Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Everything you’ll want to know. Discover principles and benefits of our holistic evidence-based natural approach to skin health. Explore answers to commonly asked questions about our integrative approach, complementary therapies, and personalized care.

If you do not find the answer you are looking for, please call us at 786.360.6355 or Contact us here for further assistance.

Can you describe the features of your program? What can I expect?

The Path to True Skin Health Transformation, and Strategic Roadmap:

Our program is–a fully individualized—uniquely designed, comprehensive, alternative care, natural and intelligent approach to good skin health.  The main and unique strength of our program is that it would have your particular needs at its center to power it to its best outcomes—for you:

• We focus on the root origin instead of just the symptoms.

• We use non-invasive functional lab testing – based assessments to uncover the root-cause of your skin concern(s).

• We use functional skincare strategies and systems: An approach that combines natural and science-based techniques to promote healthy skin.

• We do concierge consultations and evidence-based recommendations, for your nutritional and herbal supplement support program—which might include individualized diet, lifestyle counseling and coaching.

• We use scientifically-backed, nutritional & botanical skin therapies for nutritional imbalances or deficiencies and address ‘your-whole person’ because your skin is connected to the rest of your body.

• We act to nourish your skin from within as well as from the outside, using supplements, herbs and topicals that are effective, natural, clean, and safe.

• We address possible, systemic inflammation, gut dysbiosis and/or sluggish detoxification pathways which could be contributing factors in your skin concern(s).

• Leaning on our four decades of experience in natural medicine with a defined set of offenders based on your lab results, we craft your custom roadmap with natural, non-toxic remedies backed by 2000+ years of foundational clinical wisdom.

We ADDRESS the ROOT CAUSES of YOUR SKIN ISSUE(S)

How does inflammation, my gut and detoxification contribute to my skin issue(s)?

Skin issues, such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis can be caused by a variety of factors, including environmental, lifestyle, and diet. Some common lifestyle factors that can contribute to skin conditions include contact with environmental triggers, such as allergens, dust, smoke/smoking, chronic—or acute—stress, non-restful or non-refreshing sleep, and insufficient fiber in the diet.  While diet plays an important role in skin health, it’s essential to understand that everyone is different. There is no one-size-fits-all solution.  Your skin is as unique as you are.  It’s not just about avoiding bread, milk and sugar.  Achieving clear skin might mean adopting an individualized dietary approach that considers more than just avoiding the dairy and gluten factors.

The gut-skin connection is a well-established phenomenon which is important to mention. Your skin is the largest organ in your body and is directly connected to your whole-body health. Your gut regulates your immune system, and 70 to 80% of your immune system is located in your gut. When the gut is not functioning optimally, it can result in issues throughout the body, including skin issues such as dry patches, pimples, blemishes, acne, eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis, rosacea, fungal infections, and hair loss. Poor gut health influences the production of proinflammatory cytokines a group of signaling proteins that help regulate inflammation in the body. They are produced by various cells in the immune system and act as chemical messengers to communicate with other cells in the body. Cytokines play a crucial role in the immune response to infections and injuries, they help coordinate the movement of immune cells to the site of infection or injury and cells that could suppress the immune system, creating chronic systemic inflammation that can be expressed as chronic skin conditions.

Eating foods rich in anti-oxidants, probiotics, prebiotics, and different types of fiber is essential and supportive in managing skin conditions.  When your gut is thriving, your skin can be healthy and well protected.

BECOME YOUR OWN SKIN EXPERT:

Learn and follow the Foundations to Clear Skin & Reclaim your Appearance from Within.  At the end of our work together you will have the roadmap and nutritional knowledge, so you can confidently take control of your own skin health, and regain your confidence with practical strategies.

  • Understand your skin triggers.
  • Avoid flares, eruptions, rashes, blemishes and marks.
  • Know the appropriate process to get immediate relief by using the proven tools we have mutually discovered and worked with together.
  • Confidently take control of your skin health and overall wellness.

With our journey, you will be many steps closer to seeing how your skin synchronizes with your life and you will be able to manage and pro-actively control your experience and the outcomes of your skin health—by administering self-care, reducing or properly adapting to stress, creating and having restful sleep, and knowing what foods and routines you need implement to build a healthy gut.  Armed with your new found practical knowledge you’ll be able to connect the dots and apply your unique knowledge about you to understand what is giving rise at a given time to your skin-health issue(s), and jump-start your skin outcomes, to look and feel your very best.

What is your Wellness Philosophy?

Wellness is a holistic philosophy that encompasses the environment, lifestyle, mental and spiritual well-being. It is a conscious, and evolving process of achieving one’s full potential. It is self-empowerment and the pursuit of the passions of one’s life, the core essence that enhances more than just the skin.

How is the doctor’s method different from other holistic or alternative health practitioners?  

The “method” addresses the most common associated concerns of skin issues, some of which include digestion, stress, sleep disturbances, fatigue,—imbalance problems that are typically misunderstood/misdiagnosed by conventional medicine that attempts to address the symptoms, not the underlying root cause or effected systems.

The “method” is a lab-based natural protocol that tests and identifies the dysfunction of the core main body systems. Typically these main systems have become compromised long BEFORE the symptoms appear. The lab tests are used to determine the required natural support needed to assist in rebalancing your body to its more natural and normal state.

We use scientific, objective testing, in our analysis and recommendations and we strive to produce measurable results. We get great results because we test and use objective testing methods to see what is needed and how well your progressing and succeeding.

Our unique root-cause Holistic skin-care approach is usually best suited for the patient whose skin condition(s) is resistant to conventional therapies, or for the patient who prefers to limit exposure to pharmaceuticals; our approach, uses diagnostics and subsequent recommendations based on principles of Functional Medicine and offers alternatives for skin-care, focusing on the unique bio-chemistry and biology of each patient.

We are focused on your health concerns, dedicated to you and the clinical outcomes we may deliver for you, and passionate about our work in getting you the outcomes you want, need and expect.

We’re different because we offer effective all-natural protocol(s) focused on skin science with a holistic approach that actually works.

What is Integrative Functional Medicine and Holistic Skin-care?

The skin is the largest organ of the body and if not seen as part of the overall health and wellness of an individual, important areas of a person’s health may be overlooked—areas that are necessary for the skin to manifest healthy radiance.  At its core, integrative skin-care means seeing the skin as part of that greater whole which comprises our body, and not just as an isolated or separate organ – both affecting and being effected by the disruptions of internal health. Holistic skin-care puts emphasis on deficiencies or imbalances in nutrition, diet, life-style, environmental–external or internal–toxic exposures and hormonal imbalances. The focus is on caring for the individual’s unique health-care needs, and that person as a whole, not just a skin condition in isolation.  Unfortunately, Western medicine today treats different parts of a person’s body as if they are separate, or disassociated from the rest of their body.  However, we are one body with many interconnected systems, including a strong mind-body connection. In order to properly address your skin concern(s), we have to address your gut or immune dysfunction—among other things.  Your skin, is connected with all of the other systems in your body.

Functional Medicine, rather than targeting individual symptoms, focuses on the optimal functioning of the entire body and its organs. It addresses the underlying causes of disease, using a systems-oriented approach in partnership with understanding the conditions and history in which the issues manifested.  Genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors all have a direct influence on long-term skin dis-eases and chronic health issues. Examples include acne, eczema, psoriasis, atopic dermatitis and many others. Many internal inflammatory states and hormonal imbalances can cause or trigger, or at the very least contribute greatly to these skin issues.

Functional Medicine views skin issues as an observable symptom or sign of underlying imbalances.  With a Functional Medicine approach to skin issues, we work closely with our patient/client, in order to identify these underlying imbalances, and then to implement a tailored protocol to balance your system accordingly.  Identifying and addressing the underlying causes, rather than just managing the symptoms of skin conditions, helps to improve your experience of living and dealing with the issues associated with your skin, and lift your overall health in a very satisfying and sustainable manner.

Some common root causes to chronic skin conditions include:

  • Increased inflammation (acute or chronic)
  • Chronic infection, or imbalance in the micro-biomes of the body, e.g.-bacteria, virus, yeast, and parasites, in the skin microbiome, in the gut microbiome, in the mouth, nose or throat, or other places in the body
  • A weakened immune system
  • High toxic loads – or inefficient or insufficient detoxification
  • Chronic constipation
  • Vitamin, mineral or phytonutrient needs that aren’t being met
  • Genetic factors that predispose to certain un-wanted tendencies that can be compensated for to achieve better life out-comes
  • Hormone imbalances
  • Histamine sensitivity
  • Sensitivities or reactivity (commonly referred to as “allergies”) to environmental factors, foods or drinks
  • Gastrointestinal issues and associated conditions, such as:  Small Intestine Bacterial Over-growth, Small Intestine Fungal Over-growth, Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Why should I try something different from conventional medicine?

Many people find conventional medical care suits their needs, which is great– it can be effective and cost efficient for many conditions. However, if you suffer from a chronic skin condition and you aren’t satisfied with the outcomes you are getting, or you don’t want to use medications or drugs, you might want to try a root cause natural approach.

Do I need a free 15-minute consultation before booking an appointment?

Yes, it is important that we speak prior to a first formal consultation to determine if we are a good fit for each other.  First, we want to see if our services are appropriate for you and hold sufficient value for you to undertake this journey with us.  If so, we will go over what you can reasonably expect from us and what we reasonably expect from you.  Please note that we cannot give clinical recommendations until a direct care relationship has been established with a patient/client, and no specific advice will be given during the 15-minute free consultation.

As a patient, will I need skin-care coaching?

Coaching is not required, however patients that engage in our skincare coaching see the most remarkable progress that occurs at an accelerated pace.

In contrast, those that do not access our coaching services have a harder time, and have slower progress that can be very frustrating.  Coaching support and guidance is highly recommended to get more rapid relief, and achieve longer-term results. The #1 reason most people are not successful with regimens is they can’t stick with them.  A skincare coach is an educator, motivator, supporter and cheerleader that holds you connected, engaged and accountable to yourself.

Our coach is a certified expert who can assist you in how to evaluate your skin care products, provide personalized recommendations, and support you in further crafting your program tailoring it to your lifestyle, skin health needs, and goals.  Your coach will also provide a wealth of educational resources to help you better understand your skin, its needs, and to have better outcomes—what you want, need, and expect.

There is no one size fits all, one-sided advice, nor such thing as a quick fix. We are each, one-of-a-kind that’s why everything we do is tailored to meet your very unique needs. For that reason, Dr. Rodriguez and Coach Annie offer a unique skin-care experience combining effective all-natural protocols focused on skin science with a holistic approach that actually works, together with coaching that will encourage and empower you to re-gain self-confidence and self-love, so that you, can be YOU!

Working with a Clinician and a Coach concurrently you’ll gain better overall health, establishing a better and more harmonious balance between physicalmental, and emotional health. These aspects of our well-being are not isolated; rather, they are intricately intertwined, it’s not merely about accomplishing clear and healthy skin, but also about feeling positive and reclaiming your self-love and control over your life.

Learn more about our skin-care coaching

What is the best way to schedule an appointment?

It’s easy! Just call us at 786-360-6355 to find out when our next available appointment is.

We can schedule your appointment and get you started on your process to clearer more radiant skin. We will send you an email invitation to start your very own, secure, client/patient account on our electronic patient portal platform along with the next steps and detailed instructions.  All our interactions will be done securely and privately via our patient portal.

How quickly can I get an appointment?

We encourage clients to book weeks in advance. Depending on the time of the year, we can usually schedule a new patient appointment within 2 weeks of the requested time depending on availability. However, if in your case a sooner appointment is needed and wanted, we might be able to accommodate you depending on your circumstances and our availability—e.g. sometimes there are changes in schedules that produce earlier openings or different option times for appointments.

What is included with the initial consultation?

Your initial in-depth visit with the doctor will be approximately 90 minutes long, in which time the doctor will establish your starting point for care based on your concerns, medical history, and lifestyle. This comprehensive discovery and evaluation session will determine recommendations for advanced testing.  You will also receive your first personalized actionable plan and the foundational tools you’ll need to begin to address the root cause (or causes) “the why” of your chronic skin condition.

What about follow-up appointments?

All follow-up appointments are predicated based on the results of your functional testing complexity and of your health concerns and issues. Follow-up appointments are essential to support—and make real—your outcomes, to monitor and guide your ongoing progress and success and to provide support for your health concerns and any encountered barriers. The anticipated timeframe is 60 minutes, however, shorter or longer appointments may be needed depending on your progress, the action steps that need to be taken, the number of questions or concerns you have and or if reviewing labs.

The first follow-up appointment (or second visit) usually occurs 10-12 weeks after the initial visit.   At this time, we will review your lab findings.  This will reveal to us the unique items and aspects of your health in relation to your skin, that need to be addressed in order for you to achieve your wanted outcomes.   We will then immediately start the next step in coning down and developing more specific protocols that address the unique underlying causes to your issues.

From this point on, we will check-in, every 8-10 weeks, to see how you are doing, what is working, what is not, what we need to change, if and when needed, and add the next dimension to your over-all protocol, in accordance with the results and findings of your functional lab testing.

How long does it take to get results and I begin to see improvements in my skin?

Results vary by person and each person requires individualized care, the over-all goal is to get your skin healthier sooner rather than later. Some people feel dramatic improvement immediately, others may take a bit longer. We strive to keep you improving on a consistent basis so you can live the life you deserve. Progress is the key and there should be some noticeable improvement that occurs, many times happening within days, some skin issues can be weeks, as skin has a pre-determined rate of growth and correction—once indicated corrections start to occur.  The key is to maintain a correction that can continue to manifest, grow and improve over time.  The goal is to maintain the correction over time, so that the skin can clear and become noticeably radiant.  This requires work on your part, time and maintenance, especially in the beginning, so that the change(s) can become deep-set and more permanent.  The type of satisfying and longer-term changes that we want can occur within about 6 months, sooner for some.  It all depends on whether and how much or how many of the underlying issues you have succeeded in:  1) correcting and (2) maintaining the correction.

How long are the programs or plans recommended?

There is unfortunately no way we can predict how long appropriately addressing your skin concern(s) will take as results vary by person. To better inform your question:  Initial programs range in time depending on the number and degree of your issue(s).  Having said that, generally speaking, skin issues can take 6-9 months to see marked and satisfactory progress.  Once there, it is safe to expect another 4-6 months to reach a stage of stability.  Some will want or need more work to develop better outcomes, after a stable stage has been established.

What are the tools you use to create your plans?

Diet: Learn what foods to eat and what foods you should avoid, when and how much to eat in order to maximize the effectiveness of your unique biochemistry and micro-biomes.

Supplement programs: What exact nutrients you are deficient in and what supplements will have a health benefit for you, which ones won’t or you shouldn’t use, to promote your transition into a healthier body and skin. Lab results for your body systems matched with your clinical presentation enable us to discern what supplements will be supportive in this process.

Movement/Exercise, lifestyle and stress management advice: It is important to establish an appropriate program based on your specific body needs. We suggest lifestyle modifications such as changes to your sleep patterns, water & fiber intake and/or daily work schedule. Examples of stress management vary widely. Some people need more time with family, more sleep, or more connection to their spiritual life.  Chronic stressors, many of which we all commonly experience, are often a major source of our skin health issues and need to be addressed as part of a comprehensive plan to restore health.

Are labs required, and if so, how many?

The number of labs are decided upon, on a case-by-case basis and will depend on your individual situation including the number of issues you struggle with and the length of time you have been experiencing them.  We are very conscientious of the out-of-pocket costs involved with alternative procedures and as such, will discuss this with you prior to ordering any kind of testing or procedure.

What types of lab tests will you order?

There are a variety of different advanced lab tests that can be done to assess your health, at your initial one-on-one appointment, the doctor will decide which tests are most important and in which order they should be done. The goal is not to overwhelm you with data and information, but to use it strategically to guide us in the right direction, toward your path to improved skin health and complete whole-body wellness. Here are some examples of key laboratory exams that may be suggested from your initial consultation:

Urine & Stool, vitamin, mineral, nutrient tests, heavy metals (usually using hair samples), adrenal & hormone (usually using saliva) function tests, genetic tests (using saliva), and food sensitivity tests.  All tests are completed by you through easy test kits that are self-administered in the comfort and privacy of your own home or private space of your choosing.

How much do to the lab tests cost, what laboratories does the doctor use, and why?

The doctor is affiliated with a Lab service which allows him as an appropriately licensed healthcare practitioner to have access to some of the best general and specialty laboratory testing in the world, at wholesale pricing.  As our patient/client, this testing will be available to you, and we pass these savings directly on to you, which is at the most inexpensive wholesale prices available.  The Lab service takes over, in the beginning of the process to support and help you through “doing the testing right” and comfortably guides and ensures for you the best testing experience and gets the lab results to us in a proper and timely manner.  The Lab service charges an administrative fee of 7% to expedite the whole process for you. How much each individual test will cost and what the total fee will be, will be covered, before you approve it.  Having said that, we find that, generally, the up-front cost of testing can be between $270-$900.

How long does it take to get the lab results?

The results of your lab test(s) will be received by us typically 2 to 4 weeks after you’ve mailed your specimens and the lab has received them.  After a complete analysis, proper research and evaluation we will contact you to schedule (if one has not been previously made) a follow up appointment to review your lab results and we will design and recommend the next steps of your protocol, nutritional, lifestyle coaching and plan of treatment based on a thorough interpretation.  A complete report will be provided to you at that time.

Can I order my own test(s) through the laboratories or can my primary care doctor order the lab tests for me?

We use specific lab tests that exclusively (or primarily) offer functional medicine tests. Conventional medicine-based tests are not typically helpful for these types of highly specialized functional tests. Having said that, on a case by case, the doctor might want a specific type of blood panel which you can request through your Primary Care Provider.  In addition, conventional blood test results ordered by your primary care doctor, especially if they are very recent (within the last 3 months), may be valuable.

How often should I retest if testing is recommended?

While re-testing isn’t always required, we might recommend that you retest, to measure improvement, adjust protocols, or address a particular barrier, if and as needed. Once a client has achieved their desired results, we might recommend annual testing to ensure your body systems continue functioning at their best. The specifics of this are totally determined by your particular issue(s) or personal needs. We want and support you in having verifiable outcomes.

Fee Schedule:

All sessions/services are timed

New patient initial Discovery and Comprehensive Assessment via TeleHealth: $550.00 (duration 90 minutes)

Follow-up TeleHealth appointments with Dr. Rodriguez:

30 minutes: $185.00

60 minutes: $370.00

Lab Panel Analysis/Research/Interpretation/Creation of Report & Plan(s) – doctor’s time for this service: $275.00

Session to Review Lab Panel Results-Recommendations & Plan Based on These Findings – The Next Steps 30-60 mins: $95.00

Doctor’s regular fee: $6.09/min

Holistic Health and Wellness Coaching session with our Certified Coach: $2.75/min

2nd Opinion Functional Review of (patient’s own) Blood Test Analytes Assessment & Recommendations: $65.00

All appointments are invoiced according to the duration spent. If the appointment runs longer than the allotted time, the charge will be adjusted as appropriate.  Supplements and doctor’s formulations (eg–Herbals/Botanicals) that are custom-made or sourced from the doctor’s personal dispensary; may be included with the consultation invoice or invoiced separately.

Payment forms that we accept include:  Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express and Care Credit. Clients/Patients are required to have a valid credit card on file, your credit card information will remain encrypted in the credit card processing system and will be charged when services are rendered.  You will be provided with a detailed invoice when funds are collected.   

Cancellations, no-shows or Missed Appointments

If you need to cancel or reschedule your appointment, please contact us at least 24 business hours before your scheduled appointment time. If your appointment is on a Monday, the cancellation must be made by the same hour on the preceding Friday.

All of our appointment times are reserved specifically for you, as a courtesy we send you reminders via text and email to remind you of the appointment. For this reason, we ask that you please notify our office at least 24 hours in advance of your scheduled appointment time, if you are not able to keep the appointment. This allows us sufficient time to notify another patient needing our care that an appointment time has come available. If we are not available to speak to directly, we do have a 24-hour voice messaging system where you can leave a communication regarding changing your appointment. If we are not given 24 hours advance notice of cancellation or if the appointment is missed entirely it will be considered a no-show—we reserve the right to charge a $45.00 broken appointment fee.

Do you offer in-person in office consultations?

No, direct in person consultations will occur through our secured virtual office consultation space (telehealth or telemedicine) using computer video on our electronic health records systems which is HIPAA compliant.

How does a telehealth visit work?

Appointments are conducted over secure video or phone.  You’ll receive the same services and benefits as in office, except instead of consulting face to face you’ll do so over the video conference. Much like any video conference you may have experienced through Skype, Zoom or Apple FaceTime, but it is protected and secure under HIPAA standards. Telehealth is a convenient and easy way to access care from a distance, at convenient times and in a comfortable environment for you. Working with us virtually has never been easier than with telehealth.

We have been guiding patients towards optimal health for more than four decades—we have found that modern telehealth conferencing is truly life changing. Instead of having to travel to the doctor’s office and sitting in a waiting room, before waiting to see the doctor in a cubicle, you simply activate the conference call on your phone or tablet when it’s time for your appointment. Our cutting-edge telehealth service offers our patients 2-way video conferences. So, you can easily have access to a customized health plan to keep you and your family healthy!

Benefits of Telehealth:

  • You can skip the waiting room and meet with us.
  • Ability to work with us without having to travel. No time inconveniences or travel expenses.
  • Interactive and easy to use.
  • Enjoy the comfort and convenience of your own home or office or private space.
  • Accommodates your busy schedule.
  • No need for child care or take time off from work.
  • No exposure to others, limiting the exposure to contagious diseases like the common flu or COVID.
  • Complete care. Specialized testing. Easy supplement ordering.
  • Increased privacy secured and HIPAA, GDPR, PHIPA/PIPEDA, & HITECH compliant.

What kind of supplements does the doctor recommend?

We are committed to using only the highest-grade herbal and nutritional supplements that come directly from either concentrated whole foods, clean animal or vegetable sources or clinical-grade whole herbs. This ensures optimization of health through safe, effective and clinically reproducible and dependable products.

Where can I buy supplements?

Ordering will be as easy as the click of a button, and turn-around time after an order is made is very quick (most times within 2-3 days). Fullscript our on-line dispensary is available to our active patients at the doctor’s discount of 15%, so you will be entitled to very significant savings on all products recommended through the Fullscript dispensary.  

We also carry our own unique herbal product dispensary that will fill in with special or unique products that you might need; especially if very specific customization is needed or required in your own unique case.

There are some particular topical products, that can be safe, useful and inexpensive to buy through on-line companies–that we have no affiliation with—that might be appropriate for your particular protocol to use, and in this case, we will let you know clearly what those products will be, where and when to get and use them.

Do you bill my insurance company and are supplements covered?

No, we do not bill insurance companies directly nor do we participate in Medicare or Medicaid. It is up to each individual to determine whether their insurance plan provides coverage for consultations, lab tests and supplements.  Generally speaking, insurance companies do not cover whole person wellness care—or “preventative care” or “alternative care”. However, in some cases and depending on your benefits certain services might be covered. Some Health Savings Accounts (HSA) or Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) funds will cover labs, herbal, and nutritional supplements. Check with your individual fund, your specific account administrator or consult a tax professional for personalized guidance and the particulars of your specific plan details to confirm. Please note that we do not and cannot guarantee reimbursement nor do we communicate with insurance companies on behalf of our patients. If you believe your plan covers labs or supplements, you can submit for a claim; it is the patient’s responsibility to work with his/her insurance company regarding reimbursement.

Please note the doctor is a provider for Care Credit. Care Credit helps pay for out-of-pocket healthcare expenses. You can use it to help manage health, wellness and beauty costs not covered by insurance.

I’m a patient, where can I access my records? How can I communicate with you?

As an active patient you will be provided with access to your secured patient portal where you will have access to your record(s), be able to view your protocol(s), resources, other documents, and communicate with us in a HIPAA compliant platform where all of your information will be safe.  The electronic health records (EHR is a HIPAA compliant platform) patient portal has its own app, which you will be able to add to your phone or access through your desk-top computer.