A Holistic Approach to Healing

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John A. CaseyJohn A. Casey, M.D., M.D.M.A., O.M.D.
International Health & Beauty Inc.
Brooklyn, N.Y.

John A. Casey hasn’t had an asthma attack in 40 years, ever since his grandmother gave him soup made of iguana and herbs during a severe episode in Barbados when he was 10 years old. Today, patients who continue to suffer with illnesses after exhausting their medical options often turn to Casey, M.D., who combines Western medicine with alternative therapies, including the use of herbs and Oriental practices, to find more effective treatments.

“I walk a fine line as both a medical doctor and a naturalist. With my training in Western medicine I’m unable to let it go completely for Eastern or natural medicine. To me, the conventional training in anatomy goes counter to many naturalist practices,” he says.

Born a premature baby into a family of naturalists, Dr. Casey was plagued with respiratory problems in his youth. He obtained a medical degree from Ross University School of Medicine in Dominica, the Caribbean island where his grandmother was born, and, through a United Nations program, studied traditional medicine in Sri Lanka under the late Sir Anton Jayasuriya, world renowned naturalist and physician to President Fidel Castro of Cuba, Spain’s King Juan Carlos and members of Japan’s royal family. Dr. Casey has taught health sciences at the Borough of Manhattan Community College, New York City, for the past 20 years and also teaches anatomy and nutrition at York College, Jamaica, N.Y.

Dr. Casey shies away from being called a herbalist, preferring the term, “holistic practitioner.” Herbalists are knowledgeable in their field, he says, but are ignorant of functional medicine testing, such as blood, urine and stool tests. He asks each new patient to provide his or her medical records, including the most recent test results, in order to study the treatment methods employed by the conventional doctor and to better determine parallel traditional-treatment methods and regimens.

Aided by his wife, Lucretia, a doctoral candidate in naturopathic medicine at Trinity College of Natural Health, in Warsaw, Ind., Dr. Casey served more than 1,000 patients in 2007. Much of his work is done through telephone consultations. His patients are mostly Afro-Caribbean, African-American and Hispanic. Others come from the United States and all over the world, he says. “I see it as trying to get the better of two worlds, a place where systems meet, a common ground,” he says of his practice. “Conventional medicine came out of traditional medicine.”