Industry News

Naturopathic Outreach in Niger

by John Stan | Aug 26, 2015
Article written by Dr. Parissa Bunin, ND

In December 2014, after 24 years of being away, I finally had the chance to go back to my teenage home country of Niger (West Africa).  The purpose of this trip was twofold: to visit family and friends I had not seen in years; and to provide naturopathic care and presentations to various groups and individuals. 

Before my trip, I was able to raise $2500 which was donated to the Clinique Talfi, where this money was used to provide care for mothers and children (healthcare is not free in Niger).  I was also able to present various nutrition-based lectures at schools as well as to groups of mothers working with the non-profit organization SOS Children’s Village.

In addition, and perhaps the most rewarding for me, was the opportunity to see patients at Clinique Talfi and do a fair number of house calls involving naturopathic care.  Here, I must admit, the main tools I was able to use were my hands (for bodywork and manipulations), my acupuncture needles, and my Stimplus Pro Point Locator and Stimulator.  Niger is an extremely poor country and supplements are just not available.  Hygiene is to be desired.  Although I had received donations of various supplements, among which was a substantial donation from Eastern Currents that included Golden Flower and Three Treasure herbs, I felt that hands-on acupuncture (when it was safe to do) and electro-stimulation were the best tools in my kit. 

Among the various patients I treated, I had the opportunity to work with two diabetic patients who were experiencing neuropathies in the feet and lower legs.  In these two cases the Stimplus Pro was a great asset.  Within two sessions they were experiencing less neuropathy and were claiming that they were able to feel the soles of their feet.  This positive feedback encouraged me to use this particular tool with many patients complaining of pain and other neurological symptoms, where the use of acupuncture needles would not have been safe due to various reasons, the main ones being poor hygiene, risk of infection, and inadequate needle disposal.

I would like to thank Eastern Currents for their support by providing me with various herbs and for introducing me to the Stimplus Pro.  Since being back, it has become a tool I use on an almost daily basis in my own clinic.  I am looking forward to my next trip back to Africa, where once again, I hope to use these same tools.

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