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An Integrative Approach to Metabolic Syndrome, PCOS, and Autoimmune Diseases:

Place:   Calgary, AB T2R 0G8 

Date:     4/8/17

Time:    1:00pm-5:00pm, registration starts at 12:30pm

Venue:  Hotel Arts

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Featuring Becky Murray, APRN, FNP, CDE


  • Part I – Metabolic Syndrome/Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)

  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is the number one endocrine problem in women and also the MOST underdiagnosed. Since the main presenting symptoms of PCOS are acne, hirsutism, and menstrual cycles that are irregular, painful, heavy, or absent, the main established treatment is the use of oral contraceptive pills (OCPs). While OCPs will decrease the symptoms related to hyperandrogenism and regulate periods, they do NOTHING to address the underlying problem of defects in “insulin metabolism” that contribute to the metabolic consequences of chronic hyperinsulinemia. For women wanting to have children, these consequences may present as problems with infertility, first trimester spontaneous abortion, early placental degradation, and premature birth. Whether or not a woman is trying to conceive, PCOS has been identified as part of metabolic syndrome (MetSyn) and, therefore, the patient is at risk for the development of the co-morbidities of MetSyn, such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidemia, early cardiovascular disease, myocardial infarction (MI), and other embolic events such as a cerebral vascular accident (CVA) or stroke. Since all of these problems can have devastating results and decrease one’s quality of life, early detection and appropriate intervention is imperative to help our patients be proactive in achieving their optimal level of health.

  • Learning Objectives:

    • Present an overview of the pathophysiology of metabolic syndrome as it relates to PCOS and to identify the “MALE counterpart of PCOS” as part of the metabolic syndrome.

    • Describe the early and masked symptoms that may be missed as an indication that this endocrine problem is evolving.

    • Discuss the testing options available to evaluate problems with insulin metabolism, androgen excess, estrogen dominance, “suboptimal” ovulation and/or anovulatory cycles, and “differential diagnosing” of endocrine problems that may present like PCOS.

    • Review the latest research for treatment options and nutritional therapeutic modalities.

  • Part II – Autoimmune Diseases:

  • The incidence of autoimmune diseases has risen exponentially over the years and now affects more than 50 million Americans and encompasses more than 100 identified disease states with an autoimmune link. The term “autoimmune disease” refers to a varied group of illnesses that involve almost every human organ system. It includes diseases of the nervous, gastrointestinal and endocrine systems as well as the skin and other connective tissues, eyes, blood and blood vessels. Named a major health issue by the Office of Research on Women’s Health at the NIH, over 75% of autoimmune diseases occur in females, sometimes being as high as a 10:1 ratio of females to males, and is the main cause of disability in women. Even though the interplay between specific genetic alleles, impaired gut mucosal integrity, dysbiosis, and certain environmental triggers has been well established in past medical research, the role of sex hormones and sex hormone metabolism has been given new attention in regard to immune tolerance in the body. We need to acknowledge that these problems DO NOT reside only in the domain of specialists in overt autoimmune diseases. Instead, as astute practitioners, we need to be aware of the symptoms that may be warnings of a developing autoimmune process, along with the testing that is available to assist in early detection, and the interventions that can make a difference in decreasing the devastating consequences of progressive “end organ damage” that can occur in the autoimmune process that may be PREVENTABLE.

  • Learning Objectives:

    • Review the genetic risk factors with autoimmune diseases, including specific alleles and gender bias.

    • Discuss the role of gastrointestinal health and environmental triggers as a cause for the “molecular mimicry” phenomena that occurs when the body starts to attack itself through production of antibodies.

    • Describe the very early symptomatology that can be a forewarning of progressive autoimmune problems.

    • Present the latest research for treatment options and nutritional therapeutic modalities.

  • Biography: Rebecca Murray is a board certified Family Nurse Practitioner and Assistant Clinical Professor of Nursing (adjunct faculty) for Yale University School of Nursing. After graduating from Columbia University, she spent the first 12 years of her career in “critical care medicine” but her desire to practice “preventative medicine” lead her to become a Nurse Practitioner focusing on the “functional medicine” approach to patient care. For 15 years she was the Medical Director for Connecticut Holistic & Integrative Medicine specializing in medical nutrition therapy in diabetes control and prevention, weight management, PCOS, autoimmune diseases, hormonal balancing, and risk reduction for estrogen related cancers. She has now joined the world renowned “functional medicine endocrinologist” Dr. Edwin Lee at the Institute for Hormonal Balance in Orlando, FL. She continues to follow her passion of speaking at conference both nationally and internationally on the subjects of metabolic syndrome, PCOS, and autoimmune disease. She has also written numerous articles for peer reviewed journals on the subject of PCOS as it relates to insulin resistance and Metabolic Syndrome.

*Early Bird Registration: $130 CAD
Student Early Bird Registration: $50 CAD
*Early bird price available until one month before scheduled seminar date

Regular Price: $170 CAD
Student Regular Price: $75 CAD

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