Whether it is a sports injury or pain in the lower back, it is crucial to obtain the right treatment plan just for you. Everyone’s healing process is different and so complex that it is important to consult a physical therapist rather than depending on the natural body to heal on its own.
Word of Health would like to recognize a few of these individuals who are passionate about medical healing treatments and pain management. Physical therapy seeks to restore the body’s function and promote proper recovery.
1. Dr. David Fabrizio, P.T., O.C.S.
David Fabrizio, one of the most sought-after orthopedic/sports manual physical therapists in the Los Angeles area, is celebrating his 31st year in physical therapy and his 22nd year as founder of Fabrizio PTSM. David started his physical therapy and sports medicine career in the United States Air Force. He graduated Cum Laude from Cleveland State University with a Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy. His training included internships at the top medical facilities in the Cleveland area, including an inpatient orthopedics rotation at the prestigious Cleveland Clinic Foundation. After graduating from CSU, he took a staff physical therapist position at the Great Lakes Regional Rehab Center. Here, he developed his treatment philosophy of functional and comprehensive physical therapy. He treated acute, cardiac, and neurological patients during day-time hours while treating orthopedics and sports medicine patients in the evenings. David was selected as one of two physical therapists at Great Lakes qualified to teach Biomechanics, Ergonomics, and Back School. David has completed over 1,000 hours in athletic training rooms across the country treating both college and high school athletes. In 2000, he completed a year-long Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy course with Joe Godges, DPT, MS, and OCS and became board-certified in Orthopedics by the American Physical Therapy Association. His memberships
2. Dr. Courtney Mitchell, D.P.T., O.C.S.
Dr. Courtney Mitchell grew up in the Westchester/Playa Del Rey area where she attended St. Bernard High School. After high school, she attended Loyola Marymount University where she received a Bachelor’s degree in Natural Science with an emphasis in pre-Physical Therapy. Courtney excels at manual therapy and correcting movement coordination impairments with exercise. She received a Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Azusa Pacific University. After Physical Therapy school, Courtney decided to complete an orthopedic residency at Kaiser Permanente, the number one orthopedic residency in the nation. During the residency, she completed research that was able to optimize treatment of whiplash injuries quickly and with fantastic results. In addition, she was able to volunteer her time at the Venice family clinic, giving back to patients that are unable to pay for treatment. After completing the residency she passed her specialty exam and is currently a Clinical Specialist in Orthopedics. Although her specialty is in Orthopedics, she has experience in pediatrics working at various pediatric neurological clinics in the Southern California Area and completed research during PT school, lowering body fat percentage and preventing injury with inner-city pediatric patients. She loves playing soccer, hiking and playing beach volleyball in the summer.
3. Dr. John Pennella, P.T., D.P.T., Owner
Dr. John Pennella was born and raised outside of New York City, in Westchester NY. He attended State University of New York Purchase, where he received his B.A. in Economics. He had a strong interest in exercise and movement science; thus becoming a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. John then sought further education and moved to southern California to pursue a higher degree in kinesiology and physical therapy. He attended the University of Southern California receiving his Doctorates in Kinesiology and Physical Therapy. John is a Board Certified licensed physical therapist in the state of California. He has worked with high school to professional athletes throughout his clinical rotations in graduate school, as well as children and elderly in home health care services. Through his clinical education, doctorate training, and experiences in orthopedics, sports medicine, acute care, neurology, pediatric care and manual therapy he has developed his own style of physical therapy. He is now the co-director of physical therapy at The LAB.
4. Dr. Greg S. Khounganian, M.D.
Dr. Greg Khounganian is board certified in spine surgery that emphasizes minimally invasive techniques. After earning his medical degree from the University of Southern California, he completed his orthopedic surgery residency in New York City. As he grew adept at treating a variety of orthopedic problems, ranging from sports injuries to broken bones to arthritic joint conditions, Dr. Khounganian developed an interest in spine and spine-related disorders. He returned to his home in the San Fernando Valley to expand on his spine surgery training with a fellowship at the Southern California Orthopedic Institute. Here Dr. Khounganian learned some of the most innovative orthopedic techniques available to patients, including treating spine conditions with non-operative techniques and utilizing microscopic and other minimally invasive procedures. His use of these state-of-the-art practices means patients can return to their regular activities as quickly as possible. Customizing his approach to match each patient’s specific needs, Dr. Khounganian performs procedures involving the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine. His extensive list of procedures
5. Dr. Brynilla Pacheco, P.T., D.P.T, M.C.M.T.
Dr. Bryn Pacheco earned her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Dominican College in Orangeburg, New York. She has been practicing physical therapy for over 20 years and is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association. She has a mastery certification in Manual Therapy and provides consistent quality service with her specialties in orthopedic, sports and geriatric rehabilitation. Dr. Bryn has extensive experience in inpatient, sub-acute, private and home health settings. She decided to focus on outpatient settings and became the Regional Physical Therapy Director for a Southern California Medical Corporation. During seven years of employment, she opened and managed five successful clinics. In 2011, Dr. Bryn opened BSP Physical Therapy in Burbank. The practice expanded with a second office in Culver City in January 2018. She is also certified in Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE), which qualifies her to assess
6. Dr. Walker Ozar, D.C.
Walker Ozar, D.C. serves the Beverly Hills area and the surrounding communities. The seeds for Walker’s career were planted early on as teenage athlete growing up in Los Angeles. He has always been very interested in fitness, massage therapy, and nutrition. When Dr. Ozar turned to physical rehabilitation, acupuncture, and chiropractic adjustment to assist in his recovery from a sports injury, he fell in love with all of the healing modalities. Dr. Ozar went on to study health and science at the University of Arizona, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts. His desire to combine physical therapy and chiropractic care led to a focus on chiropractic rehabilitation and he earned a professional degree from the Los Angeles College of Chiropractic. Upon starting his practice in 1996 at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, he continued formulating his philosophy of healing for a few more years. Dr. Ozar soon realized that whenever he had been going through rehab (for various sports-related injuries), he always found himself driving from offices to gyms and other studios and back and forth again, and thought: “What if I could create a facility where everything could take place under one roof?” The rest is history. The original Beverly Hills Posture & Rehabilitation Institute was founded in 1999 (now known
7. Dr. Martina Fogt, M.P.T.
Co-Founder Martina Fogt is an experienced physical therapist specializing in women’s health at Bebé PT. Martina is a co-founder of Bebé PT, the first and only rehabilitation clinic in Los Angeles to cater exclusively to pre and post-natal mothers. Martina works with pregnant and post-natal women addressing musculoskeletal impairments, pelvic pain, postural dysfunctions, and pelvic floor disorders in addition to treating patients with common orthopedic conditions. She utilizes her strong dance, yoga and Pilates background in her clinical practice on a daily basis. Martina received a Bachelor’s degree in kinesiology and a master’s degree in physical therapy cum Laude both from California State University, Long Beach. During studies in her native Germany, she gained extensive experience in teaching therapeutic group exercise classes. She was also a long time instructor at Golden West College in Fountain Valley, California. In her free time, she loves playing with her dog and cats, enjoys yoga, running and competing in triathlons. She is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) and is active in the women’s health section.
8. Dr. Dana Clark, D.C.
Dr. Dana Clark grew up in a small town outside of St. Louis, Missouri, moving to California at the age of 18 to attend and graduate from Pepperdine University in Malibu with a degree in business administration. After working in the personally unfulfilling corporate environment for several years, he decided to return to school to obtain his Doctor of Chiropractic degree. He graduated Cum Laude from Cleveland Chiropractic College, Los Angeles in 2001. Dr. Clark’s decision to become a Chiropractor was motivated by a life long appreciation for a profession that was integral in resolving severe pain he experienced as an adolescent. He finds great personal fulfillment in helping others achieve personal success in ridding their bodies of debilitating pain and in helping them down a path of life long health. Personally, he is a competitive triathlete and 6-time IRONMAN finisher who enjoys surfing, skiing, and scuba diving in his leisure time.
9. Dr. Debra Hagel-Wollman
Debra graduated (Magna Cum Laude) from California State University, Northridge and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Science/Physical Therapy. She founded Lifestyle Physical Therapy in 2011 and has been a practicing physical therapist in a wide variety of clinical settings for more than 20 years. In addition to her vast knowledge of orthopedic and sports-related injuries, Debra received her Certification as a Pilates Instructor from Pilates and Beyond Institute in 2002. Her career highlights include that of former Director of Physical Therapy at Granada Hills Community Hospital, as well as, Facility Administrator and Spine Program Coordinator at HealthSouth Rehabilitation. Debra is an active member of both the California Private Practice Special Interest Group and the American Physical Therapy Association. When she is not helping patients get back to their lifestyle of activity, Debra enjoys hiking, cooking and traveling.
10. Dr. Rahim Kanji
Rahim’s journey in the field of rehabilitation started early in childhood. His grandmother suffered from chronic low back pain and would frequently ask him to step on her back or make herbal patches using ingredients such as turmeric and eggs. This piqued his curiosity of how the body functions and heals, driving his educational pursuits to find the most effective approach to heal and maintain the body at its best – free of dis-ease. In college, he began working with patients in cardiac rehabilitation and from there delved into the areas of chiropractic care and physical therapy. He received his Bachelor of Kinesiology at McMaster University and Doctor of Chiropractic, Acupuncture, and Oriental Medicine at Southern California University of Health Sciences. In addition, he was voted best instructor at the Department of Anatomy and Physiology at Southern California University of Health Sciences. He received his Master of Physical Therapy at California State University, Northridge. As a clinician, he specializes in conservative management of the neuromuscular system. He has worked in the field of rehabilitation for 14 years, integrating various approaches to providing the best treatment for his patients.
11. Larry Halem, M.D.
Dr. Larry Halem, M.D., grew up in sunny Thousand Oaks, California. He attended University of California, Riverside, and earned a Bachelors degree in Biomedical Sciences. He then attended University of California, Los Angeles, and achieved his medical degree in 2003. Dr. Halem trained at Harbor-UCLA in Emergency Medicine. After graduating, Dr. Halem began working at Santa Monica UCLA Medical Center in the Emergency Room and is currently the Assistant Medical Director of the Emergency Department. He has been a board certified Emergency Medicine physician since 2006. In 2014, Dr. Halem partnered with Dr. Farbenbloom to start the ProHealth Physical Medicine clinic. Personally, his interests include scuba diving, snowboarding, and beach volleyball.
12. Dr. Dawn McCrory
Dr. Dawn McCrory is an expert in the field of physical therapy, movement dysfunctions, and
Top 5 Meditation Apps To Try in 2019
Many individuals get engrossed in their daily routines with little time to be mindful or calm. To address this problem, people are turning to meditation apps to restore balance into their lives. Check out the Top Meditation Apps that will help you feel peaceful and will allow you to exude peace amidst a busy schedule.
Note: This is not a ranking article, and the descriptions for each app can be found on the App Store.
Calm is an app for Sleep, Meditation and Relaxation. It has sleep stories, breathing programs, stretching exercises, and relaxing music. In addition, it is recommended by psychologists, therapists, and mental health experts. Calm is the perfect mindfulness app for beginners, but also includes hundreds of programs for intermediate and advanced users. Guided meditation sessions are available in lengths of 3, 5, 10, 15, 20, or 25 minutes so you can choose the perfect length to fit in with your schedule.
Headspace helps its users learn to relax with guided meditations and mindfulness techniques that bring calm, wellness and balance. This app teaches users how to meditate, breathe, and live mindfully. It has also been proven to improve focus. There are exercises on topics such as managing anxiety, stress relief, breathing, happiness and focus. For beginners, there is a free basics course that will teach you the essentials of mindfulness and meditation.
This app is the apps of the year winner by TIME magazine and Women’s Health, and it has guided meditation talks led by the world’s top meditation and mindfulness experts such as neuroscientists, psychologists, and teachers from Stanford, Harvard, the University of Oxford, and more. It also has music tracks from world-renowned artists. Additionally, there are thousands of discussion groups and community features to help you reflect and monitor your progress.
Stop, Breathe, and Think
Stop, Breathe, and Think is an app designed to help you build the emotional strength and confidence to handle life’s ups and downs. This meditation app will help you reduce stress through a meditation timer and guided breathing exercises and acupressure. Moreover, this app will also help track your mood and progress by top emotions, total time meditated, and weekly settledness.
10% Happier is a guided meditation app that aims to help people to stick to their meditation journey. There are videos and meditation combos that make it fun and straightforward to meditate as well as a library of 500+ guided meditations on topics ranging from anxiety yo parenting to focus, ensuring that you can find the right meditation for the moment. Furthermore, there are also quick meditations that fit your busy life during your commute, lunch break, etc.
Have you tried any of these apps? Let us know in the comments below.
Top Cardiologists in Inland Empire
According to the CDC, every one in four deaths can be attributed to heart disease. Needless to say, the heart is one of the most vital organs in our body. Ensuring that the heart functions properly can significantly enhance the quality of our lives in terms of longevity and sustainability. Cardiologists specialize in treating diseases in the heart and some areas of the circulatory system.
Word of Health would like to recognize the top cardiologists in the Inland Empire for their impactful work that they are doing for their communities to combat heart disease.
Dr. Don Ahn, M.D.
Dr Ahn is the founder of Inland Cardiology. He originally started as an individual cardiologist at San Antonio Community Hospital in 1985, and eventually formed the Inland Cardiology Medical Associate Group in the year 2000. He is board certified in Interventional Cardiology, Cardiovascular Diseases,and Internal Medicine. He performs cardiovascular procedures ranging from diagnostic to therapeutic interventions. He graduated from Kyunghee Medical school in Seoul, South Korea, studied at Vanderbilt Medical School in Nashville, and underwent his Internal Medicine Residency at Wright State Medical shool in Dayton Ohio. He then finished a Cardiology Fellowship at St. Vincent Medical Center in Los Angeles. He currently serves as the Medical Director of Invasive Cardiology at San Antonio Community Hospital. He also was previously honored to serve as the Chief of Staff there in the year 2006.
Dr. Hetal Bhakta, M.D.
Dr. Hetal Bhakta is one of the most sought-after cardiologists in the Coachella Valley. Specializing in the Field of Electrophysiology and also board certified in Cardiology, Echocardiography, Nuclear Cardiology and Internal Medicine, he offers state-of-the-art care for both diseases of the heart and its electrical malfunctions that disrupt the proper blood flow.
After graduating from Albany Medical College in New York, Dr. Bhakta completed his clinical training in internal medicine and cardiology from University of Southern California. He then completed advance fellowship in electrophysiology from Kaiser-UCLA program. After finishing his clinical training Dr. Bhakta moved to Palm Springs and founded Desert Heart Rhythm Consultants and started the Electrophysiology Program at Desert Regional Medical Center.
Dr. Bhakta has since built a comprehensive EP program which offers a full complement of services for patients suffering from heart rhythm disorders—from device-based therapies to advance ablation therapies which cure heart rhythm disorders in many cases. Dr. Bhakta also is a leader in introducing cutting-edge technologies and new procedures to the Coachella Valley and Inland Empire that provide new and safer options for improving the lives of people who live here.
Dr. Mimi Sen Biswas, M.D.
Dr. Biswas completed her B.S. at the California Institute of Technology (Cal Tech), received her MD from the UCLA School of Medicine, and completed her residency at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. At Duke University Medical Center, she completed her Cardiology Fellowship, a fellowship in Women’s Health, obtained a Master’s in Health Science, and is still involved in clinical research. While on the faculty at Duke, she founded and was the Clinical Director of the Duke Women’s Heart Care Clinic. In addition to being board certified in Internal Medicine, Cardiology and Nuclear Cardiology, she is trained in cardiac CT imaging. She specializes in cardiovascular imaging, prevention, and women’s cardiovascular care. Dr. Biswas is dedicated to developing a center for Women’s Heart Health in the Inland Empire, and to raising awareness about women and heart disease.
Dr. Syed W. Bokhari M.D., F.A.C.C.
Dr. Syed W. Bokhari, MD is the owner and lead care provider at Advanced Cardiovascular Care in Riverside, California, and the greater Inland Empire area, and also serves as a Chairman for the Department of Medicine at the Riverside Community Hospital. As an esteemed specialist in his field, Dr. Bokhari specializes in and treats varicose veins, structural heart disease, and cardiovascular disease. He performs carotid stenting, as well as minimally invasive and nonsurgical vascular procedures, including transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR). Dr. Bokhari received his medical degree from King Edward Medical University and completed an internship and residency at Los Angeles County, University of Southern California Medical Center. He also completed general and interventional cardiology fellowships at the University of California, Irvine and University of Chicago Medical Center. He’s board-certified in endovascular medicine, cardiovascular diseases, and interventional cardiology and enjoys helping his patients regain and maintain healthy and joyful lives.
Harit V. Desai, M.D.
Dr. Harit Desai attended medical school at the M.S. University Baroda Medical College, India where he was amongst the top 5 students in the graduating class. He completed his Internal Medicine residency at New York Medical College Westchester Medical Center where he was selected as a Chief Medical Resident. He then completed fellowship training in Cardiology and Interventional Cardiology at University of Miami, Florida, where he also served as a Chief Interventional Cardiology Fellow.
Dr. Desai performs all ranges of coronary interventional procedures such as angioplasty, stent placement, atherectomy, intravascular ultrasound and is proficient in performing these procedures via the radial artery (wrist) approach. He also implants permanent pacemakers and implantable cardioverter-defibrillators. He has expertise in a variety of cardiac imaging methods, including nuclear cardiac imaging, vascular ultrasound, transesophageal and transthoracic echocardiograms. He specializes in the management of peripheral arterial disease causing leg pain (claudication) and/or impaired wound healing. He is also trained in structural heart disease interventions including ASD/PFO closure, balloon aortic valvuloplasty and transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR). Dr. Desai has published numerous research papers in peer reviewed medical journals and presented his work at several national meetings.
Top Optometrists in San Diego
Sight is one of the most powerful senses that allow us to perceive and experience the world around us. The field of optometry strives to maintain optimal eye health by testing for visual acuity, depth, eye pressure, and color perception. Word of Health would like to recognize the important work that top optometrists are doing in
Dr. Amanda Dexter
Dr. Amanda Dexter received her training at Southern California College of Optometry in Fullerton, California, where she was the class of 2010’s Valedictorian and former President of Beta Sigma Kappa International Optometric Honor Society. Dr. Dexter completed residency training at the VA San Diego Healthcare System in La Jolla where she gained an extensive clinical experience in ocular disease, geriatrics, traumatic brain injury and low vision rehabilitation. Dr. Dexter is a past president of the San Diego County Optometric Society where she actively participates in local vision screenings for underprivileged children. She is a current Candidate for Fellowship of the American Academy of Optometry, a distinguished association of accomplished eye care providers.
Dr. Olivia Do
Originally from Toronto, Canada, Dr. Olivia Do completed her undergraduate degree at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec in 2003. She then went on to earn her Doctor of Optometry degree from The New England College of Optometry, Class of 2008 in Boston.Dr. Do
Dr. Rambod Esfandiari
Raised in San Diego, Dr. Esfandiari did his undergraduate work at the University of California, San Diego. He received his doctorates in optometry from New England
Dr. Jared Hagan
Dr. Jared Hagan was born in Rochester, Minnesota, where he attended Mayo High School. Shortly after
Dr. Gary A. Klein
Dr. Klein is originally from the Washington, D.C. area and has been a San Diego “native” since 1989. He received his Bachelor of Science from Emory University in Atlanta and Doctor of Optometry from Pennsylvania College of Optometry in Philadelphia where he completed his internship at The Eye Institute in Philadelphia. With over 35 years of experience in various clinical settings including multi-specialty group practice, Dr. Klein has remained a clinical investigator and professional consultant for various companies in the ophthalmic industry responsible for bringing new eyecare technologies to fruition. He is a member of the American Optometric Association and the California Optometric Association. In 2007, Dr. Klein opened Urban Optiks Optometry with a mission to provide San Diego with the highest level of
Dr. Melanie Langford
Dr. Melanie Langford received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Indiana University Bloomington. She then went on to receive her Doctorate of Optometry from the Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago, IL. She also chose to complete a residency with the University of California Berkeley at the Palo Alto VA Hospital where she specialized in primary care and low vision. Dr. Langford practices full scope optometry and she enjoys working with patients of all ages. She is licensed in the treatment and management of ocular disease with therapeutic pharmaceutical agents, primary open angle glaucoma, and lacrimal irrigation and dilation.
Dr. Jason Tu
Dr. Jason Tu received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of California at Irvine and his Doctor of Optometry degree from the Southern California College of Optometry. He is a member of the American Optometric Association, a Trustee of the California Optometric Association (COA) Board, a past member of the Education & Clinical Practice Committee of the COA, and a Past-President of the San Diego County Optometric Society.
Dr. Meredith Walton
Dr Walton received her Doctorate in Optometry in 2011 from Southern College of Optometry in Memphis, Tennessee. Following graduation she moved with her husband who is in the Navy to his new duty station in Italy. While in Italy, Dr. Walton worked at the U.S. Naval Hospital-Naples, Italy providing eye exams for active duty military members and their families. Additionally, she lectured as an adjunct professor at the Italian optometry school, Universitá Frederico II and served local communities by participating in multiple free eye-care clinics throughout Europe. After relocating to San Diego, CA, Dr. Walton opened Heights Optometry in her own neighborhood of Normal Heights in the spring of 2015. She is passionate about serving her community by delivering quality care, providing thorough eye examinations and educating her patients about the importance of routine eye health. Dr. Walton is committed to helping every patient see to the best of their ability. Dr. Walton is a participating member of the national, state and local Optometric Societies and volunteers locally to help patients with limited resources have access to eye exams and glasses.
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