Provider Spotlight: Michael Citron, MD
by Wynter Kaiser
Michael Citron, MD has been practicing medicine for over 30 years. He is residency trained and board-certified in Emergency Medicine and has further training in Functional Medicine. Originally from Ohio, he moved to North Carolina about 22 years ago. Dr. Citron has completed fellowship training from A4M (The American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine) and is currently finishing fellowship training from the Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM). Further, he has completed specialized training in methylation as well as attended every SHEICON Methylation Conference (and is listed as a Physician who has “completed training in clinical methylation and nutrigenomics”).
DUTCH: What inspired you to become a healthcare practitioner?
Dr. Michael Citron: I have wanted to become a physician for as long as I can remember. I enjoy both the depth and width of the science involved as well as the tremendous positive feelings that I get in being able to help other people. For me, I can think of no other job that would provide such satisfaction.
DUTCH: What is your training?
Dr. Michael Citron: I attended medical school at the University of Cincinnati in Cincinnati, Ohio. After medical school, I completed a residency and became board-certified in Emergency Medicine. I completed the A4M Fellowship training and am finishing fellowship training at The Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM). Furthermore, I have attended all the methylation conferences (SHEICON) that were conducted by Dr. Ben Lynch – which provided tremendous insight into assessing and addressing all things methylation. Of course, there is also other continuing education in various forms as well – including webinars, seminars, reviewing literature, and consultations.
DUTCH: Describe your medical background/ practice?
Dr. Michael Citron: I worked as a board-certified Emergency Medicine specialist for 28 years – which provided incredible insight into the variety and presentation of a wide spectrum of medical issues. After that time, I transitioned to my own Functional Medicine practice – FoundationMED. I designed FoundationMED as a consultative medical practice. We see patients with a wide variety of issues including menopause and hormone imbalance, methylation issues, thyroid disturbances, Gut/GI issues, inflammation, toxin issue – in fact a very wide spectrum of issues. We recently added a board certified pediatrician who is also certified with the Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM). We work to establish a collaborative relationship with our patients and enlist the assistance of Health Coaches to help our patients achieve their wellness goals.
DUTCH: What other functional testing do you use in your practice?
Dr. Michael Citron: Besides DUTCH, we utilize traditional serum testing, as well as a myriad of other testing as needed – such as GI-MAP stool testing, Methylation Profile Plasma, OAT Urine testing, toxin testing and many others as indicated. We also integrate OPUS 23 genetic assessments, StrateGene, and others.
DUTCH: How have you incorporated DUTCH Testing into your practice?
Dr. Michael Citron: DUTCH is a key method we use to follow patients using BHRT to assess estrogen metabolism, COMT function, and cancer risk assessment (i.e. estrogen metabolism and COMT function determine degree of cancer risk). It also helps to ensure that the dose of hormones is not excessive and is balanced. We also advise ALL female adult patients to have at least one DUTCH hormone assessment in order to determine their personal estrogen metabolism profile.
DUTCH Adrenal testing is our go-to to assess the HPA axis, with options to add the Cortisol Awakening response assessment if indicated.
DUTCH: What are the changes you have seen in your patients and practice since incorporating the DUTCH Test?
Dr. Michael Citron: I very much appreciate the increased (over saliva) metabolic information that DUTCH testing provides, to say nothing of the ease of specimen collection and transmittal. With this data I can identify and reduce risk for my patients – a tremendous advantage for all involved.
In addition, it allows for ease in monitoring response to treatment (i.e. BHRT or HPA therapies). If desired, we can dive deeper with the CAR and Cycle Mapping
DUTCH: Where do you see functional/ integrative medicine 20 years from now?
Dr. Michael Citron: That is a tough question because what happens over the next 20 years is hard to predict. I would hope that the medical system basically transforms into a functional or integrative model completely versus having things as they are now. This unfortunately is going to be subject to many forces not necessarily medically oriented (such as political etc.). All we can do is to continue to develop the Functional Model and work to integrate with traditional medicine – such as being done at the Cleveland Clinic with IFM.
DUTCH: What do you like to do outside of work?
Dr. Michael Citron: Spend time with my family, walk my dog, photography, working out, and reading. I am just now discovering travel and have come to love Italy!