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Natural Awakenings South Central Pennsylvania

Capstone Medical Associates: Combining Traditional and Alternative Medicine

Jun 30, 2011 11:13AM ● By Beth Davis

Dr. Jeff Backenstoes

Throughout his life, Dr. Jeff Backenstoes has illustrated what results when a curious mind is combined with a passion to solve problems and truly help others. That blend gave Backenstoes what he needed to open his private practice, Capstone Medical Associates (CMA), in 2001, and it continues to be the driving force behind his current and future work of establishing a comprehensive wellness center that aims to create complete, lifelong health for every patient.

Even as a kid, Backenstoes was always intrigued with how things worked. He loved science and biology and says it was during his seventh grade science class that he realized he wanted to be a doctor. He stuck with this path, eventually earning his degree as an osteopathic physician from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. He also completed an internal medicine specialty track internship and an internal medicine residency at Suburban General Hospital.

In 1997, working as an osteopathic internist at a private practice in Lebanon, Backenstoes quickly realized that he wanted the opportunity to run his own practice. In 2001, Backenstoes found the right situation and opened Capstone Medical Associates in Lebanon, with his wife Kim by his side as the practice administrator. “Because Kim and I had ultimate control,” explains Backenstoes, “we didn’t need anybody else’s approval, which allowed us to build the kind of practice we wanted . . . and inch closer to our dream of establishing a comprehensive wellness center.”

Shortly after opening his own practice, Backenstoes was still frustrated by the number of patients who were suffering from ailments that were not responding to the traditional treatment methods, upon which all of his medical training had been based. He began to introduce alternative methods of treatment and has since incorporated them into his practice. “Many physicians are so influenced by the pharmaceutical industry that it is difficult to be open-minded about alternative or integrative medicine,” he says. “I am dedicated to my patients’ overall health and wellness, and therefore have chosen to take an approach that utilizes both traditional and alternative medicine to achieve optimal health.”

CMA, which relocated to Palmyra in December 2010, treats patients ages 12 and over for both acute and chronic illnesses and provides a variety of clinical services, including geriatric medicine, pulse oximetry, spirometry and genetic testing. The latest services to be introduced are testing for and management of adrenal fatigue and salivary hormone testing for the prescription and management of bio-identical hormones.

“... a comprehensive wellness center that encompasses fitness, education, chiropractic, acupuncture, massage therapy and of course, internal medicine.” ~Dr. Jeff Backenstoes

Backenstoes says educating patients is a key component of his practice. “Because we take a wellness approach, it is important for us that we provide the tools and guidelines necessary to implement lifestyle changes.” In line with this educational, lifestyle approach, CMA offers customized, genetic-based nutritional counseling and supplementation, wellness seminars and weight management classes.

Dedication to his patients is certainly one aspect that separates Backenstoes from other physicians. Motivated by patients that still come to him with unresolved issues, he has enrolled in a master’s program in metabolic and nutritional medicine and a fellowship training program in anti-aging, regenerative and functional medicine. Only eight physicians nationwide currently hold these degrees. “We often face situations wherein all the studies and tests for the patient are normal, but there may be underlying issues,” he explains. “This training will provide me with the education I need to help my patients restore health.”

As for the future of the practice, Backenstoes says that he and Kim have very specific goals about where they want the practice to go and how they can help it evolve. “Our vision is a comprehensive wellness center that encompasses fitness, education, chiropractic, acupuncture, massage therapy and of course, internal medicine.”

Capstone Medical Associates is located at 101 W. Cherry Street, First Floor, in Palmyra. For more information, call 717-838-0900 or visit

October 2019