Jacob Mirman was 13 years old and living in Russia when he knew he had to be a doctor. He participated in a group at Leningrad Pediatric Medical School, where kids were introduced to medicine. “It was not a decision to be made but more of a realization that could not be argued with,” says Mirman, now a physician at Life Clinic in St. Louis Park.
Mirman’s family eventually immigrated to Minnesota, where he studied at the University of Minnesota School of Medicine. He went on to study in London and Arizona before finally landing back in Minnesota. The area’s large Russian population may have been an attraction, and it is what brought Mirman to St. Louis Park to set up practice. In the early 1990s, all of the clinic staff was of Russian heritage. Word spread about the great care, and soon many other groups came looking for healing at the clinic.
“Helping immigrants with their needs actually became one of our specialties, so we help people with their immigration medical requirements as well as whatever else they may need to help them with their integration into American society,” he says. “We have a map on the wall of our waiting room where people from different countries put red dots on the place where they came from.”
Lee Ann Gustafson has been seeing Mirman for more than 15 years. “Dr. Mirman is a very caring doctor who is willing to take the time to listen to patients to get to the core of the problem.” She says Mirman has even seen patients via Skype, adding that what makes him special is that “he’s very good at follow-up and checks in to make sure the treatments are working.”
Alternative and Complementary Medicine
Life Medical Clinic is an integrative primary-care clinic specializing in alternative/complementary medicine. Areas include: primary-care medicine, chiropractic, physical therapy, pain management, mental health services (in multiple languages), functional medicine, nutrition, weight management, acupuncture, homeopathy, naturopathic medicine and prolotherapy.
“What people commonly think of as ‘alternative and complementary medicine’ is what we think of as real medicine,” says Mirman. “For us, the conventional medicine most people see as mainstream is but a complementary modality which is often helpful but usually not deeply curative.” Mirman and his staff use the conventional drugs “as they should be used: to tide a person over until whatever real healing modality is used takes deep-enough hold to discontinue the drug.”
Mirman describes the wide range of patients he sees: a Somali patient with PTSD looking for kindness and understanding, an elderly patient with back pain, a Parkinson’s patient who realizes his health is declining with conventional treatment, an athlete who sustained an injury and is looking for non-surgical healing.
“Sometimes conventional medicine is the most efficient method to help the patient, sometimes it’s chiropractic or physical therapy,” he says. “Some people are looking for really deep healing not possible with any modality outside homeopathy. In some cases, a combination of methods is what will do the trick.”
And what about hopes for the future at this St. Louis Park clinic? Mirman speaks not of himself but for those who seek help. “Every patient has their hopes. I am here to help them fulfill them.”