East-West Rheumatology and
Direct Physician Care

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East-West Rheumatology is a clinic founded by Dr. Yousef Zarbalian with a mission of delivering a holistic model of medical care and redefining the physician-patient relationship. Dr. Z empowers his patients to take a multifaceted approach to autoimmune disease, inflammation, and chronic pain among many other conditions. 
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East-West Medicine

Our Philosophy

A holistic view of you as a person and your health needs

  • Centered on reaching your health goals rather than a disease-centered approach

Shared decision-making on diagnostic testing and treatment

Emphasis on non-pharmaceutical approaches 

  • Dietary modification and herbal medicine to effect the microbiome and manage dysbiosis, a root cause in many autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.
  • Acupuncture and Cupping to address the autonomic nervous system (dysautonomia) as well as the structural component of many musculoskeletal conditions.
  • Lifestyle changes: mindbody medicine techniques, such as Qigong, Biofeedback (Heartmath®), and meditation 
  • Group exercise: Community Qigong sessions listed at our eventbrite page : https://www.eventbrite.com/o/east-west-rheumatology-27546127515

Reduce the intrusion of insurance companies and drug companies into medical decision-making and care ( see “Direct Physician Care“)


DR.Yousef Zarbalian, MD

Dr. Zarbalian or “Dr. Z” chose medicine as a profession because of his innate empathy for human suffering, as well as his passion for life-long learning. These two impulses found their home first in internal medicine residency training, followed by rheumatology subspecialty training.  

After three years of experience in a rheumatology clinic seeing hundreds of patients struggling despite state-of-the-art western medicine, Dr. Zarbalian decided to expand his expertise in holistic medical care.

In 2019, Dr. Zarbalian made his next step in his evolution as a healer: provide an environment where his unique skill set in immunology, western pharmacology and herbalism, and medical acupuncture could be offered to his community.  

East-West Rheumatology opened its doors in 2019 and has already made a significant impact on many patients with common rheumatologic conditions that often elude standard western medical approaches.

Outside of medicine, Dr. Zarbalian has a passion for musical performance, nature, and literature. He sings and plays the setar, a 4-stringed Persian lute instrument. 

Dr. Zarbalian’s reviews:



Dr. Zarbalian’s service work:

Arlington Free Clinic 

Medical school

Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine

Fellowship, Rheumatology

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

Residency, Internal Medicine

University of Maryland Medical Center

Fellowship, Herbal medicine

 Association for the Advancement of Restorative medicine (AARM)

Medical acupuncture training

The Helms Medical Institute, Acupuncture for Physicians


Nevin Turk L.Ac.

Nevin is a Virginia Board of Medicine and Nationally Certified Licensed Acupuncturist. She received her Master of Acupuncture degree from the Virginia University of Integrative Medicine.

Nevin has benefited greatly from Traditional Chinese Medicine and acupuncture throughout her stressful corporate career in the past and decided to study and practice this medicine. Career transition into TCM was a natural progression of her passion in integrative mindbody practices. 

She has been a long-time practitioner of meditation and integrative movement. She is a certified yoga instructor (Kripalu), qigong (Institute of Integral Qigong and Tai Chi), and mindfulness meditation (MMTCP, led by Jack Kornfield and Tara Brach).   She has had regular classes and training through different yoga studios and the Public Library in NOVA since 2013. She is also a Level 1 certified Internal Family Systems (IFS) practitioner and IFS-based life coach

Nevin brings a wealth of caring and insights from her years of studies in different healing and wellness modalities to her acupuncture practice. Nevin’s primary focus areas are but are not limited to:

  • General health and stress management: improving energy, sleep, memory, stress reduction, anxiety, depression
  • Pain management: including low back pain, neck pain, knee pain, etc. and migraines
  • Female infertility: Support for with or without IVF or other reproductive technologies
  • Preventive acupuncture: utilizing acupuncture as a preventative therapy for a whole host of conditions, including immune system support


Many research studies show that acupuncture is one of the safest and most powerful ways to promote your body’s outstanding self-restoring capacity and generate a balanced state in the body and mind. Nevin is excited to be supporting those seeking an integrative support for physical and mental-emotional wellbeing, including life style and nutrition recommendations and mindfulness interventions. Nevin offers acupuncture, cupping, moxibustion and Chinese massage tuina.

Recognition And Awards

We’re honored to be recognized for quality of care, safety and environmental
excellence. Some of the awards we’ve received include:
​Discover the key facts and figures behind Eastwestmd
Patients Served Since 2018
Volunteer Doctors Support
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Please see the about section for more information about Dr. Zarbalian’s multifaceted experience in internal medicine, rheumatology, acupuncture, and herbalism.  

As a physician board-certified in internal medicine and rheumatology with additional expertise in acupuncture and herbal medicine, Dr. Yousef Zarbalian is uniquely qualified to provide comprehensive medical care for a wide variety of medical conditions.  There are many medical conditions for which modern rheumatology has limited treatment options.  The ability to look through a different lens (traditional medicine which includes acupuncture, nutritional modification, and herbal medicine) at each person’s unique condition opens up options which would not even be considered in a standard western medical clinic.  We can provide the best of both approaches (western pharmacology as well as holistic modalities) to our patients. 


For those who have insurance, we provide you with a bill to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement.  All of Dr. Zarbalian’s prescriptions and orders are honored by insurance and our office will complete prior authorizations on your behalf.

For those who don’t have insurance, the membership plan gives you excellent access to an excellent physician (see more info above).  Dr. Zarbalian can also provide you with significantly discounted pricing on self-pay labs through Sunrise labs and self-pay prices for imaging through local imaging centers.

Dr. Zarbalian started East-West Rheumatology to deliver personalized, time-intensive care, and because private insurance imposes administrative burdens that are a hindrance to good medical care, Dr. Zarbalian opted to be out-of-network with ALL private insurances.

​Other rheumatology offices do not offer a multi-faceted approach to rheumatologic care in part because the doctor only has 10 minutes to spend with you. Our clinic does not operate with such time restrictions and therefore we do not operate with strategies limited to medications.

We do participate with Medicare (but not medicare advantage). 

Medicare is now covering acupuncture for indication of lower back pain.  

Please refer to the Packages / Membership page which also lists a la carte pricing.

The direct physician care model is a growing model of care that acknowledges that the care we provide should not be dictated by an insurance company. The most appropriate medical care for an individual should be based on the trusting relationship that a physician and patient/family can build in combination with the best available evidence.

Because we spend less time dealing with the rules of insurers and more time with you, our patients can expect prompter appointments, more time for visits, and addressing your health in a way that is right for you rather than for your insurer.

Services included with packages or membership can be found here.  

We can generally accommodate new patient appointments on much shorter notice than other rheumatology offices (from same-day appointments to 2 weeks out). 

For follow-up patients, we are able to provide next-day appointments (either telemedicine or in-person) in most cases.