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Dr Nataliya Kushnir had nothing but amazing career, and is not a “usual” small clinic doctor. She is internationally known and is an expert on rare diseases and immune system. She received her medical degree with Honors from the European Medical School (Russia) at the age of 21 (youngest medical student). She moved to the US to continue her studies and medical research at Stanford. Later she confirmed her degree of the Medical Doctor in the US and completed Residency training by 2002.
She had a unique double-training during 6 years of the Medical School – she also completed a course of studies in Chinese-Tibetan Medicine. She received a IV level degree as a Traditional Medicine Doctor.
She became an Allergy-Immunology subspecialist after 3 years of Fellowship Program at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD and Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, DC. During the next 3 years she conducted groundbreaking research in Neuro-Immunology as Junior Investigator at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
ORCID member Dr Kushnir is a World-recognized scientist. She is a medical writer, and published many medical papers in the best journals. Dr Kushnir published 13 papers in the major clinical and scientific journals, wrote a chapters in medical textbook, presented at more than 20 national and international conferences, and is an invited reviewer at the World Allergy Organization.
Since medical school she was curious of how brain can influence the body and affect health. Her cutting-edge research provided the first true evidence that brain hormone serotonin has powerful influence over allergy cells (mast cells). As NIH Clinical Investigator she was consulting patients with rare genetic disorders. She is now a recognized expert in Mastocytosis and Mast Cell Activation disorders.
She is invited speaker at the major specialty conferences. She is dedicated community educator – she gives free lectures at the local hospitals and schools. One of the recent web publication in WebMD describes Rhinitis induced by medicines.
Her deepest passion is the patient care. Her main goal is to implement all her unique knowledge of science, as well as combination of European and American medicine into state-of-art diagnosis and treatment. She was practicing Allergy and Immunology for 2 years with the large Allergy and Asthma Group of the Bay Area in transition to her solo practice. She is a proud Patient’s choice award of 2008-2021 recipient.
It is a historical twist of medicine – somehow it was divided into Conventional and Traditional (Alternative). Students who studied medicine in medical schools and received MD or DO are practicing Conventional Medicine. If someone studies medicine in Natural medicine schools or academies, or comes from Asian and Indian medicine – they practice Alternative Medicine usually not recognized as “valid” by doctors.
There are rare practitioners who studied and mastered both Medicines. They have MD/DO degrees and use modern methods in junction with Traditional diagnostics and treatments. Such combinational approach received the name Functional Medicine.
Here is what Dr Kushnir says about her philosophy of practice:
I am a scientist by mind and a healer by heart. I learned the highest standards of the academic medicine and research, and committed to deliver best science of clinical medicine to the community. I am a big believer in power of education and teach my patients everything I know. After all these years of medical studies I have learned the best practices of the diagnosis and treatment of Eastern and Western Medicine, and merged them into a unique style and vision of my own. I follow the canons and traditions that started with Hippocrates. Modern science of medicine provides us with the best discoveries and technology, yet it becomes nothing without personal touch and humanitarianism.
Here are my beliefs:
Thorough but mindful. I was taught to use tests only to confirm the diagnosis I have in mind. Conventional physicians order multiple tests in a hope to come up with a diagnosis. This is a dangerous game – some tests can be falsely positive or falsely negative leading a doctor and patient on the wrong path. This creates more anxiety and brings little information. Especially now, when patients have the access to their test results faster then physicians.
Simplicity and balance. Those are two essentials that guide my treatment recommendations. If I can do it – my patients can do it. Disease can be viewed as an out-of-balance condition, and the treatment should directed toward achieving health – state of balanced functioning.
Learn and teach. I consider it my job as a physician. As simple as it sounds – it is one of the biggest challenges that I face. In our modern world it is hard to coach my patients on the right choices. That work of reviewing hundreds of articles, books, websites and other sources is sometimes harder then following specialty medical news. I need to make sure that my recommendations are supported by science and solid practice parameters.
The job of my patients is also hard – they must comply with my recommendations and regimen. This is achieved by mutual trust and understanding. I never count how much time I spent educating my patients about their condition. Our jobs a happy when the effort are combined – is is my greatest reward when my patients become healthy again.
Earth bound – humans are a part of biosphere which has its own laws of existence. Even in a modern world we cannot forget about it. We actually should be more conscious about that now. We start understanding that the way we act with nature gets us back, sometimes in an ugly way. Global climate change is just the most visible result of our careless behaviors.
As allergists we observe an unusual increase in allergies and asthma dated back only to 20th century since we started utilizing “modern” necessities and conveniences – polyesters, resins, parabens, polymers, sulfates etc. I believe while creating modern life style we are destroying our immune system from inside and outside – chemicals in the water, food, antibacterial soaps, air pollution. Allergy is not a disease of its own – it is a result of the hyperreaction of immune system overwhelmed with massive intrusion of unnatural foreign particles.
I have never been a supporter of medications as a first treatment choice. Rarely it is necessary to prescribe antibiotics or an inhaler and in a short-term course that get the disease under control – the rest can be taken care of in a natural way. I advocate for prevention, focus on a healthy natural diet and modify the environment. Back to nature? you will ask. Yes 1000 times!
Many of my patients ask – how do you stay so energetic? My answer is simple – Use your body well! I am a big supporter of the active life and daily exercise. I am not talking about the gym. It is nice if you can make it a weekly adventure.
But you can get enough energy from the nature walks, running hills or sit-ups on the sand. You don’t need to waste money for the expensive equipment – you can put a book in the backpack, and use a bench to work up your core muscles. Research demonstrate the goodness of simple steps – people have less diseases and live longer if they manage to walk 8,000 steps a day! If I can do it – you can do it.
Dr Kushnir is a World recognized scientist. She is an invited speaker to the World best conferences. She continuously published medical papers in the best medical scientific journals. It allows her to achieve unbelievable recoveries and free people from chronic inflammation.
She is a Medical Expert who helped many people battle their health injuries in court. She advises law firms and private companies in living standards and building better healthy homes. She is a real patient’ advocate and helped many law suits settle with large compensations to the families before the court. She wrote a paper helping other to realize the damages of unhealthy living conditions, especially in children.
Her work at the National Institutes of Health was highly regarded and she had an offer to stay and lead a laboratory. She worked with the best scientists of the World – Dr Dean Metcalfe, Dr Tony Fauci, Dr Renata Engler and many others. She learned about cell functions, stem cell technology and genome studies in the laboratories of NIH. Dr Kushnir lead groundbreaking research on Mast Cells and neuroimmunology.
Reprints from the papers
A Novel Link between Early Life Allergen Exposure and Neuroimmune Development in Children. Kushnir-Sukhov NM.J Clin Exp Immunol. 2020;5(4):188-195. doi: 10.33140/jcei.05.04.06. Epub 2020 Aug 5.PMID: 33179020 Free PMC article.
In-Depth Review of Allergic Rhinitis. 2020 WAO (World Allergy Organization)
Allergic Asthma: Symptoms and Treatment. 2020 WAO (World Allergy Organization)
5-hydroxytryptamine induces mast cell adhesion and migration. Kushnir-Sukhov NM, Gilfillan AM, Coleman JW, Brown JM, Bruening S, Toth M, Metcalfe DD.J Immunol. 2006 Nov 1;177(9):6422-32. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.177.9.6422.PMID: 17056574 Free article.
Clinical correlates of blood serotonin levels in patients with mastocytosis. Kushnir-Sukhov NM, Brittain E, Scott L, Metcalfe DD.Eur J Clin Invest. 2008 Dec;38(12):953-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2362.2008.02047.x.PMID: 19021721 Free PMC article.
The role of decongestants, cromolyn, guafenesin, saline washes, capsaicin, leukotriene antagonists, and other treatments on rhinitis. Kushnir NM. Immunol Allergy Clin North Am. 2011 Aug;31(3):601-17.
Bone marrow stromal cells inhibit mast cell function via a COX2-dependent mechanism.
Brown JM, Nemeth K, Kushnir-Sukhov NM, Metcalfe DD, Mezey E.
Clin Exp Allergy. 2011 Apr;41(4):526-34 Epub 2011 Jan 24.
Rhinitis Medicamentosa. Natalya M Kushnir, MD, emedicine.medscape 2009
Mastocytosis, Chapter 91. N.M. Kushnir-Sukhov, D.D. Metcalfe and Jamie Robyn. Allergy and Allergic Diseases, 2nd edition. Textbook. 2008
Silica-directed mast cell activation is enhanced by scavenger receptors.Brown JM, Swindle EJ, Kushnir-Sukhov NM, Holian A, Metcalfe DD.Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol. 2007 Jan;36(1):43-52. doi: 10.1165/rcmb.2006-0197OC. Epub 2006 Aug 10.PMID: 16902192 Free PMC article.
Demonstration of an aberrant mast-cell population with clonal markers in a subset of patients with “idiopathic” anaphylaxis. Akin C, Scott LM, Kocabas CN, Kushnir-Sukhov N, Brittain E, Noel P, Metcalfe DD.Blood. 2007 Oct 1;110(7):2331-3. doi: 10.1182/blood-2006-06-028100. Epub 2007 Jul 16.PMID: 17638853 Free PMC article.
Elevated tryptase levels are associated with greater bone density in a cohort of patients with mastocytosis. Kushnir-Sukhov NM, Brittain E, Reynolds JC, Akin C, Metcalfe DD.Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 2006;139(3):265-70. doi: 10.1159/000091172. Epub 2006 Jan 30.PMID: 16449817
Effects of gamma radiation on FcepsilonRI and TLR-mediated mast cell activation. Soule BP, Brown JM, Kushnir-Sukhov NM, Simone NL, Mitchell JB, Metcalfe DD.J Immunol. 2007 Sep 1;179(5):3276-86. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.179.5.3276.PMID: 17709544 Free article.
Increase in extracellular glutatione peroxidase in plasma and lungs of mice exposed to hyperoxia. Kim KK, Whitin JC, Sukhova NM, Cohen HJ.Pediatr Res. 1999 Dec;46(6):715-21. doi: 10.1203/00006450-199912000-00016.PMID: 10590029
Sukhova NM, G. Okolenova and V. Platonova. Infrared laser therapy for respiratory diseases in children 1993. Actual Problems of Medicine Anniversary Edition of Voronezh Medical School Scientific Publications.