Michael Stecher, MD
My interest in medicine started at a young age through a love of science and an interest in solving complicated problems. After a short time in practice though, I realized that management of chronic disease in the traditional model was very frustrating and unfruitful. As a clinician, I felt that I was rarely addressing the underlying cause of a problem but rather treating symptoms in an attempt to delay progression of the disease.
I have worked in primary care, the emergency room, urgent care clinics, and in research, but my interest has always come back to the world of Functional Medicine. I was drawn to the functional medicine model because it emphasizes the same approach that I would want a physician to take if they were treating me—a personalized, precise approach. This involves taking the time to understand each patient as a unique individual and taking into account their expectations such as recovery goals and treatment regimens. All the while seeking the root cause of their ailment.
This scenario became very personal for me when my wife was diagnosed with a serious autoimmune condition. She wanted relief from her symptoms, but she was concerned about the potential long-term side effects of conventional medical therapies. Over the course of several months, we were able to control her symptoms solely through food planning and lifestyle. It was amazing! Seeing this firsthand was very powerful. It convinced me that chronic disease could be effectively treated with a personalized, integrative approach–and in many cases without medications!
In addition to being board certified in Family Medicine, my areas of interest include autoimmune and rheumatologic conditions, gastrointestinal disease, orthopedics, and sports medicine. I am currently enrolled in the Institute for Functional Medicine certification program and I expect to obtain my certification by 2019.
I attended Kansas State University as an undergraduate, and I obtained my medical degree from Kansas University Medical Center. I have lived in Austin since 2002. I completed my Family Medicine residency at Austin Medical Education Program (now University of Texas Austin Dell Medical School) where I was Chief Resident during my third year of training.
In my free time I enjoy spending time with my wife and children, camping, fishing, and staying physically active by practicing martial arts. He currently holds two black belts, one in Okinawan Goju Ryu Karate and one in Hankuk Haidong Gumdo.