Elena Hanyo Dakin Perez, Licensed Acupuncturist (L.Ac), M.S.T.C.M., has been studying Chinese medicine for over twenty years, beginning in 2002 at the Acupressure Institute in Berkeley and then at the Academy of Chinese Culture and Health Sciences (ACCHS) in Oakland, where she completed her Masters Degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine in 2016. She began her exploration of traditional healing systems at U.C. Berkeley, studying Sociocultural Anthropology, with an emphasis on Medical Anthropology. Elena remains engaged in continuing her education as part of the Doctorate program at ACCHS- specializing in Advanced Orthopedics and Pain Management, as well as Classical Chinese Herbology Jing Fang. She has also undertaken a doctoral course at ACTCM at CIIS in San Francisco, deepening her integrative medicine training, particularly around oncology and immunology.
Chinese Medicine is able to address a myriad of symptoms in that it provides a specialized lens to understand the body’s processes from a unique paradigm. Every sign and symptom is part of a pattern which details overall excesses and deficiencies in certain areas, and the treatments are tailored to treat not just the branch (symptom) but also the root (cause). Many of her patients come in with physical pain issues and get relief from various other symptoms that they didn’t expect to resolve by this modality. She has experienced great results in assisting patients dealing with issues such as sciatica, low back pain, neck and shoulder pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, digestive issues (Crohn’s and IBSD), PTSD, depression, anxiety, peripheral neuropathy, trigger finger, fibromyalgia, dysmenorrhea, Bell’s palsy, and more. Her passion includes emotional health- as our bodies are not separate from our minds and spirit, physical wellbeing promotes emotional alignment, and vice versa.
In her treatments she combines acupuncture, bodywork (specifically tui na massage), moxibustion (burning the herb Artemesia Vulgaris, mugwort, on or near specific points), cupping, gua sha, herbal formulas, and acupressure, depending on the patients needs and observed patterns. She is able to accept many PPO insurance plans for her services. She sees patients in Downtown Fresno at Benessere Fresno, and also practiced in San Francisco's Inner Sunset District at Dance with Life Chiropractic Wellness Center, and is currently on hiatus from her practice in the city.
In order to better serve her patients who often inquire about meditation techniques and spiritual questions, Elena chose to deepen her understanding of a philosophical approach to Buddhism. She embarked on a course of study with the Bright Dawn Center for Oneness Buddhism, which approaches Buddhism not as a religion that one accepts over and above one's prior religious identity, but rather as a tool through which one can ameliorate the inevitable pain and suffering encountered through life. This approach is aligned with how the Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hanh speak of Buddhism as spiritual guidance, not a religion. In this way it can be useful to people of all identities as they navigate their life paths. After 2 years of study and practice Elena Hanyo was ordained as a lay minister in May 2020 and now helps to coordinate the 15th Lay Minister cohort. Starting with the shelter-in-place order, she began leading meditation groups via zoom- first daily, now three times a week, a free service to help support the mental health and spiritual wellness of the broader community.