Robert J. Kiltz, MD, is founder and director of central New York's first successful IVF center, the CNY Fertility Center. He is also owner/director of CNY Healing Arts Center, an accomplished artist and a motivational speaker.
His practice embraces both the newest Western technologies and the oldest Eastern philosophies. It is a formula that has been successful for both his clients and himself. His passion in life is to help others reach their spiritual goals, achieve happiness and success, and live a spectacular life by creating balance and wellness within oneself.
JW: Now that you have established three healing art centers, can you share with us what sort of results you've seen with integrated practices promoting fertility? RK: Well, I can't tell you that we've done any prospective randomized controlled studies. I think the biggest part I am seeing is that the integrative approach in adding the Eastern medicines - acupuncture, yoga, massage, herbs, even spirituality - is that I believe it helps people continue and to be persistent in the journey and feel more relaxed in that ease about themselves in the process. There are plenty of studies out there that have shown the value of these complementary modalities in improving reproductive function and fertility. I would say, we are seeing the same thing, but my biggest view is on the ability to continue to move forward in the path with a lighter heart.
JW: What about fertility drugs? Do you think patients should be concerned about the amount of drugs that they are using and any long-term effects? RK: Well, there's been conflicting data about the adverse effects of these medications. There are some that say that cancer has increased, and I know definitely that there are some short-term side-effects. Mood swings, headaches, enlarged ovaries, hyper-stimulation, even strokes can occur from these medications. So you have to be very careful about them and really define whether it's the first route or do you combine it with an integrative approach? In general, there is nothing we have in life that isn't a risk. It's a balance that I think we have to look at and help share with people these other possibilities such as acupuncture, herbs, and massage may help them develop a "happy uterus" and minimize the use of drugs and surgeries.
JW: What about the ovaries, egg retrievals and stimulation? How many egg retrievals are too many? RK: That's the other million-dollar question because we don't really know that answer. Most people who experience fertility issues never need IVF. Most people never even seek fertility care on the Western side. I think any of these procedures offers a risk because of the anesthesia, the needle stick, and risk of bleeding or infection. I think overall it's a small risk. It all gets back to the emotional challenges that people go through. To get anything, you have to keep at it. So there is really nothing to say that one time, five times, 10 times or 20 times is too many. If it is not happening after six to 12 times, maybe rethinking what you are doing and thinking of some other modality is the best way in all of this. Success happens to those that keep at it in life, but if you keep on doing the same thing and expecting something different, that's when you are most challenged. I still don't think it's the actual procedure that's the risk, but it's the emotional challenges that create the biggest risk.
JW: I know many couples that come to see you already have children and want more. How do you stay neutral in this situation? We know the planet is suffering greatly and overpopulation has been a big concern for decades. Do you ever encourage adoption? RK: Well, absolutely adoption is something that everyone should consider. I believe it should be part of the options. We have just recently connected with a group from Rochester to help with adoption and make it easier for people to begin that path earlier. Why some people want to have no children and other people want to have 10 is just all part of the nature of the universe and the individuals that we are, and I respect each and everyone's decisions in life.
JW: We see that you have a number of Web sites, including www.mindbodysmile.com, and you have trademarked The Fertile Secret, What do you want to be most remembered for when you die? RK: I love Eckhart Tolle and he kind of laughs at all of this and says, "None of this really matters very much, because where are we in 100 or 1,000 years?" I think it's simply for sharing the words of love.
JW: We know that integrated medicine is becoming quite popular, but what we don't know is how many doctors believe that these therapies do more than just relax the patient. RK: It's interesting that most people believe in God. I go to medical conferences all the time and most doctors say, "Well we want the facts, the prospective randomized double-blinded, controlled studies and then we'll believe it." So I think most Western doctors don't believe it. What's interesting is that when I ask the question, "Who believes in God," 98 percent of them raise their hands. Then I ask them where the facts are for that? It's only a belief, yet belief is the most powerful thing in the universe. Placebo has outperformed many drugs, many of which are created through Eastern herbs. So, if placebo may outpace our Western drugs, it's only a belief that is a powerful thing in the universe.
JW: It is purported that autism begins in utero and that one of the elements is antibiotics used during pregnancy. What do you think about that? RK: I have recently read a book called The Biology of Belief by Bruce Lipton. Things are exactly what we believe them to be and nothing else. The possibilities of all of this are there and if we are out there sharing and helping with words, thoughts and ideas, there is tremendous value and growth in the universe. I don't know the cause of autism. It absolutely starts in the womb. Antibiotics in and of themselves help many people, but there are likely alternatives that we need to be pursuing more and more because we overuse antibiotics like we overuse many things in life.
JW: When you diagnose a patient with fibroids, for example, do you give them a choice of doing Western or integrated medicine as possible treatment options? RK: I look at integrated medicine as East and the West. Absolutely, I share Eastern and Western approaches in all of this and the risks, benefits and options for all of them and allow them to make the decision that is right for them. I absolutely believe that people should use the eastern approach, but not neglect the values of the Western approach. Yet I am still learning and amazed at the things that we thought couldn't be done with the mind that are being done every day. I really think it comes back to what is in our comfort zone. So, the healing happens within. People come into my office sometimes and say, "Dr. Rob shared some of this kind of voodoo stuff. Can I have that shot now?"
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