responsible for reviewing the scope of practice, including activities that are defined in law as beyond the boundaries of practice in accordance with and in compliance with your profession's standards.  For Planning Committee disclosures, please statement above.  For speaker disclosures, please see the faculty biography.  For speaker disclosures, please see the faculty biography.

Nurses - Nurses, Nurse Practitioners, and Clinical Nurse Specialists - ANCC

PESI, Inc. is accredited as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation. Nurses completing these self-study materials will earn 6.25 contact hours. Expires: 01/21/2025.

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PESI, Inc. is a provider approved by the California Board of  Registered Nursing, Provider #: 17118 for 6.0 self-study contact hours. 

** You will need to provide your license number to PESI. PESI must have this number on file in order for your hours to be valid.

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PESI, Inc. is an approved provider by the Florida Board of  Nursing. Provider #: FBN2858. These materials qualify for 6.0 self-study contact hours.

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PESI, Inc. is an approved provider by the Iowa Board of Nursing. Provider #: 346. Nurses successfully completing these self-study materials will earn 6.3 self-study contact hours. Please email with your license number, include the title, speaker name and date. PESI must have this number on file in order for your hours to be valid.

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This self-study activity qualifies for 6.25 continuing education clock hours as required by many national, state and local licensing boards and professional organizations. Save your activity advertisement and certificate of completion, and contact your own board or organization for specific requirements.



Vanessa Ruiz, ND, RN-BSN's Profile

Vanessa Ruiz, ND, RN-BSN Related seminars and products

Vanessa Ruiz, ND, RN is a dedicated Naturopathic Physician and Registered Nurse, renowned for her holistic approach to mental health and chronic diseases. With a doctorate from Sonoran University in Tempe, AZ, and honors in nursing from Stony Brook University in NY, Dr. Ruiz blends evidence-based practices with natural treatments to provide comprehensive care for her patients. Her multifaceted background includes clinical research and extensive training in therapeutic modalities such as Homeopathy, Neurofeedback, and Mayan Medicine.

Dr. Ruiz utilizes her expertise in functional nutrition to address chronic illness and the impact of toxic stress on aging. She is deeply committed to improving the quality of life for older adults by tailoring nutrition and lifestyle strategies to enhance longevity and well-being. Her personalized approach to healthcare empowers patients to take control of their health and thrive as they age.

A national speaker on integrative health and resiliency, Dr. Ruiz has trained thousands of healthcare professionals on integrative and functional medicine, known for her ability to distill complex ideas into simple, easy-to-understand concepts for her audience. In this talk, she will share insights into the transformative power of nutrition in promoting healthy aging and managing chronic conditions.


Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Dr. Vanessa Ruiz maintains a private practice and has employment relationships with AZ Trauma Institute, Essential Therapy Training, and Trauma Healing Doc. She receives a speaking honorarium and recording royalties from PESI, Inc. Dr. Ruiz serves on the advisory board for Evergreen Certifications. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Dr. Vanessa Ruiz has no relevant non-financial relationships.

Additional Info

Access for Self-Study (Non-Interactive)

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  1. Differentiate between conventional and natural management of common illnesses.
  2. Determine the risk/benefit ratio between conventional and natural approaches to illnesses.
  3. Analyze chronic disease management using nutrition, nutritional supplementation, botanical medicine, physical medicine and energetic medicine.
  4. Evaluate the appropriateness of using natural therapies in chronic disease.
  5. Determine the clinical efficacy of vitamins/minerals in the management of chronic disease.
  6. Analyze patients' use of vitamins and herbs for common side effects and medication interactions.
  7. Choose reputable educational resources to further your knowledge of natural therapies.


Emerging Trends in Healthcare: Natural and Alternative Medicine

  • Making the case for natural medicine: When it's effective; when it's not
  • Explore different alternative modalities
  • Water therapy and energetic therapies
  • Vitamins as cofactors for biochemical pathways
  • Why minerals are important to therapeutic protocols 

Explore Evidence-Based Natural Management of Common Illnesses

  • Diabetes: Optimal diets and supplements for reducing HgBA1c
  • Arthritis: Management of chronic pain through physical medicine, water therapy, nutrition, herbs and vitamins
  • Hypertension and Congestive Heart Failure: Explore nutritional protocols, exercises and herbal supplementation to be considered in the treatment plan
  • Hypothyroidism: How nutrition, lifestyle factors, vitamin and herbal interventions can optimize thyroid hormone function
  • Insomnia: Improve sleep duration and quality through vitamin/herbal supplementation
    • Herbal/vitamin side effects with commonly used sedatives
  • Cancer: Supplements to avoid when a patient is on chemotherapy and interventions to minimize side effects of chemotherapy
  • Asthma: Nutritional and herbal interventions to minimize asthma exacerbations
  • Common Colds/Influenza​: Analyze herbal supplements that minimize symptoms, boost immune system and reduce duration of colds
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome​: Explore optimal diets, herbs and vitamins to manage IBS
  • Depression/Anxiety​: How to manage mood through nutrition and herbal interventions
  • Hypercholesteremia: Nutritional protocols and supplements to minimize LDL/VLDL and maximize HDL.
    • Which supplements interact with commonly-prescribed medications.
  • Surgical Management​: Which herbs/vitamins to avoid pre/post-surgery and interventions to optimize surgical healing

Furthering Your Education on Natural Medicine

  • Supplementation: Why quality matters
  • Continuing education: Best educational resources to learn more about natural medicine
  • Incorporating natural therapies into your own life
  • Understanding scope of practice and safely practicing using natural therapies

Target Audience

  • Nurses
  • Nurse Practitioners
  • Clinical Nurse Specialists
  • Dietitians Nutritionists
  • Chiropractors
  • Diabetes Educators


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