How does a Naturopathic Doctor (ND) compare to a Medical Doctor (MD)?

Naturopathic Doctors have similar training in medical and clinical sciences (i.e. biochemistry, pharmacology, pathology, differential diagnosis, etc.) and use many of the same tools and exams to assess and diagnose an individual including blood work and physical exams (i.e., checking blood pressure, listening to your heart and lungs, examining your ears, etc).  Like medical doctors, naturopathic doctors are also trained in pharmacology and prescribing to be able to identify drug side effects, interactions, and also to recognize when a pharmaceutical prescription is needed.  In addition to the foundations of medical practice, naturopathic doctors also have extensive training in a full spectrum of natural medicines and therapies with emphasis on diet and nutrition. NDs utilize the most natural, least invasive, and least toxic therapies as first-line treatment. Preventive medicine is of the utmost importance in their treatment philosophy. Another main difference between medical and naturopathic doctors is the amount of time spent with each individual.  NDs spend more time with their patients to find the underlying causes of illness and to determine an integrative treatment plan. 


Working Collaboratively

As you may have read above, the training of medical doctors and naturopathic doctors is similar similar and as evidence based medicine advances in both fields, the gap between the professions is narrowing and integrative and complementary care is becoming exceedingly more common.  Although naturopathic doctors do not prescribe pharmaceutical medications in Ontario at this time, there are cases in which conventional treatments and prescriptions are most suitable for the health of the patient.  It is for this reason that Dr. Kada often works collaboratively with conventional family practitioners and other medical professionals to provide the best care possible.