FAQ

What type of medicine does Dr. Nicola practice?

Dr. Nicola practices functional medicine, which is a type of medicine that assesses the function of various organs and systems within the body, aiming to find the underlying cause of a person’s health issues, rather than simply focusing on medicating a particular disease or symptom.

The areas she looks at depend on the individual case, but often include digestive function, hormone balance, food allergies and sensitivities, immune function and toxicity levels. Imbalances in any of these systems can cause health problems regardless of how they manifest, so correcting such imbalances is fundamental to restoring your health.

What types of conditions does she treat?

Dr. Nicola treats a wide variety of conditions, including autistic-spectrum disorders, ADHD, menopause, infertility, eating disorders, fibromyalgia, IBS, autoimmune disorders, Lyme disease, depression/ anxiety and much more.

Regardless of the diagnosis or symptom picture, she uses the consistent approach of finding underlying imbalances that could be driving the disease process.

What diagnostic methods does Dr. Nicola use?

She uses sophisticated functional diagnostic laboratory testing to get a compete picture of your health. Some of the tests she recommends are based on saliva, hair, urine or stool samples, which can be done in the privacy of your home. Sometimes she will recommend blood tests if she feels that the information is necessary to your case, and in this situation Dr. Nicola’s office will assist you in finding a local laboratory to have your blood drawn.

What costs are involved?

Consultation fees are $325 per hour. How much laboratory testing is recommended will vary, but a range of $200 – $1000 is common.

Does Dr. Nicola accept insurance?

No, payment for your visit is required at time of service, however it may be possible to provide you with a “superbill”, or medical receipt, for you to submit to your insurance company afterwards. To do this Dr. Nicola must have seen you face-to-face at least once.

What can I expect at my first visit?

Prior to your first visit, you will be provided with intake paperwork to fill out, including a health questionnaire. It is preferred that you return that to Dr. Nicola at least 2 days prior to your initial appointment, so that she has a chance to review it prior to speaking with you. Your first visit will typically be one hour in length. During this time, Dr. Nicola will gather a lot of information about your case, including, but not limited to, the history of your illness, relevant family history, current diet and exercise programs, and any medications or supplements you might be taking. Based on the information gathered, she will make recommendations for relevant laboratory testing. She may also prescribe an initial treatment plan, or make recommendations on your diet or other lifestyle factors. Dr. Nicola will explain the rationale for her recommendations to you, so that you understand, and are involved in, the process.

After that initial visit you will gather the samples needed for the lab tests and submit them to the lab. When we receive the results of the labs, we will contact you and schedule a lab review appointment, at which time Dr. Nicola will go through all the test results with you, and further develop your treatment plan.

Follow up visits are usually 15-30 minutes in length.

Do I have to come into the office every time?

No, Dr. Nicola offers the convenient alternative of telephone consultations. This means that she can help people in other parts of the country and the world. But even if you live here in San Diego, it may still be more convenient for you to do your consultations by phone from home or work. International patients must call in to the office at their designated appointment time, and will be responsible for telephone charges.

Please be aware, however, that Dr. Nicola is not allowed to write prescriptions for pharmaceutical medications, nor provide you with a superbill for insurance reimbursement, if she has not seen you face-to-face at least once.

What makes Dr. Nicola’s approach unique?

Many doctors will try to help you by removing the symptoms you experience, without addressing the underlying cause of your problem. Dr. Nicola’s goal is to get to the bottom of what is causing your health problems, and help you optimize your health potential. She also spends a considerable amount of time with you at each visit, so that you really develop a relationship with her. You and Dr. Nicola will be working as a team in improving your health. She is professional, caring, and open-minded.

How do I make an appointment?

If you have decided to take this important next step in regaining optimal health, the next step is to contact (619) 546 4065 or email info@drnicola.com and schedule your appointment. We will get your new patient paperwork to you by email, mail or fax so that you can return it to us in adequate time.

Congratulations on taking this important step towards optimal health. Dr. Nicola looks forward to welcoming you.