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There is an affliction that affects more than half of American males, and seven of 10 men over the age of 70. But many men suffer in secret rather than talk about it, much less seek treatment for it.

The subject is erectile dysfunction, or ED.

However, a new medical practice in Orange City, Hardwood Health, is taking the pain out of having the conversation by being the only ED clinic in the area to offer free, virtual appointments, helping to decrease the anxiety associated with the sensitive topic.

Partner and Chief Marketing Officer Jeff Higgins admitted the name of the practice is a bit of a play on words.

“From the beginning, we wanted to make this a subject that’s easier to address, not to make fun of anyone’s situation,” Higgins said.

Higgins’ partners are Jerrod Williams, who came up with the concept after opening other kinds of medical clinics, and Kim Denoff, owner of Advanced Imaging, the radiology practice that also is home to Hardwood Health.

The practice has just begun seeing patients, Higgins said.

What makes Hardwood Health different is that treatment involves Regenerative Wave Therapy (RWT), a revolutionary, painless, FDA-approved process to repair the soft tissue and improve blood circulation by using painless acoustic energy waves — no surgery, no needles, and no recovery time while treating the actual physiological cause of ED.

Developed in Switzerland, the noninvasive process has been approved for the treatment of erectile dysfunction in more than 20 countries, including China and Canada, and throughout Europe and South America, according to a news release.

The release also says a series of studies published in the journal Therapeutic Advances in Urology found that RWT improved sexual function in most of their study subjects without causing pain and/or adverse reactions.

More explicit information about RWT and the treatments it replaces can be found at www.hardwoodhealth.com.

A Hardwood Health patient starts with a virtual consultation by a male medical technologist, Steve Beltran. If he determines RWT treatment is appropriate, Beltran schedules the treatment sessions. Treatment typically requires about a half-dozen sessions, depending on the severity of the case, Higgins said.

Family-practice physician Dr. John Hill oversees the medical staff, which also includes three nurse practitioners.

Higgins wouldn’t say how much treatments cost, but he said Hardwood Health offers payment plans. Unfortunately, treatment probably is not covered by most health insurance, so patients should check with their insurers.

Higgins and his partners are excited about opening Hardwood Health and hope to help many men resume their love lives.

“Any medical issue is a process,” he said. “The whole point is to be light about it. It’s a serious problem, but it doesn’t have to be so heavy.”

Hardwood Health is inside Advanced Imaging, 1639 N. Volusia Ave. in Orange City. For more information, call 386-295-7334 or email info@hardwoodhealth.com.

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